On day two I slipped quickly back into the my Nano novel by focusing on the main plot – the search for the missing children. As you’ll see I didn’t take time to find names I’d already established. Q. is the company producing the TV show. Baxter is executive producer. I was eager to the story finally onto Cape Breton.
Over the past week I’ve gotten quickly into a good NaNo pace as well. Some days hitting over 3000 words. I’m banking some of those words rather than declaring them all each day so if I have an off day or two I can still add words to my count.
“Paula Morrison. 12 years old. The oldest of the girls to disappear. Father: David, step-mother: Rose.”
Dan nodded as asst read the file to him. He’d gone over it several times already. He kept his eye on the road as they approached the Canso Causeway.
“How much more of this do you want to hear?” asst asked.
“I’ll let you know when I’ve heard enough.”
“She’d been a runaway since the dad remarried two years earlier. Birth mother died breast cancer. Father a local man, birth mother from Whycoak …”
“You say that like a native.” asst repeated the name.
“One of those place names that stuck with me. It’s a Mi’kmaq word means “Head of the Waters.”” He repeated the name. “Feels good to say it too.”
“I suppose. Anyway she died and he remarried several years later. Paula was an only child until Rose had twins.”
“Which was when the runaway business started?”
“Yes. Rose has since passed away. Breast cancer again. Must be something in the water.”
“That’s a different show asst. But I’m sure there’s some report buried somewhere that shows an alarming coincidences of cancer and the water in the area.”
“Un-huh. Her twin brothers Seal and Wolf (brothers, the twins,) no longer live in the area. One is in BC and the other …” she read the file. “Is in Hollywood! Wolf Morrison. The director! From around here!”
“Yep. I’m not the only famous person from the backwaters of Nova Scotia.”
Asst tapped on her smart phone.
“You get reception out here?” Dan asked. “Wow!”
As they drove under Welcome to Cape Breton Dan half-expected to hear his mother say “Turn down the radio so we can hear the waves.”
“Will you look at that. I haven’t seen the causeway since we left here. It was like a mini-adventure to drive across it when we left the island for the mainland. One year there was storm that blew waves over our car. Mom was terrified but Dad kept on going. All he said was roll up the windows.” Dan rolled down the windows to hear the waves.
“You sure that’s wise?” asst took a deep breath. “Don’t want to get lung cancer.”
He followed the curve of the causeway to the other side. He pulled the car off at the Souvenir Shop. “You first act here has to be one of shopping.”
“Dan this is not my first time at this rodeo. You know we’ve already pre-interviewed people before you got here. Right?”
“Yes yes but did you drive across the causeway or fly into Sydney on the Q private jet?”
He got out of the car. “Such a great view.”
Memories of that last summer there became clearer as he watched the waves breaking against the rocks that lined the roadway.
The gift shop was the usual clutter of tartan objects. Coffee mugs made in china, tee-shirts from Bangladesh. One wall was devoted to local handicrafts and there was shelf of books about the area.
“Looking for something in particular?” The clerk came over.
“You have something without the Cape Breton tartan of a light house on it?” asst asked.
“Something like this?” The clerk handed asst a roll of toilet paper. The wrapper said: ‘Cape Breton tissue doesn’t take shit from nobody.’
Dan laughed. “Maybe we should get a dozen for the crew.” He pulled out one of the books titled ‘Cabot Trail Mix Trivia.’ “Collected by David Morrison!”
“Let’s see?” asst took the book from him.
“Is this the David Morrison from St. Peter’s.” Dan asked the clerk.
“Could be.” clerk replied. “All of these are by local writers.”
“It is.” asst said. “According to the bio he’s a life long resident of St. Peter’s who had always been fascinated by local history. He is the proud father of Wolf and Seal.” asst flipped back to the inside front cover. “And it’s autographed.”
“Nice.” Dan took the book back. “You have many copies of it?”
“Just these three. We don’t tend to stock a lot of that sort of thing. Books I mean.”
Dan bought all three copies. In the car he read through one of them while the asst drove. It was, as the title said, a collection of anecdotes, jokes, short historical facts about the area. No index and apparently haphazardly arranged.
“Wonder if he’ll sign them again?” asst asked.
She pulled into Amethyst Court, a motel just past the welcome to St.Peter’s sign. The remote truck was parked at the far end of the cabins.
“I never thought I’d say this but thank God for a normal drive.” Dan got out of the car. “I was beginning to think these highways were jinxed.”
“If they were you know it would be part of the show anyway. Baxter expects you at six to go over the next week of shoots. You’ll see Mr. Morrison in the morning. 10 a.m. sharp.”
“Right.” he glanced at his cell for the time. “Give me time to freshen up. Which cabin is mine?”
“Not sure.” asst texted prod coordinator.
Prod co came out of cabin 3. “Took your time. We’ve been here since morning.”
“Dan took his time,” asst said. “A little shy after recent highway to hell events.”
“Highway to heck, is more like it.” Dan said as Prod co gave him a pass card.
“Cabin 10. Baxter is in 9.”
“Yikes.” Dan winced. “Hope he keeps it down. He must be deaf from all that loud TV.”
“Whatever.” prod co said. “I’ve done two series with him and I never knew how he could keep track of everything. Must in the volume.”
Dan grabbed his suitcase, shoulder bag and went to his cabin. It smelled strongly of lavender when he opened the door. He propped the door open with a chair to see if he could air it out. He took his lap top out and put it on the tiny writing desk. He wondered why these desks were now smaller than the TVs. At least the A Court offered free wifi. He tried it but the signal wasn’t as strong as his Lifend connection.
He had email from both this lawyers. The ones dealing with his sister, the other dealing with Sanjay. He made the Skype connection with the Depot.