Friday, April 28, 2017

Unfortunate Circumstances

A man ran into next to Philip Hornbuckle and began to dial 911 after seeing Rory on the ground. This moment was strange for Philip. There was a woman lying on the ground, possibly dead, but all Philip could see was this man. She fell in love with him at first sight. She heard him say his name was Baker Shefield when he dialed 911. She stood there in awe. She still couldn't remember much about her life, but somehow she knew Baker would complete it. However, Baker did not seem to return these feelings. All his attention was on Rory, he even went to the hospital with her. Philip was filled with jealousy. She tailed Baker all day, and even stole hospital clothing and a vehicle to try and lie low. She noticed in the evening that Baker was tailing Rory even on her evening walk with her dog. Philip couldn't stand the thought of Baker falling in love with Rory. She suddenly found herself driving towards Rory at full speed, knocking her into the river. She saw Baker yell that "Jenn killed Rory!" Little did he know he was just confused by the hospital car. In reality, Philip Hornbuckle killed Rory.

A Whole New World

Philip Hornbuckle looked at the world around her. She had a distinct sense that something had changed, but she couldn't put her finger on what is was. All she could remember was that she worked at World's Best Pizza and lived in The Victorian. "I must have some friends somewhere that I can visit" she thought. She decided to walk back to The Victorian and knock on some doors there, then maybe she could figure out what was going on. She finally arrived at her apartment. When she walked in, she was shocked by what she saw. The place was a mess, pizza boxes were scattered about and bird feathers were everywhere. She began to pick up all the trash and threw it away. She saw a bird cage and decided to get rid of that too. "Who on earth would want a pet bird" she thought, "they're easily the most annoying animal out there. She folded up the blanket on the sofa, rearranged her cushions, and cleaned all the dishes in the kitchen. Once her apartment was presentable she decided to roam the Victorian and try to figure out who she was. She knocked on the door of apartment 2, only to find Rory Langely passed out on the floor.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Thunder and lightning

Philip Hornbuckle searched for Paco all day in the crowd of parakeets. He was nowhere to be found. Defeated, Philip began his walk home. Storm clouds rolled in above him and rain started to drench Philip's only remaining trench coat. He didn't notice though, he could only think about Paco. Rain started to pour harder. Lightning flashed across the sky and thunder shook the ground below Philip's feet. Suddenly, Philip's vision lit up. Flashes of purple, green, blue, and red filled his field of vision. His body hit the ground with a loud thud. His eyes closed. The last thing he saw was the charred dirt and gravel below him.
Two hours later, Philip awoke. He felt strange, something was different. His ears were ringing. The only thing he could hear was the faint sound of Hannah Montana's "Rockstar" blaring from city hall. He looked at his hands, his legs, and the rest of his body. Then he knew what was wrong. Philip Hornbuckle had been struck by lightning and woken up as a woman. He was no longer a man. He had no memory of Paco or his past life. Philip was being given a second chance at life.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

On a Thursday

Philip Hornbuckle was finally beginning to become accustomed to a life without Paco. He threw away his trench coats with special pockets for Paco, he emptied out Paco's cage, and he even invited some of the townspeople over to his apartment for a bird-themed movie night. Now, he made an even larger step outside of his comfort zone. He stood in front of his sister's gravestone, the one place he vowed to never visit without Paco. In his hands, he held a fresh bouquet of roses. He slowly bent down, and picked up the brown, limp roses that stood on his sister's grave. He put down the new bunch of roses, carefully avoiding the thorns. He stopped for a moment when he was eye level with the grave, and admired the details on the headstone. Here lies Hanani, beloved sister, daughter, and friend, the gravestone read. A marble owl stood on the top of the headstone, its eyes following Philip's every move. Suddenly, Philip's train of thought was interrupted by a voice behind him.
"Hello Philip, would you like to join my confessional?" Philip turned towards the voice only to see it was Pope Michael, traveling with his walking confessional like he did every Thursday. Philip looked at his watch. He still had an hour before his shift at World's Best Pizza, and he did have a lot to get off his chest.
"Well, I suppose." Philip responded.
"Terrific!" Pope Michael yelled as he suddenly dropped the handles on the confessional, allowing the rickety stall to fall to the ground. Pope Michael opened the door, and took a seat, closing the door behind him.
"Whenever you're ready!" He called. Philip drew the curtain to the side, and took a seat.
"Well, times have been hard" Philip began, "I have finally accepted that Paco is gone, but I'm not sure how to live without him. I decided to visit Hanani's grave to try and find some answers. You see, back when I got Paco Hanani warned me not to get too attached to him. She said that if I spent all my time with him I wouldn't have any friends, which would make college, and the rest of my life hard for me if something ever happened to Paco. She offered to give me some advice on how to manage my friendship with Paco, and my friendships with others, but I turned her down at time time because I couldn't believe something would ever happen to Paco. Now I see the truth though, and I wish my sister was still here to help me."
"Ah Philip," Pope Michael began through the screened wall, "I know this must be-"
A loud squawking interrupted Pope Michael. Philip drew the curtain of the confessional to the side to see hundreds of parakeets sailing through the air, pecking civilians, and pooping on heads.
"Oh my God! Could Paco be in this crowd? I'm sorry father, I have to go! If Paco is in this crowd of parakeets I can't miss my opportunity to find him!" With that, Philip jumped out of the rickety confessional, and ran into the crowd of parakeets.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

