2. Hanson

Part two of the below.  I am really ripping off someone’s style here, I just can’t quite figure out who. Maybe a combination of people. I haven’t really written enough literary fiction to have a voice that is entirely my own,  I think.

– – – – –

2. Hanson

Eric Hanson fucking hated this Whole Foods nature tofu wheatgrass shit on his plate; hated it more on principle than anything else. It had been twelve years now, twelve years since he rescued her, like he always rescued the damsel in distress, from the obscurity of a minor cable series. And now here they were. He stared at her, trying hard to burn through her with his gunmetal grey eyes. Finally her image blurred and he only saw the pictures on the wall behind her- himself, young, bronzed, in the uniform of a starship captain. His wife said something to him that he didnt hear.

How had it come to this?

What were they?

The phone looked not too unlike the 1960s vision of a futuristic communication device that he held in several of the pictures on the wall. When it buzzed with a message it was as good an excuse as any. He set the fork down, very quietly, stood, placed his ninety-dollar silk napkin on his plate, turned, and walked- with twenty years of classical training in London and on both coasts, walked with utter quiet and purpose out of his house.

His training failed him for a moment, and he paused on the front lawn. The grass, immaculate, deep technicolor green, cut to exactly one-eighth of an inch. The sun was dropping behind the houses on the hill in the distance, down the street that curved down and away, deeper into the gold-tinged urban suburbia of West Los Angeles- hill after golden hill, dream house after dream house after dream house.

After all these years he never failed to stop short when he saw the view, still never quite believing that he lived here. He tried to remember his Midwestern childhood, a dim dusty world of farms, muddy fistfights and never enough room for the seven brothers and sisters that shared their three room shack- but when he thought of it now all he saw was his own television biography, a 20 second montage of sepia-toned photos with solemn voice-over narration.

Hanson walked down the gentle curve of the hill. At the bottom, he stopped and typed a text message into the gleaming black phone.

He was playing basketball with two of the neighborhood children, Chinese boys who had set up a hoop in the street, when the car pulled up. It was a late-model BMW with tinted windows, almost a limousine.

Hanson timed his exit perfectly: he tossed the ball to the oldest boy as the car slowed, and then gave them his best starship captain salute as he slid into the backseat. The boys stared as the car rolled down the hill, into the sunset.

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