Take Me Somewhere Else
I slept better than I have in a quite a while. I had the bed all to myself, of course. Tim hasn’t slept with me since the last big fight. And that was okay. I didn’t have to endure his constant conversations to only those he could see in his twisted dreams. I didn’t have to wrestle for real estate on the bed, and I had the pillows to myself. I could wrap my body around a pillow or two and just pretend it was someone that loved me. I was actually getting more emotion – and seduction – from the pieces of foam than I was getting from him lately anyway. Pillows didn’t talk back, or say things that would hurt on purpose. They just conformed. And they listened. They paid attention to my desperation while I explained in detail how I may have just gotten away with murder.
I woke up and started my day. I showered with the dog lying on the bathroom floor next to the door like she always does. She waits for me to cleanse my disgust for this miserable life down the drain. She loves me. I could always count on that. It was really the only thing I could count on. I dried off and got dressed. She sat in front of me the entire time as her tail wagged back and forth creating a breeze of joy. She couldn’t smile, but her tail gave her contentment away. I walked her down the stairs to our morning ritual of bladder release and then some squirrel chasing.
Once back inside, I found Tim asleep on the couch. He was mumbling to whomever it was he held audience with behind his eyelids. He talked to them more than he did me. I’d get rid of them too if I only knew how to reach them. I paused beside the couch in the morning living room gloom to stare at him. I wanted to put a pillow over his face and press hard. The pillow wouldn’t care. It does what I want it to do without question. It had silent loyalty. Instead, I just shook my head and wandered into the kitchen for a coffee.
I made tinkering sounds while preparing my morning elixir on purpose. I wanted him to wake up. Why should he be able to sleep when I couldn’t? The game has changed and I refused to land on the spots on the board that only offered me grief. News of his friend’s death hadn’t hit yet. I was beginning to wonder if anyone even knew the piece of shit had departed the earth. I stepped out the back door to catch a glimpse down the road to see if I could still spot his piece of shit car at the stop sign a few blocks away. I couldn’t see the car, but what I did see was the road had been blocked off and police cars were scattered about. His death was certainly common knowledge by now. It had been a very long time that I caught a smile creeping across my face. Tim had stepped out the kitchen door behind me to see what I was up to outside. He wasn’t in the mood to talk to me, yet he was still in the mood to track my every move.
He wondered aloud what could possibly be happening in as few words he could muster in my direction. I shrugged and said I didn’t have a clue, and then stepped back inside to retrieve my coffee. He stepped inside behind me to tell me – again, in as few words as possible – that he was putting on his shoes so he could go investigate. I felt that smile creep into the corners of my mouth again. This ought to be good. He left me and his phone for about 30 minutes. That gave me plenty of time to search through his contact list to see who would be next. I had a plan all set by the time he returned slowly through the door. The tears rolling down his face were dripping from his thin beard onto the kitchen tile floor where the blood from the night before had since dried up.
I asked him what the matter was, even though I had already known. Apparently, his best friend had been murdered. Oh no. Say it isn’t so. What is wrong with people? I don’t want to live in this world anymore when someone can’t even safely head to the store anymore. Oh, I played it up. I pretended to be sad. The only thing that could have made my performance any better would have been my own tears. I couldn’t produce any. I won’t be winning any Oscars this year, but I could win a People’s Choice, for sure.
There was a knock at the door. It was HER again. All four feet of her trying to be five feet in her high-heeled stilettos. Most Floridians wear flip flops or running shoes. Not her, though. She wears stilettos wherever she goes. You can hear her click-clacking from blocks away. She came to gather any information we might have had on the circus going on up the street. Nosy bitch. Why she didn’t just click-clack her ass up the road to see for herself, I’ll never know. Tim volunteered to take a walk up to the yellow police “do not cross” lines once again. Her boyfriend said he’d go with Tim. I decided I needed to go to the grocery store, which was in the opposite direction. I didn’t need to go see what was happening. I already knew. She asked if she could go with me. I may have rolled my eyes and let out a sigh large enough to fill a blimp, but I agreed to let her tag along.
