June 6, 2012


Each Tuesday, rather than a POSSIBLY IRRITATING ESSAY, I'd like to both challenge you and lend a helping hand. I generate more speculative and teen story ideas than I can ever use. My family rolls its collective eyes when I say, "Hang on a second! I just have to write down this idea..." Here, I'll include the initial inspiration (quote, website, podcast, etc) and then a thought or two that came to mind. These will simply be seeds -- plant, nurture, fertilize, chemically treat, irradiate, test or stress them as you see fit. I only ask if you let me know if anything comes of them.

H Trope: Halloween horrors

It’s All Hallows Eve – or Hallowe’en – in Minneapolis, inside the city, not far from a park, though EVERY place in Minneapolis is not far from a park.

On the city’s north side, there’s a doctor’s clinic; it bears the stamp of approval of Planned Parenthood, most of the insurance companies operating in the state – and recently had a new addition put on.

Kehlanna McGee is a young graduate of the Minneapolis Community and Technical College with a new degree in nursing – she just turned ninetnne. She’s a voracious reader and takes on the night shifts at every clinic and hospital she’s ever worked in because it gives her more time to READ. She recently bought the collected works of Stephen King and has entertained the idea that now that he’s dead, she might like to take over his spot! With a couple of publications in small emagazines, she spends what time she’s not working or reading…writing.

Trayvon Dehvahn is also a nursing school graduate, but he’s got med school in him plans. In particular, he’s really interested in cloning and biotechnology. He’s a reader, too, but has been working his way through the classics like DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE, FRANKENSTEIN, DRACULA, THE TELL-TALE HEART AND OTHER WRITINGS, SOMEETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES and the host of others.

When the new addition opens, they both get a job there and taking the training, both choose the new night shift in the ER. That’s where they meet the doctor who usually works that shift, Dr. Edgar B. Stevenson. He’s quiet, efficient – but when Trayvon and Kehlanna – who’ve started talking and seeing each other after work in the morning – start to notice that virtually all of the women who come to the clinic for abortions have one at 24 weeks, they wonder about it.

One night, a woman who is obviously farther along than 24 weeks comes in. Trayvon later enters the absurdly inaccurate records and talks to Kehlanna. They return to the clinic during the regular day shift and take an elevator down to Dr. Stevenson’s office and surgery. There, they discover a room. From the room, they hear noises. Noises that sound like voices. Voices crying out, not as infants cry, but as children cry out to be set free…

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