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This was entirely improvised. I sat down, decided I wanted to do something to spice things up in the chat room, and this is what came out. I had no idea where the story was going more than a line or two, if that, in advance. Usually when stuff like this happens, it's not so good, but I turned out to be rather proud of this one, so I'm going to be narcissistic and post it here. The room was not as empty or as attentive as it seems; a lot of conversation was going on while I was typing, but I wasn't paying any attention and only read it after the fact. I cropped the unrelated conversation and the incidental commentary and only left a few amusing interjections in. Ayako's first comment is a reference to the WHAMMO! archive.

* Sam writes a story in RinkChat:
* Sam Spade looked at his watch. Quarter to midnight. It had been a long day, and I was suffocating in paperwork. When I took this job, I wasn't counting on the red tape, but something was about to happen to pull me out of it.
* Sam : The drunks in the bar downstairs were rowdier than usual that night. I could hear the screaming through the open window. It was a hot day, but my office was hotter. Something about it captures the heat and won't let it go. But my night hadn't even started heating up.
* Sam : At ten till, there was a knock at the door. It was dark out in the hall, so I couldn't see the silhouette of my visitor through the mottled glass window.
Ayako: Then a girl walked in. "I've lost my way home!", she says.
* Sam : "Mr. Spade?" she said. Her voice was like a pair of silk sheets sliding against each other. She glided into the room like a newspaper in the wind. I knew she was trouble the moment I saw her, but I didn't care. Trouble was all I knew, and this looked like it had some intriguing side benefits.
* Sam : "Mr. Spade, I need your help," she said, but I was one step ahead of her -- or so I thought. Dames always need my help. When they're in trouble, I'm the one they come to. I have a knack for being there when dames need me, but they never stick around long.
* Sam : "I need you to help me find my husband," she said. "I'll pay you whatever you need." If she only knew what I needed.
Brunnen_G: I think I should rename my cat Sam Spayed.
* Sam : Her husband, eh? I didn't know what her game was, but this dame was no more married than I was. "My fee is five dollars a day," I said. "And you'll pay all my expenses, see? Whether I find him for you or not, I need to eat."
* Sam : "That will be fine, Mr. Spade," she said.
* Sam : "What's his name, and where did you last see him?"
* Sam : She looked uncomfortable. "I can't tell you," she said.
* Sam : "How do you expect me to find someone if you won't tell me his name? You can tell me that, at least, can't you?"
* Sam : "Perhaps this was a mistake," she said, and she turned toward the door to leave. I should have let her. Crazy broad. But something about her -- something about the troubled look in her eye caught me up like a fish on a hook.
* Sam : "Don't go," I said. "But you have to give me something. What's your name? You can tell me that, at least, I hope?"
* Sam : "Kitty Margolis," she said.
* Sam : Her lie was as plain on her face as those beautiful eyes and perfect lips.
* Sam : "Ok," I said. "So tell me what you can about your husband."
* Sam : "He disappeared a month ago. The night of December 8th, to be exact."
* Sam : "Was he in trouble with the law?"
* Sam : "He was released from prison just that day. I met him at the gates, and we went out for drinks."
* Sam : "He disappeared right in front of your eyes?"
* Sam : "No. Around ten, he said he had to run and errand and would be right back. I didn't question him. I never question him. I learned not to interfere in his private affairs."
* Sam : "And he never came back. I see. Did you have any idea where he was going or how long he expected to be?"
* Sam : "He headed down sixth from main. I didn't see where he went after that. I don't know how long I waited. I'm afraid the liquor made me lose track of the time."
* Sam : "Ok. What happened next?"
* Sam : "I have no freakin' clue. This story started with you. Where the HECK is it going, and why can't I tell you my own husband's NAME?"
* Sam : "You're the one that walked in here, baby doll."
* Sam : "Great. I'm married to someone, and I don't even know who he is. How are you going to find him now? I want to find out who I married!"
* Sam : "All right, I'll find him for you. Hey, wait a minute."
* Sam : "What?"
* Sam : "Come to think of it, *I* was at the bar on sixth and main on December 8th, around ten. I left my wife to run an errand, and a gangster conked me over the head with a blackjack. When I woke, I had amnesia, and I thought I was Sam Spade. Am I your husband?"
* Sam : "Come to think of it, Mr. Spade, you do look awfully familiar."
* Sam : "What's your name?"
* Sam : "Kitty Margolis, I said."
* Sam : "Don't play games with me, sister."
* Sam : "Wife."
* Sam : "Don't play games with me, wife."
* Sam : "Fine. I'm Lana Malone. You're 'Big Dog' Malone."
* Sam : "My name is Big Dog? What's my real name?"
Brunnen_G: Leemee Malone?
* Sam : "I don't know. You never told me."
* Sam : "Isn't that just like a noir character?"
* Sam : "I'm sorry."
* Sam : "Great. Now I'll never know my real name."
* Sam : "How much do I owe you?"
* Sam : "Well, I didn't turn out to have any expenses, but I want my five dollars for the day."
* Sam : "I'll pay you right away. Just a moment." She opened her purse and pulled out a pack of ones.
* Sam : "Thanks, doll. Where do we live?"
* Sam : "I'll show you."
* Sam : Lana and all her curves walked out, and I followed her. I didn't have any choice. I was under her spell. Also, I couldn't afford the alimony.
Sam: -end-
* This has been an improvised narrative by Sam.

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