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Blue Country #11
I actually kind of enjoy censoring myself
It’s sweltering hot in the warehouse. Jill Van Derekson and Bob Rockinstar called me up at home to tell me that it was important that I come and see what this was all about. The room is packed with people and nobody has any idea why we’re here. They all are just waiting silently looking at Jill. Bob is walking among the crowd with a tape measure and writing on a clipboard.
“All right, hello.” Jill begins testing her mic. “Hello. It’s not loud enough.” She says, I think. “Ok…Allright, I know you’re all wondering why you’re here today. My associate, Bob Rockinstar, and I, Jill Van Derekson, have discovered that there is a basketball tournament taking place right here in our very own town. We’ve assembled those who we think can compete at the level required to win this thing. If you are interested…we are holding tryouts right here right now.” A momentary pause. “Not actually right here, we rented a gymnasium and first we find out who here is interested and then we take you to the gym. Now who wants to fuckin ball wit us?”
The crowd is silent, grave and awe struck by the premise of a down and dirty street rules b-ball tournament. The tension among the prospective ballaz is palpable, running through every nerve in the room. I alone am un-afraid and I step forward, offering my skills and services as a mad phat full court magician.
“I’m game.” I say. A black jersey is thrown to me, the logo a gorilla holding a sword and shield, wearing a red and orange Kung fu gi.
“Our team name is the Killer Jungle Swordsmen.” Jill says. “We paid a marketing firm a lot of money for this design. Wear it proudly.”
I nod and slip the jersey over my shirt.
Marc steps forward a second after me. He stands next to me, shoulder to shoulder.
“I can dunk a basketball from the three point line.” He says, and we believe him.
We end up with six men, Me, Bob, Jill, Marc, Freddie Hsu, and Shawn Washington.
“Practice is tomorrow night and every other night until the tournament.” Jill tells us.
“Make sure to bring your fucking A-game.”
But my wallet is stacked to the breaking point with bills and gold cards. The cashier, a dumpy girl, about my age with greasy hair pulled back into a ponytail and framed with a red and white bandanna, looks at me with lust and envy before asking me if I want a bag for the open toed Giorgio Armani leather sunshine shoes that I’ve just purchased.
“No.” I say, barely containing the anger that bubbles up at her intrusion into my private business. “Just hand me the shoes.” Then adding, almost grunting with the effort it takes me, “Please.”
Exiting the store I spot a pretty girl walking, with a woman who I assume is her mother, and I stay my hand, reflexively fantasizing (Edited for content. I never realize what a sick bastard I am until I need to cut things out). I try and think of the new Colin Hanks movie opening next week, the recent widely publicized rehab stint of Joan Collins’s Border collie Gingersnap, the state of China’s burgeoning human slave market. I am able to ward off total madness by counting to ten and holding my breath.
I can’t help but reflect, as I sit and eat my pastrami and pork loin open-faced sandwich on rye bread, on the state of the world. The riots in France, the war in the Middle East, (Turkmenistan? Is it in Persia? Is the war in …Persia or Turkmenistan? Absurdistan?)
Pedophiles living on every street corner, drive by shootings, homosexuals openly marrying eachother in legally sanctioned ceremonies. I have…strong opinions on world affairs.
I reflect on the thousands of dead bodies, the untold gallons of blood that I’ve drunk, the countless masses of faces and arms and legs ripped from sockets. The mayhem and pain that I have inflicted comes to my field of mental vision and not the tiniest hint of remorse or regret. My indifference is complete, my emotionless self that hides no deeper psychological affliction. As a man born without feeling, only possessing a vast curiosity and an insatiable greed, I have certain…insights. A bloodlust that I’ve tried to count as a feeling in order to satisfy my need to be normal, but that I’ve accepted is only an urge. I try not to…repress myself. My insights are short, ugly, brutal, possessing no deeper truth, revealing no deeper understanding of my fractured moral compass, or my lack of love for anything except my self.
