Sunday, 6 April 2014

"Kid Store" excerpt from Further Out

     Inside Erin’s fridge is a Tupperware container half full of gasoline-polystyrene gel, mixed for her animal rescue operations, but transferrable to other situations. She tears off a hunk, plops it into a bread bag, and packs it, along with some matches, in her shoulder bag.
     As she scuttles through the alleyways past midnight, all is quiet except for the odd scrape of feet on gravel. Other miscreants out on nefarious errands, no doubt. She approaches his place from the back, nestles the glob of gel against his garage, then, crouching into the fence for wind break, strikes and tosses matches until one catches fuel to set the structure ablaze.
     Fire is an immediate pay-off. Back home she curls, toasty, into a bed of cats.
     Two nights later, bolstered and impatient, she decides to take a leap, cautious increments be damned.
     Utensils in hand, she wears the familiar path to his back gate where no dog is his best friend. Just a chain link, a popped basement window, and she’s in. Street lights outline stairs, a door leading into a dingy livingroom, its heavy curtains drawn. What’s he hiding? As if she didn’t know. She passes through the bedroom doorway, starting to feel him out in a frenzy, feral claws digging earth for bone. And when they finally connect, she is lost and found. Is it fever that wets her hands?
     When the cops arrive (alerted by who?), they have to drag her, kicking-feet-first out of a closet she doesn’t remember crawling into. Enraged, Erin spits in the face of the nearest one.
     “I’m diseased and now you are too.”
     The older cop leverages behind her, pulling her wrists together and forcing on cuffs as the now-diseased cop puts her legs in a choke hold. In this way they haul her out, body thrashing against the immanent fact of being reeled in. 
     Having neutralized her in the squad car, rookie goes back in. She waits as no bodies are brought out and no yellow tape is applied. There must be a forensics crew that does this. She doesn’t really know how it works, not being a fan of cop shows.
     “What a mess," rookie says, getting back into the car. Then, in a lower voice: “Hey, do you think she was telling the truth . . . about being sick? Should I get myself checked out?”
     “Guess you better. We’ll get her a work-up too when we get to the hospital.”
 posted by Aleks

No comments:

Post a Comment