This is ridiculous.
No actually, maybe not. With the way this night has been going, I suppose something had to give. I’d have to be an idiot to expect anything “normal’ to happen. Yvette’s dead, I did not leave the room and I saw no harm in getting it on with a whore.
Yeah, seems just about as “normal” as I’m going to get.Now this!I am staring into the barrel of the gun. My heart’s beating as fast as it would if I’d just completed a marathon of some sort. Oh yeah, and I’ve gone flaccid. Nice to know things in that department are working as they should.
The brown body that was intertwined with mine is still. She’s not dead, thankfully, but she might as well be. This night seems to have it in for me. There’s a moment of awkwardness. We are staring at the cop, she’s staring back at us. I can’t quite make out the expression on her face. It’s like anger and shock had a kid and dumped it on her face.
I notice the prostitute is not breathing as hard as she should be. There’s a certain calm. She’s not frightened. She damn well should be, but she isn’t.
Not a word is spoken. At first.
Then, “Officer, you are infringing on my privacy”
It’s kind of a lame thing to say, really, but desperate times call for desperate measures. It’s not like there’s a phrase book you can borrow from when faced with such dilemmas.
“Shut the hell up! Don’t speak until I tell you to!” The way she spits out the words, it’s a wonder no one gets hurt from the sheer force alone. That couldn’t have played out differently.
What did I expect?
“Sorry, sir. Please go on with your business, and might I add sir, that is quite a delightful piece of flesh you’re pounding. And let me just say, sir, that the Lord clearly gave you more than the rest. That’s all sir. Once again, do accept my humble apologies. I will be on my way now.”
I look at the prostitute only that I’m not really looking at her. If that makes sense.
My mind’s not really here. It’s retreated to a place way back when. A time when things were a little less complicated.
When Yvette was still alive.Â
Yvette and I crossed paths a number of times after the initial meeting at the church. The feelings I felt for her refused to go away. We’d engage in small talk a couple of times. Our days back in school, how we never spoke. Stuff like that. Reliving our history or walking down memory lane together. Just conversation upon conversation that I hoped would last longer if only to have her for a while. It never did. The conversation ended almost as fast as it had started.
Â Like dancing to a one minute track.Â
The story going around was that she was dating one of the youth counselors within the church. Word going around was that they were engaged. I was happy for her. No, actually I wasn’t. I was jealous. You know how it is, your past comes haunting you and carries with it some extra baggage.
Shapely baggage. Baggage you’d like to hold, but can’t because someone else is in the picture.
Â It’s something of a bitch.
The truth hits you like a crate of brick; you lost one. Move on.
Except, in this case, I hadn’t. Sometime during the back and forth exchanges we’d have, I gathered the balls to throw in some flirting. She was game. I figured it might have been pre-marital jitters. Or maybe something deep within wasn’t ready to accept the fact that she was going to be with one guy for the rest of her life. So she figured she’d have some fun.
One last time.
The problem, if I could call it that, is that it wasn’t me she was having the fun with. She was gorgeous, so it came as no surprise that there were others hoping to be noticed. And even more hoping that they’d get more than just a moments notice. It was messed up. Like I was loading the gun that would shoot me.
Â Okay, that’s a bit selfish.
Shoot me and her beau.
Â I let it slide for a while, she wasn’t mine after all. I couldn’t make any demands. I stewed in two pots of jealousy. Envying the guys she’d chosen over me for her “fun’ and loathing her “intended’.Â
I snap back to the here and now. The cop seems to be going through an internal debate. Probably trying to figure out what to charge us with.
Scratch that. Charge me with.
“Idle and disorderly” behavior?
Well, that would suit me just fine. In fact, I’d appreciate it if that’s all I was charged with.
All she has to do is lead us out of here now and throw us in a cell. Why is she taking her damn time?Â Then the shit hits the fan.Â Her gaze turns to the bathroom door. So much for the “idle and disorderly” charge. Her eyes seem to light up at the sight… the site? Whatever.
She’s excited. Probably going to get a promotion for this. A murderer, a prostitute and a body. Oh my!
Someone got lucky tonight!
I want to speak, but I can’t. Words fail me. I feel weak. Like I have resigned myself to my fate without even trying to put up a fight. She walks over and cuffs the prostitute and me. To each other. Isn’t that just kinky.Â
I watch as she makes her way to the bathroom door. I can barely breathe. Then a strange thing happens. I find my voice.Â
“You have no right to be here”
Then I gamble, “Do you know who I am?” It doesn’t work. She makes her way to the bathroom and opens the door.
You know how everyone says your life flashes past you in black and white at the end of it all. They lie. Nothing happens. You get a lump in your throat and get this odd urge to soil yourself and then you reconsider because there are two ladies in the room and you’d look dumb. And smell bad.
After what seems like forever, the detective looks back at us. She seems somewhatÂ unfazed. Excited even.
What is this bitch’s malfunction?Â
The prostitute is frightened. It is the first time she has noticed the bathroom. I wonder what’s going on underneath the surface, what she’s thinking. “I just â€˜did’ a killer!’
I wonder if there’s an extra charge for that.Â
I realize I should be saying something, “I can explain that…”
Who am I kidding?Â I wonder whether I can cut a deal with this cop. Everyone has a price.
I hear sirens in the distance. Sounds like the fat lady has sung.Â
The cop seems a little vexed. She shuts the door to the bathroom and the gun goes back to its original position. Aiming at me.Â
Cops enter the room. Three of them. They look at us with mild amusement. We’re naked. It’s expected.Â
One of the cops suggests that we get separate handcuffs while cracking some weak joke about the budget cuts not being THAT severe.
The female cop reaches over and uncuffs me and cuffs the prostitute’s hands together.Â That’s pretty dumb. If I was of the criminal persuasion, this would be the break I’d need.
But I’m not, and I think it shows. I hope.
“Me I wasn’t responsible…” the prostitute begins; she’s cut short by a slap from the female cop.Â
“Shut Up! Speak only when you’re spoken to!”
Nice to know someone else is having a bad night. She was probably going to profess her innocence. Say she wasn’t responsible for the bathroom occupant. The detective’s slap saved me, but for how long?Â Then the lights go out.Â One of the cops says something about “load shedding’.
I hear the first cop tell the prostitute to go with her.
Another set of hands reaches out for mine with cuffs.Â Then I hear the sound of breaking glass. Followed by what sounds like gunshots. The cops return with rounds of their own.
I hear one of them shout out “Get Down.”
I don’t have to be told twice.
There are a couple more.Â
Then the prostitute screams.
And thenÂ a thud as a body falls.Â