The sandwich is an exquisite pleasure. The pork loin is perfect, the bread positively delectable.
I think of the girl I have a date with tonight at Charmin’s Restaurant, how I’m almost positive she will survive. I hope that she likes me but I desire only a love of my looks. I don’t think I want a deep or…meaningful relationship in the traditional sense. I think of how some would call this lust, but really what matters about the…inner self? I…can’t…see it. So why would it matter? I want only to be wanted as an object of sexual desire, and it kills me that she might be going out with me because she thinks I’m…sweet.
A girlfriend…helps you…stabilize. I need a stable…constant…force in my life.
A young boy in a t-shirt with a powder blue sneering duck walks by and I make a mental note to follow him home and rip (oah edited for content, indeed. Almost missed that one). I examine my fingernails, the dried blood (almost certainly not mine) that cakes the cuticles sets off something awful in me and I duck into the bathroom. I look at myself in every mirror, scrutinizing my visage from every angle. A balding man walks in and I finger the 44. in my jacket pocket, but again I restrain myself and I take ten deep breaths before flushing a toilet that I never used and leave the room.
My throat feels like it’s stuffed with cork, my back is coiled and my thighs are tight, fist-like in the strength of their clenching. I’m proud of my coldness and though I may not find dismembering to be the most charming form of after kill activity, I can’t help but picture boxes and boxes of (edited). The awful tightness that comes before every breath I take, abates for just a moment. A calmness is captured from every limb I see flash before my mental eye. The indifference spreads and I lap it up, licking my lips.
I smile and wink at a girl who passes me, and she bares a pair of nine-inch canines. My disgust at her poor dental work is pushed aside only by my lust for her ass, and I lose myself in the sway of her hips. I’ve seen the inside of a person’s body, and there really isn’t anything in there that’s…better looking than what’s on the surface. Inner beauty…I haven’t seen it. I jump to the full distance of my three hundred foot vertical leap and I make a hole in the ceiling of the mall. I ride the wind back to my house, and I almost laugh but it loses its way and I cough instead.
I wake up to a hangover, and a cloudy feeling of guilt that grows clearer, tightens it’s focus and begins to give rise to a feeling of horror culminating in a purging vomit. Lying on the surprisingly soft forest ground, I try to climb to my feet but as the memories of the night before and the events that occurred come flooding back, I am immediately floored and I drop to one knee. Officer Sgt. Combes crumpled over, blood gushing from a dime sized hole in his throat, his face lined with terror is a recurring image that has been singed onto the inside of my corneas and I see it play out in full motion video over and over and over. The pain and undue suffering that I may have caused, the consequences that I must now try or die trying to outrun. A future erased two times over.
I decide to make for a bus station and head south. I will become a bandit in the Mexican underworld, or possibly a day laborer. I think of a bank account that I think I might have access to, full of dad’s money. I decide to head south and…find an ATM.
An hour passes, two hours, five hours. I see a mocking bird missing a wing and though I’m tempted to bring it to a vet, or maybe just put it out of it’s misery, I tear my eyes away and continue trekking. I realize that I have no compass, mechanical or internal, and that I may not even be heading south at all but it occurs to me that any of the cardinal directions will do for now. They all probably lead to an ATM somewhere down the line.
A plane buzzes overhead and I wave to it. I know that they cannot see me, and I wonder for a moment: if I were to simply vanish or retroactively never come into existence would the world notice or care? Would it be better? Two other people would still be alive and maybe the world is better off without certain people. My life consisted of things that I didn’t even know were shallow and meaningless but faced with true pain and adversity I now realize were trivial beyond my past comprehension. My ideas of what constitutes important have underwent a complete paradigm shift. My clothes almost feel like they don’t…fit. Like in the trouser seam.
