"My name is Richard Daniels. I am on a quest." I looked across the counter,
staring down the clerk at "Ryan's Secondhand Shop". It was the sign that drew me
here- there was a clock out front that only had a second hand. A pun, see? "And
on my quest, I cannot pay more than three dollars for this year book." I held up
a Class of 98 year book for Brown Deer high school.
The clerk eyed the tag on the yearbook, which clearly displayed a price of $5.
He looked back into my eyes, and I think my stare broke him down. "Fine, three
bucks it is buddy. Anything else?"
"Yes." I put a pair of rhinestone covered pumps, size 9, on the counter. "These.
The ticket price is fine."
The clerk nodded, slowly, as if afraid to make sudden movements. It's a
treatment that I had gotten used to years before that encouter, and would see
again thousands of times before my quest was complete. I paid, and walked out of
the store, and spent a moment basking in the bright sunlight and warmth of an
My quest started six months before that trip to Ryan's Secondhand Shop. My lease
ran out in one apartment, and it was a shithole, to be frank. Seventh floor, and
the elevator was broken three days for every one that it worked. The wiring
fried two computers right through the surge protector- horrible place. Anyway, I
had everything bundled up in a rented moving van. I was in no particular rush,
so on the way to my new apartment, I parked the van in a Dunkin' Donuts, and sat
down to enjoy a coffee and an apple fritter.
When I stepped back outside- the truck was gone. Stolen. The truck and
everything in the truck- stolen. Gone. Every single item in the world I owned
gone. Hell, the keys to my new apartment were in that truck. I didn't have a
place to live.
That's when I did something most people would call crazy. I took my wallet out,
removed the cash and stuffed that back into my pocket. I then dropped the wallet
down a sewer grate. Now I officially had lost everything.
I became Richard Daniels the next day. I had a name, but no life. And that is
what started my quest- I wanted to create Richard Daniels.