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Setting: Eastern Oregon, 2029

 

My main character is Pip, short for “Philip” who is a 9-year-old boy.

He’s self-possessed, outgoing around friends, and the star of the school play.

He has a 13-year-old sister named Fable.

Fable had meningitis as a baby and has severe hearing loss.

No one ever taught her ASL, so she communicates by writing on a tablet.

Pip usually speaks on Fable’s behalf because she is shy and lacks confidence.

 

Pip and Fable’s mom Iris works as a waitress in a small town diner in Eastern Oregon.

For a single mom, she’s pretty neglectful of her children, because she has dreams of being a star in Hollywood.

 

School’s out. It’s summer vacation.

 

They live in a trailer with Iris’s boyfriend Albert.

Pip hears Iris and Albert having an argument.

The next day, Iris packs Pip and Fable’s bag and takes them to a church.

She tells the pastor she’s leaving a domestic violence situation and needs a place to stay. 

The pastor gives her some gift cards and says she can use her welfare vouchers at the local inn.

 

Iris proceeds to leave Pip and Fable alone in the inn for three days while she flies to Hollywood to audition for some parts. (She sent an audition tape to some directors and got called in)

 

Pip and Fable explore the inn, buys bread and peanut butter from the store, and treat the time like a vacation.

Back at the inn, Fable uses some box cutters and starts cutting her arm.

Pip calls the front desk for a first aid kit, and the motel staff realize they’re two unaccompanied minors.

 

They want to call the police, but Pip persuades them not to because Iris will be back the next day.

The general manager gets in touch with Iris and takes Pip and Fable to her home for one night.

 

Jump cut.

 

Iris didn’t get the part in LA, but is telling Pip and Fable about how to take a bus up to Spokane, Washington and then taking the Amtrak cross country to their grandmother’s house in Chicago. She tells Pip that she’s going back to LA for more auditions for the rest of the summer. They’ll be okay to travel on their own because Fable is thirteen, and it’s no big deal to take the train.

 

Pip doesn’t want to leave Oregon. He asks Fable if she’s okay with taking the bus back to Oregon instead. The story ends with Iris dropping Pip and Fable off at the bus terminal. Pip exchanges their tickets for one going back to Oregon instead. Fable goes along with the plan. Their future is very uncertain.

 

The End.

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15 hours ago, Wesley Southern said:

Pip usually speaks on Fable’s behalf because she is shy and lacks confidence.

 

This is where you hooked me.

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15 hours ago, Wesley Southern said:

Setting: Eastern Oregon, 2029


Writing near-future stuff is perhaps the most challenging sort of fiction. William Gibson has made a cottage industry of near-future prediction. I'd be interesting to see if you could find a new technology which features into the story to justify the near-future setting.

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15 hours ago, Wesley Southern said:

Back at the inn, Fable uses some box cutters and starts cutting her arm.


This is dark but reflects hurting people thrashing around trying to find relief from their pain. I had a tenant once who did this. Our church loved on her for years and saw wonderful healing in her life over time.

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    Here's an idea I have for the plot.  It's presented from a Christian viewpoint.   

    While Pip and Fable are staying at the Inn, she watches a Christian evangelist's recorded sermon on TV.  There is closed captioning, so she reads his words  This leads to her receiving salvation; along with her hearing being completely restored.  She also stops cutting herself.  

    After seeing what's happened with his sister, Pip also accepts salvation.

    Then the two of them head down to Hollywood, to see if they can bring salvation to their mother.  

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7 minutes ago, William D'Andrea said:

    Here's an idea I have for the plot.  It's presented from a Christian viewpoint.   

    While Pip and Fable are staying at the Inn, she watches a Christian evangelist's recorded sermon on TV.  There is closed captioning, so she reads his words  This leads to her receiving salvation; along with her hearing being completely restored.  She also stops cutting herself.  

    After seeing what's happened with his sister, Pip also accepts salvation.

    Then the two of them head down to Hollywood, to see if they can bring salvation to their mother.  

 

Unfortunately, that is totally unrealistic, as I am not a Christian myself I wouldn’t know how to write that :’(

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5 hours ago, Johne said:

This is dark but reflects hurting people thrashing around trying to find relief from their pain. I had a tenant once who did this. Our church loved on her for years and saw wonderful healing in her life over time.

Indeed. But it's (unfortunately) very, very common nowadays for teenagers to do that. I haven't done it (God forbid I ever do either), but I know a couple of people who have. 😞

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