Elster's World

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Literary Elster

So after a few total waste of space posts, this is something with a little more meat.

After I finished writing my novel, I immediately tried to dive into another. Big mistake. I was all over the place and way not ready to start seriously writing again. I came up with an idea to do a more witty, but still sorta dark book about a jewel thief who messes up a big job and gets into a boatload of trouble. I'm pretty sure I will never write this book, but I did write the first chapter, which I thought I would share with you guys now.

I tinkered with it slightly from how it appears on the notebook, but it is not heavily edited or cleaned up for that matter. Still, I thinks it's pretty good.

Warning: DO NOT start this if you only have two minutes. it's lengthy. Anyway, enjoy:

Untitled Crime Caper Project

With one major exception, the job went off without a hitch. He had spent the last four weeks setting it up, an all time speed record for him, but it was a pretty simple job after all.

The information he had bought off the funny looking man known only as The Pole seemed pretty accurate. The house, in the heart of Forest Hills Gardens, an affluent and closed off wealthy community in Queens, was big enough to have filmed King Kong Vs. Godzilla in. It was also empty, thanks to its residents spending Christmas in the winter wonderland of Tahiti. He had done surveillance on the house for two weeks, and with the exception of some teenage girl with weird hair who went in three times a day for twenty or so minutes, the house was empty.

He pulled a rented late model Infinity SUV to the curb and made sure there was no movement in any of the neighboring houses. Luckily for him, in a place like this, there wasn’t another house for fifty yards in any direction. The locks on the big front door were pick proof, but that was no problem to a master thief like David Thorson. He simply blew them out with noise reduction plastic explosives and a specially rigged trigger, price of five thousand dollars. He used a special computer bypass (seven thousand, five hundred dollars) to override the alarm system and the internal motion detectors. He was inside the house and ready to roll in under five minutes.

Thorson stepped into the large foyer. A noise startled him and he turned to see a white blur hurtling itself towards him. Attack dog, he thought in a panic. The information he had gotten from The Pole hadn’t said anything about an attack dog. Lousy, untrustworthy Poles. He was fumbling for his two hundred and fifty dollar taser gun when he realized the “attack dog” was really just a loudly yelping French Poodle. The dog dove into his legs and sunk its jaws into his shin. With a cry of pain (and a few choice curse words) Thorson pried the dog off his leg, carried it by the scruff of its neck, and tossed it into the front coat closet, shutting the door tight. What kind of people leave their frigging dog home alone when they go on vacation? Rich people. Probably worried that little Fifi wouldn’t do well unless she was in her own comfortable surrounding. “So that’s what the odd girl was doing here every day,” he said to the suddenly quite foyer. He shook his head in wonder. Rich people never ceased to amaze him.

He looked at his watch and hustled for the study. He had a schedule to keep and now he was worried about finishing up and getting some hydrogen peroxide on the dog bite before he came down with rabies. So far his information had been perfect (with the exception of Yappy the Killer Poodle).

He stopped at the study’s doors and looked inside without stepping in. It was paneled oak with all kinds of strange pictures on the wall. Thorson was no art lover as a general rule (unless it was untraceable and easily fenced) but these pictures seemed like the bottom of the barrel. They all involved turkeys. Turkeys driving cars, turkeys at school, even turkeys playing poker. The whole thing had a bizarre, Planet of the Apes type feel to it. So what if the guy who owned the placed had a bunch of slaughterhouses that were giving old frank Perdue a run for his money, paintings of turkey was just plain unnatural. But Thorson wasn’t here for the turkeys. He only wanted what was behind the large portrait of turkeys playing golf.

He pulled out the map of the house security cameras and using the information he had bought (still running a pretty perfect score despite Fido the Death Dog) he disabled the four security cameras in the study and went in, pulling off his mask and breathing easier. He lifted the turkey Tiger Woods off the wall and gazed upon the safe behind it in wonder. It was a Schanhauser, just like The Pole had told him.

Now a Schanhauser isn’t just any old wall safe. It’s the Ferrari of safes. Said to be un-crackable, it was the choice unit of private homes with serious valuables to protect. Thorson nodded and smiled. The fact that it was indeed a Schanhauser was a very good sign. You didn’t put slightly damaged Reggie Jackson baseball cards in a Schanhauser. But you would put eight million dollars worth of diamonds in there.

