Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The wolf is back

I felt like a zombie. Some unknown force seized me. I surrendered to it's will. I was Anakin bowing to the emperor. It was pie! The smell was celestial, beckoning me forth. The fragrance was coming from the diner I had been at the previous day. The fumes were unmistakably cherry and they wafted up to my nostrils, exciting my entire frame. It was as if I had been out at sea for years, starved and ravenous, and I reached a cherry pie island of salvation. The streets were black as if a huge hand had dropped a veil over watershed heights. The moon shone dimly; it was fat and yellow like butter. I heard the antsy bustling of people. I peeked my head out the window and what I saw confirmed what I had heard, and smelled. There was a glowing from the diner and people were standing in line for what could only be pie. I went down to see what the hell was going on. There were people lining the inside and outside of the restaurant--and there he was, standing in line, what I thought had been an apparition, and what I am convinced still is an illusion: the wolf man. The people in line were bunched together except at the space where he stood. People grimaced at him, lidded their eyes. There was an air of both nervousness and suspicion. He got his piece of pie and handed it to me, cherry. I was grateful. He was stoic. He disappeared.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Back to Beginnings

          It's the next day. I woke up with the sun filtering through my blinds and onto my face. It was an orange sun, oriental, the type of sun you imagine a Japanese man waking up to before he practices tai-chi in the early morning. Though I cried and wailed the night before, sleep seemed to soothe me. I edged out of bed, got ready, and sauntered down to the 24 hr diner right across from the building. I sat at a table by myself and ordered a big breakfast: coffee, bacon, eggs, hashbrowns, and a waffle. I looked to my left and saw that my meal was more than matched by two men at a booth, wolfing down food like their lives depended on it.
          I've learned that when men devour food at that rate, it means one of two things: they haven't eaten in days or they are totally stoned, man! Judging by their puffy red eyes, the way they would giggle to themselves, and the fact that they would continually exclaim "this food is good as fuck!", I assumed the latter. When my food arrived, I began to eat gracefully in what I thought may serve as some type of deprecation to the men, but I couldn't help stealing glances at them. I heard noises like lions in Africa ripping into their prey after weeks of starvation; just ravenous, primal, noises. The more I observed them, the more I began to think it was funny. They were enmeshed in their own little worlds, happy, and totally severed from reality, like children. I think what I thought was so hilarious was that these two rough-looking men, middle-aged, were smiling as if they were seven, in the very midst of a splendid childhood, and full of wonderment. Silly little grins lit up faces that had seen hardship, sorrows, and funniest of all, prostate problems!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Are you fucking kidding me!?

          I spent the majority of today trying to rip my hair out. I'm sure everyone in watershed heights heard my screams. Screams of frustration, screams of remorse, screams that announce to the whole world my own idiocy.
          I had to know my reason for killing Leland. I have never once looked into my own killings, questioned, searched for the truth.
          I visited my boss today, Mr. Vladamir. He lives just outside the city, in the gated place. I knocked on his door and he opened it with grin, a white robe wrapped about his overweight, too-tanned body. His smile looked crooked and his black hair looked too sheeny (and no, I'm not making a pun referring to that dumbass I saw yesterday at the carnival). "Come in," he said,"I presume the deed has been done." "Yes," I said, "he's dead." "Good, good, what delightful news." I sat on the couch while he went into the other room to get my money.
          He came into the room with a huge wad of hundred dollar bills clasped together with a fake gold band. There was a total of 10,000 dollars, a hefty sum, yet, as I have began to realize, not hefty enough to account for the loss of a human life. I felt shameful, washed up, I felt my face begin to burn red. I was, and still am, extremely embarrassed. I reached for the money, feeling slimy. I stuffed the money in my pocket and looked up at my boss. "Mr. Vladamir," I said, "I know that we make a pledge not to ask why our targets (targets...we have to resort to euphemisms to feign our innocence) are assigned to be exterminated (there's another one!). But with this case in particular, I feel as if I must know. I don't think I will be able to move on to other assignments until I know the reasons for his killing."
          "True," he said, "you are not supposed to know. But I like you. You have been my most loyal operative."
          So he told me. The story goes like this: Leland was walking through the gated community, near Vladamir's house. He must've climbed the gate--an innocuous crime--and was merely walking about, admiring the big magnolia trees and yellow sunflowers and beautiful rosebushes and big towering houses. He came upon a man who told him that he didn't belong in such a beautiful place and that he was "marring its elegance" with his homeliness. Leland replied by telling him that "all I want to do is see it up close." He was tired of admiring from afar. It was his time to look into the face of beauty and to walk the pathways of wealth and to see all the beautiful people there. The man was furious and told him that he would pay for his "disregard of propriety." Leland blew him off and kept walking the blooming boulevard for another half-hour before hopping back to watershed heights. The man knew Vladamir very closely and requested Leland's death.
          I killed a man, who, dumb and goofy and ridiculous as he was, wanted nothing more than to walk in a beautiful place for an hour. I am not a man. I am an idiot, and far more of one than Leland ever was.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Dea(r)(d) Leland

