“Honestly, look at my face, do you really think I give a shit?”
“Well, I guess not. I wasn’t trying to . . . “
“Wasn’t trying to what?”
“Nothing. Forget it. It doesn’t matter.”
“Exactly, look around you, none of this shit matters. Nothing. The sooner you figure that out, the better off you’ll be.”
“I know, it’s just that it’s our job, aren’t we supposed to care? Even a little bit?”
“You use to. You were so different when we first met. What happened to you?”
Good question. What happened . . . Something did happen, didn’t it? The lack of sleep and days of binge drinking have left my mind a cloud of dark misshapen uncertainty. The line between what is real and what is imagined barely exists and constantly moves. And I’m pretty sure I spend much of my day crossing back and forth.
Damn, I think this place closed over an hour ago. What the fuck am I doing here? The lights are still on, is the door locked?
Something’s playing on the jukebox . . .
I knew you’d still be here.
The voice pierced my consciousness and ripped me back to a place I had hoped to forget.
“What do you want from me?”
What I’ve always wanted.
“Why? Why now?”
I want you to remember.
“I can’t. Not anymore. It wasn’t my fault.”
Then who’s fault was it?
A door slams and a wet towel slaps against the bar . . .
“Oh shit!! I said last call two hours ago. What the fuck do you think you’re doing sitting at my bar having a god damn drink two hours after I told everyone to get the fuck out. You better start talking fuck ‘o.”
“I . . . uh . . . I don’t know what happened . . . “
“I . . . uh . . . I . . . BULLSHIT! That big neon sign out front, who’s name is on it? Not yours, that’s for damn sure. You come in here, you drink all fucking night, you don’t even get drunk man. Now that’s some weird shit. And you know what? I don’t like weird shit. I’ve had enough weird shit in my life and I sure as shit don’t need more from some fucking wife killer like you.”
The glass pulled away from my lips as my hand froze. A coldness took me but my skin began to burn . . . I turned my head to the bartender . . . the only part of me that could move . . .
“What the fuck did you just say?”
“That’s right, I said it. Didn’t think I knew did ya? I told you I heard some sick shit about you. Your pasty friend with the fucked up skin disease told me everything. And come to think of it, I don’t like him either. I DON’T NEED THIS SHIT. I’ve got problems, you know? I don’t need anymore fucking aggravation. Do you know how much my ex wife gets outta me each month? Fucking drunks in here starting shit every night . . . plumbing is all fucked up. . . Damn I hate plumbing. That Circle K bitch stole all the money outta my wallet after I fell asleep the other night . . . I know she did. Who the fuck else would have taken it?”
Did he say wife killer?
“And then, when I finally think I had just about all the shit I can take, there’s you. Just sittin’ there, all fucking weird, never saying a word, just sippin’ away on your drink. Never have anything to say, do you? I know your type, your thinking something. Probably use to torture small animals when you were a kid, huh? Use to sniff your mom’s panties when nobody was home, didn’t ya?”
Let’s keep going, I can take you somewhere . . .
“What happened to the clock I had in here? Fuckin’ Kenny, always taking shit.”
Do you want me to really show you something? Really? Because I can. But you may not like what you see. If you really want me to, I can turn this whole thing inside out and pull what you thought was reality away, piece by broken piece, then maybe, just maybe, you might have something to say.
I don’t remember killing anybody.
There’s always this last thought right before I slip off to sleep, similar to the first thought when I finally open my eyes. A strangeness and sameness that I can’t quite put my finger on but I feel it has always been with me. Constantly eluding, evading, stalking. I’d let it go if I could. But there are some things you just can’t let go . . . first, they have to let go of you.