Jim walked for four hours. He would have stopped and slept at the side of the road, but the one thin blanket he had with him didn’t do enough to keep him warm. He had to keep walking until he either found a place to stay, or someone took pity on his cold hitchhiker’s thumb.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 491 : Goodbye Van Family
“He’s a misogynist!” The dork with fake glasses pointed at Big Jim Zempel and laughed. Laughed! As if he had any right to say anything, the wannabe.
“What are you talking about?” Jim tried to laugh it off, though he really wanted to punch the guy. Lately it seemed like lately Rick had been picking up more and more of those people. Always the ones who didn’t really need to be there. College kids killing the last few minutes before they went back to school.
“You, man. I’m talking about you.” The idiot college boy grinned dopily.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 490 : Van Family Neophyte
Emma paused in the front entrance of East High on the morning of the first day of school. She swallowed hard and tried to not think about barfing. This year, she was not going to run to the bathroom every few seconds. Not like all through middle school.
In middle school, up until she’d found the three Kates, she’d been a nervous wreck. Come to think of it, she’d been nearly as much of a nervous wreck afterwards too. When was it exactly that she’d gotten a grip?
Continue reading Suzie’s House 489 : The First Day of School for Emma
“So. School starts tomorrow. Are you ready?” Lisa sat in Ben’s bedroom, on his bed, and kicked her heels back and forth while he sat at his desk in front of his computer and read through her latest opus.
“Uh-huh. Yeah.” He answered so absently that she almost asked again. But then he pointed to a backpack leaning up against the wall. It was stuffed so full the zipper wouldn’t close. It was like a gaping reminder of the hateful responsibility foisted on incorrigible students at summer’s end.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 488 : School Supplies
Gene ran out to the bottom of the stairs to shout at Ben and Lisa. Since Lisa was working on the music video for them, she counted as an honorary sort of band member and you couldn’t expect Ben to sit out of it when all his friends were there in his house.
“Lisa! Ben! We’re starting.”
“Yeah, we got it.” Ben waved from down the hall.
The two of them had come in from the kitchen. They weren’t upstairs at all. What a clunker.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 487 : Band Meeting
“I’m proud of you.” Vin stood by their bedroom door with his arms crossed over his chest and a proud smile.
“Yeah? What’s that about?” Miranda refused to look at him any more than she had to. He didn’t need any encouragement if he was going to comment on her character. Instead, she focused on getting her image in the mirror of her vanity and getting the rest of the makeup off her face. This was purely practical. Nothing vain about it.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 486 : A Lion’s Pride
Gene did not much care for Miranda. Not that he really disliked her. Certainly he hated his own father a lot more. Miranda never hit him, rarely said nasty things to him, and sometime even fed him. So she was mostly okay. But still, Miranda was the kind of woman he already knew he couldn’t handle.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 485 : Up to Snuff
“It’s not my fault.” Lisa sounded even more prickly than Tracy expected.
“When did I say it’s your fault.” Tracy couldn’t help getting a little defensive as she leaned over to look at Lisa’s laptop. “I’m just saying…. I don’t know! It’s just… forty two? Seriously? Only forty two?”
“That’s forty two hits in two days, and it’s only on youtube. I mean, we haven’t put the music video anywhere else yet. Right? Once we get it on Facebook and everything….” Lisa sucked her lips in doubtfully. “I’ve seen a lot of videos that have been online for longer and got less hits than that. Besides, we don’t even have the album sales info yet. Right?”
Continue reading Suzie’s House 484: Jumping the Gun
Lisa wasn’t sure if she could use any of the film footage later, but she certainly was having fun. She dropped to her knees in front of Bruce, panned up along his stand to the underside of his keyboard, then zoomed in on his face.
Normally she considered Bruce’s innate machismo nauseating. He was too brutal to be an oaf, but not smooth enough to be cool. Or so she thought until today. On film, with that narrow-eyed, knowing expression taken from this angle, he looked pure cool. Unless something weird turned up in the background that she didn’t notice now, it would be a keeper.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 483 : Making Movies
On one of those rare days when Miranda made it home early but Vin was still out working, she sat in their room and painted her nails. Yesterday they were red talons. Today she’d only had time to add a pink top edge to hide the chipping. Today she’d go with tri-color slanted stripes. She had all but one nail done when the kids knocked on her door.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 482 : Bearding the Lion
“I sound awful.” Emma covered her face with her hands. “Turn it off. Turn the TV off!” She flapped a hand at the TV in her living room.
“Oh. Right.” Tracy had been sitting on the couch next to Emma with a look of abject horror on her face.
Emma watched her through spread fingers. Tracy launched herself across the room to turn the advertisement off. “My song,” she muttered as though her firstborn had been swept away in a flood – probably too stunned to be angry yet. But Emma knew she would be. Tracy was really territorial about the songs she wrote.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 481 : Incognito
Bruce was on his way out of Suzie’s house by way of the kitchen when he overheard his music on the TV in the den. Drew had the tube on even though his back was to it. Probably one of those guys who just had to have some kind of sound in the background so he wouldn’t go nuts. Bruce could relate.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 480 : First Appearances
The door to the closet had come unhinged. It had a tendency to fall off the rail along the top in the first place, but the weird hinge on either end had never been a problem before. Ethan had no idea how he was supposed to fix it. Somehow, it all seemed a little too symbolic of his life. He planned on a bad rail, and ended up unhinged instead.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 479 : A Hitch in the Hinge
”It’s good. Right?” Miranda leaned back in her ergonomic office chair and smiled.
“Yeah. It’s good.” Her colleague pursed his lips and nodded. “It’s pretty slick the way you get the lyrics to match up with the shot of the car driving off the lot.”
Miranda beamed. She was proud of herself not only for her artistic efforts on this particular ad, but for the way she’d been able to use Malaprop songs with her biggest account. Everything was finally coming together just the way it should.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 478 : Poetic License
Emma clung to the microphone as the other members of her band came into the studio. The glass between the studio and the sound room wasn’t really a two way mirror, but it was definitely easier to see into the studio than to see into the sound room. Everyone had looked like shadows through the glass.
Continue reading Suzie’s House 477 : The Parts Vs The Whole