Kentucky Straight

He shuffled down the street, age gripped his back and legs heavily. Passing him on the street, the smell of whiskey wafted off of him. He sat in front of the corner store, his hand extended limply. Every few hours, he would have enough money to buy a new bottle to stave off sobriety. He would nod off and be asleep on the sidewalk, but the owner would kick him lightly to wake him up. At some point, he had urinated on himself and it was beginning to dry, a new layer of grime on his pants.

He made his way to his unkempt home and sat in the worn chair and opened his last bottle. The firewater cascaded down his throat, giving him a familiar feeling of euphoria. He opened his eyes and looked around the cluttered room. It was no longer warm and inviting. His wife hasn’t making biscuits for breakfast. His daughter wasn’t laughing at him while he made faces at her. The dusty suede box on his mantle gave him no comfort. Shaking the hand of President JFK didn’t change the outcome of his life. The Army made several promises that didn’t come to fruition. He didn’t get the chance to go back to school and the only part of the world he had seen was a Godforsaken jungle. He came home to no parade, no work and no loving family. Even his memories had begun to fade into blurs of Kentucky straight.

He panhandled to survive and live in the bottom of a bottle. He had no more hopes, no dreams, only the desperate need to remain incapacitated. He was sick but it made him better. He didn’t have to think of his troubles or shortcomings, only his drink made him feel whole again. He sat in a pool of self-pity as he turned up the bottle and rubbed the stubble on his face. He made his way back out onto the street, in front of another liquor stores, looking for his next fix.

People passed him, day in and day out. They walked around him, farther away from the smell of decay that clung to him. They pretended they did not hear him, turned their heads so they didn’t see him, ignoring his grumbled pleas for change. He was invisible. Once in a while, change would be dropped into his hands and after a while, he would enough for a new bottle. When hunger overcame his need, he dug through trash cans and bags, searching for something half eaten, something someone had wasted just to tide him over. Sometimes, he collected bottles and cans for change, to feed him, to feed his addiction.

At night, he stumbled home, back to his chair, the only thing he owned from before. In the cold, he would burn paper in the metal trash can he had dragged from the park for warmth. But in winter, this barely helped. In the bitter snow, the only thing that kept him warm was the whiskey he poured down his throat. He would drape himself in layers upon layers of lost or left behind clothing. Summer was almost unbearable, to him and those around him. He had grown used to the smell of sweat clinging to his dirty skin, but people would almost run to escape the stench of the Garbage Man.

He couldn’t keep anything in life: family, work, money. He searched for whiskey to escape and soon it consumed him. His home was even gone, reduced to the pit of squalor he often sat in. The only thing he had was the hunger, the leprosy and the dereliction, things that he even the bottle couldn’t fix. But he would always try.

How To Say No

Devin got hard instantly. It had been almost a year since he had sex and he still hasn’t been able to control his urges. The woman on the screen was half naked and bouncing around. He thought any masturbating, again, but decided not to send turned the TV off. He heard shuffling in the hall, then someone saying “Dammit.” He stood up, adjusted himself and stuck his head out his door. It was his neighbor, Gabrielle. She was struggling to hold a box and open the door at the same time. He stepped out the door and grabbed the box from here. She turned and saw who it was. “Oh hey,” she said, smiling at him. They had been playing cat and mouse since she had moved in, but he kept his distance; he didn’t want to start another meaningless relationship.  She got the door open and let him in. “What’s in the box?” He asked, stepping into her apartment. Gabrielle had dedicated half her place to her art studio; easels, buckets of paint and splaterred tarps littered one half of the room. “More supplies. You can put it over there,” she said, pointing to a corner. He sat the box down next to her latest work, some art form he couldn’t decipher. “What’s this?”
“Just something I’m working on. An image I can’t get out of my head.” She walked over towards him and looked at the easel with him. He could feel her body heat next to him and he just wanted to turn and touch her. “It’s beautiful. I told you, you need to open up a gallery.”
“Yeah well…I’m looking into a floating gallery.”
“Floating?”
“Yeah. Basically they operate out of pop up locations and stay for a short time before moving on.”
“That sounds cool,” Devin said, moving around the section of room. He glanced at her as she stood watching him. She work exercise clothes, a tank top and stretch pants that hugged her thighs. He turned and looked at her full on, intent in his eyes. “Close your mouth. You’re drooling,” she said, stepping around him to unpack the box.