          I am writing this entry from my watershed heights apartment. Leland is dead. I spent so long learning his every move, studying his ways, and waiting for the moment to strike. Tonight, the most spledid opportunity presented itself--it was like the universe was looking out for me. There was a fire at the carnival, a fire that was small and yet just big enough to eat Leland.
         It was like jazz. A small meat trailer is set alight and these two little women come hurdling out, desperate to save themselves from catching fire. I was a few paces behind Leland when it happened. Something in my brain ticked. I began to sprint full throttle towards him. I knew I could overtake him with brute force, I being 6-5 and 250 pounds of raw muscle, Leland being 5-8 and scrawny. His humungous wife-beater worked against him--cause you know, it hadn't ever before, with the chicks digging his style OH SO MUCH. I grabbed him by his shirt, spun and flung him directly into the flames, completely unnoticed in the surrounding tumult. To make sure of his death, I reached for a bottle of rum that some old bootleg had been selling and I fed the fire its second-helping. Then, right in the center of all the flames and madness was a disappointed-looking nun, eyeing me. She must've been the only person who saw what I did. She wasn't upset, she wasn't angry, she was just staring at me with sad-eyes. I felt a fleeting tinge of remorse, and strangely, I never did (and I still don't) have any fright that she may try to track me down or turn me in and send me to jail. She seems to me like one of those religious messages the universe was sending my way. Like the priest I saw a few moments prior to killing Leland, the nun came after and she kept looking at me, unflinching. It felt like our eyes locked for hours though it was likely about five seconds. I turned my back to the nun and the flames and went back to watershed heights where I am writing these words right now. 
          Back to Leland: his body burned to ash, flitted into the air. He's probably floating around atop the trees right now, maybe in that gated community he wanted to be in so badly. Maybe the wind is swirling him past all the rap clubs and the dirty shops and back to Decatur GA where he belonged. His death is a shame--it's always a shame when a man burns without seeming reasons. I never knew my reasons, but someone did, someone knew why he had to die. I fear I won't be able to rest in peace until I know why Leland "rests in peace."

Friday, March 25, 2011

Gilbert's Carnival, Leland's Demise

          I followed Leland, saw him buy his gold-studded grille, and watched him make his way to Gilbert's Carnival. He bounced on the bouncy house like a little kid. There he was: a "grown" man with a gold grille, super-strong deodorant, a wife-beater, a disgusting new hair style (corn rows) bouncing with a bunch of little kids on a janky-looking bouncy castle. If he wasn't so clueless maybe he would realize that he looked like a pedophile, preying on innocent children. People would point fingers and stare at him, concerned for the children's sake. He was a fool. It's time to die, Leland.
          It's a nice day outside. The sun is shining perfectly, not a cloud in the sky. The air is warm, not overbearing, but comfortable. I thought I might have seen the hopeless lunatic from that TV show "Two and a Half Men." I feel at ease with the world, almost unnaturally natural, so to speak. Here I am, about to make a killing and all I can think about is how beautiful the weather is. Not even the monkey that is snatching everyone's wallet is getting to me, not even snarling balloon man (who keeps making a sick joke: "here's the balloon man whistling far and wee" and then he unzips his pants and pees on the ground in front of everybody), or the hag at the kissing booth. Very seldom can an individual of my profession unwind his muscles before doing what I am about to do.
         Now Leland is riding the tilt-a-whirl, stepping off dizzily, about to puke. I saw a man holding a bible, nicely dressed, and with a neat collar. Good one universe! Go ahead and send me one of your little "signs" from the "almighty" to convince me to change my mind! Ha! Like something so subtle could divert my attention from my task. Fuck you, universe! Haha!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Not Heartless

