Characters

I’m reading a book called the “Beekeeper’s Apprentice.” It’s about a 15-year-old English girl, recently orphaned, well-to-do, and living with a creepy aunt in the English countryside around 1915. On one of her lonely long walks she encounters a retired Sherlock Holmes. They become fast friends. I’m only a couple of chapters in, so I don’t know the rest. I knew the premise before I started reading.

I realized as I read the beginning that I was secretly concerned that the first person narrator (the girl) would turn out to be an under-achiever, a female incarnation of Dr. Watson, doggedly trying to keep up with Sherlock’s brilliance. A minor sidekick.

I was wrong. Turns out she’s as bright as dear Holmes, and though young, clearly his equal in IQ points. Phew, I thought. Now I can like her.

Then I stopped. Do I always demand that I like and admire the main character? That’s my question for you. Must the hero be heroic for us to enjoy the story? How many shortcomings can we tolerate? Clearly, no one is heroic from A to Z, but is there a reader’s urge here that we, as writers, need to understand?

What do you think?

71 responses to “Characters

  1. In the book I just finished, Michael Snyder’s characters were all flawed. From being homeless, no memory, mad at God, unlucky in love and on and on. He wrote the entire book in 1st person, head hopping from one character to the other, so I guess they all were the heroes. As I said in my blog review of it, they became my friends and I really hated when “The End” came and had to say goodbye to them.

    Now they were all flawed but likable, if the hero wasn’t likable, say like a politician or the like, I don’t know if I could stay with the story. I’d be rooting for him/her to fail. Then again, it would depend on the writer’s ability. Mr. Snyder, head hopped expertly, and it was a great experience. Not everyone could do that, and not everyone could write the hero as a villain and make the book enjoyable to read.

    Did any of that make any sense? Or did I dance around the question?

  2. Barbara Burris

    As a rule, I don’t have to like the characters in the books I read. But they do have to be interesting. You feared the young girl the the story would be boring and predictable. Nothing, in my estimation, is worse than boring and predictable. Characters that make repeatedly stupid, illogical decisions will also cause me to quit reading.

  3. Every protagonist and every antagonist must have a flaw, we’re taught. The protagonist is thrown into crisis because of his flaw; he overcomes it to defeat the antagonist. The antagonist, on the other hand, is defeated because of his flaw. If the protagonist fails, it is a tragedy.

    Do we have to like these flawed characters? It certainly helps if we like the protagonist, otherwise the book would be infuriating to read. Do we have to like the antagonist? It helps if we don’t because who wants to see the bad guy win? On the other hand, there’s something about Soapy Smith…..

  4. I like to be able to identify with the main character so the more shortcomings he or she has, the happier I am. I’m 🙂 ing.

    Actually, once I begin a book, I rarely take it back to the library until I’ve read all of it. It has to really turn me off for me to slam it shut midstream.

    I’m kind of weird that way. I like to think that I have a great respect for anyone who has written and had a book published. This respect bonds me to the book from the first page through to the last.

    I don’t read through books quickly either. I glean all the meaning I can from each sentence and will go back and reread sentences if I’m not sure I got the intended message.

    I do all of my reading in the evening and so I’m often a bit weary and can’t always concentrate as well as I’d like to. That’s another reason for reading slowly and rereading often.

    Unfortunately, my mind tends to wander at times as well. I sometimes wonder why I read at all when I struggle so to do it.

    And then, as long as I’ve kept you this long already with my ramblings, I might as well add that since I started writing nearly three years ago, my book reading has really slipped. I haven’t figured out how to read AND write at the same time. Something had to give and since I’d been reading for nearly sixty years, I eased up on that pastime in favor of getting my own words on paper.

    What was your question, Ann? I’m 🙂 again.

    • Barbara Burris

      I’m glad to know someone else re-reads passages and reads slowly. I tend to temporarily memorize passages from books — I read THAT slowly. But I have returned many books unfinished, either because I couldn’t ‘get into’ them or because I ran out of time and they were simply too long and could no longer be renewed. Thanks, Shaddy. Glad to know I’m not alone.

