Welcome back for more Biff and Mary! (previous chapters can be viewed here)
This chapter, we will continue the usual Biff-and-Mary shallow shenanigans accompanied by excessive description and utter silliness. Also, you will note an example of extremely unnatural, poorly punctuated and just-plain-bad dialogue in the beginning of Chapter 13.
I stumbled upon a similar butchering of character conversation in a book I read recently, and the result -- specifically, my cringing in utter horror -- was something I thought best shared, so you are very welcome! ;)
(Seriously, though -- please, please, I beg of you! -- don't ever write dialogue like this!)
Chapter 12: Wherein Biff Battles Boxes
Mary felt the soft pressure of Biff’s lips on hers and ran her hands up his shoulders and around his neck. The moment she inched her fingers up and into his hair, Biff pulled back suddenly.
“Biff? Is something wrong?”
“No, no, of course not,” Biff said, smiling as he patted down his hair, checking to be sure it was in place.
Mary realized their moment had passed and decided that the best thing to do was change the subject.
“Do you think we should try to get started on these boxes, Biff?” She gestured at the various piles of cardboard cartons that graced the room.
Biff smiled. “Of course! In fact…” his voice trailed off as he walked back toward the front door to where The Poopsie Incident had occurred. He paused en route, checking his reflection in the mirror and combing his hand through his hair briefly before retrieving his leather satchel, which matched the belt he wore and was lying on the tile where he’d dropped it. He brought it back to Mary.
“I discussed the box issue with Tony, our estate handyman, and he assured me that all I would need is…” Biff rummaged through the contents of the satchel, mumbling in frustration. “Now where is that….I know it’s in there…darn it!” Finally, he gave up and kneeled on the floor, dumping the entire contents of the satchel onto the tiles.
As she viewed the contents of Biff’s satchel, Mary felt a moment of surprise as she realized that there were certainly some areas of grooming at which Biff excelled and, in fact, far surpassed her in terms of dedication.
Spread out on the blue tiles was a brush, three different sized combs in blue, black and brown, a small bottle of Paul Mitchell Sculpting & Styling Glaze, a bottle of the same brand Unisex Flexible Hold Spray, and a small jar of Paul Mitchell for Men’s Medium-hold/Semi-Matte Styling Cream. Mary also spied a tube of dry shampoo and a travel-sized ceramic straightener. As she opened her mouth to ask the brand name of the straightener (she’d been looking for a new one herself), Biff swept aside the styling glaze and grabbed a small metal item. “Aha! There it is!”
“What is it, Biff?”
He quickly shoved all the hair products back into his satchel, rose from the floor and opened his hand. Nestled in his palm was a metal object, approximately four inches in length, with a sharp-looking blade protruding from one end.
“Tony gave it to me. It’s a box cutter!”
Biff used his other hand to push down a small screw on the side of the object, causing the sharp blade to extend further.
“See? The blade will open boxes quite easily, I understand.”
Mary reached out a hand toward the box cutter, but Biff drew it away with a small shake of his head.
“No, Mary. I think it best if I handle the box cutter myself. Tony showed me how to use it, and I wouldn’t want you to be harmed; it’s a Very Dangerous Tool.”
Mary nodded her head in solemn understanding.
“Well, where do you think we should start, Biff?”
The pair looked around the room and Biff knelt down by the nearest box. “Why not here?” he said, with one of those heart-stopping grins that always made Mary swoon.
With that, he reached out with the box cutter and sliced through the packing tape that sealed it. He then opened the flaps of the box and looked up at Mary triumphantly.
Mary clapped her hands together. “Biff, you did it! How wonderful!”
She knelt beside him and together they began removing the contents of the box, which turned out to be mostly Mary’s copies of Vogue and People magazines, as well as her two favorite books: Fabulous Fashion for Refined Young Ladies, and Makeup Secrets of the Stars, 1955-2010.
Mary and Biff started making neat piles on the floor as they emptied the box, although both were soon distracted and Mary began flipping the pages of Makeup Secrets while Biff thumbed through a copy of Vogue. However, Mary soon realized that at this rate, they would never accomplish what they intended, so she opened her mouth to interrupt Biff’s perusal of the article “Armani or Prada: How to Choose?, but the sound of the doorbell broke in at just that moment.