Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Teaser Tuesday - Sym's Stories

Today I'm honored to bring you a bit of The Jane Project by Sym Murray.  It's a serial story written by my friend, and it's a whole lot of fun.  I hope after reading this, you head on over to her site and become as addicted to the story as I am.

The Jonesville Journal had been so thoroughly crammed into Jane Greene's apartment mailbox that she had spent ten minutes trying to dislodge the thing without tearing it to bits. In hindsight, she should have yanked the thing until it resembled confetti then she wouldn't be standing in her kitchen gaping at the picture of her ex-husband and his secretary under the heading "Marriage Announcements". At least they were decent. The last time she had seen them Ex-husband had been in the middle of a strange form of dictation where Secretary straddled his lap wearing nothing but hot pink Victoria Secret bra and panties.
Jane opened the refrigerator. The can of Rediwhip caught her eye. A couple of shots later she was ready to move onto something more substantial in order to kill the pain. While digging out the leftover pizza from the night before, she calculated the total amount of time she had been single. 452 days, 18 hours, 37 minutes! Funny, it seemed like only yesterday she had stood on the threshold of Ex's office and watched Secretary arch her back and grind her hips further down into Jane's husband's groin.

She tore off a chunk of pizza and washed it down with another shot. The newspaper drew her back like a bad reality show; it was bad, but you couldn't not watch and then have nothing to contribute at the water cooler the next day. Yep, they were still there, smiling pretty and looking like a black and white version of Ken and Barbie. Jane stuffed more pizza in her mouth and read the announcement:

Mary and Todd Richardson are pleased to announce the upcoming marriage of their eldest son, Todd Richardson to Rachel Penhold, daughter of Cynthia and Robert Penhold of Chicago, Illinois, on July 17. Ceremony to take place at the Garrison Inn with reception to follow.
Mary and Todd had been pleased to announce the previous marriage of their eldest son, Todd Junior, to Jane Greene at the same bloody Garrison Inn. Jane shot some Rediwhip onto the pizza crust before popping it into her mouth. She licked her fingers, giving extra attention to her middle one as she positioned herself correctly before the newspaper picture.

Then, reality set in. Her ex-husband had moved on with his life and she had moved into a one-room apartment and gorged herself on crappy food to try to forget. She sank to the floor, luckily, right next to the cracker cupboard. A sleeve of crackers may not dry the sting of tears threatening to spill onto her cheeks, but it would keep the accompanying snot at bay. She couldn’t believe the amount of tears still available for Todd.

The phone rang. Jane's pain deepened. If she was reading the weekly edition of the Journal, then so was her mother. She let the answering machine pick up the call.

"Jane? Jane, I know you're there." There was a pause, but Jane only curled into a fetal position and waited for her mother's words of wisdom.

"Well, I don't know where you are, but if you get the paper, don't read it."

Too late! She swiped at her eyes and fished for another cracker.

"Just throw it out. Don't read it. I'm serious. I'll call you later and explain. I love you, Honey."

The click echoed in the small apartment. If Jane had received that message before she had opened the paper, she would have thought someone from home had died and she hadn't been notified. Her mother's "I'm serious." was not to be taken lightly. And, like the dutiful daughter she was, she would have placed the paper on her the table and phoned her mother to get the dreadful news accompanied by a dose of love and platitudes that everything was going to be fine.

The phone rang again. Jane crammed two crackers in her mouth and waited for the answering machine to click into action. No question as to the caller being her best friend, Kate. Pity call, anyone?

“Jane? It’s me, Kate. Did you get the paper?”

Cracker crumbs fell to the floor as Jane nodded her head.

“Can you believe this? This is so exciting.”

Jane’s stopped chewing.

“Are you going? I’m going to get a new dress. I haven’t had a new dress since before Danny was born. Ooh, maybe I'll come to Chicago first and we can have a spa day”

Kate was a pretty upbeat person, but unless she was attempting reverse psychology, Jane couldn’t believe what she was hearing. There was an actual singsong quality to her friend’s voice. She swallowed the lump of cracker goo and lunged for the phone.

“Ooh, I hope there’s a dance – ”

“You’re kidding right?”

“Jane! Were you in the bathroom?”

“I was on the floor. Crying.”

“What? Why?”

“I got the paper.” She glanced at the offending picture again and shoved the whole thing off the counter.

“I’m confused. Why were you crying? Oh, you think you’re going to need a date. Don’t worry, I’m leaving Mike at home. I’ll be your date.”

“Kate! I hate to disappoint you, you sound like you have your heart set on going, but I don’t think either one of us will get an invite.”

“Why wouldn’t we?”

“Well, I don’t think Mary and Todd want me at their son’s wedding. First time was good, I was the bride, but the second time being the ex-wife might be...”

“Todd’s getting married?” Paper rustled in Jane’s ear.

 “Yes. What are you talking about?”

“The reunion.”


Like I said, this is the beginning.  So far there are 13 installments (give or take) and she tries to put one out every week.  I hope you enjoy!


jblynn said...

Cool! I've never gotten into serials, but might now.

Silver James said...

I love this story! I'm a big fan of Janet's writing. Off to read the current installment now. :)

Janet said...

Well there, cat's out of the bag - been wondering all day whether or not to 'claim' that snippet :)

Thanks all - and thanks B.E. for using The Jane Project as a teaser for Teaser Tuesday. I really appreciate the exposure!!

B.E. Sanderson said...

Thanks so much for letting me post a bit here today, Janet. I really love this story. =o)

Aisyah Putri Setiawan said...

Banned complain !! Complaining only causes life and mind become more severe. Enjoy the rhythm of the problems faced. No matter ga life, not a problem not learn, so enjoy it :)

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