  5. I used to read mostly for escapism. Then, three years ago I began paying attention to the mechanics of writing, and would linger for a long time at a particularly descriptive passage. Other than that, it’s for the story, man.

  6. When it comes to main characters in book, I do not think a reader has to like the main characters in the sense that going out for coffee together or talking on the phone every day would be fun. However, in my opinion, something in the main character needs to resonate with a reader on some level.

    And there lies one of the challenges for writers. If characters are flat, paper doll people, or stereotypical, stock characters, then they will not ignite the readers’ imaginations. Multi-dimensional, deep characters create interest and, in some cases, a dash of realism. After all, most people in real life are not one-sided. In my opinion, if characters are not genuine in some way–multi-faceted mixtures of flaws and gifts–then a story risks feeling like a fable, a myth, a fairy tale, or a stale television show populated with over-used, predictable stock character types. Flat characters can be boring, and as Barbara observed, boring is…boring.

    Moreover, even if a main character is not likable, that character may have some admirable trait, quality, or behavior for which readers have respect. That trait or quality can end up encouraging readers to overlook the less savory traits. A delicate balance.

    In my mind, it all comes down to caring about what happens to the character; caring is more important than liking. You can care about the fate of someone you do not necessarily like or call a friend. If the reader does not give two whits about the characters, then why bother continuing to read? Where is the interest? Where is the heart?

  7. Well said, Lassie.

  8. Hi, everyone! It’s me, Fun Zelda. I’m just poking my head in here to tell you about a great thought I had last night while Serious Zelda was sleeping.

    Peeon: when something you eat turns your pee neon yellow.

    Whoops! Gotta go! Serious Zelda’s comin’!

  9. When the bell finally tolled for Robert Jordan, the reader, a female high school English student, erupted in applause. At last, that chapter was over, and the book could be closed on what had been a terrible relationship.

    Why did the reader feel such distain for Robert Jordan? Was he a particularly detestable character? Looking back from a vantage point of older and wiser, the reader replays the reel in her memory bank in hopes of shedding light on her state of mind at the time she read Hemmingway’s For Whom the Bell Tolls. After all these years, she struggles to remember even the slightest detail or the basic story line of the novel. One clear memory, however, (and she hates to admit this) is that she could not wait for Robert Jordan to die.

    Was the reader to blame? Perhaps the timing was off – perhaps if she had read Hemmingway’s novel at a different point in her life she would have related more favorably. Or maybe she was not smart enough to appreciate a classic author’s work. After all, Hemmingway was, and is, an acclaimed author. What does it say about someone who does not like his writing or his characters? Did the author create a character to whom the reader could not relate? Did Hemmingway fail the reader, or did the reader fail Hemmingway?

    The author must create characters with whom the reader can bond. As we learned in BWW, the author’s job is to write so the reader can see at least a piece of herself in a story’s characters. Characters must be believable and realistic. While they do not have to be perfect, in fact, better if they are not perfect, characters must be interesting and admirable. However, believable, interesting, and admirable are subjective concepts. What is interesting to a female high school English student may not be interesting to a middle-aged man who enjoys game hunting. Regardless of the quality of the characters, invariably some readers will not like them – such is life. In reality, not everyone likes everyone else and even the most amiable people have detractors. There will always be instances when characters and readers clash. Just because someone wrote it, got it published, and got rave reviews, does not mean that every reader will relate to it and approve of it.

    The female high school English student never did pick up another Hemmingway novel, by the way.

    • Barbara Burris

      Nice job, Zelda. I tried reading Hemingway in high school also. Got lost in the descriptions. I suspect if we wrote like Hemingway in today’s time we’d be told our work was ‘too wordy’. More than anything else in life, appreciation of any given person’s writing is highly subjective.
      You bring up an interesting point about age affecting attitude. Perhaps I should try it again some time.

