Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Entry #83

The Yes Man
by J. Scott Ellis


“Hey, he’s back.”

Mandy paused over the vat into which she was rhythmically crushing lemons. “Who?”

Her co-worker Paulina, wearing a matching uniform of wide red, blue and yellow stripes, said “The freak.”

Mandy followed her co-workers gaze, and then to the clock. She ruefully smiled. 1:33 PM. You could set your watch by it.

“Paulina,” Mandy said, drying her hands, “make me a corndog.”

“You actually eat here?”

“It’s not for me.”

“You don’t mean—"

“I do. Now chop-chop.”

Across the food court, the “freak” started into an upward trot on the down escalator. Descending mall patrons moved aside, pulling their children close, eyes averted, contemplating the mystery of the hand rail.

Mandy took the up escalator next to his. When she caught up, she reversed direction and jogged down at a pace to keep even with him.

“Hungry?” she said.

The man’s head whipped around, wild eyes laboring in separate orbits before settling upon her. “Yes.”

“Wanna have lunch together?”

“Yes.”

“Yes?”

“Yes.”

“Do you say anything else?”

“Yes.”

Mandy rubbed her chin thoughtfully. “Am I the most beautiful woman you have ever seen?”

“Yes.”

She gracefully vaulted the median, landing a step below him and took his hand. “Come on then.”

He stopped running.

When they reached the bottom however, he planted his toes firmly on the edge of the comb plate and would go no further.

“Coming?”

A sweat bead formed on his brow.

“We’ll eat here then,” she said, giving him the corndog.

“Yes.”

31 comments:

Precie said...

Fascinating. Great characterizations!

JR's Thumbprints said...

You did a nice job conveying his alleged mental illness.

Lena said...

awesome! you did really a great job to portray the character.

*~*{Sameera}*~* said...

That was touching.Well written :)

iLL Man said...

Like this a lot.

Yes. ;)

BernardL said...

Imaginative rendering of the picture, and it made me crave more.

Ello said...

This is really great characterization. In this little snippet, you have me wanting to read more about both of them. Great job!

The Preacherman said...

I'm with the freak. Loved this one.

mukta said...

I agree. I liked how you were able to convey so much, his actions, her sensitivity in so little space.

Aerin said...

This has fast leaped to my favorite entry - really, really wonderful.

Sarah Hina said...

Fabulous, Scott. You captured his eccentric nature, and her touching accommodation of it, perfectly. Really beautiful characterizations here.

And so well written. The dialogue really shined. One of my favorites! :)

Jaye Wells said...

Scott this was so great. Sweet and funny. Great job!

Dottie said...

Great dialogue which gave your story a very natural pace and rhythm. I agree with all of the comments posted.

McKoala said...

I like this one a lot too. Good dialogue, a natural flow to the story and wonderful characters.

Anonymous said...

Loved it! Another favorite.
John McAuley

K.Lawson Gilbert said...

Wow! Scott you created a great little scene. I love the quirkiness of it! Intelligently written and great fleshing out of your characters.

L'uragano (The Hurricane) said...

this piece is great...you can take it as it is...as a whole...or I can see it being expounded on. very original.

Jimmie Vee said...

Did I like it?

Yes.

RiverSoul said...

Beautiful work.
Loved the entire story
Want more
:)
RiverSoul
Entry #86
:)

Catvibe said...

This was a delight to read. The action and image of the two of them going the wrong way on their prospective escalators was great! And I really like the way she wasn't afraid to talk to him in a place and way that he could relate to, instead of just going with society's definition of his 'freak'hood. Very well done.

Prashant Dhanke said...

This was really good. Loved the scene on escalators :).

Margaret said...

Admirable characters....
Superbly written dialogue....

Loved it......

Aine said...

Wonderful little scene-- makes me want to know more. I'm really intrigued by the "freak". Great storytelling!

September said...

I liked this. I like the freak.
I like the dialogue.

bluesugarpoet said...

I love this story - the two aberrations of the mall (weirdo on escalator and girl in the hot dog on a stick uniform) join forces to create a sense of normalcy...and dine on corn dogs, no less. Great writing!

jana

K9 said...

i liked yours a lot.

Aniket Thakkar said...

Great Story! It was like "Amelie" meeting "Forest Gump"! Loved it! :-D

Beth said...

Out of all your entries, this is my new favorite! Couldn't wait for the contest to end to come on over and read it!

jason evans said...

Great job with entertainment value!

Thanks for being a wonderful part of the contest!

mr. schprock said...

One of your best, Scott! Spare, brilliant dialogue. Great job.

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

I agree with Mr Schprock.

It is what is left unsaid in this piece thatt draws the reader inward.

Top stuff, Scott.