Kendrick Morris is a forty-something stick-thin African-American man with a scraggly beard and a ratty coat. He's not homeless, but he's not far from it, either. He pays for his apartment by performing marriages on the cheap, and hearing and absolving confessions once in a while. Sometimes people can't get married the right proper movie way, for one reason or another, and Kendrick's happy to do what he can for those people. Ditto with the folks who've got secrets weighing heavy on their hearts; Lord knows there's plenty of them. Life isn't much like the movies, he hates having to tell his patrons, whether they be an interracial couple about to elope or a teenaged murderer with an attack of conscience. Growing up in Los Grano D'oro is enough to tell most folks that, but a lot of the time they don't really learn it until it's already too late. He knows he didn't.
He's still licensed to marry, and he's still technically a Catholic priest, although he separated from the church a couple years back because of certain ideological differences. What matters, though, is that he's still faithful. His most prized possession is his cassock, a far cry from his street clothes, tucked away in his closet for the times when it's needed.
I'm looking for two people:
1. for someone to either attempt to kill Kendrick or actually kill him, depending on what you think works.
2. for someone to unknowingly receive the briefcase from Kendrick, like by stashing it in their car while they're not looking.
I don't have PMs, so contact me on IRC if you want to get involved!
King Cohort fucked around with this message at 23:04 on Jul 3, 2014
|# ¿ Jul 3, 2014 22:48|
|# ¿ Dec 6, 2023 15:23|
I've got a great scene in mind between Kendrick and Hanan. She's still available, right?
|# ¿ Jul 4, 2014 19:00|
Kendrick Morris stands at a podium in a park, marrying a middle-aged couple, smiling at the guests’ applause when they kiss. Business as usual, yes, but no less fulfilling for it. It isn’t until he finds the black briefcase that his night begins.
Once it’s over, several couples ask to renew their vows, starting with a well-dressed couple that seem red in the face—probably the spirits. Then, once they’ve dispersed, he notices it on his way out of the park, forgotten on a plastic chair. There’s a ruddy stain on it that makes Kendrick raise an eyebrow—probably spirits again.
He takes the briefcase and heads back to his apartment, meaning to call the newlyweds about their forgotten luggage, and finds a note on his door in elegant script. Somebody wants a confession done at the usual place. He doesn’t bother changing out of his cassock before he ducks into the alleyway next to his apartment, taking the briefcase with him.
Kendrick’s confessional is a tall wooden lattice nailed to the wall between two folding chairs in a nook next to his apartment building. It’s not a service he charges for, but there is a Tupperware container next to the clients’ chair, and there’s always a few hinting coins in it. A dirty red rug outside the nook gives the confessional a touch of hospitality.
He sits down on his side of the lattice and puts the suitcase down at his feet. His client arrives a few minutes later. With the lattice in front of him, Kendrick can only tell that they’re fond of black, and that they must be wearing a long dress or robe.
A teenaged girl’s voice slips through the lattice like a high wind. “Bless me, Father, for I have sinned. I’ve...never been to confession before.” Kendrick nods. Right down to business. “There’s a first time for everyone. Don’t have to be nervous,” he comforts her. He hears her sniffle. “Will Jesus really forgive me? I’ve done...horrible things, I don’t know if I can be forgiven.“ Kendrick chuckles and says, “Of course he will forgive. Nobody is perfect. Nobody’s lived a picture-perfect life, either, not even the Father here.”
Another sniffle. “Really?”
“Yeah. Tell me your name, child.”
“Hannah, I’ve made some mistakes of my own. My teachers hated my slacking in seminary. Then I became a priest, and I got fed up with the way the place was run, and so that’s why we’re here instead of at the Covenant Fellowship Church.” He smiles.
“Believe it or not.”
“Is that what you called your compulsive gambling?” That soft, cold flutter of a voice. His smile falters.
“That’s pretty rude, Hannah. Judge not, lest ye be judged. I mean, you don’t even know—“
“First it was cards, games with the monks, betting a few dollars here and there. After you took your vows, it became slots and dice. I have photos of you at the El Diablito.”
Kendrick feels a hot coal settle into his gut. His gambling incidents (no, let’s be honest with ourselves, he thinks; his gambling spree) happened almost ten years back. He kept it a secret and thanked the Lord he wasn’t a Baptist and put it behind him as best as he could, but he didn’t keep it secret enough, it seems. At least she didn’t dig up the—
“You stopped your business with Covenant Fellowship because of Sister Retinger. Sources say she blackmailed you into leaving when she found out what you were doing when the vestments came off. Personally, I think you convinced yourself that she was the villain, and that you had done nothing wrong—and then left before she could tell everyone.” Her freezing words cool Kendrick’s humiliation to a dull ember of numbness. He feels very much on the wrong side of the confessional.
“She didn’t have any right into my business,” he protests. “She was everything wrong with the Catholic Church, spilling everyone’s guts to get herself ahead. I won’t call myself a saint, but neither was she, much as she acted like it. Did she send you?”
“I’ve stolen a great many things, Father. Jewels, money, drugs, lives. Good to know Jesus will forgive me, though.” His heart sinks further as he realizes this isn’t even about him or the Church. “I like you. You still admit no fault for your sins, even as you absolve those of others. Stubborn and hypocrite both.” Icy enough now to cut like knives.
“You have something we want, but I don’t dirty my hands as quickly as my hermanas. Here’s an incentive. I’ll find you in ten minutes to get that briefcase.” The black form on the other side of the lattice shifts, and Kendrick watches it fade away. He gets up and peers around the lattice. A stack of bills, an inch thick, wrapped in a rubber band, sits in the Tupperware container.
Kendrick sits too, thinking. His seal of confession binds many secrets to him, and he’s heard worse confessions than the one he just sat through, but he’s forced to ponder this one all the same. What’s in it that they need? He wastes several minutes, frozen. Then the thought hits him as he’s reaching down to take the money.
What if they don’t know what’s in it either?
Kendrick snatches the money and the briefcase both and heads out to the street, scuffing the confessional’s red rug in his haste, staining his cassock with puddle water in a careless step. He hesitates, and then heads up to his apartment, hanging the cassock on his balcony to dry.
He hails down the first taxi he finds, carrying both bills and briefcase, hardly knowing what he’ll tell the driver. It isn’t as if he asked to find the briefcase, after all.
As the cab speeds off, he glances back up at the cassock on the railing. The mud stains on the hem look darker from down here.
|# ¿ Jul 7, 2014 05:52|