  10. I don’t recall reading FWTBT. I checked Wilkepedia and found that it focuses mainly on death. Perhaps death wasn’t attractive to you in high school, perhaps it still isn’t. Some people don’t mind looking into dark corners and others choose not to.

    My husband can’t stand movies or programs that focus heavily on personal hardships while I don’t mind it so much.

    I enjoyed reading your thoughts, serious Zelda. It’s great to hear from Fun Zelda too, of course. May I ask what she ate? Too many lemon drops?

    • Shaddy,
      Fun Zelda said to tell you she thinks it was the Thai curry. I have no idea what she’s talking about, mind you.
      I hope you (and the rest of the gang) are well.
      Sincerely,
      Serious Zelda

  11. I sure made a mess of Wikipedia in my last post. Excuse me please.

  12. Ann,
    My husband, a big Sherlock Holmes fan, bought “Beekeeper’s Apprentice” yesterday. He’s thoroughly enjoying it and asked me to pass along to you his “great appreciation” for the tip.

  13. Kasmil pushed his wife aside and stormed out of the apartment. He was in a hurry as he was late for work and he hated to be late because he loved his job. The world love Kasmil as his smile was splashed all over television and the internet. Kasmil offered hope to the hopeless and justice to the oppressed. Except at home.

    How do you like Kasmil? Is he a character you would love or hate?

    • Well, if Kasmil was an ass for no apparent reason, I might hate him. If he was a really hurting person who needed to feel loved and needed by the masses to squelch the emptiness, I might sympathize at least, and maybe like him.
      I’d also need to know more about his wife. Was she a real pain in the butt?
      I guess for me all the variables add up.

    • Barbara Burris

      Can’t say I’d want him for my neighbor, but he sounds interesting. Keep writing, Walk!

    • I’d have to read on before I can say how I’d feel about him. Pushing his wife aside sounds bad but I don’t know what led up to that move.

      What are his intentions behind his big smile? I don’t know if he’s honorable with his offers of hope and justice.

      Gosh, Walk. You just asked a simple question and here I am stuttering and stammering and getting no where.

      At least you made me think; that’s more than I can handle somedays.

      Write on.

    • What about Kasmil”s wife. Do you think she should be a pain and thus deserve the treatment she received. Maybe she is in love with a man that doesn’t love her, or at least doesn’t know how to express that love.

      I thought I’d throw a character out there that a reader could love or hate, to try and help me see what Ann was trying to teach.

      • Brilliant move to discover the lesson Ann is seeking to teach.

        If Kasmil’s wife is a pain and he is truly a humanitarian, he should be looking for ways to make her happy, or divorcing her, rather than pushing her around–that’s never acceptable behavior no matter what the motivation may be.

        It’s all so complicated, Walk. Problem solving is not one of my skills. My eyes are crossing and my neck is stiffening up so I’m out of here until I recover.

      • Yip, pushing anyone around isn’t acceptable, especially when you treat others outside the home with respect.

        I described Kasmil that way hoping to evoke a discussion. It’s interesting to see how people look at him and his wife. The scene could go a hundred different ways, depending on the mood the writer would put Kasmil and his wife in.

  14. Kasmil is the character that I love to hate. He’s the trainwreck that both horrifies me and intrigues me. I can’t look away. Is he a politician? A celebrity? A philanthropist maybe? I already want to know more. Just like Lassie so wonderfully worded it, Kasmil has the multidimensional characteristics that are real. He’s a well loved humanitarian with layers and I want to find out what they ALL are. I’m empathetic toward his wife, but maybe she caused it. Either way, like him or not, its Kasmil who sucked me in and left me waiting to hear more. BTW, hello Ann and everyone! I hope you don’t mind if I jump into the conversation, I took BWW approximately two years ago.(I’ll have to look it up for the date)

    • Barbara Burris

      Welcome, Jo. Always good to have another alum here.

