Story Go Round 02/08/2002, round 3, #4


Above all, she wanted the dripping to stop. She crawled under the chassis, and the man in the turban continued bumping into things, knocking over tools and screaming in frustration. Overhead the single worksmith's bulb was knocked on its long wire, making a crazy dance of the shadows underneath where the old light fixture hung. Drip. Drip. Drip. Drip. Drip. Drip. Drip. Drip. Drip. Drip. Drip. Clunk. Drip. [curse] The man in the turban stopped, pausing to listen carefully, as though he had only now noticed the dripping.

"Help me!" she called to him, hoping he could understand English at all; with her luck the muffling of five feet of metal pipe would distort it to a language neither of them knew. He returned to his erector set, setting out a bucket for the drip. Now it made a ping noise. Sherry was lost & hopeless, since she climbed under the tank.

Assignment had turned to nightmare. She had made it to Cairo and Junta quickly enough, but with no jeeps and only a WWII tank for transport, [Ping (pause) Ping (pause) Ping (pause) Ping (pause) Ping (pause) - you get the idea] Sherry had had to stay at a hostel every night, and that's where she met the man in the turban. He'd been following her since, recording her every move, and generally getting in the way. She still didn't know his name, though.

Nor did she know what importance she - a water conservation technologist searching for truth in the desert, appropriately - could have for him, or what the attraction could be. It dawned on her that he was after her tools, that he had an erector set fetish, yet nothing advanced enough out here to make the incredible pyramidal shapes he desired. Now he would never tear himself away, and she'd become a candidate for a mummy.

Amber is purple; John is pink; Alan is blue; Terry is orange; Habeeb is green