45 comments

Funny Contemporary Drama

I’m almost glad Jim’s running late, because I’m about to break his world, and damn it, he’s my bro. He’s my guy. We go way back. But if there’s bad news he’s gotta hear it, and it’s my duty to tell him. That’s what friends are for.

I’m not really good at this touchy-feely stuff, so I hope this cake place is all right. They got a decent coffee here, and a bitching key lime pie. Man, that shit is bananas. If pies were women then this one would be–

Oh, there he is!

“Hey Jim!”

Yeah, he sees me. Ooh, is that a new jersey? Looks pretty dope. Looks legit too. I wish I had legit jersey money, but honestly? Those fakes from Monty are pretty good. I mean, not like take-a-close-look-when-you’re-sober good, but you know.

"What’s up, Big J? Yeah, I like this place, figured we’d, uh, get a brew for a change. Uh, coffee brew, I mean. Good pie here. Oh man, and the waitresses. Psst. Look at the one behind the counter. Yeah, her. Glenda. Look at the size of–

“–heh, nah, I actually don’t think your wife would mind you looking.”

Uh, whoops. He’s frowning at me. Too soon, he hasn’t got his pie yet. Ease him into it. Geez, delivering bad news is harder than I thought. Feels like I got shrimp-and-scotch indigestion. I hope this goes better than when I had to tell Peter. I can’t believe the same thing keeps happening to my married friends. Anyway, I gotta distract him.

“You see the game?”

Heh, I love when Jim recaps stuff. He’s got a great voice for it, and he does the hand motions too, really keeps my attention. I think he could be a pro announcer, and I’m not surprised Janice fell for him. Look at him go! Oh yeah, I remember that play, lol.

Wait, did I just think “lol”? Did I actually laugh out loud? I don’t remember. I better laugh now because that was a funny moment, and I don’t want to be rude.

“Oh my god, that was friggin’ hilarious!”

That’s better. Geez, maybe I do spend too much time on the phone. Well whatever, waitress is here.

“Hey Glenda, we’d like–Brenda? Oh, sorry, Brenda then. We’d like two things of key lime and some coffee. Yeah, thanks.”

I pull out my manila envelope, filled with the horrible, heart-breaking, life-ruining evidence. Damn damn damn, this is going to be tough. I don’t want to hurt my best bud, but I feel like I’m about to kick him in the balls. Least I can do is buy him a pie.

“Pies are on me, Big J. What? Why? Uh… it’s a surprise. The envelope?”

Damn it, stop asking poignant questions. I gotta get you in a real good mood before I kick you in the junk. I know how much Janice means to you.

“You’ll see. Hey, you remember that trip to Vegas?”

Ha, there we go. Yeah, it was an awesome trip, Jim. I can’t believe all the places we were kicked out of. Man, what an epic time, back when it was just us bros. No wives, no kids, no real jobs, no real worries.

Ah, she’s back with the pies. Mm-mm, can’t wait to eat that pie, girl. Heh, noice.

“Thanks, Glenda. Brenda? Really?”

Whatever.

“Good pie, eh? What do you mean, it’s okay? It’s key lime, it’s the best. You prefer cherry? What the hell is wrong with you.”

Geez, you think you know a guy. Oh well, it’s now or never I guess. This was always going to be shitty news, and you can sugar coat shit, but it’ll still just be cherry pie.

"So, listen, man. I got some bad news. Ha, nah, I’m okay. It’s not bad for me, right? Like, bad for you. Yeah. Okay, so, you know your wife? Janice? It’s the big C.

“No, not cancer. She’s cheating on you.”

Oh my god, there it is. He’s gone all pale and trembling, like that time we were in Little League and Jim was at third base and Ricky Santiago just plowed into him and Jim wasn’t wearing a cup and he fell and we all laughed, but then we felt bad about it later. Only this time, I feel bad right away.

“Yeah, sorry man. Yeah, I got proof. You know I wouldn’t make something like this up, bro.”

I tap the manila envelope.

“Are you, like, sure you want to see this? Okay.”

I hope he can take it better than Peter did. I slide the envelope over to him. Oh boy, this is bad. Geez, he’s even crying. I can’t believe Janice would do this to him.

He opens the envelope, slides out the photos, and takes a look. His face changes. First it’s soggy and he’s doing that romcom thing where his lip shakes and his breath is all weird, like he’s tired from running or whatever, like his girl’s on a train or whatever and he doesn’t know if he’ll catch her. Then he frowns, looking closer at the photos, sliding from one to the next. Then he’s scowling and he’s bared his teeth, and he’s all red in the face.

Yeah, that’s good! Be angry, Jim. Nobody likes a crier.

