Recently in my creative writing class we had a really fun exercise. In order for us to better understand character, character development, and then also plot, our teacher had us brainstorm as a group and come up with two rather opposite characters. I took a picture of the board so that you can see what we came up with. The names? Frank Zeeter and Molly Ann Robins. Then, utilizing these two characters our teacher gave us this prompt: Frank and Molly meet. How they meet is up to you. Frank has something Molly really wants, and Molly has something Frank really wants. Don’t give them what they want at first, and just see how the story progresses. Well, here is my story, in all it’s glory. It’s really a rough draft, but eventually I may whip it into something more. I hope you enjoy it!
THE DEGREE OF SEPARATION
Frank Zeeter scored his first, and only, music job at Under Mona’s Smile – a strip club in North Beach. A pair of kicking legs in neon lights rested perfectly under a large sign which featured Mona Lisa gracefully looking down at all the customers frequenting the dingy, struggling club, giving the facade a whimsical, off-kilter appearance. Customers could enjoy the show downstairs, or perhaps head upstairs for a bit of gambling and some snuff. A real all-in-one entertainment joint.
Marcus Comasco, the owner, first knew Frank as a fellow raver, and after several years of unexpected friendship, Marcus learned of Frank’s own musical inclination. He wrote electronic music suited to raving and fancied himself a DJ – but when pressed would readily admit his amateur status. In fact, his music was horrible. However, true friendship prevails, and Tuesday was a characteristically slow night, so Marcus decided on a psychedelic theme to hopefully liven the place up. Hiring Frank was more of an act of goodwill than any actual talent, and somehow Tuesdays became even less popular. True to form though, Molly Ann Robins still showed up habitually for her pirate strip tease.
A rather pear-shaped, tall woman, Molly gave off the strange impression of two triangles stacked on top of each other. The first triangle encompassed her long, curly, bushy brown hair which flowed angularly from her head to slightly past her collar bones. The second triangle peaked at her small breast and thin waist, and continued it’s diverging lines to skim large hips, a round butt, and meaty thighs. Catering to her strength, her strong base, Molly took of her top early and then played to her bottom half. Her ripped pirate shirt always came away from her body easily, and the skull nipple covers followed quite quickly after. But then, gyrating her hips in that oh-so-delightful way that immediately called to mind undulations of the horizontal persuasion, Molly hooked her small audience. The sheer audacity of a 6 foot tall woman with a perfectly poised, perky ass, shaking it in a pirate costume, made many men look twice. Those that bothered to come to a strip club on a Tuesday night, found themselves rewarded.
Frank liked this slow crawl towards nakedness performed every Tuesday at 9:15 PM, and queued her up with his most delicious mashup of heavy beats and minor chords. He especially enjoyed her perfectly formed nipples, small and shy, which contrasted so sharply with her generous bottom. In moments of truth, Frank would confess his desire for Molly to rave. He wanted to watch his light show on her body, with his music caressing her smooth undressing. Really, through sound, light, and some vibrational bass, he wanted to posses her triangles. However, Marcus, in no uncertain terms over a tumbler of whisky, had told Frank that Molly would only dance to music of her own choosing – pirate music in this case.
Marcus hadn’t told him that in reality, Molly Ann hated Frank. His large, bulbous nose and thick, full, moist, red lips sent her into a frenzy of loathing. She hardly deigned to talk to him. She wished he would never, ever play his horrid music at Under Mona’s Smile again. The fact that he seemed to relish his small musical introduction to her stripping act particularity irked her and almost ruined the pure joy she felt when dancing. The lights, with which he often accompanied his music, disoriented Molly Ann – she was blind in one eye – and only made her more antagonistic.
In her small studio, at her work table surrounded by her three cats, Molly Ann often found herself forming busts of Frank Zeeter in clay expressly in order to smash them. She wanted him gone. De-stressing from her day job as the secretarial underling to an ad-agency whore, her fingers loved the wet, coldness of clay, and the satisfying thuds that accompanied the Frank defacement – which inevitably started with the nose and those Dumbo-esqe ears. Her boyfriend, who came over like clockwork every Thursday and Friday night, thought she’d found her muse, as often only full, beautiful lips of clay remained untouched in the wreckage of her wrath. It follows that he encouraged her endeavors and thought blithely of his girlfriend watching some other beautiful girl, and then coming home, alight and inspired to fervently work on Art. She didn’t correct him.
Marcus, caught on one hand dealing with Frank’s minor obsession, and on the other Molly Ann’s major abhorrence, remained remarkable neutral. He figured these minor kinks would straighten themselves out in time. He was wrong. When Molly finally brought a fully-fired bust of Frank on stage during a performance only to desecrate it by decapitation followed by fragmentation, he knew he had to do something. Approaching Frank, he tried to feel out how hurt he might be by a cancellation of his only gig. Frank was surprisingly calm when Marcus started the conversation by asking about the bust incident. He even smiled as if delighted.
“The thing about human emotions,” he said, “is that they lie in a circle. Hate is just a simple degree of separation from love. It only takes a small push to tip the scale.” Marcus wasn’t so sure about Frank’s confident optimism, but couldn’t ignore his plea for a deal. His terms were simple, Molly Ann just had to dance one set for him, with his music, and he would quit. It didn’t seem unreasonable.
When first approached, Molly Ann flat refused. Until hell froze over, there was no way she would dance for that short, blue-eyed, raver. However, realizing that it might be a small price to pay for the reward of never seeing his large, red nose and matching lip set, she rethought her attitude. She graciously accepted.
The stage was set, the time 6:45 PM, the day, Tuesday. Under Mona’s Smile was closed to customers, and wouldn’t open until 8. Instead, Molly Ann waited inside, looking morose, while Frank began his number. As prearranged, the set would last 30 minutes, and Molly Ann was to dance the entire time. And dance like she meant it.
With his first beats, Molly Ann proceeded like she did every Tuesday – by ripping off her fluffy pirate shirt, doing some snaky pirouettes, and flipping off her skull nipple covers. But then, something strange happened. With her one eye, Molly Ann noticed that the lights, contrary to their usual epileptic inducing flickers, were slowly rotating around her torso. It seemed to her as though wherever she moved on stage they followed, flickering over her small nipples, nipping at her waist, and dancing on the palms of her hands. She became entranced. Almost hypnotized, Molly danced with even greater emotion, flinging her body with abandon and utilizing all props on the stage.
Flinging herself onto a chair, in order to better arch her back and spread her legs to the light, she noticed the second surprise of the evening. Frank had organized his bass so precisely that it vibrated the floorboards of the stage. The vibration traveled up the legs of the chair and settled firmly into her ample ass. They positively rocked her, and set her body tingling. It wasn’t music any longer – Frank had gathered all his wiles, his limited genius, and had created a movement of foreplay. Molly Ann couldn’t get away, and the more she felt the vibrations, the lights, the gentle caress of his terrible minor chords, she didn’t want to. Instead she found herself imagining his lips, Frank’s beautiful woman lips of red, cavernous moistness all over her body. His bulbous nose buried in her roundness, his wide-set blue eyes watching as he took her.
By the end of the half hour, Molly was exhausted, lying down on the stage with every nerve tingling, her breathing staccato, her hatred spent. Frank, his wide set eyes twinkling in victory, walked up to her prone figure.
“I named it ‘My One Degree,'” he whispered as he slowly traced his finger down her bare sternum. She looked at him with her one brown eye and said nothing. As he walked away he raised one hand over his head in a salute.
Molly Ann never saw him again.