Merry Christmas, Mr. Lorenz (Part VII)

“I can’t believe they granted you a conjugal room,” Susan said.

Bill was busy setting the candle light and pouring wine. “And they gave me alcohol too,” he replied, “maybe things aren’t so bad.”

Susan pulled out a chair, sat down, and looked him square in the eye. “I’m not having sex with you, Bill,” she said, “besides, I’m already seeing someone.”

“Why didn’t you tell me this before?”

“Because it’s John.”

Bill looked down at the ground and shook his head. “Goddamn it,” he uttered.

“There was no good way to tell you,” Susan said.

Bill walked over to the window then glanced at the small Christmas tree in the corner. “Well Merry Christmas to me,” he replied.

“But I did bring you a gift,” Susan said as she dug through her bag. She pulled out a picture of him and his grandfather at Mount Hood some 15 years earlier. “I know that this was the last picture of your grandpa before he passed,” she continued.

Bill took the photograph and turned his back on Susan. He was silent as he recalled the memory of that day. After several awkward seconds, Bill spoke up. “I haven’t seen this picture since the day it was taken.”

Susan said nothing.

Then Bill turned around. “Why John?” he asked. “Don’t you two have a history? Isn’t the government watching you two like a hawk?”

“Maybe,” she replied, “but I don’t care. I think we always had feelings for each other.”

“But you guys aren’t up to the same old shit again? You just got out of prison for Christ sake!”

“I don’t think I should discuss this with you right now.”

“You are! Fuck. I hope they don’t have this room bugged!”

Susan threw up her arms. “Let’s drop it,” she yelled, “I was hoping this would be a happy visit. But obviously you’re not mature enough for this conversation.”

Bill began drinking directly from the wine bottle. “I guess not,” he replied.

The two uttered nothing for a few minutes. Finally, Susan stood up. “I don’t think I’ll be coming back,” she said, “you seeing me probably isn’t good for your rehabilitation.”

Bill didn’t reply.

“I wish you luck in the future,” she continued, “when you’re released, if you know what’s good for you, please don’t reach out to me. Do you understand?”

He nodded.

Susan knocked, then a prison guard unlocked the door and let her out. Before she exited, she turned around. “Merry Christmas, Bill,” she said, then departed.

Bill held the bottle of wine in one hand, and the photograph in the other. Then the prison guard stepped in the room. “You still have access to this room for a few more hours,” the guard said, “do you wish to stay here?”

“No,” Bill replied, “please take me back to the cell.”

TO BE CONTINUED…

Flashback: A Short Biography

So here it is, the post that started it all. It was originally published in early August of 2021.

As the new year approaches, I just want to reflect on how I’ve changed as a person and as a writer. Which really isn’t a whole lot when you think about it.

So onto 2023! Have a Happy New Years and thank you to everyone who has followed me on this journey.

I love you 😘

They say Rome wasn’t built in a day.

They say you can’t count your chickens before they hatch.

They say you can’t shit where you eat.

They say I should seek therapy because everyone’s worried about me.

They say I have a drinking problem and that I shouldn’t mix downers with downers.

They say I have crippling debt and that I am months away from homelessness 

Hi I’m James. And maybe they’re right. What do I know? Well let me tell you a little about myself.

I was born outside of a Denny’s in Scottsbluff, Nebraska in either late 1979 or 1981 depending on who you believe. I attended Norhwestern on an athletic scholarship, but was suspended for PED usage, and, in the words of the university, “cockfighting”. 

So I hit the road. I hit up every strip club and drug den from Baton Rouge to New Orleans. I learned a lot about myself on that trip. I learned that sometimes growing up means putting your pants on one leg at a time. Sometimes it’s about changing your pants. Sometimes your pants just aren’t long enough and you accidentally expose your wiener.

But the most important thing in life is this: show up to court on time and pay all of your fines.

So I actually know quite a lot. And if you stick around, you might learn something too.

So stay tuned my friends….

Merry Christmas, Mr. Lorenz (Part II)

“Forget it, Bill,” Susan said, “I’ve consulted with attorney after attorney and they’ve all said the same thing. Just play ball, take the treatment, and you’ll be released. The Reformed Department of Corrections will provide you with a job and assistance once when you’re released. And when you’re deemed fully rehabilitated, your criminal record will be expunged. It’s not like it once was.”

