Wednesday, October 19, 2011
SEEING BLUE, an exclusive story by Paul D. Brazill!
Quite some time ago, back when THE BASTARD HAND first came out, I did a guest post over at Paul Brazill's blog, You Would Say That, Wouldn't You? and I managed to coerce him into doing an all-original story here at Psycho-Noir whenever he had the time.
Well, time is scarce for Mr. Brazill. He's a hard-work drivin' man. We waited a while for this story from Paul, but damn... I'll think you'll find it was worth the wait.
It's my pleasure to give to you an all-new, never-before seen short story from Paul Brazill...
Paul D Brazill
First, it all turns red. And then it goes black for a very long time. After that, everything is a searing white. Until I see Blue.
Then everything hurts. Everything.
Blue reaches into a rusty tool box. Takes out a hammer. Snorts some Charlie from the window ledge. Pops a duck egg. And walks toward me.
Now, the room is a muddy brown. Early evening or late morning. An old transistor radio on the mantelpiece leaks out hits of the ‘80s.
I can make out Blue Dobson’s massive frame in the corner of the room. He is naked. His jigsaw of tattoos exposed. His long red hair tied back in a ponytail.
He’s doing press ups. And repeating a mantra, ‘Fuckemall, Fucke em all, Fuckemall, Fuck em all.’
And then I start to panic. I try to drag myself free from the rocking chair but I’m still strapped in. A pool of piss below me, splashed with blood. I scream but my jaw is broken and the movement hurts so much that once again it all fades to black.
Some people never learn from their mistakes. And I suppose I’m one of those people.
Just over a year ago, Natalie, my girlfriend, got a job as a receptionist at the Health Centre. After a few drinks she liked to unburden herself. Tell me all the sob stories she heard all day. It was the old dears she usually felt the most sorry for. Living alone. Abandoned by their family.
I usually zoned out; I never had a thing for other people’s problems. But when she mentioned that Mrs. Barker had just died, I had an idea. Later that night, I sneaked into Mrs. Barker’s house and looked for whatever loot I could find. I got a decent wad of cash and jewelry, too.
I paid more attention to Natalie after that.
But about a fortnight ago, I was almost caught by a neighbor who’d stopped crying crocodile tears and obviously had the same idea as me. I saw him rummaging under the bed, fat arse in the air. I scarpered pretty sharpish.
So, I thought I’d leave it a bit.
And then Natalie mentioned that Mrs. Dobson had snuffed it. She was the grandmother of Blue Dobson, who had once committed a string of post office robberies and killed three people while he was on the run. Blue was eventually caught and given two life sentences but the loot from the robberies was never recovered. This seemed like a window of opportunity well worth jumping through.
I wasn’t to know that Blue had escaped from prison when he’d been notified of his nan’s death. That he’d go back to her home.
Sunlight peeks through the lace curtains. Blue is in the corner of the room, gurgling, puking, grasping his heart with his baseball mitt of a hand. After some time, he stops moving. As the day becomes brighter, it becomes clear that he’s croaked. Brown bread. Heart attack, maybe. Overdose. Whatever.
I wriggle around enough to topple the rocking chair over. It hurts. It hurts so much that I black out again. When I come to, I struggle free from the shattered chair. Crawl over to Blue.
And the suitcase full of money. My jaw hurts as I grin. I untie my ankles. Get to my feet.
The sun has risen over the tower blocks. The day is bright. The skies are blue. And the copper on the balcony, pointing a gun at me, smiles.
© Paul D Brazill 2011