This first appeared at Flashing in the Gutters on Friday, April 21, 2006
“Dude, there’s blood dripping out of your nose. You need to lay off.”
“Is it mine, or is it hers?” He gestured to the prone figure at his feet.
“Dude, does it matter? Hers, yours, mine. It’s flowing, man. Flowing.”
A dense fog had roared in. The Village was strangely quiet, deserted. Even Charlie’s had closed its doors for the night. The ubiquitous drunks were gone. Alone. He and the girl.
She deserved it, of course. She looked so much like his sweet love. What had he done?
He caressed the girl’s hair, swept a blonde lock back off her forehead. Arranged her just so. Felt bad that the gravel was digging into her back, realized he had skinned a knee.
“Dude, we have to get out of here. Someone might see.”
He searched the shadows. A skinny cat crept toward the alley, eager for dinner. Time had stopped for him. He didn’t want to leave her by herself, the night air blooming dew on her pale arms. The strains of a twelve string drifted to his ears. Another lonely soul, wanting in the night.
“Now, Dude. Let’s go.”
He stood, reached into his pocket, pulling out a silver vial. He
unscrewed the lid, tapped some blow onto his thumb web, like he was salting up for a tequila shot. Just one quick hit, then he was out of there. He inhaled sharply, the rush cooling his brain. He saw the scene clearly at last. The picture window reflected his lean form. His hands were covered in sticky blood. He wiped his face, leaving a red smear. He grinned at his visage. Turned to the voice.
“She shouldn’t have done it, man. She asked for this.”
“Yeah Dude, I know. You’ve been telling me that for three days. Time to vamoose.”
The shadow turned and he saw his reflection one last time. He was well and truly alone now. The guitar picked up a new tune, and his spirit lightened.
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