Muse for Hire (Chapter 4)

Elaine sits down to cover the books while she contemplates about her next ‘story’ if the children’s book idea doesn’t exactly pan out. She’s got plenty of choices but she knows it has to be minimal research due to her time limit. She could see more old school action movies for an action feel. She can write about a few punches but she can never get a good fight scene. She can see it in her mind but she can’t actually capture the fight in words. She can’t even have a killing scene because as gory as it looks in her mind, it reads like a minor stab wound.

She backtracks, remembering that the book is intended for children. Not CSI fanatics or maybe even Dexter. Those two are one of the many shows that showcase an insane amount of glorious gore and blood.
She has a hunch that children love detective series, like Scooby Doo.
She read a bunch of books once and it started steam punk like and the next thing you know, magic was suddenly involved. There are always magic and love triangles for teens. The supernatural will hook and sink them faster than you can say vampire.
She knows she’s no good with the mythological creatures. She always messes up and she always confuses one goddess from another mythology from another. She remembers she wanted to write about dragons. But she assumes dragons don’t like her either. She makes up laughable creations. She tried to explain this to a friend who’s an avid fan of dragons and they just couldn’t quite connect. It was yet another mess.
And the dragon looked like it was in a costume, in the end.
It wasn’t really one of her grand creations.
She thinks about going people watching when she goes for lunch. She checks her watch and clucks her tongue. One and a half hour to go.
She busies herself, picking up an overturned book here and there. She looks around for more things to do besides watching the kids around the library. She won’t get anywhere here. And it won’t help if she keeps checking the wall clock either.
After an uneventful but progressive hour an a half, she then half-runs out of the library doors, to the long awaited hour long freedom.
Cigarettes, cake and coffee will be on the menu.
She sits at the nearest café and sips her coffee slowly, taking the aroma and the feeling in. She looks around the area before carefully taking a cigarette out of the box. She knows she has to be careful.
The kids from the library might see her. But it’s quite unlikely since she’s out of the way of the main road and the café is pretty much in an area where kids are not allowed to venture out by themselves since the road where the café is located is pretty steep. She lights the long-awaited cigarette and inhales. Bliss is the only word she can think of.
With her pen and paper in hand, she watches the passersby, making up whatever stories. She looks at her almost finished cake. She looks at her paper and sighs heavily. As usual, nothing made sense. She picks up her notebook and scans her scribbles. She begins to see red. She wants to throw the notebook across the street, scream, and throw the tables out on the street.
The only reason this was not happening is because Elaine has an insane amount of reserved self control. She can see all this happening in her head though.
She certainly knows that it’s not the end of the world but then it would be if she tells Lam that she can’t come up with anything, not even utter rubbish for him to amuse himself in and pretend that it was bloody art.
She needs to look at this in another way. There has got to be a way. There always is that light in the end of the tunnel or so they say.
When Elaine got back to the library, she takes a quick toilet break and she finds out that she has her period.
Her anger is now understood, dawning on her slowly as she looks at her bloody mess.
Elaine shifts uncomfortably. She’s just using tissue and manoeuvring around with it, is not exactly something she perfected.
She curses and walks like a crab from the counter to the back of the library to fix her wedgie. She rolls her eyes and watches the door carefully, hoping no one walks into her.
Elaine tells herself she needs to stop whining. It’s as if her ego is feeding on it and she’s beginning to sound like a first class egoist.
You can even say a first class whiner.
As she gets back to the counter, she checks around again to make sure no one is there. She then launches on the stack of returned books.
Two of the books were in French and the other one was in Spanish, all of them clearly not from the library she’s working at.
Elaine suddenly wished she was French. How easily drama comes to them. How easily romance is depicted. She can almost hear the swoons of readers. The Spaniards are no exception. She can hear more swooning.
Maybe she can ‘pretend’ to be French? Or be a Spaniard? Write in broken French with a hint of English?
If she was French, how would a typical day be? She thinks for a moment. She looks at the computer and decides on googling the answer but first, work.
She starts typing, ‘How do…’ and erases. She thinks again and types, ‘What is a typical day for a French person?’  She smiles at her silliness but this is all for research.
She has to be serious. And she giggles to herself, imagining herself with a serious face.
Just as the page loaded, the internet connection gets disconnected.
She stared at screen for a moment or so, wondering whether she should be careful. She did just have a dream about being the only person in a whole country.
That is not cool.
She calls the IT Department to report the situation and they informed her that it’d be like this until the end of the day. She checks the wall clock. Three hours to go. She looks around her and knows she has no other choice but to read.
Pretending to be French or Spanish just has to wait until she gets home.

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