Conversations, excerpts, and edits — The Dead Enjoy Eating, Too — 03: Characters: Kirk Thompson

Conversations, excerpts, and edits — The Dead Enjoy Eating, Too — 03: Characters: Kirk Thompson

Eagles Soaring in the Heavens

Long before Eric died, Charley had read his unpublished short stories and other writings and made comments that often hurt Eric’s sensitivities. Now that Eric had died, Charley feels saddened. He had never gotten around to reading Eric’s manuscript of his novel until now.
Charley sits in an easy chair in his apartment. The urn with Eric’s ashes sits on a side table next to Charley’s glass of Chardonnay. He opens to page 1 and is drawn into the troubled mind of Eric Haas as revealed through three major characters: Kirk Thompson, Cecil Pickwick, and Felix Gunther.

Kirk Thompson

Kirk Thompson is a person who continually lives in the present tense. He avoids thinking concretely about what he will be doing in the future. He floats through his life imagining that he will become a videographer — but he is tied to his job at the Tokyo Research Institute. He writes reports in English for distribution to companies worldwide. A job that leaves him bereft of satisfaction. Fear and uncertainty shackle him to his indecisiveness.
Two events force him to shake himself free from his inertia.
During the season of Obon in Japan when the spirits of the dead return for visits with living relatives, the spirit of Naomi Tanaka floats into Kirk’s life one early August morning. She is carried along by the morning breezes through the wind chimes hanging outside the open window to Kirk’s bedroom.
Her arrival stimulates dark memories in the form of a nightmare. He wakes up screaming, “Death!” His shouting startles his partner Nancy awake. She calms him down. He tells her about the dream, but he cannot remember Nancy’s name. In a tender moment, he holds her tightly and whispers into her ear: “God, I love you so much, Naomi!”
Nancy pushes herself away. She demands to know who this Naomi is. Kirk tells her he had met her three years earlier and had known her for only three days. She died in a traffic accident.
“What made you think of her?” Nancy asks.
“She just popped into my mind.”
Kirk drifts between reality with Nancy and psychic encounters with Naomi. Naomi tells him she has come to deliver his glimpse into the future. She guides him into his future, but the glimpse is vague, more like a delusional drug-induced experience. What does it all mean? But he gets no answers. Naomi has left him to ponder alone to decipher the meaning.
The psychic glimpse leaves Kirk distraught. For the first time, he wonders what lies ahead of him. Meanwhile, in the world of reality, Nancy delivers to him an announcement that completely shatters the comfort of his life in the present tense. “I’m pregnant.”

Next: Cecil Pickwick



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