She knew he was watching her. She wanted him to. For six months, she had been hoping that he worked up the courage to ask her out, to come over one night and do all the things she imagined. She found it frustrating and spoke before she has a chance to rethink. “So, why is it that you have yet to ask me out?” Devin was blindsided by the inquiry. “What?” He said, trying to make sure he heard her correctly. She stood up and went back to him. “Well…obviously you’re attracted to me. I’m… Very attracted to you. What’s the hold up?” She asked, putting her hands on her hips. Devin sighed and sat down on the stool next to him. “It’s, uh, kind of a long story,” he said.
“I got time.” Devin ran his hands down his thighs, trying to find the best way to explain. “My last relationship ended on a pretty bad note. After that, I kinda slept around and made some bad decisions. After a while, I just decided to not partake anymore.”
“So…you’re celibate?”
“Yeah.”
“Wow. That’s beautiful. It’s very rare that a man can do that, remove sex so they can find something…special.”
“I’m not exactly looking. Just hope I happen upon it soon. I…didn’t ask you out, or anyone else, because I wasn’t sure how you would take it. It hasn’t been easy.”
“I believe you. But you can do it,” she said, punching him lightly in the arm. “But I have wanted to ask you out. I’ve wanted you for a while,” Devin said, looking at Gabrielle. She smiled at him, before planting a kiss on his cheek. He touched her face and pulled her into a full kiss. Her lips were soft and he melded into them and it excited him. She moaned before putting her hand on his chest. “Wait, are you sure? I dont wanna compromise what you’re doing,” she said.

Devin weighed his options. He knew he wanted her, badly, but he wasn’t interested in just another romp, especially with someone in such close proximity. “If I asked, would you go out with me?”
“if you asked, yes,” she said, smiling, her hand sliding down his chest. He pulled her back towards him and kissed her again. She held back, not wanting to pressure him into anything. Yet, he stood and picked her up and carried her to her bedroom. “Devin,” she whispered. He laid her down on the bed. “Are you sure?”
“Very,” he said, pulling her tank off. He pulled his own shirt off and laid on top of her. He cupped her breasts in his hands and kissed her hard. His lips moved down, kissing her neck, chest and stomach. She bit her bottom lip as he worked her pants off. He nearly exploded when he saw her in her black lace thong. He watched her squirm and he couldn’t think of anything other than being inside of her. He closed his eyes and stood back from her. “I’m sorry,” he said. Gabrielle sat up and looked at the expression on his face. “I’m sorry,” he said again. She got up and put her pants back on. “Hey, its OK. I…” She said. She couldn’t find the words. She had never been in this situation before. Devin straightened himself back out. “I’ll see you,” he said, leaving out of the room and heading for the door. Gabrielle followed him and stopped him. “Hey,” she said, grabbing his arm. She kissed him softly. “Call me.”

Me 4 U

It was the phone call to end all phone calls. 

Of course, Marcus didn’t know that he had called Jasmine in all the commotion,  it she answered and she heard everything. 

Hey babe. Shuffling. Someone giggling. Hellloooo?? 

Oooh, just like that, Marcus said distantly. 

What the fuck, she said, listening closer. 

36 minutes. 36 minutes of listening to the man that she loved tell someone all kinds of things: how he never wanted to leave, how good it felt inside of her, where to put her mouth, until his phone died. Jasmine sat in the kitchen in shock. She wanted to marry this man, to start a family…She could feel her heart breaking into pieces. 2 years of building a life together, a home, all destroyed in less than an hour. Questions buzzed in her brain, questions she knew she didn’t want the answers to. She went upstairs.