This was the first visit Susan paid to Bill in some months. The guards stood back while the two shared a table in the prison cafeteria. “That’s not the point,” Bill replied, “I’m being treated as a common criminal, which I’m not. What are they saying about me on the outside?”

Susan said nothing.

“That bad, huh?” Bill chuckled, “What happened to the world, Susan? Are we not allowed to be human anymore? This is everything we fought against!”

“We lost, Bill,” Susan said, “Sure it has taken time getting used to that. But I survived the rehabilitation process and things aren’t so bad on the outside. Some people know who I am and the things I’ve done, but everyone trusts the process. It’s like it doesn’t matter. I’m fully reintegrated.”

“You sold out, in other words.”

“Don’t be stupid, Bill.”

After a moment of awkward silence, Bill reached across the table and placed his hand on top of hers. “Did we ever fuck?” he asked.

Susan gave out a throaty laugh. “We got drunk and fooled around once or twice,” she said.

“Why didn’t we ever get together?”

“It would have never worked.”

“I know,” Bill lamented, “you were always too smart for me.”

“You were always preoccupied.”

“Now I’m gonna spend the rest of my life here. My loss.”

Susan stared into his eyes for a few moments while she clasped his hand. Finally, she stood up and straightened herself out. “I handed the package you requested off to the guards,” she said, “Goodbye, Bill.”

Bill exhaled. “So long, Susan.”

He watched her walk out through the gates and out of his life. Then the guards escorted him back to the cell.

Minutes later, Junior, the senior day shift guard, walked up to Bill’s door. “Good news Bill,” Junior said as he handed him Susan’s package, “I don’t know what you want with all this leather, but it cleared security. Because you’re not on suicide watch, it was approved by Dr. Effington. Of course, it can’t leave this cell. You will be checked each time.”

“Understood, Junior. Thank you.”

TO BE CONTINUED…

Jack Hardcock: The Legend Continues (Part XII)

“Care for a Fruit Roll-up?” I asked Layla. I was riding in the passenger seat while she was driving down I-10. We we’re leaving California for good.

“No,” she simply replied.

“More for me then.”

We didn’t say much. Before we left, I loaded Donovan’s dead body into the trunk. The two of us were still covered in his blood.

“I’ve been wondering, Layla,” I said, “have you gave any thought to what I told you back there at the strip club?”

“The fuck are you talking about now?”

“You know…about me being madly in love with you, God sending you to me, and all that jazz…”

Layla then swerved off to the shoulder and slammed on the brakes. The sudden stoppage made me spit out my Fruit Rollup.

“Get out,” she demanded.

“But why?”

“I’ve known you for maybe four hours and you’re already the craziest son of a bitch I’ve met.”

“Layla, I’m just asking you a question. I have feelings, ya know? And you’re not being very receptive to them!”

“I’ve got my boyfriend’s dead body in the trunk, and you want to talk about FEELINGS? Who do you think I am? Your mother? Your therapist? Fuck you AND your feelings!”

“But…but…I know that God…”

“You think that God is on your side?” Layla interrupted. “Then good for you buddy! Maybe he’ll give you a ride cuz I certainly won’t! Now get out of MY car!”

I stepped out of the vehicle stunned. But before I shut the door, I leaned forward to say one more thing. “Layla, I just want to say that I will always love…,” but she squealed the tires, with the sudden force shutting the door closed, then off she went…going 9-0, eastbound down I-10.

Other than the blood soaked clothes on my back, I had nothing. The sun was just dawning over the desert horizon.

About five miles down the road was a lone gas station. I walked inside, grabbed a biscuit, and tossed it into the microwave. Then I walked up to the station attendant.

“Gotta take a shit,” I said.

“Bathroom’s down the hall.”

While glancing through a porno mag while sitting on the toilet (I must’ve been in Nevada), I heard a commotion outside. I quickly wiped my ass and stepped out of the bathroom. The attendant was being held at gunpoint by a couple of bikers. One of them was holding a .38 special.

Before they noticed me, I grabbed my biscuit from the microwave. “You guys should really try the food here,” I said as I chewed on the bread.

The biker with the .38 turned his weapon on me. “Give us your money too, pal!” he ordered.

