I had to return just one more time for a more specific workup of a concept/theme which has inspired multiple short-stories I've written. This final time, the 'rendition' is much more descriptive, so I hope readers will find real value!

Thanks so much for reading (signing off),



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Dartagnan immigrated from Algeria and grew up in New Jersey with his mother and sister in Haddonfield. He met an older boy in junior-high named Cal who was a terrific baseball player. Dartagnan and Cal became best friends, so Cal taught him how to play baseball. The two buddies began collecting baseball-cards together. One day, Cal and Dartagnan went to a sports-collectibles store in Haddonfield together and purchased two sealed packs of baseball-cards, with one friend selecting the pack for the other friend. When they opened their packs the together, they discovered that the pack of baseball-cards Cal selected for Dartagnan had much better cards than the pack of cards Dartagnan selected for Cal.

Years later, Dartagnan went off to Dartmouth College to study psychology and literature. He became friends with a group of hippie-students and moved into a hippie-house with them in the summer of their sophomore year and named their hippie-house the Blue Smurf. The large hippie circle of friends at Dartmouth included multiple attractive young women. While there were not normally many new age hippie students who enrolled at the somewhat conservative Ivy League school Dartmouth, Dartagnan's class year happened to be comprised by numerous music majors of whom many happened to be hippies. Dartagnan's group of Dartmouth hippie-students happened to include multiple attractive young female hippie-students.

Dartagnan was liberal in spirit and got himself a wild dreadlocked hairdo and began dating a number of these attractive Dartmouth female hippie-students and found them all to be rather engaging and fun and sexy. However, a few of them broke his heart, telling him they were more interested in a wild life of free love rather than simple college romance. This troubled the young Dartagnan whose Dartmouth studies in psychology and literature inspired him to think about social behavior and imagination conducive to a developed sense of modern mature lifestyle harmony. He intended to write his thesis on the offbeat American writer JD Salinger, after all, and sought smart ways to think about the links between maturity and life's strangeness. That's why these odd number of the female Dartmouth hippie-student girlfriends who happened to break his heart made him more sensitive about life's general undesirable unpredictabilities.

After graduating on time from Dartmouth with his competed thesis on Salinger, Dartagnan decided to travel to Europe and lease an apartment in Madrid, Spain. Dartagnan called his mother and told her his Madrid address and phone number. Dartagnan lived happily in Spain and met a very nice young woman named Isobel and started dating her the summer they met in his first year in Madrid. Dartagnan even considered proposing to her and marrying young. However, a monkey-wrench was thrown into his life that autumn when Dartagnan's childhood-friend Cal showed up at his door, telling him he got his address from his mother. Dartagnan reunited and reconnected with Cal and spent much joyous time together in Madrid that autumn. Cal had studied at Penn State University and traveled to New Zealand afterwards before arriving in Madrid to find his old pal Dartagnan.

One night, while reveling in Spanish wine in Madrid, Cal confessed something strange to Dartagnan. He told Dartagnan that the sealed pack of baseball-cards he selected for Dartagnan when they were young and living in New Jersey had turned out to be superior in quality to the pack of cards Dartagnan selected for Cal and that this made him go a bit insane. Dartagnan was surprised and confused about this strange random confession about meaningless random envy and told Cal he did indeed remember the funny incident at the sports-collectible store in Haddonfield. However, Dartagnan felt the need to ask Cal why this memory continued to haunt him in regards to their otherwise joyous childhood friendship. Cal just eerily told his friend Dartagnan that he'd explain more later.

DARTAGNAN: Why am I tied up, Cal?
CAL: You're in your Madrid apartment, buddy; you got drunk!
DARTAGNAN: Why the hell am I tied up?
CAL: Look who's here with us --- Isobel and your hippie gals from Dartmouth.
DARTAGNAN: Why the hell are they here, and what's going on, Cal?
CAL: I'm going to make you my witness, Dartagnan.
DARTAGNAN: What?
CAL: These girls from your past are my secretaries!
DARTAGNAN: Secretaries, Cal?
CAL: I assigned them to seduce and lead you astray.
DARTAGNAN: What...why? Are you serious?
CAL: Remember that haunting story of the baseball-cards that saw me slighted?
DARTAGNAN: Yeah, you mentioned your pack was inferior and thus crazed you!
CAL: You have no idea.
DARTAGNAN: What...so my pack had a cool Wade Boggs card and your had mediocre ones.
CAL: Exactly.
DARTAGNAN: You're pulling thus bizarre psyche-stunt over Wade Boggs, Cal?
CAL: Boggs was an unbelievable baseball-player, Dartagnan.
DARTAGNAN: I'm confused.
CAL: I realized that day you were destined for fun and me for labor.
DARTAGNAN: What do the girls have at stake in this, Cal?
CAL: These girls you befriended and courted are going to cut your fingers!
DARTAGNAN: What...why?
CAL: Today, you're going to be more misfortunate than me.
DARTAGNAN: You believe Wade Boggs has made you a messenger of envy?
CAL: Why's that hard to believe, Dartagnan?
DARTAGNAN: Every man has a right to define his own demons, but this sucks, Cal!
CAL: You fail to see the simple human poetry in all this, young Dartagnan.
DARTAGNAN: Look, can I bribe you to spare me?
CAL: What do you have to offer?
DARTAGNAN: A free plane ticket to Nepal.
CAL: Nepal?
DARTAGNAN: Yeah, my friend can get me one because his brother works for the airline!
CAL: Why the hell would I want to go to Nepal?
DARTAGNAN: Go see the Himalayas and meditate in the mountains.
CAL: Why?
DARTAGNAN: Maybe time in snow will help you forget Wade Boggs!
CAL: That's clever man, really clever Dartagnan; you were always inventive.
DARTAGNAN: So we have a deal?
CAL: Alright old buddy, it's a super-deal.
DARTAGNAN: Good, I promised your mom we'd remain friends.
CAL: I suppose you've offered me an inventive alternative to hell!
DARTAGNAN: What're friends for, Cal?
CAL: I'm not surprised you studied psychology.
DARTAGNAN: I think we both learned something here about the profundity of envy!
CAL: You're a funny guy, Dartagnan.
DARTAGNAN: This little conversation would make for a great novel.
CAL: Isn't envy a thing of theater?

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