    • Jo,

      BTW, I drove my BMW to the beach to read my BWW lessons over again.

      Welcome to goofing around land. You’re gonna love us or hate us, question us or ignore us, smile at us or scowl, sigh or get irritated or….be lukewarm, but that’s highly unlikely. I’m nuts, Walk’s goofy, Zelda’s fun and serious, Barb’s batty (just kidding), Gully’s gallavanting around Alaska, Lassie hasn’t barked yet, Maureen’s adding up the variables and everyone else is off getting a tan.

      • Thnx Shaddy, ROFL UR2YS4ME! Thank you for the warm welcome. A little bit of downtime at work leads to my boredom on the blackberry. I’ll try to keep the abbreviations to a minimum. Sounds like a fun and encouraging crew, I should expect no less from Ann’s former students. I’m looking forward to getting back in the saddle again from my writing hiatus and getting to know everyone.

    • Welcome Jo, thanks for the Kasmil comments. Don’t be shy to join in with the crazies.

  15. In the past couple days, I have had a manuscript review with the Writer Laureate of ALaska, a long conversation with a NYC agent (owner ofher own company), and read a three minute piece to a couple hundred writers, educators, etc. And I didn’t faint. Many have come up to me and told me my piece was powerful and terrific–no quotation marks as my laptop is balanced precariously on my knee–and that I have great stage presence. Maybe I’m a closet ham. My piece is posted at my blog. Gotta run–closing sessions. Just wanted to share the news with y’all first.

  16. Perhaps it’s the struggle that attracts us. If Gullie has the determination and guts to write and then go out and read her stuff to people, we like reading about her. If Kathy H. once found solace hiding under the table, but managed to come out and write anyway, we bond with her struggle. If Walk suggests characters to see what we think, we’re pleased and read his postings. But if Kasmil shoves his wife but pretends he’s got a great life message, that doesn’t seem like a struggle we can learn from but rather a trick he’s pulling on everyone. He’s appears to be a bully. His struggle is dishonest. I doubt I’d want to read about him.

    I like Gardner’s comment. We read to find out how to live.

    Nice discussion. The comments above are only my opinion; I’m not trying to “give the answer.” I truly asked because I wanted to see if there were thoughts out there I hadn’t considered. (Lots of good minds here!)

  17. Jo,

    Please continue with the abbreviations. I’m old and crusty and don’t have a good handle on many of them so I could use the practice in deciphering and using them.

  18. Hey, Walk. Look up. I replied today to your post way up above, about 14 submissions ago. Pack a lunch and hike up there, please.

  19. My Father’s Character

    My father’s mother died when he was maybe nine years old. He dropped out of school in about sixth grade. He scraped up some money by selling magazines, turning in pop bottles he found for a few pennies and other odd jobs as a kid. When he needed to have his tonsils out, my widowed grandfather used my dad’s money to help pay for the operation. For their own reasons, my grandpa and his grandpa I’ve heard were quite mean.

    Dad married my mother and then had to go to war. My oldest brother was born while he was away. I suspect he resented being pulled away from the first good life he’d had in a long, long time.

    My dad had a lot of bottled up anger in him and it came out pretty often as I grew up. My mother was quite controlling and my dad being passive-aggressive let her have at it regarding raising us kids. She made all the decisions because she wanted to and Dad gave up trying to put his two cents in.

    So Dad was pretty angry, quiet, uninvolved and withdrawn when we were kids. When he got mad, it was scary. One late afternoon, I stood visiting with my friend and he came charging toward me with pure anger on his face. He dragged me in the house by one arm and cracked me good because I didn’t come for supper when Mom called. He gave my older brothers some out of control beatings.

    I came to know a much kinder, emotional side of my father after we all grew up and moved out. He had many layers to his character and I now can see how and why they developed.

    I wrote of his happier side on my blog if you’d like to see the rest of the story.

