Fiction

Dialogue Exercise

4

Before the workshop about the different dialogue technique, Professor Litt wanted us to write a dialogue… as it came. This is my first attempt – the next post will be a dialogic scene in which I use the techniques we have studied in class about winning, hiding and ignoring.

There was something dirty about the smell of that stupid incense stick. As Dixon closed the door, he was struck by the ugliness of Ale’s house once more. It seemed to be a neutral, tidy terrace house from the outside, but the inside was terrible. Ale was wearing one of his old striped t-shirts, and he looked like he had just waken up.

“Tea?” he asked, without even looking at him. There was no lobby, you just had to choose if walking up the corridor towards the kitchen or taking the stairs. A room opened just beside the main door. The toilet was right next to the table where people ate, and the brown moquette changed abruptly into a ugly, checkboard patterned floor.

Dixon followed Ale into the kitchen. It was a clear, sunny summer morning, but Ale had slept until midday. The smell of the incense stick came from upstairs, where his Estonian roommate lived. Smell of weed and incense and Enya’s music were the only things that Dixon had ever sensed of her.

“Did you go on Facebook?“ he asked to Ale.

He sat at the plastic table as Ale reached for the tea bags in the cupboard.

“I didn’t. Is it so bad?“

“People think he did that. They really believe it.“ He lit up a cigarette, absent-mindedly.

“You shouldn’t smoke here.“ Ale yawned, scratching his own hair.

“Your bloody roommate is making me sick with her stupid incense, I don’t give a fuck if she doesn’t like cigarette smoke.”

Ale shrugged and switched on the kettle.

“So they really think Daniel did it. Wow. That’s intense.”

Dixon turned to face his friend. “Intense? Is that really all you can say? Intense? It’s not intense. It’s the end of all the things.”

Ale laughed. “You seem like bloody Frodo or something. The end of all the things. Trigger warning: drama.”

Dixon let out the smoke and shook his head. “We’re done. We’re finished. You still don’t realise it. You don’t use Twitter and Facebook, so you don’t know what people can do.”

Ale shrugged again. “So what? What can they do? Say that we’re pieces of shit and prevent people from buying our records or showing up to our concerts? I doubt it.”

Dixon wanted to get up and slap him. He had spent the last hours consuming himself by anxiety and rage and reading all that shit that people he didn’t know had posted on Twitter. He couldn’t stand that Ale had just waken up and seemed to be relaxed when everyone thought that their drummer had raped a girl the night before.

“They are telling everyone that Daniel did it. This girl…”

“This skank, you meant to say, right?”

Ale poured the tea and smiled to him as he had just said something absolutely brilliant. Dixon shove his cigarette on the ground.

“Can’t you just be serious? Just now. Just for a few minutes. Is it so difficult?”

“Pick it up immediately, asshole.” Ale said, pointing at the cigarette with his chin.

Dixon took it. He wanted to get up and put it off on his friend’s forehead.

“There is an ashtray on the fridge.” said Ale. He approached the table and put the mugs on it. Dixon get up and took the ashtray, then he sat and lit up another cigarette. He felt incredibly tired and his muscles were aching.

“I am just saying that people think we are sickening assholes. They really do. They’re making a big thing out of it.”

Ale looked at his friend. He was slighlty hunched on the table, not completely awaken.

“Do you think he did it?” he lowered his voice, as he didn’t want to say it loudly.

Dixon took a sip of his tea – that tasted more like a very bad fennel infusion – and shook his head. “The point is that what we think doesn’t really matter. It is what people think that is freaking me out.”

Ale looked at the wall for a bunch of seconds. “I think that what we think he did has a lot of importance instead.”

For a very brief moment, Dixon hated him. He clearly couldn’t get it. The night before, they had performed at the old pub where they were formed as a band. Everyone knew them there. The old Cart and Horses, Stratford, London, where also Iron Maiden were born and where you could get a pint for 2 quids because you had been going there since you were of age – and also before.

They had had this last, amazing gig just before leaving for their first tour outside United Kingdom. They were a big thing in London, and they were going to conquer northern Europe. But then, Daniel had decided to rape a girl just after the gig. And if he didn’t do it, he had chosen to hit on the only girl in the whole bloody crowd that could claim something like that.

“So what did you read on social media, then?”

Ale took one of his cigarettes and lit it up. Dixon took a sip of his tea.

“Are you sure you want to know?”

Ale shook his head. “No.”

Dixon sighed, putting his cigarette off in the ashtray and looking back at his friend.

“They are trying to boycott us. They said Daniel is sick. They say he had always seemed violent and sketchy.”

Ale banged his fist on the table. “What? Is it because he’s tall and big? He has never done something like that. This is the first time we have to deal with… with…”

“Rape claims. Say it.”

Ale shook his head. “I can’t say it. I cant believe they really think Daniel did it.”

“They do.” Dixon felt the first symptoms of a bad headache. “They do. They wrote some terrible stuff before even knowing if it was actually true.”

“What reasons could she have for making up all this?” Ale seemed a little worried now, but it didn’t make Dixon feel any better.

“This is going to be the end of us, Ale. I wasn’t speaking nonsense.”

Ale nodded slowly. “What they think of Daniel will make us sink into shit.”

Dixon sensed the incense’s smell once again. It made him sick, as if he wasn’t enough.

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