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Welcome to Fiction Fridays! We’ll give you a short bite of fiction every week – something to enjoy during your lunch hour – but with a twist: We want you to give us the idea for the next installment! Come join in the fun this month with our Thanksgiving-themed contemporary romance. This segment was written […]

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Fiction Fridays: The Invite — Part 4, Finale

Posted by on Nov 22 2012, 1:13 pm Posted in , ,

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Welcome to Fiction Fridays! We’ll give you a short bite of fiction every week – something to enjoy during your lunch hour – but with a twist: We want you to give us the idea for the next installment!

Come join in the fun this month with our Thanksgiving-themed contemporary romance. This segment was written by Colette Auclair, and is the hilarious final episode to the zany Thanksgiving gathering that brought our heroine Rebecca and our hero Alex together. To get caught up, read Part 3 here.

Enjoy! And Happy Thanksgiving!

The Invite

Part 4

By Colette Auclair

Rebecca’s mouth dropped open. Her savior apparent was a bargain-basement stripper! Talk about your short straw. (However, from a cursory glance, nothing on this man could be described as “short.”) But at least he was making money on this hellish holiday, which is more than she could say for herself. Even if he was paid in singles that he would have to retrieve from his underwear—or whatever he was wearing in lieu of underwear, which she didn’t want to contemplate, having just eaten.

And been shot at.

She’d wager this Village People refugee’s Thanksgiving was going better than hers, with the notable and handsome exception of Alex.

Officer Paul disabused himself of his dark blue shirt, taking special care to remove his badge. He huffed some hot air onto it, then extravagantly polished it on his behind, which was, based upon its movements, seemingly untethered to spine, hip or femur. It was its own independent entity.

This fact was not lost on Bonnie. Rebecca glanced at her friend—if she could call her that after this night in the asylum, a reality show waiting for a camera crew. Bonnie was as rapt as Rebecca imagined the children at Lourdes must have been. Her eyes were big, her mouth slack and…was that drool?

Officer Paul gyrated his way to the stricken woman. He was topless, showing off what were, Rebecca had to admit, some remarkable pecs. Built as he was, the aesthetics were marred by the Tweety Bird tattoo. Tweety perched upon his left nipple, looking far too big for the nipple to support his body weight. Rebecca found herself fearing for Tweety’s safety. Good heavens, I’m worried about a tattooed bird! I’m becoming just like them!

Officer Paul displayed skills that Rebecca doubted helped him to fight crime. However, this beat cop was most assuredly on the beat. The hip thrusting continued in earnest, aimed squarely at Bonnie. As for Bonnie, she looked primed for a strip-search.

Rebecca glanced at Alex, who gave her a most adorable crooked grin. He leaned over and whispered, “Would you like a dollar bill?” She punched his arm.

Just then Granny jumped up and yelled, dentures clicking, “Come on stud muffin, let’s see that booty!” She grabbed the waist of Officer Paul’s prop pants and yanked. Unfortunately, Officer Paul hadn’t finished unbuckling his belt (apparently, his choreography demanded that he grab it with both hands and bump and grind for several bars). Officer Paul lurched backward, Granny staggered, and down they both went with a loud thud. Officer Paul let out such a high-pitched yelp, Rebecca imagined only dogs could fully hear it. The audience erupted in applause and whistles.

“Go for it, Granny!” yelled Chia Head.

“Yee haw, son, you are in for it now!” said Arnold Benedict.

“I don’t know what Granny’s paying you, but you just earned it!” said David.

Granny and Officer Paul convulsed on the floor in an interpretive dance of excruciating pain. Officer Paul grimaced and waved his arms, but Granny had an iron grip on his biceps. Her legs—clad in baggy white tights and hiking boots—kicked and slammed the floor.

“Hold on there, whippersnapper!” she said. “Now that’s what I’m talkin’ ’bout! Cite me for a moving violation!”

With a mighty wrench, Officer Paul freed himself from the geriatric Greco-Roman wrestler without injury to either party. He stood, panting, and looked around the room. Tom Jones kept right on singing.

Granny propped herself up on her elbows and growled, “I didn’t pay you my bingo money to stand around. Get that cute little keister goin’!”

Everyone stared at the half-naked Starsky with the yellow bird on his chest. It was a perfect opportunity for an escape. Rebecca squeezed Alex’s hand and slid him a look. He nodded, then stood and said, “Holy smokes, will you look at the time!”

“Yeah,” Rebecca said. “We’d better let you get to bed. Or…” She looked at Bonnie. “Whatever.”

Officer Paul drew his revolver and pointed it at Rebecca. “Hold it right here! I mean there!”

Once again, Rebecca faced a gun on Thanksgiving. Somehow, she doubted this is what the Pilgrims had in mind. But he was a stripper—this had to be a prop, right? She stepped forward to disarm the Chippendale wannabe.

“Don’t move!” said Officer Paul. When Rebecca kept on coming, he raised his sidearm straight up and fired.