He slams the photos onto the table, and I nod, knowingly.

“Yeah, told you bro, it’s pretty bad–”

Wait, why the hell is he yelling at me now? That’s not fair.

“Dude–”

Stop interrupting me, man.

“Bro–”

Man, I knew delivering bad news would be hard, but I’m kinda regretting it. There’s really no call for shouting at me. It’s kinda rude.

“Dude! Why are you shouting at me? She’s the one that cheated on you.”

Oh my god, I cannot believe he just said that. In public. I hope nobody’s recording this, for Jim’s sake. Christ, he’s actually mad at me now. Real nice, Jim. After I try to do you a solid. This is Peter all over again.

“Yes, I know I’m the guy in the photos, Jim! That’s how I know she’s cheating on you! Hey, don’t scream at me, bro. I’m a victim here too. This married woman, who should have known better, just swooped in on my poor, lonesome, vulnerable heart. She took advantage of me, Jim. She made me feel so dirty.”

Actually, fair, I liked the dirt. Janice is filthy. I can see why he married her.

“Nah, she didn’t take the photos. They’re stills from my video. Yeah, I recorded it–what do you mean? I always record it. I mean, look at me! I look great in these shots! No, I did not secretly tape your wife! I caught her screwing around on you. I did you a solid, man, don’t turn this around on me.”

Oof. He just slammed his key lime pie in my face. Real mature, Jim. Real nice. Not only does that hurt my feelings, it’s a waste of a perfectly good pie. Let’s see, maybe I can scrape it onto my plate… there. Mm that’s good pie.

Yeah, fine Jim, just leave. Just scream at me and leave. Make a scene. Whatever, bro.

I know you just need time to cool off. It’s gotta suck learning your wife betrayed you. Just know I got your back. That’s what friends are for.

September 26, 2022 22:51

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45 comments

21:54 Sep 27, 2022

The one way dialogue is a really interesting idea. Never even thought of that concept but it really works here. And you have a fun middle america bro speak narrator. The twist was good too, matched the vibe of the mc. Reminder me a hit of the jimmy mcgill chwracter.

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Michał Przywara
23:46 Sep 27, 2022

Thanks, Scott! Yeah, I wasn't familiar with the monologue kind of story either, until I hit some of them on this site. I think I can still fine tune it, but it's a fun format to play around with. Glad the twist worked for you! Thanks for the feedback :)

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Seán Mc Nicholl
16:39 Sep 27, 2022

Haha, brilliant Mark! Michał? Really? Whatever. Great great story, very witty and funny! He’s just lucky Jim only put the pie in his face and not his fist! Really enjoyed this!! Well done! Noice!

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Michał Przywara
20:54 Sep 27, 2022

Ha! Thanks :D I'm glad it was funny, because the prompt was kind of dire. You're right about the fist though, very lucky indeed :)

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00:25 Nov 29, 2022

That is seriously twisted. We could grab a private investigator license and do this child right.

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Michał Przywara
23:12 Nov 29, 2022

Thanks, Lester! If you're going to go twisted, might as well go seriously :)

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Sophia Gardenia
12:07 Oct 17, 2022

Ha! I laughed out loud when I found out the MC was the one Janice was fooling around with (I guess the same happened with Peter's wife...). Love the one-sided dialogue; it highlights how much the MC is trying to justify himself (and also reminds me of your story, "Dinner at Charlie's"). The voice is also very funny and natural.

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Michał Przywara
21:02 Oct 17, 2022

Thanks, Sophia! I'm glad you found it funny :) Yeah, there's a similar monologue approach to both stories. It's not something I have a lot of experience with, but it's a blast to write. I appreciate the feedback!

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Zelda C. Thorne
06:36 Oct 13, 2022

Omg I am actually belly laughing 🤣🤣 I did sneakily suspect what was going on (just because it also happened to Peter) but if anything, that made it even better. The voice is great too. Well done!

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Michał Przywara
20:52 Oct 13, 2022

Ha, thanks! That's made my day :D I don't know what it is, but it is so fun to write terrible people.

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Rama Shaar
09:51 Oct 08, 2022

This was a really funny, engrossing read! The narrator is a really interesting mix of narcissistic, stupid, funny, loving and lousy friend. I think the essence is that he's jealous of his happily married friends, but instead of working on himself to have the same life, he ruins theirs. Not TOO far off from how some people operate in the real world!

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Michał Przywara
00:43 Oct 09, 2022

Thanks Rama! You might be right about that jealousy. It's easier to sabotage someone else than to improve yourself, I suppose - at least, in the short term. Thanks for reading!

