Friday, January 26, 2007

Love Story

Love Story
Joshua Weston

We were watching some unmemorable comedian on TV when I decided to stab Mark repeatedly in the chest. It wasn't a planned thing, when he called wanting a place to crash, I just said "Sure, come on over". But sitting there, bored off my ass, I decided to do something different. So here I was, covered in someone elses' blood. My favorite shirt. Shit.

What's even worse is he was still bleeding. Four or five times in the chest, and he's still squirming around on the floor, indistinguishable phrases leaking from his freshly tied gag. I recognized one of the most used words as "fuck", but I think "friend" was used as well. He stopped moving and stared straight ahead. I recognized his stare; it was false hope. He spotted the gun I kept under the couch. I lived in a dangerous neighborhood, after all. You can never be too careful. You never know when some asshole will stab you while you're watching cable TV.

For a dying man he shot out his arm pretty quick, and I have no doubt that he had his hand around the gun handle. However, before he could bring his arm out to finish his heroic plan, I plunged the knife through his arm and into the floor.

He was crying now, his final dreams of life smashed into oblivion. I didn't enjoy this as much as I thought I would. It was like desiring a certain drug, or woman, and upon receiving what you'd wished for, you decided you wanted more. I knew as I was doing it this wasn't the last time. I wasn't done, because I wasn't pleased. I started to take the gag from his mouth to explain that he wasn't making me satisfied, and he started to scream the most useless phrase in this situation: "Help me!" So he'd just have to listen for the last few moments of his life.

"I know what you're thinking," I said to him. "Mark, you didn't tell anyone you were coming over, did you?" His pause followed by whimpering and tears told me I could get away with this if I did it correctly. "I haven't decided yet what to do with your body. In fact, I guess I could've planned this a lot better, huh?" Chuckling was probably the last thing he wanted to hear, but I couldn't help it.

His breathing become irregular, his eyes widened. The end was near. I retrieved the knife from his arm, lifted his head by the hair, and quickened his descent to Hell. His foot shook for almost a minute, he gasped a few times, and he was gone.

I glanced up at the television. The same comedian was still prancing around on stage, pretending he was funny. He wasn't funny. He was so damn unfunny that someone had just killed another human being to keep from being so bored by him. I wonder if he ever thought of that while practicing his moronic jokes in the mirror.

It was now clean-up time. I'd never been one for chores, and now I had a big one to do. I decided then and there I'd take this show on the road. No one knew me but Mark and a few others that didn't know a friendship existed between us. I wouldn't miss anyone, and no one would miss me. Luckily for me (and my landlord as well) I had a freshly finished floor that wasn't going to be hard to scrub clean. Then came the bathtub and trash bags. In an effort to disguise my departure, I paid two months worth of my rent, slipping an envelope into the manager's mailbox containing a check and a note announcing an inheritance had inspired me to be proactive. Right, proactivity would've kept me from this situation in the first place, but that's neither here nor there.

I took the fire escape down to the trash dumpster, being careful not to alarm anyone, although most people were asleep anyway. I lined the trash bags behind the dumpster, in the shadows, so I could pick them up a few minutes later. Then I headed upstairs to put on shoes and grab a few things. I shut off the lights and said goodbye to the place for the last time, locking the door behind me.

I glanced casually up and down the sidewalk, and then crossed the street to my car, opening the back door and swinging my duffel bag into the seat. Then I started the car, put it into gear, and drove around the block, still eyeing my surroundings cautiously. I pulled around to the dumpster, popped the trunk, and headed into the shadows.

The missing bags clued me in that something wasn't right...

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