And thus it begins!

Author’s Note:  I began writing this novella at the Panera restaurant in Saint Joseph, Michigan on July 2, 2020 at 9:45 a.m. EDT.
I got the idea from the Moleskine® notebook I bore in my shirt pocket. Hence the title: POCKET BOOK.
Having a pair of Pilot fountain pens at the ready in my pocket advanced my literary ambition.
I resolved, then and there, to write at least one, one-page chapter each day until I had exhausted the notebook’s supply of pages.
And thus I began, fortified by two toasted bagels and a cup of the house dark roast.
And so, gentle readers, we’re off to the races again.
But this is going to be a darker ride than what you experienced with I AM FLYBOY.
So hold on to your horses, because we’re off to the races.
Now sit back and enjoy and expect regular updates on this page:

a novella
by Charles McKelvy


Chapter One: Bagels for Breakfast

He had just enough scratch to buy two bagels and an endless cup of the house dark roast.
That would be his breakfast.
And his lunch.
And his dinner.
He ate, and he drank.
And then he went out to kill them all.
(to be continued)

Chapter Two: Killing Them All

So he killed them all.
Every last one of them.
He had none.
Why, he thought, should I regret killing vermin?
They have no right to live, to share my atmosphere. And I have ended their short, miserable lives. And all before lunch, no less.
And then he remembered that he had already eaten—not only breakfast, but lunch and dinner.
He was done eating for the day, but he had worked up quite an appetite, killing them all.
So he set out to scratch up some more scratch.
(to be continued)

Chapter Three: Scratching Up More Scratch

He put a green bandana over his face and demanded: “Your money or your life.”
The teller, who knew him only too well, smiled and said: “Glad to see you’re finally wearing a mask, Charles. So what have you been up to?”
Charles smiled under the mask he didn’t want to wear and said, “Killing vermin. All of them. Now can I have some scratch?”
(to be continued)

Chapter Four: All Scratched Out

“Sorry, Charles,” the friendly teller said, “but it looks like you’re all scratched out.”
“All scratched out?”
“Yes. All scratched out. Perhaps you’d care to make a deposit for a change? Then you wouldn’t be all scratched out. And you could eat lunch and dinner.”
Charles sighed and said, “I’ll just have to get thinner.”
(to be continued)

Chapter Five: Charles Gets Thinner

Charles got thinner all right.
A whole lot thinner.
Because he was all scratched out, he was forced to forage for food. But he wasn’t the only one being forced to forage for food.
He met legions of hungry, homeless, desperate people every time he tried to dive into a dumpster behind a grocery store or restaurant.
Most were armed.
All were dangerous.
Charles was not armed.
Charles was not dangerous.
Not yet, anyway.
(to be continued)

Chapter Six: A Danger to Myself

The arresting officer said: “You are a danger to yourself and to others.”
A danger to myself.
The sentencing judge declared: “Society will be well rid of you, for you are a menace to yourself and to others.”
A menace to myself.
The correctional officer at intake smirked and said: “Welcome to the lowest circle of hell.”
A hellish place if ever there was one.
The cellmate, or cellie, in the bottom bunk said: “I am the god of hellfire, and you will burn.”
I am a child of God, and I will not burn.
(to be continued)