Three Things Serial: 2 – Ballerina, Fireman, Astronaut

Come on now everyone — don’t let me down about sending “three things.”  Words, phrases, that’s all it is; whatever pops into your head.  As an example, I’m taking “things” from The Daily Prompt Today’s was a thought provoking post. They asked what you wanted to grow up to be when you were ten years old, and how it compares to what you’re doing now.  At ten I wanted to be a psychologist.  Can you imagine how well off I’d be by now if I’d had any encouragement?  Ha! But you can’t change the past, so you move forward.

I’ve added a page to my blog where you will find the Three Things Serial combined as it develops (as well as the individual blog postings). Having a few more “things” helped me see how the story might grow, so I’ve revised yesterday’s post telling it in first person.

Now continuing our serial with “things” from The Daily Prompt.  (Even though these things are related, all being careers, I encourage you to send unrelated things if you can.)

Ballerina, Fireman, Astronaut, Movie Star

Burned toast.  That’s what the scent was.  I sniffed the air and stood up behind my desk as the odor was suddenly much stronger.  My new pink cloche hat fell to the floor and I quickly scooped it up and dusted off the nonexistent dirt.  “Oh, applesauce!” The hat was brand new.

I wrinkled my nose at the growing odor.  Really burned toast.  A heavy knock at the door made the newly painted glass shake.  I cringed thinking about how much it had cost to get the frosted glass with my name stenciled on it put in that door.  It was nearly as much as I’d spend on food for a week, but the expensive glass inset proudly bore the sign, P. I. Peabody, Private Eye.

Right behind the knock was a fireman.  Right behind the fireman was a lot of smoke.  He didn’t have say a word.  I swept papers from my desk into a satchel and followed him down the stairs.

“Don’t tell me,” I said over my shoulder in a dry tone.  “The ‘movie star’ in 2-C burned her toast again.”1920s Fire truck

“That and half her kitchenette too,” the fireman said with a lopsided smile.  “But don’t worry.  It wasn’t too bad.  We just want to check and make sure everything is okay before we let folks back into the building.  Procedures the chief always says.  It’s a decent building,” he added with a thoughtful expression.  “You think there’s a vacancy?  I’m Frankie Fabro, by the way.”  He took off a heavy glove and offered his hand.

“Paisley Peabody,” I introduced myself and shook his hand.  “Call me Pip.”

Nope, with a moniker like that I didn’t have any business giggling about anybody else’s name, but I couldn’t help smiling at the thought of Frankie Fabro, Fireman.  Besides, Frankie really was the cat’s pajamas, a real cutie.  I explained that the building was meant to be for offices, but times were tough, so as long as occupants at least put up the pretense of having a business and paid the rent on time, the management let them live there.  Because of the pseudo businesses, I had come to think of my fellow tenants as if they were children playing the roles of what they wanted to be when they grew up.  There was the toast-burning Mindy the Movie Star, so a fireman might be good to balance that.  There was also the Boris the Ballerina, a graceful but aloof man with a Slavic accent who gave dance lessons about twice a week.  Then there was Andy the Astronaut, or rather Astronaute, as he would correct me.  He was really a writer, but he wrote stuff like Edgar Rice Burroughs – wild imaginative stuff.

As if on cue, Andy came running out of the building.  His glasses were askew and he clutched his screenplay to his chest and chased a few loose sheets of paper down the street when they escaped.

10 thoughts on “Three Things Serial: 2 – Ballerina, Fireman, Astronaut

  1. Thanks for stopping by, Mary — and for the kind encouragement.

    I know you didn’t ask, so I guess I’m commenting on myself… For the Three Things Serial I’m thinking sort of like we had to for NaNoWriMo. It’s meant to be quick — not necessarily correct.
    It’s also meant to be interactive. Kind of like some TV shows that let the audience vote on the ending.
    This is also an exercise in flexibility. I have to be willing to let the story go wherever the “things” take my imagination. So it’s not about making a perfect story either.


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