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(Story) Larger Forces 1: Inordinate Drama

Warning: Very little actual plot, just some stuff to remember how to write.

Larger Forces: Inordinate Drama



They were never supposed to go through my papers. That was the deal. Talk about me to
everyone, look at me with scathing glances or ignore me completely, I don't care. You can help
yourselves to my media collection not that you ever would, but don't touch the notebooks. That's
the good stuff.

Look I made up my mind when I was like ten I was going to be a journalist, like Harriet
the fucking Spy. Then Carl gave me his banged-up hand-me-downs of _On the Road_ and
_Fear and Loathing_. That was that. Everything's been practicing for that.

And so okay I'm in my twenties now and nowhere near being anything resembling a
real journalist. Or even a writer. Well I keep a half-hearted yet wordy blog but then who
doesn't. What I'm saying sideways is that I do whatever I can to get by financially (except,
y'know, in the illegal sense, cos, um, a world of no there) and so there's a reason my notebooks
should see the light of fucking day let alone somebody's eyeballs.

Roommates suck. Let's keep it to that. I share a house with like ten people. The cool
part, about the house I mean, is that there was this half-hearted plan wayback by different
owners once upon a time ago and I got what's known as the Alice (as in Wonderland) room
because to enter you have to climb up the fire-escape, go through the window, and down
a ladder again. At some point a floor was knocked out and so there's two doors to my room,
except there's only one door you can go through that won't lead to a ten foot drop, only it's
locked (except when I'm there).

This means two things:

1) It's a pain in the ass to get stuff in and out of there, and

2) Therefore my roommates are conspiring assholes to have gone to that much trouble
to look at my notebooks.

Maybe I make too much of this stuff. But I've kept those books since I was ten, y'know?
So it's like this whole record of me: every boy I've liked, bad poem written, rant about whatever,
every dragon doodled (yes I'm a nerd, accept it already) is in there. It creeps me out people
went in there and looked.

Most people wouldn't have noticed, but that's why I'm obsessive and stuff. I make my
OCD work for me, dammit. In other words, I put things in order and leave them that way. Also,
color-coding makes all the difference.

Thou shalt not put the purple notebook next to the yellow one. Dammit. Am I the ONLY
person who ever remembers ROYGfuckingBIV? That and I number them inside the covers.
"Beta's Books, Volume 1" etc. Good system if you bother paying attention and all. Which some
people clearly don't.

Anyhow, rewinding. Or fastforwarding. Whichever. At any rate, there was a confrontation
later in the kitchen.

ME: So who went through my papers?

Subtle, aren't I?

Ted, our hippie capitalist landlord, whose obscene coloring combinations (such as the
punk bathroom, all lime tile and pink accents) were the only possible reply to the Alice Apartment,
looked nonplused. "You started it," he said.

Karol, the Polish painter who knew three words of almost-English, agreed. "Ya," he
said, then went back to the _Cosmopolitan_ he was reading. He had a strange hangup on ladies'
magazines, but due to the language issue no one was exactly sure why. Sandy, who was not
present, suspected he was gay but too Catholic to act on it, or something. And at least lots
of Cosmo back issues laying around was less disturbing than icons of the Pope. But I digress.

"Huh?" I said, brilliantly.

Jill, who worked for the IRS or something and who was present said, "We suspected
you of tax-dodging, so we went looking for receipts." She is also married to Ted, if that makes
any sense.

"Is that even legal?!"

"The point now is," Ted said, "we know you're innocent of tax evasion. So what are
all your notes about us for then?"

Look, it's not that I'm a freak, though probably I am and in many ways, but well, really,
in case you haven't noticed, with these people having notes and diagrams is a necessity. Okay,
here's an instance: I was here maybe three months before I found out about Jill and Ted. In
fact I'm not sure if they are really married or just common law, or just don't wear rings or
whatever. But basically I've found than in general to keep up with these people you just have
to watch and remember and sometimes keep notes.

It helps, it really does.

But anyway, I said, "Well I'm practicing my craft, you know that!"

"Beta, the last I checked, your actual craft was doing inventory at Borders and selling
Skittles at the Regal, not spying."

"It's not spying, it's journalism!"

"Ya!" said Karol. We looked at him, as he placidly filled out a quiz on "Is He a Dud?"
There was a collective blink.

"We'll let you go," Jill sniffed, "but do be more careful where you leave things laying
around, will you."

I withheld comment, and returned to my lair. Of course you realize, this means war.

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