Monday, August 24, 2015

The Writing Prompt Boot Camp: Day Three

In an effort to battle the evil tempter, Mara, the creator of procrastination, I've decided to take matters into my own hands. A quick Google search uncovered The Writing Prompt Boot Camp: Two Weeks of Craft, Creativity, and Discipline, a free PDF from Writer's Digest.

For the next few weeks, I'll be posting the work I do through out the boot camp.

I had a great weekend with my kids! Which means I didn't get any writing done. That's ok because I think I'm on a roll now. A day or two off won't stop me from completing this boot camp. In fact, I think not stressing over HAVING to write makes it easier to get back to it when I miss a day or two.

Today, I'm posting day three of the writing prompt boot camp, and this time I'm posting it immediately after finishing it. It's as fresh as a hot cookie right out of the oven!!!

Day 3
Mystery Cookie
One Day you come into work and find a cookie mysteriously placed on your desk. Grateful to whoever left this anonymous cookie, you eat it. The next morning you come in and find another cookie. This continues for months until one Day a different object is left—and this time there’s a note.

A Cookie A Day Keeps The Asshole Away
by Cruz Andronico Fernandez

     Emile walked into the break room with his lunch. He was the last one off the line again, so the place was empty. He preferred it this way. He didn't like eating around people. He felt exposed.
    The room was usually pretty clean by the time he got there. Empty of all traces of the lunch hour. The shift boss would bitch at them if they left a mess. Today was the same, except for one thing.
    Emile usually sat at the very back of the room with his back to the door. He always sat in the same seat. Today, placed on the table, exactly in front of his seat, was a large cookie sitting on a cloth napkin.
    Emile stood in front of the table, looking at this anomaly. He looked around the room; nothing else was out of place. He poked his head out the door. No one was around. Everyone else was probably outside smoking. He didn't smoke.
    Emile sat down. He picked the cookie up. It was soft. It smelled good. He took a bite. It was good. Emile finished the cookie.
    He felt guilty, but the cookie was so damned good, he couldn't help himself. Besides, who ever put it there must have left it for him. Probably a thank you from one of the other employees, for all the extra work he does around the plant.
    Emile is extremely quiet at work. He almost never talks to anyone else, but he does more work than anyone. Most folks leave their equipment laying around, knowing that Emile will pick it up and put it away. He knows they are using him but he doesn't mind. He's just happy to have the job. He figures the cookie was left by someone who wants to show their appreciation, but don't want to get shit from the other guys. Emile also knows the guys call him names behind his back and think he's weird.
    The next day Emile finds another cookie waiting for him. This brings a smile to his face. Now he knows this is from someone expressing their gratitude. Everyday, for the next month, he comes to lunch to find a cookie waiting for him. Everyday, Emile's heart swells when he takes a bite of the delicious cookies left for him. The cookies are like a medicine, curing Emile of the horrible loneliness he's felt ever since Pollo stopped coming to the plant.
    The year before, Emile was working a late shift. He was the last to leave work that day. While he was putting the abandoned tools away, he heard a whining outside the door. Emile stepped outside to investigate. Sitting on the other side of the door was a white dog, wagging his tail expectantly. Emile brought the dog in to the plant and cleaned him up. He fed the poor dog some food left in the refrigerator from the break room.
    The dog came back every day. Emile was told several times to stop feeding the dog. But, he continued to feed him. He knew some of the guys resented him because the shift boss continued to let him feed the dog, even though he was told to get rid of it. They made fun of him for naming the dog Pollo, Spanish for Chicken. This was another reason they thought badly of him. They thought he might be retarded. He just thought the name was funny.
    One day Pollo stopped coming. Emile waited all night for the dog to come back. The next day the guys shook their heads and laughed when they heard he had stayed at the plant all night waiting for a stupid dog.
    Emile was heart broken. He searched the town for the dog. He never saw him again.
    He didn't feel any joy at work until the cookies began to show up. One day he walked into the break room expecting to see a cookie, instead there was a box with a note attached. Emile sat down in front of the box. He opened the envelope. Inside was a letter. He read it.
    "Emile, I hope you liked the cookies. I made them especially for you. You do so much for the people in this place. You do other peoples work without complaint. You pick up their slack with out saying a word.
    You are a selfless man. But this is a harsh world, Emile. You shouldn't let people take advantage of you like this. You must be a man. You must show them that you are not a retard. Show them you are something more. I will help you.
    Baked inside each cookie, was a little bit of something special. Something to help you destroy your cowardice. Something to overcome your servitude. You are not a dog like that mutt you took care of for so long. You are a man. A man must eat the heart of that which he does not wish to be. You are no longer a dog."
     Hands shaking, Emile lifted the lid of the box. Inside was the severed head of his beloved dog, Pollo.

I hope you liked day three! Come back for day four.