And that, boys and girls, was what Thorson had come for. He had a guaranteed fence price of four million dollars for them. Sure it was only fifty cents on the dollar but you try unloading eight million dollars worth of stolen diamonds and see how you make out. All he had to do was sit back in an empty house, crack an un-crackable safe, and bring it on home.

He took four thousand dollars worth of safe poaching equipment from his bag and looked at his stolen Omega Seamaster watch. The choice of James Bond. He had taken it from a Park Avenue apartment six months ago. He smiled at the memory. Now that had been a good haul.

It was 8:43 pm when he got to work on Herr Schanhauser. Thorson has been looking forward to this moment since The Pole had told him the safe was an honest to G-d Schanhauser. He poked, prodded, drilled and clicked, working the lock mechanisms and tumblers, all the while humming John Lennon’s Imagine. The big German was indeed a tough old bastard, but by 9:23 he was starting to show some chinks in the armor. And at exactly 9:42 pm James Bond time, Dave Thorson cracked the un-crackable.

He set down his tools and took a few steps back, taking in the enormity of what he had done. Something like this could drive him right into the upper echelon of burglars. To Hell with that, this might make him legendary. After all, the Schanhauser gave Hans Rigger a heart attack and ultimately put him into retirement. He savored these thoughts like a sip of twenty five year old scotch. Then he opened the safe, which seemed to have sagged in its failure, swinging the doors wide open. He reached inside for the eight million dollar haul. Four million dollars net. Heck, if he didn’t love his job so much, he’d be able to retire. Well, he thought with a chuckle, not the way I spend money I won’t be.

All these happy little thoughts caused him to lose sight of a slight problem. But he noticed it soon enough. He shone his mini-Maglite ($7.50) into the defeated beast. He looked away from the safe, closed his eyes, opened them and peered back in. He shined the flashlight in again and again to be sure. Then he was sure. The safe was empty, the diamonds previously removed. Assuming, of course, they were ever there to begin with. The job had cost him four weeks and over fifteen thousand dollars that he had borrowed from two very bad men. He was really starting the hate The Pole.

“Well shit,” Thorson said.


  • Just cause the post was begining to look really lonely.

    By Blogger Elster, at 3:51 PM  

  • I LOVE this, Elster! Why in the world would you not want to turn this into a book? The combination of wit (yappy the killer poodle, the whole turkey bit, etc.) and crime story is excellent. And it reads much more natural than some of your straight-ahead crime stories, which are good, but in the tradition of other stories. This is completely different, and very very good. Really.

    By Blogger MC Aryeh, at 7:41 AM  

  • It's not that I DON'T want to write it, it's more that i don't think it will ever be written. I'm slightly down on the book business right now and after the work I put in trying to get The Novel published, I don't have the heart right now to really work on another project.

    By Blogger Elster, at 4:04 PM  

  • So why not just write it and not think about the business side of things? It's obvious you enjoyed writing this piece - that certainly comes across. And it's good. Two excellent reasons right there why you should continue.

    By Blogger MC Aryeh, at 5:41 PM  

  • Yes, but

    yes but it's very very very tome comsumming.

    By Blogger Elster, at 6:03 PM  

  • wow, you seriously have some amazing talant.

    By Blogger Eshet Chayil, at 3:13 AM  

  • Thank you EC.

    I tend to think of myself as being able to write, but then so can many many people. Most people simply never use their ability and like any other muscle, it can atrophy. Thus, the blog. My practice device. my exercise room.

    By Blogger Elster, at 9:31 AM  

  • Not true! Very few people can actually write well. You are one of them. So what if it's time consuming? It is passing time in a way you enjoy. And from a purely selfish standpoint - I want to read it!

    By Blogger MC Aryeh, at 9:42 AM  

  • Well MC, because your so zealous in your entreaties, i will (soon) publish the begining of the next chapter for the story that i have begun working on - Where our hero actually metts The Pole.

    By Blogger Elster, at 11:00 AM  

  • Excellent! Looking forward to it. You should be blessed a thousand times...

    By Blogger MC Aryeh, at 12:28 PM  

  • From your mouth to G-d's ear my man

    By Blogger Elster, at 12:31 PM  

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