I am sitting at my conference table writing when suddenly I hear a knock on the window. I look out to see Andrew standing in the middle of the street wearing a pair of old basketball shorts and a ski parka. It’s the standard frat boy uniform on a warm winter’s day such as today. He looks up at me standing in the window and starts calling my name.
“Betsey!” he shouts in the street. “BETSEY!”
I open the window and call down to him.
“What are you doing? It’s 3 o’clock in the morning!”
“I just got off work.”
“So you showed up here.”
“I came on my bike,” he says, motioning to the flashy new vehicle parked on the corner.
“Let me guess,” I reply. “She took the car too?”
“She sure did!” he says with a smile. “She took everything from me!”
“Even the Eggo waffles?”
“Even the Eggo waffles!”
“That’s great! I’m really happy for her!”
“So what are you doing? Can I come in and watch you write?”
“I mean… I guess. If you don’t have anything else better to do.”
“I really don’t,” he says excitedly. He immediately climbs up onto the rooftop underneath my window, as any normal person would do. I open the window and he climbs in. Then he takes off his coat and curls up on the carpet by the fireplace. He drapes a blanket over himself and nestles in to watch me write.
“Are you gonna tell me another story now?” he asks.
“I suppose. I told you I can’t publish anything else from my novel anymore.”
“Maybe it doesn’t have to be in your novel,” he says reasonably. “Maybe it can just be for me.”
“Sorry, you have reached the end of your Free Trial to BetseyHorton.com. If you want stories just for yourself, you’ll have to upgrade to Premium™.”
“How do I upgrade to Premium™?”
“By paying the price… of course.”
“Don’t worry,” I say sweetly. “It’s worth every penny.”
“I was afraid you’d say that.”
“Well, you’re the one who decided to come outside without a shirt on, so here we are now. You have no one to blame but yourself.”
“That’s true,” he says. “I guess I didn’t expect to like so many of your stories.”
“I didn’t really expect you to either.”
“But I like them a lot,” says Andrew. “Like, a lot, a lot. I was worried you weren’t going to like me anymore after all of this.”
“Of course I still like you. You’re My Andrew!”
Andrew tosses his head back and runs his fingers through his hair.
“I am your Andrew,” he sighs happily. “I love being The Star!”
“You are my little Star, aren’t you?”
“Yes,” he says, straightening up. “Now I command you to write me another story.”
“Okay,” I say. “But only because I saw you slow crawl by my apartment the other day. You were going 5mph when everyone else was going 15! You stopped right underneath my window! It was completely ridiculous! Where do you think this idea came from in the first place?”
“What can I say?” Andrew asks. “I like to inspire you IRL.”
“I like it when you inspire me IRL too. That is why I must stay as far away from you as possible.”
“We’ll see about that. You should just let me just sit back and inspire you to write another tale instead. What’s it gonna be about today?”
“Howard Hughes and The Line of Death.”
“That sounds like a pretty epic movie,” Andrew says seriously.
“It is a pretty epic movie,” I reply. “Just you wait and see… and you’ll have to, because I’m not publishing it on my website today. Mwa hahahaha!”
Andrew gives me an extremely disappointed look.
“But I want a story…” he says sadly.
“Then I guess you’ll either have to upgrade to Premium™ or wait until the novel comes out like everyone else does. The Choice is yours and yours alone! In the meantime, I’m gonna go hit up the male strip club. Have a nice day!”
I leave Andrew sitting in my apartment, awestruck and all alone.