Damn. The thing was real. A hole appeared in the ceiling, precipitating a light snow shower of plaster. Rebecca lept backward into Alex’s arms, which closed tightly about her.

She whispered to him, “We are going to be killed by the criminally insane.”

“Nah,” he whispered back. “They only shoot ceilings and walls. Maybe a sconce, but that’s it.”

Suddenly, Morgan Freeman’s voice came from above. “Sweet fancy Moses!”

Chia Head, Mr. Chia Head and Arnold Benedict fell to their knees.

“Lord?” Mr. Chia Head said. “Is that You?”

“Holy jumpin’ chitlins, Ralph, I ain’t the Lord,” said the voice.

Officer Paul said, “Hang on, Beau!” Officer Paul crouched next to the small red bag on the floor. He squeezed it. It began to smoke.

Officer Paul spoke again. “I’m coming! Remember the Alamo!” He shot another round into the ceiling, leaped over the kneeling ginger-tinted Chia pair and took the stairs three at a time.

Thick white smoke filled the room.

“Tear gas,” said Alex. In one athletic motion after another, he scooped up the offending red bag, ran to the front door, and tossed it out. He slammed the door, then lifted the hem of his sweater to cover his mouth and nose, which revealed a healthy six-pack. Despite her pesky cough and watering eyes, Rebecca couldn’t help but notice.

“Help me with the windows,” he said, and she helped him open every window they could find.

Tinsel swayed in the chilly air, but the smoke began to take off for parts unknown, far from the nut job little house on the prairie. Even the smoke knew to escape.

The dinner guests coughed and sputtered. Rebecca and Alex stood in front of a wide window and gulped lungfuls of pristine air. He had wrapped an arm around her waist, ostensibly to keep her warm. Which it did, more than a mere limb should have.

Morgan Freeman’s voice boomed again, behind them. “Aha!” it said. “Foiled you, Beulah Mae!”

Rebecca whirled around to behold Officer Paul—still topless—leading a portly octogenarian with a wild thatch of white hair down the stairs. The man shook a blue-veined fist at the hacking gathering below.  “I told you I’d escape, you harpy! You and your gull darned Thanksgiving with your wicked evil yams!”

“Go on, you old coot,” Granny said. “Go eat your damn bait!”

Officer Paul got to the bottom of the stairs and now displayed far less of his former bluster. “Uh, dude, would you mind throwin’ me my shirt? I have to return it to the costume shop tomorrow.”

David, presumably certain that Beau was not, in fact, God, stood and retrieved the fake cop shirt and badge and handed them to the cut-rate strip-tease artist.

“Grandpa Beau,” David said, “we thought you gave this up.”

“As long as I draw breath, I will never forgive what happened to Daisy.” He shook his fist at the heavens. Or at the ceiling with the bullet hole in it. “Damn you, yams!”

“Oh, and hey, beautiful,” Officer Paul approached Bonnie and instantly transformed into James Bond. “Don’t make me beg.” He handed her a business card. Bonnie beamed despite her watery eyes.

“Maybe you can bust me,” Bonnie said.

“Bonneroo, I’ll frisk you like you’ve never been frisked before.”

Bonnie made a sound Rebecca had never heard emanate from a human, but she assumed it meant Bonnie was happy.

Alex’s arm was still quite pleasantly around Rebecca’s waist as they stood in front of the window and took in the proceedings. Officer Paul led Beau into the Thanksgiving night, muttering something about wasabi. It was difficult to hear, because the crowd in the house had recovered from the tear gas and had begun to mill around and discuss the evening’s events.

“Hell,” Granny said. “I didn’t think he’d do it this year.”

“Do what?” Rebecca said. “Who was that?”

Bonnie jumped in. “My grandfather, Grandad Beauregard. He hates Thanksgiving. He stays upstairs every year. He’s the one who was looking down through the hole when Granny shot the kitchen ceiling.

“Why does he hate Thanksgiving?” Alex asked.

Granny stepped up. “We had a Thanksgiving tradition. Yam football. We’d go in the yard and play football with one of the yams we were going to cook. One year we’re playing just as nice as can be. But Beau, he’s got this hound dog he loves like a brother, see? And that hound dog was crazy for yams. Had a great nose but he was not the snappiest Rice Krispy in the bowl, if you know what I mean. David was QB, makes this scorcher of a pass, and don’t you know that hound dog gets right in the way? Lost an eye. Ever since then, Beau can’t stand Thanksgiving.”

Bonnie said, “Every year he goes out for sushi, thinking it’s the farthest from Thanksgiving he can get. But this year we told him enough was enough, he had to stay, and Granny locked him in his room.”

“He needed a time out,” Granny said.

“And Officer Paul?” Rebecca asked.

“My fault,” Granny said. “I told Beau I was gonna make this Turkey Day special for Bonnaroo here, and didn’t he go and plan a hostage rescue by conning that stripper.”

