Sorry for not posting a review yesterday or that I haven’t been posting my short stories lately. Things have gotten too hectic with me, and I have struggled to read and write anything extra. Thusly, I have prioritized finishing my fourth book. The first draft is now done, and I have moved on to write the character and setting sheets. So here’s a sneak peek of what is to come. Elvira is just a minor character, mentioned in passing, but as I started to flesh her out, I knew I’ll need to write more about her.
Role in Story: Elvira is a lower secretary working at the Town Hall for Petula. She is only mentioned in passing in one chapter.
Occupation: A secretary at the front desk of the Town Hall.
Physical Description: A dried-up old woman. So that it is hard to tell what she is. She is not entirely a human, but neither is she an undead. People never can tell. She has hollow cheeks and eyes that have burrowed deep into the eye sockets, and she sucks her complete set of teeth. She has long gray hair and dresses in simple official clothes. She could be a banshee, but not in the usual sense. She is more drawn to accidents and catastrophes than death and dying.
Personality: Strict, matter-of-fact, quiet, and likes all doom and gloom. Plots apocalypse in her spare time.
Habits/Mannerisms: Sucks her teeth constantly, mutters to herself, curses, and makes snarky comments about people and their appearance and behavior.
Background: She was formed from the thoughts of humans. She was drawn to Necropolis because of the massive potential for everything to go bat shit crazy. She is waiting for the day that everything will collapse.
Internal Conflicts: She should leave Necropolis because all the new policy-making is turning the city more stable and secure. She hates Petula for that, but at the same time is protective towards her because it is her job to guard who enters the Town Hall and who doesn’t.
External Conflicts: Percy, Philomena, and Elmer want to see Petula, but Elvira doesn’t want to let them in. She has to go and ask Petula if it is okay. Also, all the other people running in and out of the Town Hall are vexing her. Too much going on, and the potential for a significant accident isn’t as close as she would hope. So she is constantly at the edge of her bench waiting for that exhilarating moment of a collapse, which never arrives as Petula and other so-called sensible beings are making it impossible.
Elvira nestled in her seat in the lobby. She had come in early at the crack of dawn before anyone else had arrived. The Town Hall was quiet from all the usual hubbub, and there was a nice ring to the place as all the walls moaned and creaked. It was as if the house was playing a private concerto for her.
She neatly arranged her pencils, notebooks, and official forms on the desk. The inner demon inside her told her to mess with them and bring chaos into order, but she liked when she could measure with a ruler that everything was in its proper places, waiting for an accident. She often dared the visitors to Town Hall to cause chaos, but to her misfortune, her hard, steal stare was read as a warning to stay away. So she never got that release she yearned for.
She turned the stack of forms counterclockwise a few rounds to arrive at an exact position they were already in. It made her feel great. Then she got up and headed to the staff kitchen to brew her morning coffee. She liked it with cream and sugar. She had brought tough biscuits with her from home. All baked by herself. They were just perfect to chip a tooth if you bit in carelessly. She would offer them to anyone unsuspecting enough to fall into her trap.
When the coffee was brewing, she took the tin out with the biscuits. They looked all welcoming. She selected two to her own plate and then sealed the lit back on. She took notepaper from the shared kitchen desk and wrote a note, saying that the biscuits were for all to share. She left her own name out of it, not to raise an alarm. To her misery, all in the office knew her penmanship and her antics. They stayed away from anything she brought in. If they were caught in the kitchen with her and under her stare, they would take a piece of whatever she had baked and pretend to take it to their stations. Then they would hide them in flower bots, inside filing cabinets, or throw them out the window, causing a whole lot of confusion to innocent crows passing by, and so on. All her coworkers thought she was a cuckoo, but none of them ever suspected that there was a real, persistent malicious intent behind it all.
Elvira headed back to her lobby desk with her coffee and biscuits. She was content to sit there and drink the sweat brew slowly until the Town Hall would fill with people. She listened to the concerto being played for her and hummed happily.
© K.A. Ashcomb
I hope you enjoyed. Thank you for reading and have a great day ❤