Fiction

The Charrington Copter

BY


Illustration by Rolli

A letter came in the mail. I hadn’t received a letter . . .  Not for years and years.

“I read your story Trinity Times Three on the internet. I think it’s one of the finest things ever written. Call me.”

The name on the letterhead was Glynne Charrington.

I knocked over the phone, reaching for it.

An hour later, a helicopter landed in my back yard.

Not many writers have their own helicopter. Glynne Charrington is the greatest writer on Earth.

The clothesline exploded.

The door of the helicopter swung open. A gloved hand waved. I ducked even though I’m five feet two and climbed inside.

“Good morning.”

I’d seen photographs, but . . . Glynne Charrington has an atmosphere of hair. It’s a nest sitting on an egg.

Neither of us spoke for an hour.

The scenery was beautiful. The twin peaks of Mount Javan. There were lots of—they were eagles or vultures.

“Would you like a signed copy of FemDom? ”

Her new book. Of course I nodded. Though I prefer MatriMoney.

She pressed the autopilot button. She peeled off her gloves and reached into the glove box and took out a book and signed it.

For a fine writer and friend. Glynne Charrington.

The ink was still wet.

A tear ran down my cheek.

Glynne Charrington started crying.

“I’m sorry about this,” she said.

“It’s no problem,” I said.

She reached into the glove box again and pulled out a gun and pointed it at me.

“Open the door,” she said.

My heart beat harder.

Glynne Charrington sprang up and kicked the door open.

Her hair blew out the door. A wig. She looked even stranger with no hair. She grabbed onto the back of her seat.

The mountain was so close.

Glynne cocked the gun. I couldn’t . . . My heart was beating so hard.

The mountain.

Glynne screamed something.

I felt dizzy.

I blacked out.

*

When I woke up . . .

My head was throbbing. My leg. My stomach.

I couldn’t walk. I crawled in the snow.

I crawled over . . . I counted a dozen skeletons.

Down a ways. It was a warped book on a black boulder. I crawled to it. I leaned on a smaller rock but it rolled over and I fell over.

It wasn’t a rock. It was a skull.

I picked up a femur and knocked the book down with it. I scraped the frost off the cover. I made out MatriMoney.

I pried the book open. On the title page:

“For a fine writer and friend. Glynne Charrington.”

A tear ran down my cheek and froze to it. I slid down the side of the boulder, into the snow.

When I closed my eyes, I was looking right into the eye holes of the skull.

*

I was just about frozen to death. I was close to starved to death.

Vultures, not eagles.

But . . . There was a small animal not too far away. It wasn’t moving much. It looked hurt. It looked like a porcupine.

When I got close enough, I beat it with the femur.

It wasn’t a porcupine.

It was Glynne Charrington’s wig.

Rolli (rollistuff.com; @rolliwrites) is a writer and cartoonist from Regina. His most recent story collection, I Am Currently Working On a Novel, was long-listed for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award and short-listed for the High Plains Book Award. Rolli’s cartoons appear regularly in the Wall Street Journal, Reader’s Digest, Adbusters, and other popular outlets.




SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTER. Get the weekly roundup from The Walrus, a collection of our best stories, delivered to your inbox. Learn More »


Elsewhere on TheWalrus.ca