Monday, August 12, 2013

The evening paper...

The sound of soft classical music and the flumping of the evening newspaper leaked under the doorway, subtle, omniscient, haunting. She could picture him in his leather chair. She could see the highball glass in his hand. She wondered if it was full. She wondered if he was still holding it at a proper angle or if drops of scotch were staining her carpet. She tried to picture his eyes, dark circles, flecks of purple and green. She wondered if they were still open. If they were drooping. She did not open the door until she heard the distinctive thump of thick glass on thicker carpet.

He was out cold. The glass rested where she knew it would be. The paper still hung from one hand. His other hand was on his gut. She said his name, but he did not move. She shook him, but the only reward was a loosening of vapors. Body odor and scotch and the stench of the newsroom. She slapped him, hard, and he glamped onward, eyelids fluttering.

"I fucking hate you."

She whispered it. Like you would whisper into a lover's ear. She didn't want anyone to hear. She didn't understand it herself. It wasn't anything he did. It was the things he didn't do. The things he'd promised and never delivered.

She felt a wave of rage overtake her. She grasped the bottle of scotch by the neck and had her first drink in years ... as much as she could choke down - liquid fire...cleansing fire. It was electric. Her brain smirked. She poured the rest of the bottle over his head, matting the grey hair to his swollen skull. She was starting to feel it. She felt cold, calm. She'd forgotten how good it was.

"You piece of shit. Big man. You may be a big man at work, but you're nothing here. You're fucking furniture."

She laughed. She stepped forward and slapped him again. Harder, this time. He stirred briefly, but then his head settled, cheek mottled red against his starched white oxford. She laughed. She went into the kitchen to look for something. A marker. Ketchup. Tin foil. Something. Something she could use to fuck with the big, sleeping bear.

She did not realize she had been looking for the butcher's knife until it was in her hand.


  1. I've been waiting for you to write this. I didn't know what the subject would be or who the characters were, but I've been waiting for this story nonetheless.

    Dan, this is what flash fiction can be. I not only see the white of the bone, I see the red of the marrow in this one.


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