For Short Story #4 we had to write in a point of view we hadn't used in the pervious three stories. I had wanted to write in second person, just wanted to try, but I couldn't get started. With this last story of the semester I wanted to try writing in the style of a frame tale with each layer of the frame in a different point of view. Here's a sample of what I submitted:
You want to keep reading, but you need to eat something, with the manuscript in hand you head into the kitchen. You prepared a quick meal before sitting down to read some more. You want to know more about your grandfather’s military career and you’re finally getting a peek into the childhood of your father. You remember him talking about his family driving across country when his father got stationed in Hawaii and he would only occasional mention what life was like on the island. You’ve just started reading about that trip and want to see what your grandfather writes.
The storm from the night before had gone east and the weather was clear ahead but we were still hitting small patches of rain. The bad tire on the car was still wheeling. I could see the threads on the darned thing. That evening, before settling for the night we killed a pheasant with the car. We stopped to pick it up.
Hector pulled the car to the side of the road after Carmen had insisted he stop to see what they had hit. He pulled the collar up on his jacket and hustled from the car. He could barely make out the lump in the road, but knew it was an animal of decent size. Carmen was hoping for something she would be able to use in their dinner. Just as he reached the animal another car pulled up and the driver rolled down his window.
“Everything alright?” The driver looked down at the animal and then up to Hector.
“We’re fine. Just hit the animal, my wife thought it might be nice to add to our dinner.” Hector leaned down to pick up the animal.
“You all got a license to hunt in the state?” The driver asked when he saw that it was a decent sized pheasant that Hector had picked up.
“We’re just driving through.” Hector stood up the pheasant in hands and started to walk back towards his car.
“We’ll then you can’t take that bird.” The driver yelled out his window. “Why don’t you just had it over-“
“Why don’t you report me to the police?” Hector opened the back door and put the bird into the back seat with his son. If the driver said, anything Hector didn’t hear as he got back into his car.
“Hijo,” Carmen turned towards the back seat, “start drying that bird with that blanket.”
In the back seat, Fernando started to rub the bird. “Like this mama?”
She tells him he’s doing a good job and then turns back around. She turns the heat up, hoping they can have it dried out by the time they reach their stop for the night. Carmen opened her purse and counted what little money they had left. She would need a few things from the store if she was going to cook this bird properly. If they were lucky, it would last them a few days and save them some money.
“Hector I need to stop at the store.” Carmen said as they entered the main part of town.
“For what?” Hector didn’t sound happy, like Carmen he knew how much money they had left.
“I don’t have the right spices for the pheasant.” Knowing her husband Carmen quickly followed up with, “I only need one or two, it shouldn’t be too much and they will last us until we get to our new housing assignment.”
The fact that it wouldn’t be a lot and that it would last them until they reached Hawaii satisfied any objection Hector would have with stopping. The small grocery was just getting ready to close when they pulled up out front. The employee allowed Carmen to run inside to grab the spices since she only needed a few things and knew just what she needed. When she got back into the car, she handed the bag back to Fernando.
“Is the bird dry hijo?”
“Si, mama. I’ve been drying it the whole time.”
“Hand me the bird.” Carmen turned around to grab the bird from her son. It wasn’t fully dry, but she could start to pluck it on the way to the motel. Once in the room Carmen set up her two burner hot plate and set up her makeshift kitchen. She started her rice before heading outside to finish cleaning the bird. It wasn’t easy, but she was determined to cook this bird perfectly.