    I beginning to understand the concept of characters and people in general being multi-dimensional or whatever. My recent thoughts of Dad came to a head so I shared it here. I hope you don’t mind.

    I love him more and more as the years go by and as I learn to see him as a complicated person shaped by life, as we all are in varying degrees.

    Ahh…life is something, isn’t it.

    • Barbara Burris

      Shaddy,

      Thanks for sharing your memories. I guess we know we’ve grown up when we’re able to view our parents not just as ‘mom’ or ‘dad’, but more fully as we might see our peers, taking into account the different roles they’ve played in their lives and the impact that different events and people had on them.

      • Yup, I’ve finally grown up at the age of sixty. All I can say in my defense is, “Better late than never.”

        Thank you from the bottom of my heart for reading and sharing your thoughts. I didn’t know if I should throw my thoughts and feelings in here AGAIN but I’m trying to stop editing my “first” flashes of what I deeply feel.

        It feels so good to understand the whys.

  20. My job requires me to be on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (it’s not all that exciting, believe me – it’s not like I’m saving lives or anything…) so I sleep with my cell phone beside me on my night table. The last few mornings I’ve found the following weird messages recorded in the notes feature of my cell:

    Peeon
    Jaws snore

    Does anyone have any idea what’s going on? It’s like someone is sneaking into my room and writing notes in my phone while I sleep…

    Oh, wait. I know exactly what’s happening…

    Fun Zeeeellldaa! Get over here. I’m on to your little evening escapades…

    • I wish I had a fun side, it’s terrible being serious all the time. :>(

      • OK, Walk. Here’s a recipe guaranteed to bring out your fun side: Stand in front of the mirror wearing your boxer shorts and a smile, then spin around in circles four times as fast as you can. You’ll fall in the bathtub with your feet pedaling in the air.

        Your wife will come running in and when she sees you she’ll say, “Oh, Walk. You tard.” Then you pull her in the tub with you, turn on the water and…

        How’s that for some fun?

        P.S. Place a wine bottle and two glasses beside the tub before you start smiling and spinning.

  21. That fun Zelda is up to her tricks again. Yay! I love her pranks. Does serious Zelda sleep with one eye open now she knows fun Zelda is pulling worse escapades than merely walking in her sleep?

  22. Ah Kasmil. Yes, I know you all too well. Charismatic. Righteous in you own eyes. Quite the crowd pleaser, aren’t you. Yes, I will read about you and your double life. And I will smurk all the while I’m reading.You think you are fooling everyone. It’s easy to fool a crowd, isn’t it. But not so easy fooling a wife. Yes, I will keep reading–waiting–because I know you’ll get what’s coming to you. Poor, poor Kasmil….

    • With that great description, Kasmil must be on the front page of US Weekly and People Mgazine. I’m such a sucker for checkout aisle smut.

  23. My girls, all three of them, have too much perseverance. Oh I know we’re not still on “perseverance” but you all need to know what’s going on here.

    Yes, Mama, we’ve made you an appointment. Be there at 11 a.m. Friday.

    No, Mama, you have to go. We’re all going. And so are you.

    It’ll be fun.

    I’ll pick you up, Mama, at 10:30.

    Can’t you wear something besides those jeans?

    What do you mean, you don’t have anything else.

    Quit whining. You’ll be okay. Be ready to go.

    How did my girls rope me into this?! Boy, they sure know how to persevere.

    Now, my two sons are snickering.

    You’re going where, Mama? You’re going to do what?

    You’re kidding, right?

    Okay, daughter that’s getting married. Now you KNOW how much I love you. This proves it. Oh the things a mother endures.

    KathyH is going for a pedicure! Wahaaaaaahaa!

    (I know I’m late for the “perseverance award”, but please, whoever has it, please let me wear it. At least until Sunday!)

    I’ll never be able to live this down!

