Interview Subject – Mary Prattle, a.k.a. Midway Mary, support character, CounterClockwise: A Blast From The Past Love Story.
Warning – Mary is a very skilled liar and a thief. She’s devious and out for revenge and her hidden agenda is terrifying. During the pre-interview process, Mary tried to steal several items from the interviewer’s handbag – she never stops.
AUTHOR: Let’s all welcome Mary Prattle, known to many as Midway Mary. How are you today, Mary?
Mary: I don’t like being called that. So stop it.
AUTHOR: You mean Midway Mary?
Mary: You’re damn right I do.
AUTHOR : (smiling) OK. Tell us about yourself. Where are you from?
Mary: (narrowing her eyes) Why? Are you some kind of strange female constable? Never saw one before. But maybe they exist now. (she then looked around the room wide-eyed)
AUTHOR: No. I’m not a police officer. I’m a writer. It’s like I told you earlier, I”m just asking you questions so my readers can learn more about you. So – would you please tell us where you are from?
Mary: (shrugging) Don’t know why anyone wants to know about me. I’m just a gypsy. I’m from Hungary. The Old Country, you know. (once again she narrowed her eyes) And I can read minds!
AUTHOR: Of course you can. That must come in handy. Tell us more about some of the mind reading you’ve done.
Mary: (laughing) There’s not enough time to tell you all of that! But, there was one man. He was very tall, and good-looking. Not like the rest of them. More polite.
AUTHOR: Sorry to interrupt. The rest of them? What do you mean?
Mary: All the men. (sniffing) They admire me. Lots of them do!
AUTHOR: I see. Go on tell us about this special man.
Mary: (nodding) Yes. That’s what he was! Special! Such pretty blue eyes. And blonde. I don’t usually like blonde men but he was different.
AUTHOR: What did he say to you?
Mary: (shaking her head) No. He wasn’t saying much. It was me who did the talking. He wanted a reading from me.
AUTHOR: Tell us about your readings.
Mary: (smiling broadly now) That’s better! I love to talk about my readings! I’m a gypsy like my mother before me. Back in The Old Country, in Transylvania, we read magic cards. Oracle cards. They tell all. A person’s most guarded secrets. And they tell the future!
AUTHOR: I thought you were from Hungary?
Mary: Oh, yes. I misspoke! Hungary, of course. I have cousins in Transylvania. Spent many a Summer there.
AUTHOR: I’m sure you did…. And this man, the tall blonde one, he wanted a reading?
Mary: Yes! That’s what I said! Didn’t you listen? For some future-woman you’re not very smart are you, lady??
AUTHOR: (clearing my throat to keep from laughing) Perhaps not. Well, I understand you now. Go on, please.
Mary: He wanted a reading! Like I said how many times now? Three? The man wanted to know about a woman. (winking) Two of them actually.
AUTHOR: What women? Who were they?
Mary: Well…..one of them was his wife. Miserable thing she is too. The other…. much different. Mysterious. Most ladies her age are hags. But not her! (laughing) She’s still a beauty and it drove him crazy!
AUTHR: Who? Who is this man?
Mary: (now stone serious) I can’t say. I’m sworn to secrecy. It would be against the Gypsy Code to reveal my customers’ secrets.
NWM: And…by any chance….is there a price that would change the code, Mary?
Mary: (chuckling wickedly) Always is! How about that handsome timepiece you have on your arm there? Never saw one like that before!
AUTHOR: My watch? I don’t think you could keep it. You know it’s battery-operated. That means you’ll need a new one every year or so. There aren’t any in 1840.
Mary: But it’s good for the next year?
AUTHOR: Well, yes, it is.
Mary: Fine. Hand over the watch-thing and I’ll hand over the name!
AUTHOR: (unbuckling my watch) Here. You fasten it onto your wrist. Yes, that’s right. Now, what is the man’s name?
Mary: (admiring her new watch) This is a fine timepiece! No one has one like this! Will fetch a nice price back home!
AUTHOR: But, I told you it needs a new battery next year. It will be no good to anyone for long.
Mary: (winking) That’s our little secret now, isn’t it?
AUTHOR: All right. What is the man’s name?
Mary: It’s Allen. That’s all he told me. Mr. Allen.
AUTHOR: Really! So what did he want to know about these women in his life?
Mary: Which one will live and which one will die. (she answered in a matter-of-fact way)
NWM: (raising my eyebrows) Did he tell you why he wanted to know that?
Mary: (she leaned forward and lowered her voice) He was hoping that one of them might do him the favor of leaving this world. You figure it out!
AUTHOR: Mary, you’re known to be a liar. Why should I believe you’re telling the truth now?
Mary: (laughing hard) Maybe you’re smarter than I thought! Of course I’m lying! Mr. Allen never asked me that!
NWM: Don’t you have any scruples at all? I paid you for that information. If you don’t tell me what I want to know then you’ve stolen that watch.
Mary: (glaring at me) You took this watch off and handed it to me. Told me all about some bat-ter-ry. You even told me how to fasten this fine leather belt it has. This was a gift!! I didn’t steal anything!!
AUTHOR: (sighing) Is there anything you can tell us that is not a lie?
Mary: (pausing before thinking) Mr. Allen is in love. And it’s driving him mad. Do you want to know with who?
AUTHOR: Yes! Very much!
Mary: (smiling broadly) It’ll cost you more. Those earfobs you’re wearing. Are they diamonds? They’d look right pretty on me.
AUTHOR: (I shook my head) Thank you so much for your time, Mary. It’s been a pleasure having you here!
Mary: (frowning) What about the earfobs? I like them! Your readers would sure love to know about this lady. Won’t expect this at all!
AUTHOR: Have a nice day, Mary!
Mary: We can make a trade! My gloves for the earfobs! They were made by the seamstress who tends to the future Empress Charlotte of Mexico! How would you like to have them?
AUTHOR: The interview is now over. Back to New York, Mary!
Mary: (narrowing her eyes) I’ll get even with you – future lady! Mark my words! You’ll rue the day!
This interview is with a fictional character from my series, “CounterClockwise: A Blast From The Past Love Story”