Rebecca noticed the admiration in the old woman’s voice. Even the cheese dust on her dead-turkey sweater seemed to glow with pride.

“It was a regular Argo,” Mr. Benedict said. “Or maybe The Great Escape.  Or Finding Nemo. Or…or…Ghostbusters.

“Dad—” Bonnie said. She turned to Granny. “Thanks. This was a wonderful Thanksgiving. Listen to what Paul wrote on his card: ‘I’ll give you the real show when I get back tonight. Where you’re the star.’ Isn’t he the dreamiest?” She looked at Rebecca. “You can have him,” she said, as she nodded at Alex, “I’ll take a man with a gun—and such a set of guns—and buns—and abs, and…” Bonnie trailed off, lost in her happy listing of Officer Paul’s critical assets.

The house was clear of smoke, so Alex and Rebecca began to close the windows. The rest of the oddball consortium meandered back to their seats in the living room, lackadaisical as gelatinous globs of day-old turkey gravy.


“Bonnie,” Rebecca said, shrugging into the coat Alex held for her, “It’s been, without question, the most memorable Thanksgiving I’ve ever had.”

“I’ll say,” Alex added. He put on his coat, and the couple said their goodbyes, which largely fell on deaf ears because another football game had captured the collective attention of this most unusual gaggle of Turkey Day revelers.

Alex ushered Rebecca outside and stood at the passenger door of his mint-condition vintage sports car. “I’m happy to take you home. Actually…I’m not so happy to take you home.” He casually braced his arms on either side of her. An accountant through and through, she liked being placed squarely between two parallel “lines,” like an orderly column of numbers. Numbers, she was thrilled to realize, that were about to add up.

She stared up at him. Her lips curved and her eyes danced. 

Confident as a fat tom turkey on the third Friday in November, he continued. “How about I take you for a nice, quiet, ridiculously normal drive during which there will be no gun shots, certifiably insane people or male strippers?”

“You had me until the strippers.”

Alex grinned. “I’ll see what I can do.  But on this Thanksgiving, I sure know what I’m thankful for.”

And he kissed her.





Be sure to tune in next Friday for your next lunch installment!
Copyright 2012 by The Firebirds


19 responses to “Fiction Fridays: The Invite — Part 4, Finale”

  1. Kat Cantrell says:

    Hilarous! “You had me until the strippers.” Classic. I am so sad this is over!! Great wrap up Colette.

  2. Brilliant ending, Colette! But only what I’d expect!!!

  3. robena grant says:

    Wonderful telling of the the Thanksgiving from hell, Colette. I’ll be keeping an eye out for guns and strippers later today. Ha ha.

  4. Kay Hudson says:

    Way to go, Collette. And I’m off to what I hope will be a much quieter Thanksgiving (we’re going to a public buffet, so there shouldn’t be any strippers or guns!).

  5. Jean Willett says:

    Laugh out loud ending, Colette. Great job! and wonderful ending to Thanksgiving with Bonneroo’s wonky family.

  6. So funny, Colette! I’m still cracking up at Granny writhing on the floor with Officer Paul and saying “Cite me for a moving violation!” Ha!

    Like Kay, I’m heading off to what seems like it’ll be a much quieter celebration. …

    But I’m almost disappointed now after this fab story by all four of you — Terri, Magdalen, Catherine and Colette.

    Great job, Firebirds! So much fun!

  7. Tammy Baumann says:

    Wonderful ending to a fantastic tale told by all!!

    Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!

  8. Magdalen says:

    I read it aloud to the Brit Hubs, and “he wasn’t the snappiest Rice Krispy in the bowl” made us all stop dead, laughing.

    Thanks for a wonderful end to the story, Colette, and to our Thanksgiving. (Well, we have some fireworks to enjoy, and leftovers, but you know what I mean.)

  9. karen says:

    OMG, Colette. The visual of poor Tweety was too much. I was laughing so hard I had to wait to read the rest of the story until my eyes cleared. It must have been the tear gas. The whole story has been so entertaining and you brought it home (literally) with a bang.

    Loved it. Its a Thanksgiving story I’ll never forget.

  10. Terri Osburn says:

    This thing took turns I NEVER saw at the beginning. It’s kind of fun to see what y’all did with it. LOL! Guns and strippers. Can honestly say neither of those things made an appearance at our T-Day gathering. Would have certainly livened things up. 🙂

  11. HILARIOUS, Colette! “Lackadaisical as gelatinous globs of day-old turkey gravy.” And such a sweet, sexy ending. Hope you had a great (and uneventful) Thanksgiving 😉

  12. Catherine Rull says:

    So many highlights, Colette! But I think my fave part was the men’s reaction to hearing ‘Morgan Freeman’!

    What a way to end the story! 🙂 Great job!

  13. Great job, Colette! Another great end to a Fiction Friday story!

    Hugs to all,

  14. Lakisha says:

    The exietrpse shines through. Thanks for taking the time to answer.

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  16. http://www./ says:

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  17. http://www./ says:

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