The Wrong Number was a novel I began writing nearly a decade ago. I don't think I ever finished this one either. It went through many drafts (two of which I'm sharing with you) and at one point I even created a cover of the book on that painting program we had on our old computer.
As you will observe from reading the various drafts below, I had a small dictionary of names in my head at the time and reused them frequently throughout my writing. I blame Disney movies, The Babysitters Club, and the 90's for that. Yeah. You'll see.
So now it's time to sit back, enjoy a drink (or two), and read the brilliance I of my twelve year old self.
The Wrong Number
The sound of the gun shot was so horrible and shocking. Unfortunately, I did not know that the person who called had the wrong number or a gun. This frightening incident happened last Saturday, March 21, 1999. My three friends and I were home alone when the phone rang. I let the phone ring to the message machine and then my friends and I heard a loud scream and all of sudden there was a BANG! We all stood still in silence, none of us could move till a man’s voice said, “Hello? ...Is anyone there?” asked a man. Of course I had to answer because my friends and I heard the gun shot.
“ H-Hello?” I said cowardly.
“ Hi, I just wanted to tell you about that scream and loud sound you heard a couple minutes ago. I am very sorry to scare you like that, but my wife, is uh practicing for her um ...oh yeah, for her performance of a Snakebeer um..story.”
“Do you mean a Shakespeare performance?”I asked nicely.
“ Well of course I do, you brat, that is what I said, isn’t it!?,”the man yelled. “Of course it is, Bernard Beacon is always right! HA! HA! HA!”and he hung up.
My friends started asking me about him and what he said to me about Shakespeare’s plays. When I told them what he said and what his name was they were very worried that we got ourselves into a bad situation with a drunken murderer. As we were talking my mom and dad came home from working at their computer store down town. We stopped talking right in time, because when my parents got home from Macy’s, which is where they work, they seemed to be a little sad.
“Oh, hi girls...nice to see you...did you have a nice day?” my mom asked very nicely.
“ Yeah mom, ah... we had a swell day school. Right guys?” I said with a wink, to keep they phone call a secret. I did not want to tell my parents yet because they would freak out like the time my brother, Eric, was offered drugs down in front of 7 eleven. When my brother told us at dinner my parents instantly called my D.A.R.E. teacher and told him.
“Did anyone call here while we were gone, honey?” my dad asked. He asked everyday because he is waiting for a call back from a sales clerk that is interested in buying some of Macy’s furniture. My dad works in a Macy’s that sells furniture, mattresses, and carpets. While my mom works in the section that sells jewelry. I really like them working at Macy’s because then I get discounts on the clothes. But, I still hate to see my dad’s hope disappear while I tell him that the sales clerk hadn’t called.
“No, ∞dad, nobody called while we were home.” I lied. “Well, we’re all going up to my bedroom now.”
On the way up to my room I grabbed the phonebook to look up Bernard Beacon. While we passed the kitchen I saw Dana take a bag of chips, cookies, and some Chex Mix. Dana is always hungry, but she is not overweight, it is very strange to see such a small thin girl eat so much.
When all four of us were in my bedroom I started to look up Bernard Beacon in the phonebook at my desk. My room was a descent size for me. When I walk into it, my closet is on the wall to right, my bed is next to the wall on one’s left , my desk is next to my closet, I have a blue inflatable couch underneath my window, and a wardrobe next to my chair. Last year I had my walls painted a light shade of blue and received a blue comforter and sheets.
“Have you found his name in the phone book yet?” Clara asked. Clara “Nosy” Norton we usually called her.
The Wrong Number
It was a cold, windy Friday afternoon as the last bell at Maclin Jr. High rang. I, Valerie Benson, met my friends, Amy, Clara, and Dana, in the Library after school. We had to look for books for our Endangered Species Report, and we were all going to spend the night at my house tonight.
“Hi, Mr. Morgan.” Amy said, “We are looking for books on our endangered species. I am- oh, cool look at this Teen magazine over here. Wow! Hey guys Freddie Prinze Jr. is in it! So is-”
Yep, that is Amy, who is very, very talkative. She looks like a girl named Amy too. She has blondish, brown hair in pigtails, a nice tan, blue eyes, and very light freckles. Amy is not only talkative, but has good taste in clothes.
While no one was looking I snuck a peek at a Seventeen magazine, before anyone else did. There was this quiz in there to see if you are healthy and fit.
“ Hey, Mr. M., can I check out this magazine, please.” I asked quietly.
“ Oh, yeah sure, Valerie, which magazine is it?” Mr. Morgan asked quite loudly and of course Amy, Clara, and Dana came over.
“ Which magazine is it?”
“ I have first dibs on it!”
“ Is Zachary Ty Brian or any other hotties in it?”
All three of them crowded around me shoving to see what was in it. They’re usually like that though, I’m used to them pushing themselves around, but still laughing as if it was a joke. You can get sort of sick of it after awhile, but sometimes I laugh along with them.
“ Hey, have any of you girls seen the Sports Illustrated around hÀere?” It was my crush, Eric Johnson! He stood about a foot away from me with his olive complexion, spiked brown hair with golden tips, his brown eyes looking into mine, and his adorable smile.
“ Uh...um, well...I um ,” I got hold of myself not to look stupid in front of him. “ No, sorry, Eric haven’t seen it, maybe Mr. Morgan knows.” I said while I tired to act cool, yet nice.
As soon as he left to go ask Mr. Morgan I asked my friends if they could ask Mr. Morgan to sho them some books on the other side, so I could talk to Eric.
“ Um, Mr. M., can you show us where the books on the Endangered Species are, we can’t seem to find them.” Clara asked in her sweet suck up to a teacher voice.