The Fifteen Minute Novel: Day 160

The Fifteen Minute Novel is a novel written fifteen minutes at a time with each week day’s section starting with the sentence from the previous day. At least it is attempting to be a novel. For now I am just aiming at one continuous story, worked on for fifteen minutes each day. Started Friday January 1st, 2021 (in case you want to search for the beginning. I can’t wait to see where it ends up. It could be good, or it could be a mess. We’ll have to see. For now, here is today’s fifteen minutes.

Day 160: He reached for the towel.

He reached for the towel. As James dressed in pajama pants and a tee-shirt, his mind felt a little clearer.  There was nothing he could do about Sebastian other than tell someone.  He would prefer Morris, but would take Tucker if necessary. 

“Hopefully this week will be calm and I won’t see him until he checks in,” James said.  He then realized that if there were no problems, then Tucker wouldn’t check in.  Tucker was meant to be an unseen shadow with no communication between them.  James was pulled into the office to deal with a discrepancy.  He met Tucker because someone wanted to kill him to prevent him from finding the discrepancy.  Everyone now thought he was dead.  If everyone kept thinking he was dead then there would be no reason for anyone to contact him.

“Fine if we make it through the week and nothing happens then I’ll check in,” James told himself.  He thought about how things seemed to happen on Fridays and Saturdays. “Next Sunday would be the end of the week. So I just have to make it until next Sunday before opening another can of worms.”

James decided that he hoped someone else already found Sebastian’s message and was dealing with it. He hoped that the following Sunday he would call in and be told that they already saw it and were looking into it.

“I want to be told not to worry my pretty little head about it,” James decided.  He had no trouble playing the damsel in distress if it got him out of dealing with people aiming guns at him.  Deciding that given all the trouble he had getting it connected, he might as well watch some television, James descended the stairs and went into the living room. 

After so long without a television, the multitude of channels felt somewhat daunting.  He realized he could spend an hour of mindless entertainment merely flipping from channel to channel.  James found a menu channel and scrolled down the list.  Very few of the titles meant much to him.  He couldn’t remember the last time he actually sat and watched a television show.  He was hard pressed to even remember the last movie he watched.  His life consisted of the office meetings, meals that often featured meetings and using a few lines of a book to convince himself he was unwinding before going to sleep. With nothing jumping out at him from the menu, James decided to flip through the channels until he found something that looked vaguely interesting.

“Maybe I could ask at work if anyone has any shows they are following,” James said as he began working his way through the available shows.  “Then I can bond with them over talking about the shows instead of happy hour.”

He nodded at his own suggestion.  He wanted to escape the Friday night drinks, but he didn’t want to be seen as standoffish.  He wanted to be one of the group for as long as he was there.  The fact that he hoped he wouldn’t be there forever was irrelevant.  He had no other place he currently wanted to be so this was where he was.  There was no reason to risk turning it into an unpleasant environment.

There were no shows James skimmed passed that looked like storylines he wanted to dive into.  He was pretty sure part of that was his mood.  He managed to wash most real thoughts down the drain with the shampoo and his brain wasn’t looking to fill up again.  It wanted to stay pleasantly blank for a little while.  James flipped through the channels until his eyes started to droop and he decided it might actually be bed time.  He turned the television off, double checked the locks, turned off the downstairs lights and went upstairs.

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