Nine Months in the Life of a Nameless, Fictional, Hard-Boiled P.I.

So this Ben Solomon character’s been spinning my yarns for 9 months now. Real proud of himself, too. Sometimes, at any rate. Sure.

He scratched out my first adventure back in August of 2012. As he put it, “It was a gas to write.” Sure it was. So he pens another one and tells himself he’s having a ball with the style and the lingo. Now the bird thinks he’s a on roll, for crissake. The third tale practically wrote itself, so he tells everyone.

I’ve provided him some set-up, a nice little threesome, and he’s all tickled about it. I’m the one taking the lumps while he’s cooking with gas. He gets so wound up, as a matter of fact, he decides to turn my adventures into a damn series. He goes and puts it online and charges dough for subscriptions.

And what kind of thanks goes with such an honor? My name in the title? A clever pun or take-off on my moniker? Not from Solomon. Not this joker. He makes it a point not to give me a name.

I’m forever just “The Hard-Boiled Detective” to him, eternally dancing around it in dialogue, in making my introductions, and even in plot synopses. So I ask you, as one fictional character to an invisible reader I’ll never hear from again, does that seem right to you? He won’t name the burg I work in or even identify what era I’m in. Is this the 1920s, ’30s, ’50s? He won’t give me that much.

I’ve already starred in 27 adventures—what more does he want from me? By my quick count, you can tally up 39 deaths in those 27 yarns—no less than eight in the current month’s edition. I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve been sapped, slapped and otherwise bounced around. I’ve been chased by car, on foot and shot at. And I’ve eaten my share of lead.

All of that and we’re still in the first year. I’m thinking I’m just downright unappreciated. I’m thinking, maybe, I should start a fictional detective union. How would you like them apples, Solomon? Just trying to keep you honest, buddy. After all, what am I, really, but one more shadow?

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