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Nick Cevennes
23:25 Oct 06, 2022

Thank you for the lovely story. It made me laugh.

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Michał Przywara
01:54 Oct 07, 2022

Thanks, Nick! I'm glad you enjoyed it :)

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01:35 Oct 06, 2022

Great twist! This messenger deserved to be shot. Pie in the face is most appropriate. The inner monologue was very entertaining.

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Michał Przywara
02:25 Oct 06, 2022

Thank you, Christine :) I definitely wanted a messenger that deserved it :) I'm glad you enjoyed it!

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Delaney Howard
23:01 Oct 05, 2022

Loved this - very funny. From the monologing to this... "Oh my god, there it is. He’s gone all pale and trembling, like that time we were in Little League and Jim was at third base and Ricky Santiago just plowed into him and Jim wasn’t wearing a cup and he fell and we all laughed, but then we felt bad about it later. Only this time, I feel bad right away." Showing their history. What a horrible friend! But still funny as hell!

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Michał Przywara
23:05 Oct 05, 2022

Heh, thanks Delaney :) At this stage, "friend" might be a generous term :) I'm glad you enjoyed it!

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06:23 Oct 05, 2022

Your narrator? I think I know him...Quite the douche. LOL Great story. I like your style.

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Michał Przywara
21:18 Oct 05, 2022

Heh, thanks Theresa :) I'm glad you enjoyed it.

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Maria Alexandra
22:30 Oct 04, 2022

This was a really fun read!! I loved the inner voice format, this guy is really funny and relatable (except for backstabbing his friends lol)! "Wait, did I just think "lol"?" I do the same sometimes! I wanted to go for this prompt too, but I worried that having the messenger be guilty will be very see-through for the reader. However, I didn't mind this in your story, because it was very amusing and cleverly written.

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Michał Przywara
23:22 Oct 04, 2022

Thanks, Maria! I did once verbally and unironically utter "lol" and that's when I knew, time for a break from the Internet :) I'm glad the story worked for you. This was actually my last pick of prompt, until this idea occurred to me. Initially I was hung up on the messenger being innocent, naturally, and the person being told about the infidelity reacting irrationally. That seems to be the way it usually goes. But then I thought, "What the 'shooting' is justified?" And here we are :) I appreciate the feedback!

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Tommy Goround
13:44 Oct 02, 2022

Hmmm... Thought it might hit recommended. One of the better twists I read last week.

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Michał Przywara
21:35 Oct 03, 2022

Thanks! I thought (hoped) so too, but alas. Maybe I deviated too far from the prompt, since I don't strictly *start* with the telling but instead build up to it. Or maybe it was just one of those days. So it goes :)

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Tommy Goround
00:39 Oct 04, 2022

Is that a thing? Strict adherence to prompt?

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Michał Przywara
01:06 Oct 04, 2022

I have no idea, to be honest. I think it depends on who's judging, and what kind of day they're having. I've had things get recommended before though, where the link to the prompt was tenuous, or even subverted, so it doesn't seem like a hard rule.

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Tommy Goround
02:19 Oct 04, 2022

Could you send me a rental price for your Thrift Store Baby story, please. (I think you used to have your email on your biography. There's no normal way to ask you this). Tpgoround@gmail.com

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Kyle Bennett
18:25 Oct 01, 2022

Good job, nice fun little story. I like the phone call dialog put into face to face. It keeps the focus on your character, because, no offense to Jim, but we don't really care what he's like or what he has to say. It would just distract from the shallow pool of his friend's character. Jim is just the cardboard straight man. Kinda saw the plot twist coming, but not too soon and not too for-sure, and you kept it NASCAR-crash compelling enough to be worth pretending not to see it coming.

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Michał Przywara
02:43 Oct 02, 2022

Thanks, Kyle! Yep, Jim's the invisible straight man :) I'm glad the twist was still good, even though you had suspicions. Actually, that you had an idea of what was coming is good too. A story probably shouldn't be completely unpredictable :) I appreciate the feedback!

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Marty B
19:46 Sep 30, 2022

I like the twist of the friend being in the cheating photos, and you give good examples of why he shouldnt be trusted - I can’t believe the same thing keeps happening to my married friends. I can’t believe all the places we were kicked out of ...he fell and we all laughed

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Michał Przywara
18:19 Oct 01, 2022

Thanks, Marty! Yeah, it seems like he thinks he's a better friend than he actually is :) Bit of a disconnect between thought and deed. Thanks for reading!

