Author: Dawn Twilight
Feedback: Yes, please...at firstname.lastname@example.org
Summary: a sequel of sorts to Doodles
by Twilight (Dawn)
There was a slight chill in the living room despite the fire blazing in the hearth and he shivered, pulling the blanket from the sofa down and around him, snuggling into the cocoon of warm comfort.
He awoke to pouring rain and still he could hear the steady beat of water hitting the building and roof, see it streaking down the skylights and bay windows to pool on the balcony before its final freefall to the pavement below.
He had stayed home today, having no obligations...no deadlines to meet...no reports to write.
Timbers in the wood stove crackled and spit, bright red and golden yellows danced over the dry wood as he booted up his computer and opened a little used file. It was nearly full, but it had been ages since he had the time or inclination to sit in silence and work on one of his favorite pastimes.
Opening an old file, he read, shaking his head.
"That sounds like he's brushing his teeth with his razor...what was I thinking?"
Sounds of tapping filled the air, dots and spaces...fingers flying over the keyboard as new ideas formed and took shape, corrections made as he spotted old mistakes in his hurry.
"I hate 'no' and 'know...I mean I KNOW...man, I need a good beta."
Carefully scrolling back, he added the request in his notes line.
Soon thoughts turned to words and words to sentences and sentences to paragraphs. Ideas taking form, some rejected, others flowing to make a complete story.
Writing...he loved to write. Articles, term papers...even police reports...it didn't matter, just running through his extensive vocabulary was fun, trying to show instead of tell.
Going back, he read what he had written, made a few changes and reread, ever trying to find a way to get his thoughts and ideas across...to "show" the reader what he was seeing in his minds eye.
Time warped, around him the setting sun shone over the harbor and through the large bay windows that led to the balcony. The rain had ended sometime before. Shadows slinked up and over the couch and light from the laptop illuminated his face.
Tucking a stray curl behind his ear he pushed up his glasses, staring hard at the monitor, willing the correct words to come. Time passed, an idea tickled the back of his brain, fingers posed over the keyboard as the front door swung open.
"Hey, Chief. What did I tell you about working in the dark?" The overhead lights flickered on and Blair squinted at his roommate and friend.
"Just lost track of time, man." He saved his work, the idea slipping away even before he closed his notebook. "I'll start dinner."
Blair watched as Jim jogged up the steps, releasing his holster to stow his gun. "How about Chinese? I feel like some spicy pork?"
"Sounds good." He tucked his computer into its carrying case, placing it in the center of the coffee table.
"Hey, " Jim descended the steps quickly. "Don't stop on my account. You looked pretty engrossed in your project. What are you working on?"
"Oh...nothing important." Blair grabbed up the phone, punching in the number for the Hunan Chef. "Drabbles, you know. Just a writing exercise."
Jim puttered around the kitchen, opening and closing drawers before finally grabbing a bottle of soda and pouring a glass. "Drabbles like in one hundred words?"
Blair turned quickly, his mouth slightly agape. "Uh...yeah." A man he could hardly understand answered the phone and he quickly gave his order and address. "So..." he approached the sofa, following Jim, sitting on the other end. "Do you like to write?"
"Me?" Jim looked to him, a slight smile on his face. "Nope...but I did take all the appropriate courses in school. I am familiar with writing paragraphs, using proper grammar...so you're writing for fun...not school?"
Now what? He hadn't meant for Jim to find out about his sometimes hobby. Sure, he had written a few stories, posted them to the net and even was a member of a few groups...but what would Jim think? "Hmmm...no...not for school."
Jim sat up a bit and angled his body to see him better. "So what kind of stories?"
"Just about characters I've seen...like on TV. It's called fan fiction." He watched as Jim's eyes drifted to the case sitting on the coffee table and he thought about the sketchpad tucked up under Jim's bed. Jim had shared his hidden talent with him, but would he think what Blair was doing as silly...
He jumped a little, lost in thought. "Oh...um...Magnificent Seven and Stargate...sometimes X-files. It's been awhile since I've had time, but I like to use my imagination...different writing styles..."
Jim's gaze went back to the case.
"Um...if you want, you can read them." He wasn't sure that Jim would be interested, but his partner perked up and smiled.
"Could I?" Jim's hand was already reaching for Blair's computer.
"I, uh...sure. You really want to?" His stomach knotted. It was silly really. He had gotten lots of positive feedback from people on his groups...but this was different. This was Jim.
"Of course." Jim pulled out the computer and opened the lid, handing it to Blair.
Jim really wanted to read his work...seemed almost excited...
Dinner came and they ate in the living room. Jim held the notebook in his lap, smiling and even snorting from time to time as Blair tried to watch a special about mummies on the learning channel.
A few hours later Jim closed the lid and sat the computer on the table. "I...well they were all great Chief. You should show this around."
"Thanks, man. I've posted them to groups and I have a web friend who archives them on her page."
So he did.
Blair pulled up the site and Jim studied the pages, looking at both Blair's and others. His brow creased, a slight frown marred his face. "You okay, Jim?"
"Yeah, yeah...I'll be right back." He took the steps two at a time, returning with the box that held his drawings. "I was thinking..."
Not really understanding, Blair watched as Jim took out his newest pad and a few pencils. Jim looked at him and then sat, putting pencil to paper. Blair had seen his drawings all those weeks ago, but he had never seen Jim use his talent. Transfixed, he watched as shapes took form.
Forty minutes later, Jim handed him the completed work.
Oh...wow...he was holding a familiar illustration. One of his favorite works...his first.
"I don't..." looking up he could see his friend's down cast eyes. "It's...perfect. Thank you so much Jim."
His roommate relaxed back against the couch, pad held loosely in his hand. "It's nothing...not even that good."
"Yes it is, man...it's great...can I..."
"Sure, you can post it. I saw a lot of the other people had illustrations and I thought...well you can use it if you want." Jim neatly tucked away his pad and pencils and stood to take them back to the hiding place under the bed.
Stopping in mid stride, his friend turned to look at him. "Maybe, well maybe you should leave it down here. You never know when inspiration might hit.
Jim smiled, moving a little closer to the sofa. "You think?"
"Yeah, man...come on...I have a story I'm working on and I could use a little objectivity." Blair patted the cushion next to him and Jim sat, sliding his box under the coffee table.
"So, Chief. What's a beta?"
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