Here we go – this week’s contribution to the fabulous Inspiration Monday as presented by the wonderful BeKindReWrite. Thanks so much for the truly inspiring quotes. Yet again, I had a hard time picking one. Here it is:
“Sun sets, curtain rises. Sun rises, curtain comes down.”
He’s fat. He’s bald. He’s short. And he has a cigar, unlit, hanging from the corner of his mouth.
I glance past his sweating pate. There is a dark rectangular hole in the wall behind him. Through the hole some fornication is going on. I raise an eyebrow. The fat man, still looking up at me, shrugs. He has a sheepish grin.
“You into that? I can get you some for your own private consumption if you want,” he says nudging me in the ribs with an elbow.
I just look at him deadpan while the massive projector next to us whirrs.
“Okay, okay,” he says. “That fucking douchebag was a regular here. He’d usually come in around ten and leave at midnight. Then he’d be back around three and leave at four. Always sat in the same seat – A16. He once wanted to kick the shit out of some old-timer who wouldn’t move when he told him to. Most of the folks that come here are regulars though. They prefer sitting closer to the action, not all the way in the back, so they never bothered about his seat.”
“How often he come in?”
“Three, sometimes four times a week.”
“You ever speak?”
“I tried greeting when he was new. But he just told me fuck off. That was it.”
“Did he ever bring anyone with him?”
“Yeah. Not often. Maybe eight, nine times in a year-and-a-half.”
We look at each other. I wait for him to elaborate but he doesn’t.
“Yeah, and?” I ask.
He just keeps looking at me.
“Are you fucking kidding me?” I blurt. “I just gave you a hundred.”
“Game over, motherfucker,” he chortles and turns to tinker with the projector.
I pull out another hundred and slide it next to the other one in the breast pocket of his shirt.
“Two hookers who hang down at 5th. Sherri and, and… I don’t know the other bitch’s name. Wears a short black wig, like that babe in Pulp Fiction, and is into red outfits,” he says.
“They ever come here with anyone else?”
“On their own?”
“Anything else I should know?”
I nod and turn to leave.
“Yo,” the fat man says. “Who the fuck’s this guy to you anyways?”
“He’s my brother,” I say.
“Oh, shit. I’m sorry, man.”
“When’s the last time you saw him?”
“Few minutes ago,” the fat man says.
“Where?” I ask, frantic.
My heart races. He’s a liar. It can’t be true.
“There,” the fat man points at the black rectangle in the wall. I follow his finger, through the hole and onto the screen. And there he is. My brother.