Day One Hundred and Seventeen: Rachael Decker
Part of writing is getting to know your characters. The way that I’ve been working so far, there’s not been a lot of time to do that. I write a story, and move on – maybe coming back another time to revisit the people I have created, but usually not. So just for fun, I’m going to do some character interviews this week and see what I can find out about the folks who emerged from between the folds in my brain. To do so, I’ve got my list of characters and the fine folks over at random.org, and together I’ll be randomly choosing my subjects. If you have a request for a character interview, let me know in the comments and I can see to it that he or she jumps to the head of the queue.
Rachael Decker is an interesting character, in that she has died twice – rather terribly both times. The first was on day 9 in Reunion, and the second on day 38 in A Friend in Need. I realized with the second story that I’d found my Kenny. Poor girl….
Good evening, Miss Decker. Have a- Oh! Are- are you okay?
Yes, yes, I’m so sorry. I guess I must have tripped on something. I’m fine, though, I’m fine. (sits) There, that’s better. Thanks for asking me to talk. I’ve really been looking forward to it!
I’m glad to hear that. We have some refreshments – would you like some?
No, thanks. I should be fine. Well.. maybe a water.
Why don’t you start off by telling us a little about yourself?
Well, I don’t know how much there is to tell, really. My name is Rachael. I live with my mom and dad in Ravensbrook with my younger brothers – twins. They’re really cute, but they can be kinda annoying sometimes.
I’m in high school now – I’m a junior, and I hope that I can go to Corsair Academy after I graduate. They have a really good social science program there, and I want to get into something like psychology or counseling.
That sounds great! What do you hope to do with it?
I know this sounds like a real Girl thing to say, but I like helping people out, y’know? There’s always kids in my school who are having problems or who aren’t getting along, and I… I don’t know. I can’t not try. I can’t just walk past them and let them go.
Why do you think that is?
Maybe because I hope that someday, if I’m having trouble, I hope someone will be there to help me. I mean, my mom and dad won’t be around forever, you know?
But… Wow, that sounds kind of selfish. It’s not like I’m doing this because I expect something in return – I totally don’t. It’s just that I think… You have two choices, right? You can be good to someone, and make their life better, or you can be bad to someone, and make their life worse. And I guess I don’t really see any benefit in making another person’s life worse.
It’s like there’s this one kid at my school – Eddie. He’s a real quiet kid, doesn’t get along with people very well. And a lot of the other kids give him grief for it. Just for being a little different. So I make sure to talk to him when I see him, ask how his day is going, that kind of thing. He was really shy at first, but I think he’s starting to open up a lot. He actually smiles now, and that really makes my day.
That’s sweet. Is there anyone else you feel you’ve helped?
There’s a girl in my biology class, Evelyn, who went through some really weird stuff a few months ago. For some reason, her hair turned green. We’re talking bright green, like the grass over at the Ravensbrook Country Club green. Everyone thinks she dyed it, but she was really upset about it. She kept trying to hide it under hats and scarves and things like that, and seemed… well, ashamed. I don’t think she’d do that if she’d meant it to be green. And when I got paired up with her to do our biology project, I decided that I wasn’t going to pay any attention to her hair at all. She seemed like a nice enough person, and that would have to be good enough for me.
And how did that work out?
It… I think it went well. To be honest, I think there may have been an accident or something, because I don’t really remember a lot of things from right about then. I do know that Evelyn and her family had to move suddenly, which was really too bad.
So what do you hope to do when you get out of college? Do you have any plans?
Gosh, I don’t really know. I’d love to be a counselor of some kind. I was thinking for veterans? My uncle came home from Iraq and he had a really hard time getting used to life at home. He’d wake up in the middle of the night and think he was under attack, couldn’t stay out in public too long, that kind of thing. I did a paper on it for social studies class, too. These are guys who really let themselves get hurt – mentally and physically – and I think we owe it to them to make sure they can live the life they deserve.
That’s really great. I hope you go far with your dream.
Thank you! Hey, you mentioned you have something to eat? I’m starting to feel a little hungry…
Sure! We’ve got some cookies, little snack-sized candies, maybe some chips? Nothing healthy, but…
That’s okay. These cookies look great, I’ll try one.
They’re store-bought, nothing special. So, let me see, one last question… How did you-
(cough) I’m- (cough) I’m sorry. There’s some-(cough) Something wrong… (cough)
Are you okay? Do you need some water?
I just (COUGH) I can’t br(COUGHCOUGH)brea(COUGHCOUGH)a- acckkkhhh…