Ben awoke in a clinic still clutching his copy of For Whom the Bell Tolls. Blurry memories of fire and teeth and those baleful eyes flashed across his mind causing him a smidgeon of surprise at the wholeness of himself and his book. Sounds of exploding buildings and the hiss of water could still be distantly heard.
Ben sat up to find that he had been left in a hall, nurses rushing here and there dealing with the aftermath of the Balask outbreak and he had been there, at the forefront of it all! Quickly Ben searched his pockets for a pen and his ever-ready notepad.
Excitedly Ben flipped to a new and only slightly singed page, pen poised to put down words of wonder. But then he remembered. The duty of any good correspondent, foreign or otherwise, was to bring the worst and most horrid news to the readers of whichever paper you belonged to.
To better himself in this little-appreciated art form Ben had taken up studying the masters of depression. Hemmingway was tops, with almost every line bringing the reader closer to the end of hope. With a sigh, Ben put down his pen and opened his book letting the sad and hopeless words fill his mind so that he might channel the tone of Hemmingway into his work. This, he felt as he turned a page, was going to be his worst story yet.
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