    • You never know, KathyH,. You just might like the pedicure experience. I got my first a couple of years ago and I thought it was pretty close to divine. Comfy chairs, feet soaking in hot water with lots of good-smelling stuff. I read a magazine during the process, it was an excuse to sit still and think… ah.

      Personally, I’m not the type to paint my nails (I’m more of an ‘au naturelle’ kind of gal) but sometimes it can be nice to indulge yourself a little (especially if your daughters are paying!).

      Enjoy!

    • I laughing just thinking about someone trying to give me a pedicure. I hope you enjoyed the experience. Best wishes for your daughter.

  24. Even if Ann’s next project for us isn’t related to pedicures, I’d sure like to hear how your experience goes. The crevices between your toes will be stuffed with cotton, a rather unusual sensation and look, to be sure. I’ve not experienced this personally but do know a bit about the procedure.

    I’m quite sure Barbara is in possession of the perseverance medal and I’m more than sure she’ll happily pass it on to you. I ask only that you polish and buff it before you adorn yourself with it for your manicure appointment and on the big wedding day. You’ve definitely earned it, my dear.

    Just think of the lingering looks and extra attention you’ll get with the bold words: I’VE PERSEVERED on a six-inch brass medalion afloat on your bosom.

    I’m so excited for you. Wear it with pride and make us proud, my friend.

  25. Climb up six steps to fetch a recipe for fun. (As if you really need instructions!!)

  26. YES! I will proudly walk down the isle, light the candle, turn around, and give a great big ‘thumbs up’ wearing the big brassy 6 inch medalion dangling and glittering in the candlelight upon my bosoms!

    • Zelda–my daughters BETTER BE PAYING. I deserve it. Don’t I?

      • Barbara Burris

        Hey KathyH!

        I am hereby passing along the medal to you. You have my utmost admiration. I can’t STAND to have anyone touch between my toes. I can’t even wear those sandals that have the little piece that goes between the big toe and next toe. UGH!!! My puppy, Alex, likes to lick my feet. If he runs his slippery tongue between my toes, I squeal and kick. He loves it. He grins at me when I do that. I hope you’re able to relax and enjoy the process.

    • Oh, cool. I’m proud of you already, bosom buddy. Have a blast!

  27. The directions above are for WALK but anyone looking for more fun in his or her life is welcome to try out the recipe.

  28. Barbara– you may just hear me squealing and kicking as I am very ticklish. Hmmm. Wonder if I should give the poor guy a fair warning. Oh, I can see the pan of water flying through the air right now. All I can say is, if that does happen, I just hope my daughters will have learned a lesson.

  29. Call me strange, even cynical, but I prefer to read a story where there is confusion between who is the protagonist and who is the antagonist. I like the process of finding the clues to the plot as I read along. I love to be surprised. I am a huge fan of M. Night Shyamalan movies for this very same reason.

    I loose interest if the characters are predictable. You know who the good guy is, you know he will get the girl in the end, and you know the bad guy will never learn his lesson. YAWN!

    When the good guy doesn’t turn out to be so good after all, when the bad guy learns a lesson and makes a life altering change, now that is a story I remember. The rest just kind of fade away into the background. No matter how well written, if the story doesn’t have a surprise element, something that makes me go—WHAT—I tend to forget about it. I have noticed that the stories I recall most hide that surprise element in the character development, not in the events or settings.

    Just my two cents.

  30. Kasmil tip-toed into the bedroom, another late day of pleasing his public. In his hand he carried a dozen red roses in the art-deco vase that she loved. Placing them on her bedside table, he lightly kissed her on the cheek and whispered, “I love you deeply”, to his sleeping wife. She stirs and turns her back to him, rejecting him once again.

    The tlot phickens…………now who is the protagonist and who is the antagonist

  31. Quit messing with my mind, Walk. I’m a tired, old woman and I can’t take it anymore.

    Night, night.

