Good evening, readers!
Today is a good day, you want to know why? Because I’m about to treat you to the second excerpt of Written in Silence! The first one introduced you to Dianna, so this one I’ll use to introduce Michael, then sometime in the near future, I’ll give you the details about Michael as I did with Dianna last week.
Please remember that this is a vomit draft. It was written fast, and the only editing I’ve done to it was to clean it up so that it’s presentable to you here on The Paradigm. So please, don’t send me angry hate mail because of some errors. Thank you. Enjoy:
“Oh, come on, it’ll be fun. My mom is a good cook.” A pause. “My brother will be there, of course.”
Dianna had almost forgotten the handsome Michael. “Deal!” It may have been too late, but she didn’t want to sound to sound too obvious. “I’m a homework pantster anyway.”
“Good.” Isabel looked up over Dianna’s shoulder. “Speaking of which…Hey, Mike!” Isabel was waving her hand in the air.
Dianna tensed up and turned her head so hard she thought she heard her neck crack. There, only two tables away was the hunk, Michael Vadaren. He too was carrying a tray of hamburgers and French fries. He looked up and waved back at his sister while trying to balance the blue try on his left. If he noticed Dianna, he didn’t show it. He nodded to his friend and sauntered over to the table. He moved around it, over to Isabel’s side.
“Mike, this is Dianna Testa,” Isabel said with the same introductory tone she used all day.
Michael looked at her and their eyes locked. Dianna didn’t believe in love at first sight, but if such a thing could exist, this was it. The eyes tell a lot about a person, and in the deep hazel of Michael Vadaren’s, she saw kindness, gentleness, and a guy with a heart of gold. This guy had more than looks going for him, he had a decent soul. She only hoped that those eyes told the truth. He was even more handsome close up. His lightly curly hair was short, and as black as space, his arms were toned, and his skin was smooth. In one word, he was a god.
Dianna imagined him taking her hand, kissing it, and saying hello in a charming deep voice that would make any girl weak at the knees. But this was twenty-first century, New America, chances were slim that it would happen that way. But a girl could dream, couldn’t she?
Sure enough, she was right. All Michael did was give her a warm smile and a small wave.
She was a bit disappointed at his lack a of proper hello. Maybe he was shy. How cute.
“Mike, Dianna is new here, she just moved from Four Corners. She will be joining us for dinner tonight.”
Michael raised his eyebrows, then held up one finger as if to say “wait a moment.” He put his tray down on the table and began to rummage through his pants pockets.
Dianna couldn’t stop staring at him. She felt kind of awkward because she realized she was being kind of rude. That was unusual enough, she hardly ever felt awkward. But his search gave her an excuse to look at him anyway.
After a moment, he found what he was looking for. He pulled out of his pocket an old, grubby, piece of paper, it was torn in a few places, and had several sharp crease marks in it.
“Oh, here we go,” Isabel said. “Mike, why don’t you get rid of that thing?”
Michael ignored his sister, unfolded the old paper and handed it to Dianna.
Confused, she took the paper. Hey, when the hottest guy you’ve ever seen gives you something the first time you meet, you accept it…just don’t drink it if it’s liquid, or so her Aunt Mandy always said. Dianna turned the paper right side up and looked at it. It was a note, written in sloppy, childish handwriting.
“Hello, my name is Michael Vadaren. I’m happy to meet you.
Please be patient with me, I don’t talk. I communicate with
writing and hand gestures.”
Dianna looked up at Michael in surprise. He didn’t talk. That’s why he hadn’t said a word yet. This was an unusual turn of events in her fantasy of the charming Italian whispering sweet nothings into her ear. Turns out, the hottest guy in school couldn’t speak. In that moment, she didn’t find herself upset, but rather intrigued. Sure, her fantasy took a crash and burn, but since when did fantasies ever come into reality?
She decided to play this out and see what happened. He was still a hottie and still had those soul-filled eyes. “Nice to meet you, Michael.” She handed him back the paper. He took it, folded it carefully and put it in his pocket. He smiled at her, and Dianna felt her heart skip. What was wrong with her?
Isabel sighed. “Sorry, my brother wrote that when he was eight and he’s used it as an introduction ever since.” She looked at Michael. “Why not write a new one?”
Michael glared at her, and forcefully gave her a thumbs down motion.
“Whatever. Hey. do you know what Mom is making for dinner tonight?” Isabel asked.
He gave her a thumbs up, pulled out a pad of lined paper, and a fine black pen. He wrote something down and held it up for both girls to read. His hand writing was a lot better than it was when he was eight. In fact, she would say that it was cleaner, neater, and more legible then most guys’ handwriting.
“She’s making meatloaf, I think.”
“Oh good. Her meatloaf is very good, you’ll love it, Dianna,” Isabel said.
“I like meatloaf,” was all Dianna could think to say.
“Hey, Silent Mike, you coming or what?” One of Mike’s friends was calling from two tables away.
Michael gave the two girls a small look that Dianna guessed meant “I’m being summoned”, waved bye, picked up his tray of food and walked back to his friends.
“Mike is a Junior as well. He’s a great guy. Most people can’t get over the fact that he doesn’t talk, though.”
Dianna ate more of her food in silence. After a few minutes, she had to ask the question that was burning inside of her. “If I can ask, why can’t he talk? Was he born a mute, or something?’
Isabel coughed while drinking her Dr. Pepper. She put her cup down and said. “I didn’t say he can’t talk, Dianna. I said he doesn’t talk. Mike chooses not to speak.”
Dianna was surprised. Why in the world would anyone choose not to speak? Besides old timey nuns, that is? “Why?”
Isabel picked her cup back up. “That’s a long story and best told at the dinner table where Mike can be there to hear what we have to say about it.” She leaned in towards her. “Still want his number?”
-Excerpt from Written in Silence; Chapter 2 “Silent Mike”, by Andrew Ronzino
Again, please keep in mind that this is very rough draft.
Current word count for Written in Silence: 35,035/50,000!
Until the next time we meet,
Andrew Ronzino, Traveler From Second Earth