The Prophecy

Philip Hornbuckle was soundly asleep until suddenly he felt something smacking his face. He slowly opened his eyes, and found that his face was covered in orange peels. In the distance, he saw Munny Pang, on the back of train, eating an orange. Philip sat up, and small pieces of gravel stuck to his unshaven face. He looked around, and realized he was asleep on a bed of grass next to the railroad tracks. "Oh. I must have fallen asleep looking for Paco" he thought. He stretched his arms and checked his watch, expecting it to be the early morning hours, "4:05 in the afternoon?!" he yelled, "I'm supposed to be at work in fifteen minutes!" He jumped up and ran off towards World's Best Pizza. He could hardly see through the fog on his way there, and almost ran straight into Wren Henry in the midst of his panic. Finally, Philip arrived at World's Best Pizza, threw on his apron, and went to the front of the restaurant to manage the register. Half an hour passed, and the restaurant remained empty. Finally, at 5:15, Sasha Tary strolled in with some strange news for Eduardo, the owner of World's Best Pizza. 
"Hi Eduardo, your sister is buried by St. Cecelia's Church, right?" Eduardo nodded with a confused expression on his face, "well. I'm not sure how to say this, but your sister's grave has been...disturbed." Eduardo let out a defeated sigh.
"PHILIP! Get your stuff. We're closing down early so I can go handle this mess." Philip quickly gathered his stuff, wished Eduardo luck, and started his walk home. As Philip was walking through Howell Park, as woman approached him. She was dressed in various of shades of red, and appeared to be in a hurry.
"Hello, are you Philip Hornbuckle?"
"Well, yes I am." Philip replied, unsure how the woman knew his name. Slowly, the woman reached into her pocket, pulled out a crinkled envelope, and placed it in his hand.
"This may seem odd, but an old blind man told me to find you in Howell Park right about now, and give you this envelope." Philip looked at the envelope in his hand, and looked back up at the woman as he began to open it.
"Did he happen to tell you-"
"Listen I'd love to answer your questions" the woman interrupted, "but I'm really in a rush!" With that, the woman ran off, bumping into Philip on her way out, and causing Philips finger to scrape the envelope.
"Ouch!" yelled Philip, "Papercut!" Philip shook the blood off his finger, and opened the enveloped. In messy handwriting, the envelope read:
"You may not know me, and you probably never will. But that doesn't matter to me, because even though I am blind I still see the truth. I had a vision of you, Philip Hornbuckle, and this is what I saw, the truth with all its power lives inside me." Philip looked at the sentence in shock. "No one knows where Paco is. No one ever will. The truth of what happened to Paco is something only I know." Suddenly, Philip realized what this prophecy meant, and accepted his fate: a life without Paco.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

