Sunday, December 14, 2008

How Tumperkin Chose Her Heroes (Part 1)

[Tumperkin shuffles through a large pile of papers on her desk and frowns. She leans forward over the enormous desk and presses the intercom]

T: Sydnam, could you come through here?

S: (disembodied voice) Yes, ma'am.

[A few moments later a man enters the room. He is has only one arm and one eye and is limping. He is in Regency dress and carries a clipboard under his good arm and a grande latte in his good hand]

S: Your latte, ma'am (he sets down the cup)

T: (frowning) Where's my muffin?

S: (looking nervous) I'll just get it. It's just -

T: (rolling eyes) Yes, yes, the one arm thing, I get it.

[S limps out of the room and returns moments later with a brown paper bag]

S: I'm afraid they didn't have the white chocolate and raspberry so I got the -

T: (peering inside bag) Jeez, Syd, skinny blueberry? That would be my last choice. (shakes head). Ok. Syd, I've been through the papers you left for me. What's this DIK thing? I gotta choose men for this? We're going camping or something?

S: In a manner of speaking ma'am. However, knowing your dislike of camping, I've taken the liberty of arranging for a party of natives to commence construction on something a little more substantial than the usual beach hut. I have the plans here.

[Sydnam shuffles awkwardly through the papers on his clipboard and finally extracts some plans]

T: (whistling) Pretty impressive, Syd.

S: Thank you ma'am, I aim to please. As you know, I was the estate manager for the Duke of Bewcastle's Welsh estate for some years and I count myself to be rather -

T: That'll do Syd.

S: Sorry ma'am.

T: So, who's coming apart from you and me?

S: You want me to come, ma'am? Really? Gosh! Am I really one of your favourite romance heroes?

T: Of course you are, Syd! Why else would I have asked you to be my personal assistant? You're so kind and sweet, and with your missing arm and eye you're like a little wounded puppy. I adore you Syd!

S: Do you ma'am? But I'm so disfigured!

T: That's ok Syd, I can see past your disabilities to the fine, beautiful man underneath.

S: Gosh, that's a relief! Could we have a little snog now?

T: Later Syd. We need to work out who else we're bringing.

S: Well, ma'am, I've taken the liberty of preparing a short list.

T: Oh, Syd! What would I do without you? Let me see. (Pours over list; picks up red pen and scores through several names; after a few moments, T's head snaps up) What is Lucas from Slave to Sensation doing on this list?

S: You loved that book ma'am.

T: Well, yes, I enjoyed the book, but everyone knows I don't like all that possessive shit, Syd! And fated mates? So not my thing! I want a hero who is strong, yes, but I want him to let his woman be strong and independent too. I want a hero to be looking for a woman who will challenge and needle and provoke him. A man like -

S: Graham Wessit from Black Silk by Judith Ivory?

T: Yes! Is he free? Can he come?

S: He is indeed, ma'am. And raring to go. He's quite the social animal as you know and he loves a new diversion.

T: He sails doesn't he? That'll be useful on an island. Tell him to bring his boaty thing.

[S makes note on clipboard while T returns to reviewing the list]

T: (head snaps up) Where the shitting bollocks is Dain from Lord of Scoundrels?

S: Taken.

T: What?! I thought you said these chicks were paranormal freaks?

S: Many of them are but I'm afraid one or two seem to be historical fans like yourself ma'am.

T: (shoots S a significant look) Find. Out. Who. Has. Dain.

S: Yes ma'am.

T: We'll need some tash on the island.

S: I was thinking of Mick Tremore in that regard ma'am.

T: (looks up from papers in surprise) Has he grown it back?

S: It's bigger than ever ma'am.

T: Excellent. Sign him up. Better tell him to bring his ferrety thing. There may be rats.

S: Very good ma'am.

T: Right, so we've got you, Mick and Graham. Excellent work so far. I'm feeling rather tired now, Syd. Shall we go and have that snog now and reconvene tomorrow?

S: Very good ma'am. Would you like me to prepare you a cocktail?

T: That would be lovely Syddy. You do take care of me! An elderflower martini would be lovely.


Bridget Locke said...


You crack me up. :)

Carolyn Crane said...

Oh, my! This is SO entertaining, T. I must read about this Sydnam. I love your play format, and how you characterize yourself. This is great.

Oh, Is it possible you are sitting at a paperfilled desk with a latter this very minute? And yeah, who indeed has Dain?

lisabea said...


I still think you could bag that Dain.

T you'd better be writing in your spare time, young lady. Don't make me cross the pond to spank you.

Tracy said...

This is sooooo good. I just loved reading it! lol

sula said...

OMG! This is so clever. lolol. And if I recall correctly, I may be the one with Dain...I'll have to go back and check. mwahaha!

I love that pic of Joe Fiennes. Such a talented family. le sigh.

Kati said...

S'OK T, Lucas is busy being ALL possessive and grabby on my ass.

Sounds like Sula better watch her hut though. Tumperkin's on the way to retrieve Dain. Heh.

Joanna Chambers said...


CJ - no, I'm not in the library right now as I'm sick. Syddy's just gone to get me a hot toddy.

I return all the love to you in my usual slightly restrained British manner.

Ana said...

GENIUS, absolutely genius. Love it.

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