Gothic Novel



“Hey, Taylor,” Brian wondered as he sheafed through a stack of typewritten pages he had picked up from Justin’s desk. “You been writing up your latest nightmares?”

“Nope,” Justin laughed in response from across the room. “My friend Myles from the Institute is writing this scary novel and he wanted my advice on this chapter. It’s set in Restoration England and it’s about this mysterious sapphire ring. It’s in a teak wood box with the carving of a daisy on the top of the box and everybody who owns it….”

“You know,” Brian cut in. “I think I’ve seen the exact box in that dollar store where hardly anything is a dollar – you know the one. It cost about five dollars – except I think maybe the box was plastic – and maybe the flower on top wasn’t a daisy – but I’m pretty sure the stone in the ring was a fake sapphire. Guess I should have bought it if it’s lucky.”

“OK, Kinney,” Justin complained lightly. “Nobody asked you to read that manuscript at all – so you don’t have any right to be critical about it. I don’t think your old dollar store plastic box would substitute for Myles’ mysterious wooden box – and I think the flower has to be a daisy – and I also think the sapphire has to be real.”

“So you’re gonna hold out for the real thing, eh?” Brian grinned at him. “Only real wood, and real daisies and real sapphires for my very particular JT. Probably come to more than five bucks – unless Mikey can get me one from a street vendor.”

“OK, Kinney,” Justin told Brian. “Go ahead. Have fun if you want to. I’m just helping out my friend Myles, but if you insist on giving me such an elegant remembrance, you gotta change something. Either the box can’t be teak wood – or the flower can’t be a daisy – or the stone can’t be a sapphire. Cause the box in the story brings real bad luck to anybody who owns it – and I have enough bad luck already – really bad luck too. It’s standing next to my desk right now – reading my personal stuff – and making fun of it – and me.”

“Yeah,” Brian ignored Justin’s teasing. “But what if it’s just the sapphire that brings the bad luck and I change the wood or the daisy? What then? Maybe disaster?”

“Next time I help anybody from the Institute I’m gonna hide the stuff, Brian Honey,” Justin told him with no sign of irritation in his voice. “I shouldn’t tempt your dark side. It’s always too ready to come out with not much provocation…..”

“But you’re still going to try to tempt my good side I bet,” Brian surmised with a sly grin. “I’m getting the feeling you’re trying to tempt me right now – just the good side of course.”

“I don’t know why you’d be thinking that?” Justin grinned back at him coyly.

“Yeah you do,” Brian told him – placing the mystery chapter back onto Justin’s desk. “And maybe I’m just about ready to do something about it too. So what do you think about that?”

“I’m thinking,” Justin answered as he moved toward Brian, “That maybe my luck isn’t so bad after all.”


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