4 Kings: Injecting Developmental Notes

Other 4 Kings posts: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

I’m a serial planner. When creating Lubomir’s character sheet, I describe him (for myself and any potential artist should this be a comic project), I give him a present-day bio, and create a backstory on his life before he appears in the series.


All of the above info will make its way into the prose, along with the dialogue sheet I tapped out ages ago. I must be careful and avoid info-dumping. It’s fine here and there, but pre-written bios should come out  in bits and pieces.


The first chapter reads from Lubo’s headspace – the way he talks is reflected in the narrative without using first-person. Honza’s chapter reads different since his headspace isn’t the same as Lubo’s.

The first time someone called him pretty, he looked at his father to see if it was true.

Pops, a dead ringer for a young Boris Karloff, scored a Polish-born beauty contestant while working as a lowly engineer for Colombia Gas. So, when some lady at the park called his ten-year-old son pretty, he yielded what would be the first of many winks that cemented his son’s confidence.

Lubomir’s long lashes and flawless skin came from his moms, and he resembled his moms enough that many wondered if pops genes even tried.

A fourth runner-up to Miss Poland in ‘86, she came to America at nineteen and worked as a fledging model. She met the gaunt Igor Gubenko at a Pittsburgh car show, and because the brooding twenty-five-year-old reminded her of the boys back home, she eagerly accepted his invitation to coffee.

Moms hooked up with him that first night, and after that, she considered herself a slut for his monster cock. Lubomir first heard this story after he came out in middle school and realized, not long afterward, that fallen apples never rolled beyond the shade.

Lubo came along seven months after his parents married, and moms named him after her father, who’d died the week before; naturally, the Gubenko family found this in poor taste, and naturally, moms didn’t give two shits what they thought.

He existed as the center of their universe for five years, then came the twins.

Magdalena and Karina quickly established themselves as the wet sand in Lubo’s bathing suit. He struggled throughout his childhood to refrain from punching the crap out of them when pops wasn’t around; moms remained their Switzerland throughout the conflict.

“Bomir,” moms shrilled through the window screen. “Get some clothes on,”

The hot mid-afternoon sun peaked as lines in his barely opened eyes.

He sunbathed like a roasting turkey, turning his heft over every three songs on the playlist in a proven ritual that delivered the evenest of body tans. The tiny thong kept the tan lines away, its meager floss lost between his fleshy buttocks.

Moms’ voice floated out from her place in front of the sink.

“What happened with that boy?” she asked, her Polish accent thick.

Through the double glass doors that led out to the pool, he noticed his Pops at the kitchen table with his newspaper up like a shield.

“He’s your son,”

“It wasn’t a virgin birth, you know,” she reminded.

Pops huffed, “No one could say that by looking at him,”

His mother’s mini-me, in every way but gender, found his weight increasing on the same trajectory as hers. Both were fat with creamy complexions impervious to stretch marks. In contrast, his pops and the twins were skeletal types, unable to gain weight no matter how much milk and cupcakes they abused.

Lubo lamented only one thing about his mother’s dominant traits; his failure to inherit his pops’ legendary unit, an injustice that presented itself every time he took a piss.

What traits he did pass were things Lubo didn’t value at all, a case in point being his insufferable baritone. His voice dropping several octaves in one summer proved the least of his problems when the pubic hairs appeared.

He took tweezers to the first few that sprouted on his balls, but five more took their place. Disposable razors cleared his chest, underarms, and legs, but grooming his balls proved difficult after his belly swelled.

Lubo and his balls were still traumatized by the Nair incident of 2003.

A thud signaled his moms rolling out that large watermelon she bought onto the countertop. “You know, he gets his whole body waxed.”

“I know, ‘Gata,” said pops, his newspaper still in place. “The salon charge appears every month on the Amex.”

“He gets it all waxed, too,” she said, a slink-noise following as she grabbed her large knife. “Even his asshole.”

Pages ruffled as pops turned to the sports section. “And here you thought the worst thing about him being queer would be the boyfriends.”

“That boy on his team is a bastard,” moms said. “I’m glad ‘Bomir shook him loose,”

Lubo smiled to himself.

“The less I know about his love life,” pops droned. “The better off I am,”

“It’s not so bad, Iggy. A queer son is like having another daughter.” When he didn’t respond, she turned to him. “Did you check the mail today?”

Pops peeked out from the newspaper at his bosomy raven-haired wife and noted the knife in her hand. “Would you like me to check the mail?”

Chlorine tickled Lubo’s nose as his sisters put their rafts to water. The above-ground pool that pops buried ground level covered most of the backyard, and its teak wrap-around deck cost more than the actual pool.

Moments later, his pops strolled past and ordered him to cover up for the neighbors’ sake; Lubo wasn’t moving until the last line of Ghost Face Killah. After the song ended, he pulled the earbuds from his ears, triggering his sisters to fuck around and find out.

“Yeah, get some clothes on,” Kari tolled. “No one wants to look at your flabby ass,”

The sun-cooked chaise warmed his face. “Bite my dick, bitch,”

“No thanks,” Kari clapped back. “I’m on a fat-free diet this summer,”

“As if,” Mag railed. “Lubo hasn’t seen his dick since the second grade,”

The two gangly pre-teens hooted like a couple of chimps in a monkey cage.

Lubo pushed himself up, drained a fresh bottle of water in one go, and wondered how these two, having no detectable curves, pulled off wearing bikinis. Crushing the plastic bottle between his hands like an accordion, he stepped to the pool’s edge and found a spot he liked within the water’s shimmering webs.

“Pops said get dressed, lard-tard.” Mag barely dented her floating matt.

Kari groused, cautious to avoid tipping over. “You’re blocking my sun.”

Devout tomboys for years, the pair took an interest in how they looked since entering the eight-grade; both got their hair permed the day before, and neither wished to get wet.

Now aged eighteen, Lubo gave zero fucks. He tossed the bottle over his shoulder and, without preamble, jumped off the deck, hugging his knees to his chest. His body hit like a cannonball, sending waves that toppled the girls from their raft.

He sat cross-legged at the bottom of the pool, smiling as frantic sloshing thundered overhead, complete with depth-muted expletives.


I’m not posting the whole chapter like I did before – I think you get the idea. 🙂

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