Writing Prompt: “Do you know how many times I called?”

Good morning one and all and Welcome to Monday morning. I hope you had a fabulous weekend. I’m running a little slow today because I just couldn’t resist hitting the snooze alarm as many times as possible. However before I forget… This week is the Annual Read an E-book Week at Smashwords. Most of my books are 50% off (the link takes you to my page) and there are thousands of authors participating in the sale. So even if my books aren’t to your taste there are so many other good books to choose from on pretty much every available topic. It is a really great sale and I love that it is an annual one. This link will take you to the general page instead of just my books. And I am also hoping to have one of my new books out later this week, but that announcement will come later. For now there is the morning writing prompt. Ready? Good lets shake the weekend off or brains.

Monday, March 8th: “Do you know how many times I called?”

“Do you know how many times I called?” He said in exasperation.

“Try again,” Martin told him.

“Look,” Frank told him. “I can try calling all day long, but it wouldn’t help.  I can’t get past the secretary.  If she won’t put the call through to him, we can’t talk to him.”

Frank watched Martin sit back, weighing the odds.  He knew Martin didn’t want to share any details with someone he considered an underling.  He wanted to speak to the big boss or no one at all.  He considered it beneath his dignity to explain why he was calling.  It was why Frank had to make the calls in the first place and why he was told merely to request a meeting for Martin to speak with Mr. Harrison.

Martin considered himself a boss, the equal of Harrison.  While he was willing to concede that Martin had a great deal of power among his followers, Frank knew he wasn’t in Mr. Harrison’s league.  Martin did have enough power to make him deeply regret that statement if it ever came out, so Frank was careful never to let the words pass his lips. 

He thought this a fool’s errand from the start and hated the fact that he was involved at all. But just as Martin considered it beneath him to explain himself to the secretary, he also didn’t want to be the one arranging the appointment.  He firmly believed that assistants called and spoke to other assistants and that once the meeting was scheduled, those with power met.

As Martin didn’t technically have an assistant Frank was drafted.  As Martin continued to mull the situation over, Frank let his gaze slide over Martin’s gathered lieutenants.  Jarod was pure muscle with no brains actually guiding it.  Martin served as his brain and Jarod served him loyally. Stringing more than five words together at a time was pushing him to the absolute limits of his capacity.  He followed orders, but he didn’t make conversation.  Ricky was physically the opposite of Jarod.  He was short and slender with a pinched in weasel-ly  little face and mean, mean eyes.  He was smart.  Very smart.  But his smarts lay in tactics.  Give him a problem like someone invading there territory or a betrayal from within and he was a bloodhound ferreting out details and coming up with a dozen ways to settle the situation.  All of his ways were bloody.  Ricky was not someone who talked himself out of a difficulty.  While both were useful here at what felt like the edge of the world, Frank couldn’t see either of them doing well in wrangling an appointment with Mr. Harrison through his secretary.

Apparently Martin agreed with him and so Frank was tapped.  Frank knew very well why he was tapped for the task.  He knew it was both a task Martin wanted done that he thought Frank’s skills could accomplish.  But there was more.  Frank knew it was a test.  He knew it was coming.  He wasn’t like the others.  He accepted that just as he accepted the vagaries of fate that sent him here in the first place.  There had been small tests every day since his arrival and acceptance.  Frank knew there would be more.  This had the feel of those tests, but he could see a lot more was riding on it.  Frank knew he was, at the moment failing.

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