Posted: October 11, 2011 in Fiction, Test Subject

I rub my eyes again.  Staring at the monitor for hours on end hasn’t done my headache any favors.  I poke the screen again, this time on a link that says “Medical Survey.”  The screen flickers, and a wall of text pops up before me.  Ugh.  So tired of reading.  I’m running out of cash fast though, so I slog through it. 

“Subjects wanted for medical survey.  Free physical.  Free psychological evaluation.  Criminal background check required and provided.  Pays $50, plus opportunities for bonuses.”  I skim through the rest of it.  Fifty bucks to get prodded and poked with a needle?  I have had worse jobs.  Up until last week, I was a delivery boy for a Chinese food place.  That sort of fell apart when I got rear-ended.  My car didn’t survive.  It wasn’t exactly a Rolls Royce, but it was mine. 

I pull a wad of papers out of my back pocket and dump them on the desk in front of me.  The public address system chimes, and a bored voice announces that the library will be closing in five minutes.  Fine.  I’m sick of sitting here anyway.  I grab a pen and flatten out one of the crumpled papers.  I copy down the address and phone number.  It’s a warehouse not too far from where I live.  Cool.  I could use a little good luck for a change.  I gather up my papers and pen and stuff the mess back into my pocket. 

I step out into the night, and I hear the door lock behind me.  I wave a goodnight at the librarian.  She ignores me.  I start walking.  At least I’m getting exercise now.  As I walk through town, I watch the neighborhood degrade around me.  The library was in a pretty nice area; my apartment is in what I would generously label a “less expensive” area.  Windows transition from clear to alarmed to barred.  I stop at the convenience store on the corner.  It’s a grungy little dump, and the clerk is kind of a scrawny guy with an attitude problem, but it’s close to my house.  I grab a pop out of the cooler and plop it down on the counter.  “Buck forty-five,” the guy says.  I pull out my wallet.  I have a five left.  I planned on donating plasma tomorrow.  Looks like now it’s a necessity.  The guy gives me my change and  I head for home. 

Now that I’m finally functionally creative again, I’ve been having ideas regarding a project I started at the beginning of the year.  Way back in January of 2011, I resolved to write 500 words every day.  Like many of my plans, it went well right up until my whole life blew up in my face.  It’s taken kind of a long time to fix things – I daresay I still have a lot to do.  At least I’m capable of acts of creation again.

  1. […] time moving forward.  In an effort to push through, I tried working backward.  So I wrote a  I ended up changing more than a few of the details, but the character remained the same.  As I […]

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