Author's Note: For those of you new to the Blog, I should explain that Granola Prose is a cereal, uh, serial of sorts. It is a fantasy tale told in the form of blog post installments. Having been gone from the Blog for some time, it has finally returned and this post is the latest chapter. If you care to catch up on what you have missed, check out the handy Granola Prose links on the sidebar.
Some Years Later...
The Writer stood in his bathroom, feet tingling on the cold linoleum, and stared into the mirror. His reflection stared back, haggard and shocking. Sadness filled the Writer, causing a tear to escape from the corner of his eye. It ran down his cheek and rolled into the sink. He caught it just before it disappeared down the drain.
He washed off the eye and put it back into its socket, rolling it around and trying to make it stick. His friends had warned him about purchasing from that glass eye retailer on the Internet, but the prices had been too good to pass up. After all, it’s tough to beat $4.99. And a payment plan.
He thought back to the old days, when his writing was going famously and he had been the proud owner of two original eyeballs. And then the accident had happened, the terrible accident that had robbed him of the eyeball to the left of his right one. It had plunged him into a miserable wretchedness of unhappy sadness and taken away his will to live, his will to write, his will to do anything except eat granola and watch reruns of U.S. Senate proceedings on C-SPAN.
The Writer stood in his bathroom, feet tingling on the damn cold linoleum, and stared into the mirror. His reflection stared back, haggard and shocking. Determination filled the Writer, causing a tear to escape from the corner of his eye. He closed both eyes (just in case) and came to a decision. It was time to start writing again. After all these years, the Granola Prose epic would rise from the ashes like a really shitty phoenix, taking on fate, life, and the American way!
The Writer performed an unsightly pirouette. His white bathrobe swirled open, giving his unsuspecting cat a nasty peek “indoors.” The traumatized animal yowled and ran for the cellar, discovered one did not exist, and then decided to dig one before realizing it would simply be easier to hang itself from a nearby oak tree.*
“Yes, goddammit!” the Writer said aloud. “I am going to WRITE!” He ran to his typewriter and looked around for a piece of paper. “Paper, paper…where’s the fucking paper!” He searched high and low, inside desk drawers and behind the wallpaper…no foolscap to be found. In desperation, he ran to the bathroom and returned with a couple rolls of single-ply toilet tissue. “It’ll have to do!”
He spooled it into the carriage with a flourish and began to type…
Stubs ran blindly into the dark recesses of the cave. Behind him he heard Tony’s screeching and the malevolent quacking of Edward the Duck.
“We’ll find you, dwarf! We’ll search you out! We’ll track you down!”
Stubs ran faster, bumping his head on low-hanging rocks and once falling to all fours, the rough surface of the ground scuffing his hands and knees. Soon, however, all the recent excitement and exertion took its toll and he collapsed, exhausted. He rolled onto his back and listened to the pounding of his heart. The air was heavy this far back in the cave and he struggled to breathe.
“Come out, dwarf,” Tony yelled in a typically antagonistic manner. “We promise not to harm you.” There was a moment of silence and then both Tony and Edward burst into hysterical giggling. “Har har har!”
“Quackle, quackle!” laughed Edward.
“Nah, but seriously, dwarf,” Tony said, his voice echoing throughout the cave chambers. “Make a noise, throw a rock, something…”
Stubs felt a familiar urge growing inside him and he tensed, trying to forestall disaster. He squeezed his eyes shut and tried to concentrate on calm, pleasant things, like rainbows and beer.
The footsteps of his pursuers came suddenly closer and the battle was lost.
“Ah ha!” Tony sounded triumphant. “We’ve got you now! Follow the smell, Edward!”
Stubs pushed to a sitting position and looked around frantically. His eyes probed the darkness, trying to see something, anything that would give him an avenue of escape. Then he saw it: a little point of light down the passage. He heaved to his feet and stumbled forward, hands outstretched to protect from any nasty bumps to the head. As he ran, the point of light became larger and soon he could make out a crack in the rock. It was a window, of sorts! Maybe just large enough to squeeze through! Behind him, Tony and Edward were closing in.
“There he is!” Tony shouted. “We have to stop him!”
“Indeed, sir,” Edward replied. “Uh, I mean, wonk!”
Stubs was almost there. He could feel the cool draft of mountain air on his face. His hands reached outward, fingers grasping for freedom…and then the ground disappeared and he was falling…falling…falling.
The Wife poked her head around the corner. “I thought I heard some typing in here. Finally back at work on your granola story?”
“Epic! And, yes.” Although he didn’t need to, the Writer hit the space bar with extra force just to make his point. He looked back at the Wife imperiously and assumed the stuffy British accent he always used during these occasions. “I have battled through my personal demons at last and decided that the accident, dreadful as it was, should not keep me from my destiny.”
“Whatever.” Obviously fascinated by this account of the Writer’s personal journey, the Wife yawned and stretched. “Anyway, I just stopped by to tell you not to panic if you hear a loud roar and the house starts shaking.”
Accent forgotten, the Writer’s eyes widened and he shuddered. “Your mother is coming!? She was just here!”
“No, no, no! This morning I’m testing the new jet engine I designed out of old house appliance parts.”
“So that’s where my toaster went.”
“And your electric razor, yes. Don’t cry, we’ll get you new ones for Christmas.”
And with that the Wife disappeared around the corner to pursue her destiny. The Writer bent over his typewriter, knowing he should attempt to wrap up this particular plot point before all the racket began.
*In the end, it sought treatment instead and went on to live a happy and fulfilled life of ease.