The Underwood's legacy--and ultimately my legacy--began in 1897 with a man named Harvey Scott Lochrast...and a typewriter. It was new... It was fancy... It was the spawn of hell; full of mechanical mischief and dark deeds waiting for the unknowing writer's keystrokes.
Had Harvey known what would happen, even generations later, would he have declined what seemed to be a good purchase or would he have chanced the consequences and bought it anyway? I don't know but wish with every fiber of my being that he had chosen the first option. Perhaps if he had chosen differently I would not be in fear now of an antique, or in horror of the stories that rolled out of it.
As this will likely be the last thing it ever writes--or that I write, for that matter--I guess I should begin this (memoir?) by explaining who I am. My name is Garland Joseph Lochrast, IV. Perhaps you've heard of me, perhaps not. Until today, I was referred to as a Wall Street tycoon; high-stakes roller, gifted investor, Lochrast money. How did I make my fortune? I'd like to say that I was a lucrative businessman, that I scraped and crawled my way to the top until the world lay before me like a treasure well-fought for. But as I intend to leave the truth as my lasting legacy, I cannot say these things. I will not end my life with a lie.
Admittedly, the bulk of my fortune I inherited at a very young age--at birth, to be precise; the Lochrast genealogy suggests that it has always been so, dating back to Garland Joseph Lochrast, I. I suppose, if you were so inclined, you could call it a Lochrast family tradition. Whereas most families pass on trinkets and pretty baubles, the Lochrast's pass a typewriter, the desire to write one story, and a grand inheritance to the first-born son at the ripe old age of twenty-four hours. Am I continuing with a gruesome tradition? No...I hope deeply. I write this in hopes of ending what my great-great grandfather began in 1900, when he wrote the first of the Underwood-Lochrast manuscripts.
But I guess, in order for you to understand my story I must first tell the whole story, the one that began in 1897 when a young man named Harvey bought a typewriter...