Once in the grocery store, her heels were clacking all over the tile floor of the store. Those same heels also found their way through my endoneurium to scratch every nerve that I possess. I told her she could go her way and I’d go mine. We’d meet up at the car outside. She agreed. When I could hear her clacking, I raced two lanes over to get away from her. Somehow I ended up at the Fresh Meat department. I picked up ground beef and ground pork to make meatballs. Then a light hit my eyes. Over in the fresh fish section, the overhead lighting was bouncing off the filet knives that touted, “Get’s the job done in half the time.” I am a fan of efficiency and time management. I grabbed one and threw it in the cart.
I was done with my shopping. I checked out and head to the car with my purchase. I sat in the driver’s seat waiting for her to be done with her shopping. I lit a cigarette and scanned the parking lot. There were empty carts regurgitated here and there. Why no one can ever stroll their empty carts to the coral, I’ll never know. I then noticed the vultures gathering in the retention pond beside the store. There must have been a good twenty or so of them flapping their wings and fighting over their own fresh catch of the day. Those birds were huge. They honestly had to be as big as a full grown teenager. This gave me an idea. I hopped out of the front seat and opened the trunk. I consolidated two bags into one and brought the empty plastic bag with me back to the driver’s seat while I waited for her to come out of the store.
It wasn’t very long before she was clacking out of the store. How those poor heels supported that body is a modern scientific mystery. She placed her groceries in the trunk and then got into the front seat. I started the car and then showed her the vultures feeding on the edge of the retention pond. There were no other cars on the side of the building, so I pulled up there. This interrupted the feast for a minute before they all flew back to finish munching. It was impossible to recognize what had been on their menu. They had shredded it to bits. We both got out of the car to look at the majestic beauty of these morbid birds doing what they do naturally to survive. While she was taking pictures of them with her cell phone, I slipped the plastic bag I had retrieved from the trunk over her head.
She struggled, of course. This interrupted the vultures again. But once she stopped flailing around, and breathed her last breath, they all flapped back to their meal. I was about to contribute to their buffet. I dragged her lifeless body between the side of the building and the car, and ran to the trunk to get that spanky new filet knife I just bought. We were about to test it out. I took off those damn stilettos first and heaved them like I was throwing the winning football toss of the season. God damned shoes. We won’t be hearing those fuckers anymore. The label on the knife was certainly correct. It got the job done in half the time. I filleted as much meat off her bones as I could put in that empty bag. I’m not so sure why people are so dead-set against plastic bags. They have so many uses. I sliced through her bones to chop the rest of her body into a good ten pieces and threw them over to the vultures. I’m not really sure, but I think their black eyes were thanking me for the extra grub as they all flitted about to pick what meat I didn’t get off of her bones. I would rather hear their beaks scraping on the bones and stretching the cartilage than I would those damn heels again. It was time to head home.
Tim had come back from the crime scene up the street with more disbelief of what had happened. “Poor guy had his head chopped off. No one deserves to have their head chopped off.” He kept saying it over and over again. I kept agreeing with him every time he said it. He stopped long enough in between sobs to ask me what’s for dinner. I told him, “food,” It’s a game we’ve played for years. I slapped the ground beef and ground pork into a bowl. I opened up my surprise bag and ground her up in the grinder, added it to the bowl, added some spices and continued to make meatballs. Tim may not love me much anymore. But he loves my meatballs.
An hour or so later, another knock at the door. It was her boyfriend. He asked me if I had seen her lately since she wasn’t at home, and she wasn’t answering her phone. I told him a lie with a very straight face, “I haven’t seen her since the grocery store.” Which was really the truth. He wondered where she may have gone to. I told him I didn’t know. He was smelling the apartment since it smelled like an Italian restaurant, and he hadn’t eaten yet. I offered him some meatballs. Both Tim and he proclaimed I make the best meatballs. Dinner time is the only time Tim lays down his emotional weapons to offer a peace treaty. They had seconds, and then thirds. They asked me if I was going to eat any, I told them I really don’t eat meat and told them both to eat them all up. Tim even gave some to the dogs, who devoured every morsel. Her boyfriend said she would be sad to miss these meatballs. Did they have a secret ingredient? I told him I put a little Mexican in them. He hummed, and with a mouthful of his girlfriend he said I should package and sell them. They were so damn good that I should get a parade. What I should get a parade for is that I saved everyone from hearing those damn heels ever again. There were no leftovers tonight. Two pleasant nights in a row for me. This could become a ritual.
(Again…this is fiction. No need to call the law on me. When you get to the end, it will all make sense. Just sit back and enjoy the ride, unless you’re one of the victims. Then just lay there and let this play out.)