I have been working on a new Arthur Witles story. In this one I have decided that it is time for Witles and Ampere to tackle a tough issue: God. Not God in the sense that you or I would think of it, but God in the sense that a written character would think of it. After all, the characters would not exist were it not for me writing about them. I am having a lot of fun writing this one.

The story was going to be about how Ampere met his wife, but as I began to write the story I went back and read over the dialogue that was supposedly spoken while our heroes were in peril and realized that I had them speaking as though they were at a cocktail party. I found that pretty humorous. Here is an excerpt:

It was a lazy afternoon. Well, not really a lazy afternoon per se, but
the type of afternoon that has the affect of making one feel lazy; warm, balmy
with only the slightest hint of the horrible gases that are slowly choking you to
death. At least that was the case for Arthur Witles, who, through no fault of his
own (to hear him tell the story) found himself locked in an airtight chamber
somewhere near the docks. While it is difficult to be sure exactly what the gas
that was slowly killing him was, it can be assumed that it wasn’t the emission
from automobiles over the last several decades, unless someone had the foresight
to concentrate all of those emissions and put them in a huge metal canister, affix
it to the wall in the airtight chamber near the docks and open up the valve (and
what an ingenious crime that would be, killing someone with nothing more than the
chemicals that are already in your body).

Currently, Arthur Witles was assessing the predicament.

“Quite ingenious! I am astounded at the level of detail they have
achieved! Not only have they managed to trap us in this chamber, but they have
done it in such a way as to make it nearly impossible to escape!”

“So they have,” I replied, gasping for another breath of the putrid air,
“I can’t help but notice that you said escape was only NEARLY impossible. Does
that mean that you have a plan?”

“Of course I have a plan. It may seem the perfect imprisonment/execution
chamber, but in reality it has one fatal flaw…”

Knowing Witles as long as I have, I have become accustomed to him pausing
between telling you that he knows the answer and the actual conveying of said
answer. What I find truly remarkable though is that Witles actually manages to
audibly communicate the dots of ellipses. Most would just stop talking and then
start again, or possibly trail off; Witles actually says “period, period, period”.


“Wit ‘Uls!”


I know that you like to build the anticipation as much as
possible before you tell me the great secrets that you discover, but in this case
I must insist that you just get to it already! I am barely clinging to
consciousness and I fear that you are doing no better.”

“Yet, you managed to speak such an intelligible sentence.”

“I didn’t say that right now, I went back and wrote it in later.”

“Then how did I hear it?”

“I don’t know. I guess that is one of the great mysteries of the

“It seems pretty fishy to me.”

“Can we discuss this later, please!”

“Oh, very well then.” Witles took on his most dignified posture, at least
as dignified as one can be while hog tied and chained to large metal pipe. “Our
captors have failed to note that the location of our prison is below tide level.”

“What, exactly, does that have to do with anything?”

“Well. It certainly must have been their intention to poison us with the
gas that they are releasing into the room. There is absolutely no way that the
gas is going to kill us, this room will be completely underwater in less than an
hour! The idiots.”

“Perhaps they intended for the gas to render us unconscious, but their
ultimate goal was for us to drown.”

“Oh, I hadn’t thought of that. Remarkable! They have this planned even
better than I previously thought.”

“Yes, it truly is remarkable. Now can you tell me exactly what your plan
is? What are you going to do?”

“I am going to sit right here and wait.”

“Wait for what?”

“Wait to see what happens.”

“We are going to die, Witles, that is what is going to happen!”
“No, I don’t think so.”

“How can you be so sure?”

“Because you wrote about it.”

“I haven’t written about it yet!”

“Yes you have. You told me that you added in that line later. That says
to me that we have survived the situation and you have already written about it.”

I wanted to argue with him, but he made a good point. Besides, I was
already passed out on the floor.

Had I been conscious, I would have seen Witles expertly slip out of the
the ropes that were entangling him, discard the chains with minimal effort, and
make his way over to me. Had I been conscious, I would have felt as Witles
reached inside my jacket and started feeling around. Had I been conscious, Witles
wouldn’t have been.

Now Witles was reading through my notebook. Had I been conscious I would
have heard him mumbling as he read through various lines I had penned over the
last few days, until at last he shouted, “What good does this do me? These notes
stop just before you went unconscious!”

But I was unconscious, so I didn’t hear or see any of that. I just
remember waking up on his couch some hours later.

Like all of the Arthur Witles stories, it is meant to be about as subtle as a nuclear (nukular?) warhead, and I think I have managed to pull that off.

I will post the story after I finish it. Finally the world will have definitive answers to questions about God.

Rejoice now! Bask in the warm glow that is megalomania! Next I will start a band and finally release Chinese Democracy, thus doing what neither God or Axl Rose was capable of. Then I will build a brand new skyscraper for my head to live in…

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