October 14th, 2018 by Patrick Starks
Say what you want about me, but at least I know who I am, I do not eat green eggs and ham, and no, my name is not Sam. My name is Mr. Books and all my life I’ve wanted to be a bestseller; to be read by millions, to be read internationally, to lie rested in the palms of coffee stained hands, oh, it could be so stellar. From the pastry shops near pioneer square to the possible selfies of me on Instagram, no matter the place or case, I knew I could impress for everything I have dreamed about thus far could never be a waste.
On the inside, I had become dim and fragile as a leaf. Page after page would lose its essence over time. I’d been abandoned but not purposely you see. My father had passed long before he’d gotten the chance to see me touch the hearts of others as he’d always envisioned. O’Rien Crumble was his name or O’Rien the Extraordinaire he liked to be called in bold and italic. O’Rien was what many would call charming, a man’s man, but like most heroes, his story eventually came to an end.
We, the fantastic duo, would spend many years together, traveling the world, from six chapters to twelve. And for three years we both worked together until the day O’Rien would decide to have me published. But sadly, New York was not a fan of innovative writers—if it wasn’t a topic or genre that was trending, then to they, the anonymous judges, wasn’t worth the investment. And it was this reason why O’Rien Crumble had to learn how to write with his left hand.
But his funeral was heavenly. Flowers of every color and a casket artistically painted in ways by the finest of fine artist—just the way he’d always imagined. I never realized how many people O’Rien knew until now. Family, friends, co-workers, students, the whole dam city. But in all honesty, the soft legs I rested on were more appealing–thank the gods they didn’t burry me with O’Rien. But one thing was for certain, I might not have been a best seller, but at least O’Rien had still made an impact on the world one way or another. And I could never be any more happy for my old man.
After O’Rien’s passing, I’d get handed down to his wife Carmela, the woman with the soft legs. She was quite charming herself which made me feel even more okay with the fact that O’Rien was gone—I at least had something to remember him by.
In his name, Carmela would crack open their favorite—Cabernet Sauvignon. It was a cheap wine, but still, it got the job done. And if one were to turn to page two thirty-two, they would still see the stain of red wine from the nights Carmela sat in O’Rien’s lap as he read to her like one of Santa’s little helpers.
And Just to remember him, Carmela would read me every Friday night, from chapter four to seven, specifically, for reasons I do not know. Mozart, a little Frank Sinatra, it was all that played in the background. And afterward, it would be I who would lay rested on Carmela’s soft and suckle chest. It was warm. I could hear every beat of her heart like something from Jumanji but nothing about the moment was a game. O’Rien was a lucky dog, I thought, at least for the moment he was. But all I could really think about was O’Rien throwing me into the fireplace that roasted by Carmela’s pampered feet. He was somewhat of a jealous man, but what man isn’t for his precious. Without a doubt, on a night like this, I would find that not all stories like that of my own had happy endings. I’d become depressed.
Cobwebs and darkness, it was all I could ever see through the crack of the box I was in—molded from the water that dripped from the damaged ceiling above—there was no other place in the states that rained buckets in October like Seattle.
To my right, a dark magician stared at me, with seven stars that hovered above its head that of which resembled dragon balls from O’Riens favorite anime, but I never really knew what any of them meant for I was no Manga. And to my left a U.S.A flag and a few medals. Fun fact, O’Rien was a military brat, although, he never really spoke much about it to Carmela. But that is another story.
Carry on soldier.
Every now and then, I thought I heard something, the fast pacing of footsteps maybe, no, I was no book of horrors. But out of all the years spent in silence, I knew for sure it was something.
Light then revealed itself to me. It was blinding, yet refreshing all in one—I could finally see my di… I mean, words again—let’s keep it PG-13 Mr. Books.
“Dam. This is some good shit,” I said to myself, like a drug addict around the corner of Third and Pine street. But there was no sugar coating it, O’Rien was a genius. An underrated one at best.
The lights flickered on and off—it been a while since the bulb was changed or cut on. A mysterious being searched the room. I didn’t have a nose, obviously, so, depicting their smell was slim to none. Although, the way they huffed and puffed all over the place like the big bad wolf was enough for me to know they were just like O’Rien, a man.
“Honey did you find it!” yelled an angelic voice. This I knew for sure was a woman.
The man then stopped what he was doing in response to the question.
“Almost love,” he said. “I think I’m getting close. But you should come up here. I didn’t know that mom had so many things. I’m sure you’ll find something you like.”
There was a pause but not long after the woman would respond.
“Yeah… No, I think I’m going to head back to the car. Besides, I don’t trust Cami and O’Brien in the car by themselves. You know what happened last time,” she said.
“Yeah your right, how could I forget. I still got the scrapes and bruises all over my knees from that day,” said the man. “But that’s what we get for getting those to hooked on race car driving at such a young age. Our little Talladega Nights.”
The man and the woman both laughed. It brought joy to my pages. It had been a while since I heard or seen happiness from anything. Nevertheless, the man continued his search. I was amused. Just what did he mean by mom? I wondered.
Now two feet stood in front of me—shined by the best of shoe shines men they were. A knife then pierced the top of the exterior nearly cutting into my interior. A hand reached around corner to corner of the box. It was hairy and tickled the sides of me like the Elmo doll from behind.
“There you are. Time to get you published once and for all old friend,” said the man with a familiar smile.
Was I dreaming all this time? Of course, it was a O’Rien. But the funeral? What about the red wine and warm breast, I mean, chest? Stop being a perv Mr. Books.
No, of course, I knew all of this time. None of what I’ve told you until now was true. I fooled you all, but calm down, I am a book after all. I tell stories, you should’ve known all along.
It’s not April yet, but I still fooled ya.