Symbiography: A Novella

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He casts a long gaze through his transparent glass wall onto the main street. He thinks he can consistently offer value to the local community. I think so too. Mr Biggs Apo is now offering an outdoor catering service for homes, businesses and schools. If you would like to make an order please call: OR It's HOT like that, babies.

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The rumours I hear indicate that the full expanded Symbio Tropie multi-volume is on the tarmac ready for lift-off in print and in ebook edition. Let's get this. Jump to. Sections of this page. Accessibility Help. Email or Phone Password Forgot account? See more of The Symbio Trophie on Facebook. Log In.


Forgot account? Not Now. Community See All. About See All. Page Transparency See More. Facebook is showing information to help you better understand the purpose of a Page. See actions taken by the people who manage and post content. Related Pages. Zigs Investments Company. Allenrichee Artist. A lawyer named Winesap said there was something you wanted to speak to me about. It was easy to imagine those pampered hands gripping a whip. Nero must have had such hands. And Jack the Ripper. It was the hand of emperors and assassins.

Languid, yet lethal, the cruel, tapered fingers perfect instruments of evil. I got out my wallet and showed him my photostat and honorary chiefs button. He flipped through the celluloid card holders and when he handed back the wallet his smile was ten degrees whiter.

I prefer to take a man at his word, but my legal advisors insisted upon this formality. Only when I have to be. I listened hard for any trace of an accent, but his voice was like polished metal, smooth and clean, as if it had been buffed with banknotes from the day he was born. Suppose we get down to business, I said. Another admirable trait. Cyphre withdrew a gold and leather cigar case from his inside breast pocket, opened it, and selected a slender, greenish panatela. Care for a smoke? I declined the proffered case and watched Cyphre trim the end of his cigar with a silver penknife.

Do you by any chance remember the name Johnny Favorite? An overnight sensation, as the press agents like to say. Sang with the Spider Simpson orchestra in He created a near-riot at the Paramount Theatre two years before anyone ever heard of Sinatra. In , I was just out of high school, a rookie cop in Madison, Wisconsin. Very true. It smelled like excellent tobacco, and I regretted not taking one when I had the chance. This is a city of outsiders, he said. Cyphre waved away a wreath of cigar smoke, flashing an emerald the Pope himself would have kissed.

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A pleasant voice, all things considered. Cyphre raised his glass to eye level in a silent European toast. As I said, I could never stomach swing music; too loud and jumpy for my taste. But Johnny sounded sweet as a caroler when he wanted to.

Read More From William Hjortsberg

I took him under my wing when he was first getting started. He was a brash, skinny kid from the Bronx. Mother and father both dead. Do you know what happened to him? Because of his professional talents, he was assigned to the Special Entertainment Services Branch and in March he joined a troop show in Tunisia. The Luftwaffe strafed the bandstand.

Most of the troupe was killed. Johnny, through some quirk of fortune, escaped with facial and head injuries. Escaped is the wrong word.

Symbiography – Novelist and screenwriter William Hjortsberg

He was never the same again. Some form of shell shock, I suppose. Cyphre stubbed out his cigar in the ashtray and toyed with the age-yellowed ivory holder. It was carved in the shape of a coiled serpent with the head of a crowing rooster. I gave Johnny some help at the start of his career.

I was never his agent, but I was able to use my influence in his behalf. In recognition of my assistance, which was considerable, we had a contract. Certain collateral was involved. This was to be forfeited in the event of his death. But Johnny had friends and money, a good deal of money. Although he was by nature profligate, his earnings for the two years prior to his induction were considerable; more than any one man could squander.

Indeed it does, Mr. Cyphre tapped his ivory cigar holder absently against the rim of his empty glass, making the crystal chime like distant bells. There was some sort of radical treatment. Typical psychiatric hocus-pocus, I suppose. The end result was the same; Johnny remained a zombie. I never saw Johnny again after he went away to war. All that mattered was whether he was alive or dead.

Once or twice each year, my attorneys contact the hospital and obtain from them a notarized affidavit stating he is indeed still among the living. This situation remained unchanged until last weekend.

How to Plot Your Novel FAST (editor demonstrates plotting technique)

Something very curious. I was in that vicinity on business and, quite on the spur of the moment, decided to pay my old acquaintance a visit.

Hjortsberg, William (Reinhold) 1941-

Perhaps I wanted to see what sixteen years in bed does to a man. At the hospital, I was told visiting hours were on weekday afternoons only. I insisted, and the doctor in charge made an appearance. He informed me that Johnny was undergoing special therapy and could not be disturbed until the following Monday. Cyphre slipped his cigar holder into his vest pocket and folded his hands on the table. I stayed over in Poughkeepsie until Monday and returned to the hospital, making certain to arrive during visiting hours.

Naturally, I said no. She said only family members were permitted to visit with the patients. Not a word. I grew quite indignant. That was a mistake. The receptionist threatened to call the police unless I left immediately. Aprile 2, No comments. Febbraio 7, No comments. Dicembre 10, No comments. Novembre 26, No comments. Novembre 7, No comments. Ottobre 29, No comments.

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