 

Marcus tripped over several suitcases when he walked in the house. “What the… Babe?” He called up the stair, but got no reply. He stepped over the luggage and went upstairs toward their bedroom, but he found Jasmine in the bathroom. She flitted around, stuffing toiletries into a smaller bag that sat on the counter. “Babe?” She continued walking around, ignoring him completely. “Jasmine,” he said with a little more effort. “What?!” she replied, at an equal volume. “What’s your problem?” He asked.
“You, you lying sack of shit!”
“Me, what did i do?”
“I think the more appropriate question is ‘Who’ you did,”
she said, stomping past him. Marcus felt his heart drop into the bottom of his stomach, but he maintained his façade. “Who? I was out with B,” he said, following behind her. “Oh, so you got B sucking you up? You wish you were inside of B everyday?”
The look on his face gave him away. “Yeah, dumb ass, your phone called me. I heard it all,” she said, putting more things into a duffel bag. Marcus swore to himself. He had his back against the wall and had no more moves. “Jasmine… Where are you going?” He said in his most earnest voice.
“I’m out. I don’t have to put up with this shit.”
“Wait, we need to talk about this.”
“I don’t have shit to say to you. I’m gone.”
“Wait,”
he said, grabbing her arm. “Marcus, get your hands off me.”
“Where do you think you’re going?”
“None of your damn business. You weren’t looking for me when you were with that bitch, were you? Now let me go!”

They tussled briefly. Marcus pushed her down on the bed and laid on top of her to stop her from hitting him. “Get off me! I hate you!” She fought hard enough to knock him off the bed and onto the floor. Jasmine stood and walked past him to collect her things. Marcus saw the fluffy pink handcuffs she had bought and got an idea.
Before Jasmine could collect the rest of her things, Marcus snapped one cuff onto her wrist. “What the fuck are you doing?!” She yelled. He pulled her down to the floor and cuffed her other hand through the wooden rails of their bed. “Marcus, this shit ain’t funny. Uncuff me.”
“I’m not letting you leave. Just let me explain.”
“I don’t want to hear shit from you!
“Too bad! Because you’re not walking out that door!”
“Fuck you!”
She yelled before kicking at him wildly. He dodged her feet and sat back against the wall, out of her reach before putting his head in his hands. He couldn’t imagine life without her. Life before her was a drunken blur of loose women, but she made him want to be better. Jasmine commanded respect from him, made him wait and let him see how worth it all she was. “Marcus, let me go or I swear…”
“You put my feet on the ground, you know. I don’t know where’d I’d be if you hadn’t come along.”
He heard her scoff and he turned to face her. He had never seen her this angry, but he knew it was only because she was more hurt than anything. “I love you. I love you more than anything.”
“Fuck you.”
“How could you say that?”
“How could…how could i? Marcus, you cheated on me. You spat in my face and in the face of this relationship.”
“It was an accident. She doesn’t….”
“Bullshit! You made a conscious decision to be selfish, to conveniently forget about me! That’s no accident!”
“But I…”
“Shut up,”
she said, already knowing what he was going to say. They sat in silence: Marcus, too afraid that losing and Jasmine, too angry to stay. “I’m not letting you leave, Jas. No one in this world could mean as much to me as you do. Before you, my life was a mess. My mom…”
“You think throwing your mother’s death in my face is gonna change what you did?” She said, her voice dripping with venom.

Her phone rang on the bed before Marcus had a chance to reply. He picked the phone up, but ignored the caller. “Give me my phone Marcus.” He ignored her and sat back in his spot on the floor. The phone chirped from a text that popped up on the home screen.
Do u still need me?
“Who the fuck is DeAndre?” Marcus asked, frowning his face up at the phone. “None of your business!”
“So that’s what this is? You tryna leave me for another motherfucker?”
“Even if I am, it’s none of your damn business! Apparently, you have plenty of hoes to placate yourself with.”

Marcus pitched the phone across the room, shattering it into several pieces. “What do I have to do to prove that she meant nothing to me? “
“How about not fuck her?! How about come home to me at night? Be faithful, be loyal, be the man I thought I fell in love with!”
“I am loyal! I’m here with you every night!”
“No…”
Jasmine said, shaking her head, willing the tears not to fall.
“I’m just a man. Im not perfect. You make me feel like I can do anything and I forget…that I’m just a man.” Jasmine still hadnt replied or looked his way. She couldn’t bear to face him, because she knew she still loved him, flaws and all. He moved towards her and unlocked the cuffs. “You can’t leave me. I dont want you to leave me. But if you need to…if you can’t forgive me…I’ll go.”

