Dramatis Personae

I discovered a glitch in the working of things.  It all started with an accident.  I was lost in the forest, and I came to the base of this large mountain that had a vast network of tunnels and caves hollowed out in the inside of it.  One of these tunnels terminated in an opening several feet above the ground, high above where I was standing.  As I stood there, staring up at the granite face of the mountain, I saw a man in a marching band uniform fall from the opening.  He stood up, dusted the burrs and dried leaves of the forest floor from his sleeves, cast a wary glance back at me, and then he took off through the trees and he was gone.

I didn’t think anything of the incident until I happened to stumble upon a parade the next day in the city.  There were floats and baton twirlers, and of course, a marching band.  As the band passed, someone stepped on someone else’s shoe, and one of the band members tripped and fell.  I watched as he got back to his feet and dusted the dirt from the street from his sleeves.  And then he spotted me looking at him.  He shot me that same wary glance, and then he pushed the other band members out of the way and took off through the crowd before I could pursue him.

I returned to the mountain in the woods.  In one of the tunnels, I found a stage that was set up to look like a restaurant in my neighborhood.  I had stumbled across some sort of rehearsal space.  I hid behind the counter over by the cash register and I watched as these two women had the same lunch over and over again, reading all the same lines, trying to get it right.  Like the marching band member tripping and falling, it was an event that wouldn’t happen until the next day.  This was where they rehearsed life before it happened, making sure it all came off normal and natural.

After about their fifth or six run-through, I began to notice something.  I saw that one of the women kept reproducing a twenty dollar bill from her wallet every time the bill came.  There was no resetting of the props between each scene.  It was a fresh bill every time.  An idea came to me.  I stood up and revealed my position.  They were startled to see me, but I launched right in, asking about the money.  I wanted to know where it all came from.  Was a new twenty created from thin air every time?  Had I found an unlimited source of funds?  A loophole in the economics of existence?

Unfortunately, once we started piecing it all together, we discovered that these funds were being generated from tiny changes out in the world, changes that normally no one would notice, things no one would miss.  But when we traced where the money that had paid for these lunches had come from, it all led back to this young bride-to-be.  Her wedding dress, which she had dreamed of since childhood, had been traded for a cheaper one to pay for the meals.  This would lead to a grave misunderstanding between her and her fiance’, as the dress was the same one which an old girlfriend of his had worn for her wedding the previous spring.  And this suspicion, in turn, would break the engagement and derail this poor bride’s entire life. 

We couldn’t let that happen.  I sat down to figure it all out.  I took account of all of the different scenes being rehearsed in those caves.  We had to juggle the money around from one scene to the other.  We had to set things right and get this bride her dress back.  It was a vast undertaking, pennies from one life, dimes from another, but at last I managed to do it.  The world was back on course, and no one would miss a thing.           


21 thoughts on “Dramatis Personae

  1. Again with the twenty dollar bill…
    If I were your mom or sister I'd advise you to stop being a friend to the world & keep those twenties to spend on a little something for yourself. If I'd been a character in your dream I would have snatched those twenties up & handed them over to you. Then I'd said to that bride “boo hoo you pretty pretty spoiled little princess I don't care – you can wear a duc tape wedding dress for all I care or get married at the courthouse like I did”
    I don't like this dream. It's confusing, too deep for me & it makes my head hurt.


  2. Ha! A cross-over call back! I didn't even think of that.

    I do love my twenties though. Noting the number of twenties in my wallet in a regular part of my weekly routine. I don't deal much in fifties and hundreds as they're so hard to spend. Plus, Andrew Jackson was such a great loose cannon President.


  3. Jackson was bad-ass! But I doubt if he were alive today he would do a darn thing about my hillbilly neighbor's nasty backyard & their mosquito infested Walmart pool. Tarleton on the other hand would slash that pool to shreds with his saber in seconds. And he'd slash their heads to the bone too.
    Then he'd throw them in an animal pen where they belong. And he'd let me stand at the fence & spit on them too.


  4. As a guy who's been cooking his whole life, I actually ended up catering my own wedding, and it was backbreaking, but it came out really well and was cheap. Otherwise, my wife's wedding dress WOULD have been traded for a much cheaper one just to cover the cost of meals. They wanted much more than infinite twenties just for chicken, fish, and bland, tasteless salads.


  5. Oh Bryan, I'm so sorry! I have been viewing your blog on my mobile instead of desktop – so I didn't see until this evening that you have written a book!! I just now downloaded Kindle to my Android & I'm going to Walgreens right now to get an Amazon card. Your book looks so interesting & the cover is absolutely beautiful! I can't wait to read it & to tell everyone I know about it!
    I'm so proud of you I could bust! Ohhh THANK YOU for writing that awesome book! And so sorry for trashing up your wonderful blog with such pointless nonsense.
    You did it! YAY! WOOOO HOOO! :0)
    :0) :0)


  6. She's a very talented artist! When I reached the ending of 'Percivus & Drominden Deal With An Impossible Situation' I knew instantly that was the skull of Percivus! Oooo that was a creepy one! There was never a spaceship?! He was inside his own skull?! WTF?! That ending totally shocked me! In fact all of your stories either shocked or amazed me or both. Nothing about any of them is predictable & that's what I like about them.
    Love how your mind works. Supreme superiorness!
    That last one… 'The Final Ordeal Of Phillip Neville Chambers' is the one that got to me the most, because it played on my worse fear. Lol it's still messing with my head a wee bit. 3:48 a.m only two more hours till dawn. Think I'll just stay awake in case I fall asleep & “wake up with a scream”. (Chills & shivers) 🙂

    Sorry for the mess I made here… again.

    VERY awesome book, Bryan!
    I honestly really liked it so much more than anything I've read lately. There wasn't a single word that was boring or predictable. It was PERFECT!


  7. Oh and no way did I want to embarrass you by writing some nutty review. But I did try to rate you the 5 stars you deserve. It wouldn't let me though. Don't know what the deal is with that. Maybe it was just my phone. I'll try again by desktop later on.
    Way Cool Book from cover to end!


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