  32. Don’t know enough about the wife, Walk. Every character must have a flaw, otherwise there will be no trigger, crisis, epiphany, struggle, and solution. We’ve already seen one of Kasmil’s flaws–he’s an abuser and perhaps a charlatan. But, other than a sleeping woman rolling over in bed, we know nothing about the wife.

  33. Sounds a little like my exhusband Walk. My guess is that the wife is tired of being in second place to the public. But I have to agree that there’s still not enough information about her.

    • I guess, from a guy standpoint, the phase “rejecting him once again” showed her attitude towards him. So lets add this:

      The next morning, she sat across the breakfast table from him, a blank stare piercing his chest. Kasmil continuing his one sided conversation as she would only grunt as an answer.

      “It’s not my fault, it was your choice. I spend so much time away from the home I love and the lady I love because you have made it unbearable to live here. I will also tell you this, my dear Carrie, I will not quit on our marriage. If it fails, it is because you have failed to try.” Kasmil turns, pausing at the door, “I love you to the inner core of my soul, today when I return, I will have given up my position and sold everything that I have built up for us over the years. The only thing that I will have left is this house and our marriage. I am no longer going to run from this problem, think about what you want to do.”

      She looks up as the door closes behind Kasmil, tears in her eyes for the first time in years.

      • Ahhhh!…Revalation…he’s definitely NOT like my ex.

        So he truly is the humanitarian and good husband. But why is she making it unbearable to him? What characteristics hide in her? I’m still empathetic and curious, something had to set her off to cause her to turn cold to him especially if she hasn’t cried in years. Unless she’s having an affair maybe?

        I certainly prefer a character that keeps me guessing.

  34. Okay, we’re getting somewhere. BUT! He knocks her around. Any acts of kindness are invalidated by that simple fact. He is a bully, and a charlatan still–based on the info we have at hand. He would rather hear the cheers and have the adulation of thousands than treat his wife with kindness and respect. I can’t tell you how many men I’ve known in my lifetime that I thought were fine human beings, only to learn later that they mistreated their wives and/or children in the secrecy of their homes. Never happened to me, I’m glad to say. If it had, it would have only been once.

    I’m still of the opinion that Kasmil deserves a roadhouse divorce–he gets the road and she gets the house. As for the wife, I suspect the tears in her eyes are for what could have been, instead of what is. More info, please. And stop sticking up for the rat.

  35. Kudos to you, Walk. You’ve got everybody riled up ‘cept me. I’m too tired to put up any kind of argument or even form an opinion. I need a nap.

    (By the way, I admire your ability to plant seeds that put life back into worn out subjects).

  36. Carrie’s tears pooled on the table top as she stared at the door. All these years, she thought, and he still loves me. Why do I feel that he is to blame, it wasn’t him. He took me away from that nightmare, he saved my life.

    Her tears continued to flow, and as her eyes turned red, the hardness of her heart was being softened by each tear.

    She stood and wiped the tears away, straightened her back and held her head high. “It stops now. Right now, right here. I am no longer going to be a prisoner of my past.” she yelled at the top of her lungs. “Right now, right now I choose to love. Right now I chose to live happily ever after. Right now I chose to be the wife that Kasmil deserves.”

    She stormed up the stairs and straight to her closet. She didn’t know how much time she had before he came home, so she was in a hurry. She found the little black dress that he bought for her three years ago and had never worn. She laid it on the bed. Along with some spike heels and white pearls, she would be stunning.

    Two hours had passed when she heard his car enter the garage. She stood three stairs up on the staircase, giving her best Loretta Young poise. Kasmil walked into the room and took one look at her and fell to the floor.

    He had a knife in his back.

  37. Yeah. Probably put there by his girlfriend when she realized how he lied to her about how he despised his wife. There’s not a woman in the world who hasn’t met this guy at one time or another. No sympathy for a man who treats anyone better than his wife. I’d love to know if any of those “friends” would be there if he was on his deathbed.

    As I said, no sympathy. This is not a man. This is a jerk and his wife would benefit by some courses in self-esteem.

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