"No Mirrors" by Riley Hamilton, the author of the novel-in-progress "I Used To Be Much Younger" and the screenplay-in-progress

"Tweeps" She was hassling him again verbally on the phone. "Why don't you get away and write that novel you've been talking about for two years," she said. "It hasn't been two years, Mom. Are you trying to sound like an old, crazy woman?" He said, flexing his biceps. "I just want my baby boy to be happy. As much as you joke, Jonah, I am getting old. I can feel it all around me. I'm not as fast as I used to be. You should see how I walk." "Mom, you are still so fast, " Jonah giggled. "Remember when I was complimenting you about how fast you were running down the stairs last time I visited? I wasn't just making conversation. You were as fast as lightning. I've never seen a 55-year old woman move like that." Jonah pulled the phone away from his right ear because she had started to cry. He checked in a few moments later to make sure she was done and then resumed the conversation. "I think you're right. I can take this time to finish that novel. They gave me three weeks' pay as severance and that will go a long way around here." "A long time," she said, trying to hold back her tears. "I want you to be happy, Jonah. I've never heard you happier than when you were describing your little book to me. "The Beautiful Friends," that's what it was called, right?" Jonah giggled again. "Right, mom. "The Beautiful Friends." -After hanging up with his mother, Jonah took a long look at his apartment building. It looked like Satan had taken a big shit there. There were bare white walls and nothing that screamed, "This is Jonah's Home!" Even his multi-colored drapes looked like one of the most boring things ever created. He grabbed a two-liter bottle of soda out of the fridge and polished it off. "I love soda but it does not love me," Jonah said before sighing loudly. The sound soda makes when it goes down your throat was in full effect that day. The carbonated syrup swished in his belly and Jonah laughed loudly. A boisterous laugh that seemed rare coming from a sourpuss like Jonah. Something about the loud laugh reverberating off the walls gave Jonah the courage to go for it. To do the thing he had always dreamt about. To get away from the city of Juniper and try to write that novel. Jonah let out a high-pitched squeal at the thought. In a hotel, Jonah thought suddenly. One with a nice big view of trees and squirrels. A ways off in a small town. The words would flow like sweet honey. He had money saved up, three weeks' of severance pay and the rent was squared away. A change of scenery was what Jonah needed. A little getaway would make him become the superhero writer he knew he could be. And he went for it. -Jonah packed two bags and threw away some things in the fridge that would go bad while he was gone. One of his bags held his clothes and the other was for his toothbrush, hair gel and other hygienic products. He said goodbye to his apartment but left with a smile on his face. He quickly got into his car and started it up. Jonah drove. As he picked up speed, he stuck his head out of the car window and opened his mouth as wide as it would go. He quickly tucked his head back in because he had lost full control of the car. Once he had been on the highway for around thirty minutes he started to look at his choices and finally made his selection. He had settled on a town called Prescott. Prescott almost rhymes with biscuit, Jonah thought. He immediately pulled over and wrote that down in his notebook. He would have to remember that. Jonah had yet to realize that this sense of inspiration and wonder that he had been feeling since he left his apartment and the town of Juniper would soon be replaced with a fear like nothing he had ever experienced.


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