Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Trifecta #33: Post One

Trifecta's going crazy on the threes for their 33rd week.


“What I tell you three times is true.” I am relieved to hear steadiness in my voice and I hope that it sounds like strength. I have no doubt the obscure literary reference will go right over his head. He doesn’t look to me to be a well-read man. Still, he has a habit of holding eye contact far too long. It’s just a tactic, I tell myself, a way to make it look like he sees far more than he possibly could. Knowing that, it’s still unnerving.

“Say it as many times as you want,” he answers. His voice is deep and flat, like a drum in a sound-proof room. “It’s still not going to work.” I see the dirt under his nails, impossibly black. I try not to speculate on the jagged scar that slices across the right side of his neck, but I can’t help myself. A knife? A rope? “You’ve never done this kind of job before.” It wasn’t a question.

“Well…” I drag the word out, feeling a stammer coming on. I swallow. “I’m still in charge of this thing.” I know I should let silence speak for me. I should turn with the confidence that he will follow, but my mouth keeps chattering on without me. “That’s what I was hired for. I’ve got the technical knowledge. The education. That’s why he put me in charge. If you’ve got a problem with that, we can call him right now.”

He doesn’t laugh, at least. But he never drops his eyes. His right hand hangs in a fist, like a stone at the end of a maul. He runs his left hand slowly down his right cheek, his little finger brushing the line of that awful scar. “You don’t look much like a Bellman to me,” he says, and my heart and my stomach change places. “Not a Butcher, either.” His eyes move down at last, then up again, slowly. “No,” he says. “A Beaver. Definitely a Beaver.”

8 comments:

Hannah said...

His right hand hangs in a fist, like a stone at the end of a maul.


Great descriptions and story!!

Annabelle said...

Great details -- that guy makes me nervous! Interesting that he picks up the reference at the end and turns it around.

jesterqueen said...

Wow. So the guy is going to be hunting our persona here and making him nervous and unsuccessful.

I, Rodius said...

Thanks, y'all. He makes me nervous, too.

rosemary mint said...

I have not read "The Hunting of the Snark." I'm sure once I do, I'll understand the bellman, baker, and beaver references. :) I have the story pulled up now. Thanks for the lead-in.

Andrea said...

Such strong details! Congrats on your 2nd place!

brenda w said...

Congrats on the win. You've created an unnerving character, with some darn good phrasing in there.

I, Rodius said...

Thank you! Now I have to write another one?? :)

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