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Amanda Lieser
04:40 Sep 30, 2022

Hey Michal! Oh my goodness! The twist in this story! I loved it. I also love how it was more of a stream of consciousness piece. The use of dialogue was interesting and I felt the messenger was rightfully shot. I think it’s clever that you used a public space as well-because some people choose public to avoid meltdowns. Still, this was a clever use of the prompt. Nice job!

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Michał Przywara
20:44 Sep 30, 2022

Thanks Amanda! "I felt the messenger was rightfully shot" - heh, that's exactly what I was going for :) So often these poor messengers get crapped on for no reason, so now there's a good reason. I'm glad you enjoyed it!

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Scott Skinner
23:47 Sep 28, 2022

Well this guys not very likable! Although, he was in the beginning of the story. I liked the humor that was injected throughout this piece - I think the stream of consciousness narration helped strike the right tone. Small things like Glenda/Brenda are funny when they become call backs. But yes, I didn't like this guy in the end, but I commend you for tying it together with him mentioning 'this' happening to all his 'friends.'

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Michał Przywara
04:05 Sep 29, 2022

Thanks, Scott! Yeah, he's definitely a bit of a mediocre person, though it's fun to write such characters every now and then. I'm glad it was amusing :) I appreciate the feedback!

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Aeris Walker
19:09 Sep 28, 2022

I get the sense that grade school was difficult for this character...not the sharpest tool in the shed is he? When I saw this prompt, I cringed and scrolled faster, lol. I think writing this from a humorous angle was a good choice, as the prompt itself kind of implies the plot, so the real twist lies in the characters and the unveiling of what happened. Your character here did not disappoint--he is in his own little delusional world of idiocy, and the future does not look promising for him. On a technical note, I liked how your perspective ...

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Michał Przywara
20:58 Sep 28, 2022

Thanks, Aeris :) "in his own little delusional world of idiocy" - yeah, that's probably most accurate. Glad to hear the format worked! I also cringed when I saw the prompt initially. It seemed like so much of the story was already defined by it, and it was kind of sad. You got the infidelity, and you have someone shooting the messenger, so like, taking your disappointment and anger out on the wrong target. So, a character that is disconnected from reality and very immature. Understandable, in such a highly emotional situation, but not some...

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Suma Jayachandar
07:03 Sep 28, 2022

Noice indeed, Michal! I can totally understand the shock the POV character experiences towards the end, being a conceited douche who checks out Brenda's bosom more accurately than her name tag. Another well etched character driven piece from you that's so enjoyable! Well done!

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Michał Przywara
20:38 Sep 28, 2022

Heh, thanks Suma :) "Conceited douche" sounds about right. There's something fun about writing outrageous, reprehensible, perhaps oblivious, people. Plus the prompt, "shooting the messenger", seems to typically be a very misguided petty act by the shooter, and I wanted to see how it might be justified :) Thanks for reading!

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Tommy Goround
00:58 Sep 28, 2022

The dialogue hurts my eyes. You have to keep it. Hahaha There was that movie about the guy that could make any woman mad and she would go back to her boyfriend or husband. (Dane Cook: My Best Friend's girl, 2008)... Thought your main character might be trying to get all of his friends single again. Maybe he is. The plotting is fantastic. Unique. Cleverly elegant in selling this "smooth brained" MC as a guy sexing his friend's wives to show they are not worthy of their husbands. Stand to clap. Bravo.

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Tommy Goround
01:03 Sep 28, 2022

To clarify: the dialogue, the dialog breaks, the segues all work. I was commenting on the class of character.

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Michał Przywara
20:43 Sep 28, 2022

Heh, I figured :) Class (less) people are fun to write. I've never met anyone quite like this guy, but there've been people leaning in that direction. Thanks for the read :)

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Tommy Goround
20:54 Sep 28, 2022

I've met people like your main character. You're pretty much nailed the characters. I can't believe you squeaked in on an original concept within this scope. It has been written in a thousand ways and you just found a new way to tell the story. Big claps.

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Calm Shark
01:50 Sep 27, 2022

I love the perspective and I chuckled at some parts of the story. Anyways, I love the twist, it was pretty well done. I was in disbelief at how the main character takes no blame for his actions but instead blames Janice(who is also to blame as well). Overall, a funny, yet sad story. Favorite Line: "Just know I got your back. That's what friends are for."

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Michał Przywara
02:17 Sep 27, 2022

Thanks, Shark! Yeah, funny but sad sounds about right. I think there's people like this. When I first saw this prompt, I pictured all sorts of scenarios where the person being informed flips out arbitrarily, and how it's completely unfair to the messenger. Then I thought to myself, what would it look like if they were justified in "shooting the messenger"? I'm glad it's funny. I think the prompt intrinsically has some sad, given the betrayal. I appreciate the feedback!

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