For killing a girl that I didn’t know, my life…becomes this? Her life, now gone, outweighs mine? This shit…flies? Having taken life accidentally, and then only somewhat intentionally, I lose my own life? This is fair? This is justice?
I decide to keep the gun that I used last night and I tuck it into my waistband. I may be guilty as fuck but I’m not going to jail. Not ever. I know that having killed before I will kill again to preserve my own well-being and this knowledge scares the ever-loving shit out of me, but I hold it close. I grip the fact that I’m now capable of murder with a white-knuckle death hold. I’m going to need that feeling, to know that I can do this and survive and stay out of jail. I can postpone the day of reckoning, and I will forever run away.
I watch Dirk suck up a gram of cocaine in a minute and a half and I’m wired as fuck from the minuscule amount I did myself earlier. I screw on a silencer and though I always thought of us as thieves and not real murderers at all really, I see that the money we’re going to get from this job is basically already spent. I mean yeah, we’ll threaten murder until we’re blue in the face, but actually killing someone, that’ll bring the pigs down on you faster than a hemophiliac can bleed a quart.
“Seanny.” Dirk says to me, pinching his nostrils together and leaning his head back. “Don’t forget to pick up…”he sniffs wildly, “To pick up the god damn…the fucking…don’t forget to pick up that gram from Sully tomorrow morning.”
I narrow my eyes impulsively and the abject rage that grips me so often hits Dirk with full force. It’s something that I’ve made grown truckers shake with fear with and it has …zero effect.
“I’m not going to fucking forget Dirk.” I say, annoyed. “I don’t forget. That’s you.”
“Whatever.” Dirk sighs. “Just remember to…use the side door.”
Our footsteps are heavy and though I wear sunglasses and my eyes are perpetually hidden from view, I can see that Dirk’s ice blues are glassy. He’s intoxicated, royally whacked and I wonder if he gets that way so much to kill the pain of what it is we do (although I confess I’ve never felt any sort of pain about it) or if he’s getting fucked up so much because he just has no use for sober living, decency, wholesome values or civil discourse. I mean, I know that he doesn’t have any use for anything, especially those things, but we’re literally on out way to commit a MASSIVE homicide and he’s…drunk and wired beyond speculation. I almost feel pride in my little brother, but I refrain from praise and keep my eyes forward, my feet marching.
We get to the murder scene to be and it’s a brown ranch house. The lawn is expertly trimmed; the mailbox is some kind of special edition Wizard of Oz thing. It has a picture of Toto and Dorothy watching the cyclone that first took her away from Kansas. Their eyes are transfixed, dazed, dreaming of other things. Dirk see’s me looking at it and a smile breaks open his perpetual smirk. “Your such a faggot.” He says to me, laughing.
“How about I break your fucking windpipe?” I ask, stepping towards him.
“How about you cool the fuck out?” Dirk counters.
“Why are you starting shit?” I ask. “Why, now of all times do you have to start this?”
“Because when you watch gay porn you’re too focused on it to hear me call you a faggot. I just wanted to have a chance to communicate the message clearly.” He pauses, I shake with rage. Nothing is said, a stare-down commences which I maturely give up on and begin to look for possible entrances to the house.
I’m around the back of the house, jigging a window that I think might be loose, when Dirk comes running around the corner. He gets over to where I’m working, and breathless he’s leaning over trying to recover from the sprint.
“Sean,” He says, gasping. “Sean…I need…to know …I have a question for you.”
“What is it Dirk?” I ask annoyed, barely paying attention.
“Ok.” He says, having sufficiently caught his breath. “I just need to know if you’ve (edit) any (edit) over nine inches long. A man called and he was conducting a survey that only notoriously flaming homosexuals were meant to participate in. I promised him I would ask you and get back to him with the answer by Tuesday.”
I don’t take the bait; the adrenaline of what’s to come keeps me focused.
“Give it a rest.” I say, and he does but his smirk, the only truly predictable thing about Dirk, stays firmly in place.