Saturday, August 12, 2006

Babbling again

“Only one way to find out Charlie”

His trembling hand reached out for the stiffened doorknob. He tried to open the door only to find it locked. He did had a key. It was on the kitchen table.

“Just isn’t your day, huh Charlie?”


He tried the doorknob again and again it refused to turn. It became a battle of wills. The more he would try to turn the knob, the more it would try to not be turned. At the end of their ten minute battle, the door had won. It was still closed and she was still on the other side of it either dead or dying. He had to get in. Even his thoughts were working with him for once.

“Break down the door Charlie”, they suggested, “she needs you.

He looked around the narrow hall of the complex and could not even find a fire extinguisher to batter it down. Torn up carpets aplenty, cigarette burns, graffiti covered walls and even the cliché dying neon lights creating a strobe effect. He thought about what a cool scene this would make.

It would be like a scene in some 80’s cop buddy movie. His partner would be around back and he was going in the front. He placed a cigarette in his mouth, movie cop style, and prepared to kick the door in. He even cupped his hands and raised them slightly as if he had a gun.

A quick glance to the left, another to the right, and his full force met the door right above the doorknob. It was a perfectly placed hit. Rockford would be proud, only the door did not budge. It seemed so much easier in the movies.

He wasn’t sure, but it almost looked like the door flexed, taunting him. Why are even inanimate objects not working with him today? All he wanted to do was find out if he was a killer or not. His mind seemed to know, but it wasn’t sharing with him. He knew he was many things, but never thought he was a killer.

“Anyone’s a killer Charlie, it’s all about circumstance”.

He rested against the door and lit his cigarette. Ten minutes. It always took him ten minutes to smokes a cigarette and it was always peace for him. He could slow down and even his sadistic self-hating thoughts could not gang up on him while the nicotine overtook his synapses. It was a one on one for the next ten minutes and he was going to get some answers.

“I want to know who I killed” he decided to start off directly. He was never one who could take direct interrogation and he was hoping his subconscious shared his weakness.

“Your wife Charlie, you killed your wife.”

“I would never kill Dana.”
“You haven’t” his original thought said full of mocking confidence, “yet. You killed your wife Charlie. You killed Michelle.”

“Holy Christ!”

The cigarette fell from his lips, falling into his crotch. His shock was such that he did not notice.


Serena Joy said...

Oh, my, my -- I'd say Charlie's in some pretty deep stuff. I'm not sure where you're headed with this, Kanrei -- short story, novella, novel, etc. -- but it has a nice dark feel to it.

kanrei said...

Neither am I serena. I am kind of going for serial right now. Gonna see how far I can take it. I have a vague idea, but the story has changed on me twice already. I think I am Charlie and this story is his thoughts. We just don't see eye to eye and the story is going to win.

missouri-lisa said...

Am I the only one getting the creeps here??

Great job,'re spookin' me!!!

Gal said...

Hi Kan,

Now that I've gotten over my initial impatience, I'm starting to like the serial format of this story. Except for the subject matter (!), it reminds me of being in grade school when the teacher would read us a chapter a day (from the whatever book we were reading) right after lunch and recess. Sometimes on a Monday morning when I didn't feel like going to school, I'd say to myself, "Don't you want to find out what happened to X?" Also with the serial format, the story can start to creep into your daily thoughts more. If I see someone fiddling with their lighter, I think of Charlie and start to wonder about the secret life the owner. Hmm, that reminds me of a poem I like:

A Secret Life

Why you need to have one
is not much more mysterious than
why you don't say what you think
at the birth of an ugly baby.
Or, you've just made love
and feel you'd rather have been
in a dark booth where your partner
was nodding, whispering yes, yes,
you're brilliant. The secret life
begins early, is kept alive
by all that's unpopular
in you, all that you know
a Baptist, say, or some other
accountant would object to.
It becomes what you'd most protect
if the government said you can protect
one thing, all else is ours.
When you write late at night
it's like a small fire
in a clearing, it's what
radiates and what can hurt
if you get too close to it.
It's why your silence is a kind of truth.
Even when you speak to your best friend,
the one who'll never betray you,
you always leave out one thing;
a secret life is that important.

—Stephen Dunn