          I see him through lidded eyes, that Leland character. As I kneel by the bushes at Jack's Tracks and watch Leland write retarded lyrics, I can't help but remember the time my dad passed away (don't you just love euphemisms and how they sugar-coat reality? Gotta love 'em!). It was a Sunday and it was snowing, much like today. I must have been about 9 years old. My parents were divorced and my mother's sanity was completely intact but my father kept becoming more distressed day by day. It was his job, my job. He didn't have the heart to go through with everything and he was feeling guilty for everything he had already done--he had ruined lives and destroyed families.
          I remember startling myself awake as I heard a loud knocking at the door. At the time, I was convinced that it was a monster, some trumped up delusion in my head because I was just coming out of a dream. Because of the juxtaposition of my room and the living room, I was able to look out of my window at a sharp angle and see who was at the front door (it was about five in the morning). I saw a barely discernible figure, dark and large with huge shoulders. I could hardly see him; he was just a black gob of motion in the darkness. But as he knocked again and turned away from the door, the incandescence of the streetlights illuminated his figure. It was a man with a round cap. He began to bang louder and louder on the door. I heard my mother's footsteps pound down the hall past my room and went back to sleep, terrified. I was now convinced that the man was not a monster but a murderer and that I was going to die. So naturally I went back to sleep. Isn't it funny how we do that? We are convinced that there is a murderer in the house and yet we go back to sleep.
          The next morning, it was snowing and the streets outside my house were sloshed over in the weak gray light. The whole world seemed gloomy and off-kilter. The pine tree outside my house was swaying in what was fast becoming a gale. I went into my mom's room as I always did after I woke up and I didn't hear a single sound in the house, not the sound of my dog, not the sound of a TV (which was always on, buzzing with the morning news). Nothing. I saw my mom on her bed and before she opened her mouth, I felt a lump in my throat and a shaky feeling in the pit of my stomach; I knew what had happened before she told me--it was one of those insane moments of intuition that we experience only once in a while. As the words escaped her mouth, I remember looking down on the wooden floor and noticing the intricacies of the little cracks, how they were perfectly symmetrical. I looked out the window and saw a little red bird on the pine branch, beaming and thrusting out his chest with pride. I'll never forget it.
          According to the police--which I now knew explained the shadowy figure outside my house--my father died on the job. I immediately resolved to take his place. I am well-aware of the dangers of my--and my fathers--profession but I am convinced that I trained well enough to prevent a slip-up. And now, as I see Leland stuff his notebook into his pocket and plod back towards his apartment in a scummy snow, I know that the time has come. But I'll allow him to buy his (undoubtedly fake) golden diamond-studded grille. I owe it to him. I'm not heartless.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

He makes me smile

          The wolf-man was quite the sight for Leland. He whipped out his lyric book to write down some ideas for the next song. He flips through pages and pages of horrible lyrics: lyrics like "yo yo yo, we in da hood now. We doin' what we should now. Everything is good now in my hood. Represent!" And of course, my personal favorite: "oh shawty dizzle my nizzle till I start to fizzle." That Leland with his double-entendres and innuendoes! I swear sometimes he makes me want to laugh in his face! He finally waded through the crappy lyrics until he found a blank page. He began to write: "I just saw a wolf-man, yuhhh, a wolf-man homie! I just saw a wolf-man and don't know what to make of it, don't know how to shake with it. I just saw a wolf-man, yuhhh, a wolf-man homie!"Apparently, Leland is trying to communicate that he did indeed see a wolf-man.
           He bagan to stroll along the street, clearly proud of his new song. He looked happy and was on his way to get a grill and complete his "hood-swagga"as I've heard him say before. The rain began once again, a thunderous, shrill rain. Leland stood under a small tarp behind the vietnamese place and just stared at a sleek, black limo. I knew from my background research that Leland used to live the life of luxury. It must suck having to stare at that limo. Ha! Above him, a thoughtful man peered out a window into the gray, dismal rain. Unlike the man above him, he doesn't get it. He doesn't understand. Nor does he know that none of his work will ever matter, the fame, the fortune, the success.
          We recently "took care of" the last guy on our list. My colleague told me he severed the mans head clean off and left it in the gutter. Apparently, his friend hired him to be killed. His own friend! I know not why this man would order his friend killed but our job isn't to ask questions or question the moral integrity of our profession. All we do is learn the ins and outs of our target: the way they think, the way they act. Poor Leland. I kind of like the guy, the way he is always so blissfully unaware of everything. He makes me smile.