Monday, 16 March 2009
Portrait of Words # 7
Jeff (A Word in Edgewise POW) has started up this monthly challenge, derived from a previous challenge from R.E.H.'s "Picture Fiction Challenge". Do pop over to Jeff's to read the other entries, you won't be disappointed. You can get the portraits for this month's challenge here.
The object is to:
Write a story of any length or style. Long or short, comedy or tragedy, fact or fiction, etc,etc... it's up to you.
Use each of the picture representations in your story. (one from the wild card options)
Here's my story:
Your story can be told through or about this person, i.e. first or third person. Either way, his involvement in the story should be a focal point. Feel free to have as many or as few additional characters as you wish.
Jack was no fan of Pete Doherty but he was Pete's dealer and Peter was his best customer and he recommended Jack to his friends. Jack was no mug, he only sold the stuff, he’d never consider taking it, he had seen the damage it could do addled brains, rotting teeth, collapsed veins but customers like Doherty kept his family in luxury. Doherty thought Jack was his friend.
This will create the setting for your story. It can take place at the location depicted, be a destination to it, or be a journey from it.
Jack had a trusted network of runners who did the deals for him on the buses, less chance of them getting caught because of the crowds; he never did the deal himself. Except for Doherty, none of Jack's customers had ever seen him; it was just his mobile number that was passed on but only with his permission.
This is what drives or motivates the main character to action. It can also be viewed as the objective of the story.
Jack was a respected dentist with a thriving practice in the best part of town. He was happily married with two boys who both went to private school, mainly funded by Jack’s drugs money. Jack’s wife didn’t know about the seedier side of his career she just presumed their lifestyle was funded by his dental practice.
This object should have a significant value to the main character, backdrop or purpose of the story.
Jack’s beginnings were very different to what he had now. He was the son of a scrap metal merchant, his school holidays had been spent working in his father’s scrap yard surrounded by old cars and tins of rusty screws. He was determined to get out and make a better life for himself. He worked hard at school, went to university and embarked on a career in dentistry. Cathy, his wife, had been the receptionist at his very first dental practice, they married and Cathy helped him build it into the empire it was today. Unfortunately the practice couldn’t totally fund the lifestyle Jack wanted and when Sam, his best friend since dental school, told him how he made more money dealing drugs than he ever could fixing teeth, Jack was sucked in.
Sam introduced Jack to Doherty and before too long Jack had taken over supplying Doherty. Eventually Jack put Sam out of business, as far as his drug dealing was concerned, as he got a reputation for supplying good stuff at reasonable prices. He refused to be part of Doherty's clique, his home life was too important to him but he kept in Doherty's good books by always being able to supply what he needed.
Wednesday dawned like any other day and Jack jumped in his car to go to the surgery. As he entered the reception area he was surprised to see a policeman and a detective standing there.
“Can I help you?” asked Jack.
“Mr Nichols we’d like you to come down to the station to help us with out enquiries” said the detective.
“Please come into my surgery gentlemen, what’s this about?” enquired Jack.
Closing the door behind him the police constable stood in front of it as if to prevent anyone leaving. The detective said “We have reason to believe you have been supplying drugs.”
Writers choice here. Choose *one* of the three options to use in your story anyway you see fit.
Jack was taken aback but wasn’t really worried, they couldn’t possibly have any proof. Keeping a calm exterior he agreed to go with them after phoning his solicitor, who said he would meet him down at the station. He sat relaxed in the interview room sitting facing two detectives, with his solicitor at his side. After the preliminaries of introducing themselves for the benefit of the tape, the detective who had come to Jack’s surgery spoke.
Jack put on his glasses and concentrated on the television screen. He could see his two boys and there he was, coaching them on their bowling. He then left them for a few minutes whilst he went to get them a drink. He saw himself waiting at the bar and the man in front of him turning with a drink in his hand bump into him splashing himself with the liquid. The man was flustered trying to brush the liquid off his clothes, Jack recognised the man as a friend of Doherty's so he took his handkerchief out of his pocket and handed it to the man for him to wipe his clothes. He vaguely remembered telling the man to keep the handkerchief, which the man then put in his pocket and then he shook Jack’s hand. The detective turned off the video.
Jack looked bemused. “I don’t understand, what am I supposed to be seeing?” he asked.
“That man is one of your runners, you passed him some drugs in your handkerchief and he passed you payment when he shook your hand” said the detective.
“That’s ridiculous” said Jack “it didn’t happen and even if it did what proof have you got?”
“That man is well known to us as a drug runner, we’ve been watching him for months. We picked him up later that day selling on the drugs you supplied him with and he told us he got them from you, confirming the CCTV footage” replied the detective. “You’re under arrest.”
Jack realised he’d been set up, probably by Doherty, but why he didn't know. It was all over. Had the detective let the video run on 10 minutes longer, Jack may have noticed the man who had set him up talking to his ex friend Sam and things would have been a whole lot clearer.
Photo Credits: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License
(From Flickr.com/creative commons, unless otherwise noted)
Main Character- nico
Backdrop- L A Ward
Item- P Doodle
Wild Card #1- kcolwel
Wild Card #2- alex-pl
Wild card #3- mag3737