The next Weekly Rumpus features fiction from Jeff Albers. Here’s an excerpt:
These parties normally had a certain rhythm that suited Frank’s style, so relaxed and casual as to lead him to coin his own time signature, Loesserando, which, he explained, should fall somewhere between the slow walking pace of andante moderato and the reduced heart rate of an afternoon nap. This evening’s casualness, however, was already slightly altered, as earlier that afternoon, Frank had negotiated a deal over lunch with Severo Barza, head of MGM, to swap out the song in the key moment of Neptune’s Daughter, the third picture to pair Esther Williams and Ricardo Mantalban and the film Frank was currently under contract to score. Severo felt the song Frank had provided wasn’t right, and had asked if he had something more fitting, maybe a proper duet for the film’s leads. Frank mentioned that he and Lynn had several, and one in particular they’d trot out at parties like the one they’d be hosting that very night and which was always a crowd pleaser, and that if he’d like to stop in for a drink or two and see the thing in action, well, then, he was more than welcome, but as far as the party’s concerned, this deal never went down. Severo brought fingers to lips, sealing them, and Frank wished he hadn’t. It’s always the lip sealers who end up shouting things from the rooftops.
Jeff Albers is completing his MFA in Creative Writing at Arizona State University, where he served as prose editor for Hayden’s Ferry Review. His work has appeared on McSweeney’s Internet Tendency and in The Mayo Review, and he has reviewed music and live shows for L.A. Record. Find him on Twitter at @jeffralbers.
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