The Thirst

Philip awoke from another night's rest feeling just as upset as the day before. And the day before that. And the day before that. Philip sat up in bed, and began to think about all his memories with Paco. He thought about when he got Paco during his first year in college, because he was having trouble making new friends. He thought about all the movie nights, fancy dinners, and concerts that he and Paco had bonded over. Now, all he could think about was what would happen if he never found Paco, or Paco never found his way back to The Victorian. Philip didn't have many other friends. In fact, the only time he really engaged in human interaction was during his shift at World's Best Pizza and his weekly Bird Watchers Club meetings, and even during those times Paco was with him. Philip quickly shook his head, and started to get out of bed. He tried not to think about living life without Paco for too long, the thought was too upsetting. Philip threw on his favorite trench coat, grabbed his keys, and set out for Howell Park to look for Paco. As Phillip walked through town, something seemed slightly odd. People were running around frantically, carrying large jugs of water, and asking around to see if anyone would be willing to share anymore water with them. "Geez" thought Philip, "don't these people have enough water? I mean it's not like the town is on some insane water shortage or something." Philip continued thinking about the strangeness of the whole situation as he searched for Paco in Howell Park. Suddenly, Philip came upon a stream in the park he had never seen before. "Paco always loved the water! Perhaps he flew here!" Philip began to look on every tree surrounding the river. No Paco. So he bent down, and began to check in the stream to see if Paco was taking a swim.
"Great. Another weirdo looking for water. Listen dude, you need to look somewhere else for water. This is my spot, and I don't share. Maybe you should check Rainbow River."
Philip turned around to see a woman standing behind him, with an frustrated expression on her face.
"My apologies" said Philip, "I didn't mean to invade your territory, but I wasn't looking for water. I was looking for my bird, Paco." The woman's face softened slightly before she spoke again,
"Oh. Well maybe you should start looking for water, instead of wasting your time trying to find your lost bird. Tell you what, I'll even share some of my water with you." The woman handed Philip a jug, and began to fill it up from the stream. Phillip looked at the jug in confusion.
"Thank you, but I think I'll just get my water from the store."
"Hah! The store! Do you really think they have any water left? C'mon you better start filling that jug before I don't want to share anymore. It's like you don't even know there's a water shortage right now." Suddenly, Philip understood why everyone in town was running around in a panic, and quickly began filling his water jug next to the woman.
"Thank you for sharing. My name is Philip, what's yours?"
"Cecelia Fisher" the woman said, and continued to fill her jug.
"Well, Cecelia it's nice to meet you"
Cecelia smiled at Philip, and two continued to talk about their lives as they filled their water jugs. Before Philip and Cecelia even realized how long it had been, the sun began to go down.
"Oh no!" cried Philip, "I have to go before it gets dark! I need to keep searching for Paco! It was nice to meet you Cecelia!" With that, Philip jumped up, bolted into the night, and forgot to bring his water jug with him.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Southern Living

Philip Hornbuckle was asleep on his sofa after a long night working at World's Best Pizza. He still had on his flour and pizza sauce stained shirt when he awoke to a loud knocking at the door of his apartment. Philip quickly realized that the knocking must have started far before he woke up, because Paco was flying around the apartment in a panic. Philip jumped up, accidentally knocking over his coffee table and sending Bird Watcher's Club sign-up sheets flying everywhere. He ran to the door, and opened it to find a large group of men and women eagerly holding cameras and notebooks at his doorstep. "Can I help you folks?" Philip mustered as easily as he could after such a startling wake up call. "Hi, uh, sir." started a young man in a polished suit, "I'm Langford, and I work with Southern Living magazine. We're making a piece about southern towns making a comeback. We were hoping to feature you, but first I should everything alright in here?" Philip looked at the man in confusion, then back at his apartment. Philip's apartment was covered in sign up sheets. There was a pile of dirty World's Best Pizza shirts in the corner, and next to them a bookshelf filled with tattered bird encyclopedias. Paco was still soaring around the apartment. "What do you mean?" Philip asked the reporter, "everything in my apartment is how it always is." The reporter let out a forced laugh, "Oh of course..." he responded, sharing glances with his team mates. "So what do you think? Can we feature you?" Philip nodded excitedly, "Of course you can! I can't believe someone wants me in a magazine! Come in! Come in!" he ushered. Langford and his team filed in the apartment and began to set up camera equipment. "First we're just gonna ask you some questions about the town, and everyone that lives here. What's your name by the way?" Langford asked. "Oh, I'm Philip." Langford nodded and opened his notebook. "Okay, so what's your favorite thing about this town?" Philip barely had to think. "I love Howell park!" he exclaimed, "there are so many interesting birds there. Me and my best friend Paco spend all our free time there. You know, I once even saw a rare nepal there." Langford scribbled furiously. "So, tell me more about Paco. Who is he? What's he like?"
"Well Paco is my bird, and best friend." Philip went to gesture to Paco, but quickly made a realization. In all the chaos of the reporters arrival, Philip had forgotten to put Paco back into his cage. Paco was no longer in the apartment. Paco was gone.