Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Devoted Plumber

Harv walked up the sidewalk. It was a fine, sunny Sunday, and he felt damn good. He had a great life with a great job. He was one of God's chosen; he was a plumber. It was a responsibility that he took very seriously. The modern world depended upon him, and his brothers and sisters, to keep the fresh water running in and the shit moving out.  He anticipated the familiar squeak of wood as he stepped on old Mrs. Howell's front porch. He gave a happy three raps to the front door.

"Mrs. Howell? I am back like I promised. I have that piece for you."

The door was unlocked and he walked into the the front parlor. He stood in the entrance as the sun warmed his face and breathed in the old lady smell of the house, which was laced with a trace of cigarillo smoke. He smiled with the wonder of it all.

Mrs. Howell's teacup poodle, Prissy, ran up to him, wagging her tail. She was  a friendly little critter and seemed to join him in celebrating the day.

"A plumber's work is never done, Prissy." He bent down and pet the curly, white head.

He walked upstairs to the bathroom that was next to the master bedroom.  He placed his big toolbox on the floor and took out the necessary tool to finish his work.  Mr. Howell hung limply from the shower rod where he had tied him yesterday, unconscious, but still alive.  Mrs. Howell peeked in the door.

"Hi Harv! I just got back from church. Don't let me interrupt you, but would you like some tea? I made it this morning, and some cookies."

"Maybe when I'm done, m'am."

"Oh! I do apologize dear. I'll run along."

Harv picked up the ceremonial dagger and recited the prayer. Mr. Howell moaned lightly. Yep, a plumber's job was to get rid of the crap, and Harv was a very devoted plumber.


I participated in NaNoWriMo this year, which you probably already knew, if you  read the The Protector of Hartley  post. While writing, I decided to join my local group, which was the awesomeist (Roll Tide Druid City Wrimos!) Now that NaNo is over, I have joined a weekly writing group and it has been great. (I have been twice.) There was a posted prompt for the month called An Unexpected Gift, which I wrote a response to and will post and you can get to it by clicking the title above. I haven't shared it with the group yet, and I'm not sure if I will (I'll explain why in a minute). Tonight, I was given a title and I had to write a story for it. This post is what I wrote. The group had a positive reaction to it, if a little shocked. People who meet me in real life before they read my writing tend to be a little surprised by what I write.

I am worried, however, that I may be a little stuck when it comes to my horror writing, though. I really love a twist, and I am worried that it's all getting to be a little one note. An Unexpected Gift reminds me a lot of  Charity. This story seems to be a little derivative of Stephen King's The Lawnmower Man and the Milkman One and Two stories; Morning Deliveries and Big Wheels:A Tale of the Laundry Game. (Although, I am probably flattering myself with the comparison.)And I would actually be okay with rewriting King stuff, if that was my intent when I started writing. I did not start this story, though, thinking that I would like to write a reworking or even a fanfic of those stories. So, the similarities are a bit frustrating. I am interested in seeing how participating in the writing group will affect my writing. Maybe you will see more short stories here. Maybe I'll even get a third No Sleep story written. But for now, I may just flow with the group, see what happens, and work on the NaNo story I started. Plus, I want to get back into poetry prompts and NaPoWriMo is coming up fast!  Maybe (don't hold me to this) I can even be a little more regular about posting. I have so many drafts that are just waiting for me to hit the "publish" button. I guess we'll see.


  1. I like your prose. Even in genres I don't normally cotton to, you write entertainingly.

    1. How did I miss this comment? Thank you Ally!


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