“It meant nothing. I was helping her, Margaret, that’s all.”
“The way you helped me?”
“I thought she was your friend.”
“So you wouldn’t fuck her?”
“That language does not become you.”
“Yes, you’d rather I be demure.”
“I’d rather you be rational.”
“Meaning what? That I say nothing about what I see, what I hear?”
“What have you heard?”
“That you are capable of anything.”
“And who told you that?”
“Agent van Alden while you were out campaigning.”
“Well, if you didn’t tell me about it, It couldn’t have been very upsetting.”
“It made me sick to my stomach. This whole arrangement does…”
“What arrangement?”
“That I’m to accept what you tell me and ask nothing more that I aid you in the business you conduct and pretend I don’t know what that business is.”
“I don’t recall you ever saying no to anything I put in front of you. You make a little noise every now and then to remind me what a good person you are. But a good person wouldn’t be here right now.”
– Boardwalk Empire

Pillow Talk

He had been watching her for a while.

She laughed loudly with her friends, taking occasional sips of her Cosmo. Her hair was slicked back neatly into a ponytail, accentuating her face.

He had finally worked up the nerve to talk to her, pouring the last of the whiskey into his mouth. “Amanda”, but her friends called her “Mandy”. They talked, she flirted; batting her long eyelashes and touching his arms. She took the final sip of her drink and he could tell she was already drunk, even though it was only 9pm, even though she did her best to remain poised.
Let’s get out of here.

The motel was clean enough. She paid no mind to its order; she was too excited about being entangled in the arms of this beautiful man. They stood in the doorway, entertaining the empty parking lot with their kisses and groping. She gasped as he bit her ear and kissed her neck. She wrapped her leg around his waist and pulled him closer to her. He lost himself in her perfume, pushing his face into her bosom. They made their way to the bed, the heavy door snapping shut behind them. He tossed her onto the bed, sending her down with a squeal and a giggle. She began undressing and kissing his body. He was beautiful, muscular and lean. She opened his jeans and took him whole into her mouth. He moaned at the feeling. It has been so long since he felt this way. He gripped her ponytail and guided her head in her motions, giving her as much as she could handle. She felt his legs quiver and she stopped to shed her clothes.
Take me now, she moaned, laying back onto the bed.

The pillow was on her face before she couldn’t react. He was on top of her, pinning her arms to her side. She screamed into the fabric, muffling her voice as she fought. Confusion, fear and survival flooded her mind as she fought but he smashed the pillow harder into her face. In a brief moment of clarity, she searcher her mind frantically for an answer. Surrounded by darkness, her thoughts grew foggy, her screams quieted and her jerking stopped. She felt herself slipping away, out of the bed, somewhere else.

Then she was still. He held her for a moment longer, angry tears sliding down his face. His breathing quickened and his heart sank down to his stomach. It wasn’t his heart that escaped from his throat but bile that escaped out onto the floor. Now he had nothing.
He wiped his mouth and sat on the edge of the bed and dug into his pocket for the newspaper clipping. The picture was one he had taken on his daughter’s 8th birthday, the pair of them smiling brightly. He had finally gotten the monster that took his family away from him. He reread the clip again: Mother and daughter slain by drunk driver. Now he had nothing. No wife, no daughter, no obsession.

D’abord….

One of my earliest memories is learning how to read…I was put ahead in school at a young age; a lowly third grader out shining 8th graders in reading, blowing through “Harry Potter” in fifth grade in a day’s time. I loved the adventures books took me on: the suspense, the drama, the allure, I felt it ALL. At some point, I decided writing was something I needed to invest the rest of my life on. I finally worked up the courage to start a blog, since, being my own worst critic, I was always afraid my writing would never be good enough. But I will let you be the judge of that.

Everything I write is an original production, UNLESS it is aforementioned that the post is fan fiction, which I have often found myself delving into. Naturally, I would never represent another person’s work as my own. Feedback is appreciated, as long as it is positive, constructive and respectful.