A Night To Remember

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/32539933″ params=”color=757575&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

All my friends and family members say I smile too much when I try to explain what happened. A few leaves were stuck in her hair, she was naked, she was ashamed, she was afraid—I was unchained, the hunger of a lion was written on my face. Jonathan was around too, quiet and stealth like in his room, listening to everything, cat-like on tip toes with his face pressed against his room window and half-hidden by the curtain, his narrow back facing his race-car bed.

image (5)A light breeze blew one of the dry leaves from out her hair, sending it swirling towards the sky; the stars were all out, every last one of them, an infinity of dancing white light. On any other night she would have been able to point out Orion’s Belt with no difficulty but tonight she mostly watched me.

“Where is your watch?” I said.

“Don’t do this!” she said.

My left fist clenched, my teeth gnashed, I was alive. She crossed her arms more tightly around her chest and shrunk into herself.

“Where is your watch?” I said again.

“Please, Juan! Just stop it! Please!”

I smiled.

Goose bumps were on her skin as she trembled, I could see her breath too. I took my eye off her for a bit and looked over into Mr. Watson’s yard, not one of his trees had leaves on them. Then I peeked into Miss Ivy’s yard for a bit and all her trees were either a rich yellow or fiery red. I stared into Miss Ivy’s yard longer than I stared into Mr. Watson’s. I didn’t like Miss Ivy but I hated Mr. Watson.

A few dry branches cracked when she tried to run, I quickly gave her my full attention again. And raised my hand, she stopped, frozen again by the sight of shinning steal. She opened her mouth as if she were about to speak and I waited a good 10 seconds to see if she would but all she did was fall on her knees, panting and wheezing. Blood rushed through my body like never before. My trigger finger twitched.

“Where’s your watch?” I said.

“At least let me help Ryan!” She finally said still trembling, crying, her frosty breath as laboured as ever.

She stared beyond me at the figure slumped over in the hallway, it still had breath, though it moaned a lot. I waved her attention back with what was in my hand.

“Where’s your watch?” I said.

“I don’t know,”

“Damn right you don’t know because I have it! I found it under the benches at the park”

More tears rolled down her cheeks.

“I’m sorry,” she said.

“It’s too late.”

“Please!” She said. Her voice cracked.

“It’s a cold world; remember when you told me that?” I said.

“Please,” she said again. Her voice cracked some more.

tumblr_neg1fvmygT1sf70p0o1_500tumblr_neg1fvmygT1sf70p0o1_500tumblr_neg1fvmygT1sf70p0o1_500

I took a step back up the porches steps, stripping some white paint off the cedar whose sappy scent rose through the snow and burned my nose. I could feel the coarseness of the steps under my boots and it made me hate her even more. My steps were like that too, broken here and there with the paint stripping for as long as I can remember. In fact her entire house was like mine, small, broken down but comfortable enough for a working class family. Her house was right next to mine, so I had expected more from her, she should have understood.

“Do you hate me as much as I hate you now?” I asked.

“No, Juan! You’re my friend!” She was still trembling.

“Stop lying!” I tried to resist the mounting pressure of tears and couldn’t.

“I’m not lying!” She was crying too.

“Why did you let them…”

“I’m…”

“Sorry? You’re sorry now? Were you sorry when all those pictures came out? You weren’t sorry when he locked me in my locker! You weren’t sorry when he and his friends made me bleed!”

“I…I didn’t know.”

“Shut the fuck up. You laughed with them, you found all of it funny, you loved it. You weren’t sorry!”

Her right arm fell first then her whole body, the person on the floor inside the house started to moan more when she fell.

“Shut up, Ryan!” I said.

The moaning stopped. I smiled then laughed until my stomach hurt, then I dried my tears.

The next day when the police asked if all this took place because of the bullying, I said “yes and no.” And when they asked if I would do it again, I said “absolutely!”

 

by Mark Hutchinson

Featuring artwork from Wellington Sanipe!

etre

We are a creative hub urging you to fall in love with the fullness of who you are, a platform for introspection through all types of artistry. In essence, then, we press towards capturing the shared experience of the human condition with the appropriate blend of charm and raw honesty, offering ourselves and our subscribers a new way to conceive of and appreciate the richness of life, including even its tragedies.