So I took out my wallet and pulled out a $5 bill. “I’ll tell you what,” I said, “I’ll make you a deal: you give me that .38 and I’ll give you this $5 bill.”

“Or else what?” the biker chuckled.

I took another bite of the biscuit. “Welp,” I wondered aloud, “then I hope you’ve accepted Jesus into your life. Cuz you’re about to meet him.”

The two bikers nervously cackled while sweat poured down their faces. I stared them down while continuing to eat the biscuit. Finally one of them looked over to the other. “Can you believe this jackass?” he asked.

Then I threw the rock hard biscuit into his face, wrestled the .38 out of his hands, and shot dead the other biker. With the last thief on the ground and my knee to his throat, I pointed the .38 between his eyes. “I’ve already sent two people to hell today: Donovan McNabb and your friend here. Shall I make it a third?” I asked him.

The biker cried as he shook his head ‘no’.

“Then accept Jesus in your life,” I said.

“I accept! I ACCEPT!” he yelled.

“Then I’ll see you in heaven,” I replied. I pulled the trigger then bits of skull and brain matter went all over the floor.

I stood up straight and secured the .38 in the front of my pants. Then I looked over to the attendant. “Sorry for messing up your floor,” I said, “and for clogging your toilet.”

THE END.

JACK HARDCOCK WILL RETURN

Jack Hardcock: The Legend Continues (Part X)

“I don’t know what you want from me, mister,” Layla Huffington said from behind the one-way mirror, “so you DON’T want me to take my clothes off?”

“No,” I replied, “I want to preserve your dignity.”

I finally gathered the courage to look at Layla. She was everything that I had hoped for. God was speaking to me at that very moment. He was telling me that it wasn’t a sin to gaze upon her; she was already mine.

“Look, if you just want to talk,” Layla said, “I can just meet you at the bar. It’ll cost you, of course, but at least I’ll be able to see your face.”

“I’m afraid I can’t do that,” I said.

“Why not?”

I didn’t know how to reply. So there was a long silence then the curtains fell in front of the mirror. I dropped another quarter in the slot and they opened again.

“You must have a lot of quarters,” Layla said, “you’ve been here for two hours and told me almost nothing. Sure, not having to take my clothes off makes things easy. But it’s been really boring. So please, say something.”

I figured it was time to come clean. After all, it was costing her mother thousands of dollars a day for me to find her. So I took a deep breath and considered my words.

“Layla, I can’t get you out of my mind,” I explained, “I’m a lonely man. But that’s the cost of being a blunt instrument of the Lord. Yet I’ve been sent on a mission to find you and return you to your family. But I can’t shake the feeling that God has finally smiled upon me and said ‘it is not good for man to be alone.’ So he delivered you to me.”

Just as I had feared, a look of puzzlement fell over Layla’s face. “Excuse me?” she laughed, “Is this a joke?”

“This is certainly not a joke,” I replied.

“Look, I don’t know who the fuck you are! And my family? Those abusive fucks? They can go to hell! I’ve spent my whole life trying to get away from them and there’s no way I’m going back!”

“Layla, listen to me…,” I said. I was beginning to panic. “Maybe you’re right,” I continued, “maybe we should meet face to face at the bar…”

“Like hell we are!” she interrupted, “you stay away from me!”

Layla pressed a panic button. The lights went out and the curtains closed. I began pounding on the glass. “Layla!” I yelled.

Two large bouncers stepped into the tiny room. “Sir, you need to leave,” one of them ordered as he laid his hand on my shoulder. Without my .38 special, I had to rely on my physical prowess to overpower the men. So I utilized my signature move: a kick to the scrotum so hard that it induced vomiting.

As the bouncers barfed all over the floor, I took one of their taser guns. Then I roundhouse kicked the one-way mirror and the glass came crashing down.

TO BE CONTINUED…

Untitled (Part XII)

“So you guys accidentally killed Don Lemon, placed his body in his 4-cylinder Honda CRV with the intention of sinking it in the river to hide his body? But before you two could do that, Harvey Whinestine rammed into the Honda and made it look like vehicular manslaughter?” Patricia asked Eric after court.

“Sure did!” he said.

After Harvey Whinestine was found guilty of killing Don Lemon, Eric and Patricia immediately asked the same judge to marry them in the courthouse. Along with Kenny, the three of them returned to Patricia’s house to celebrate.

“Man we got lucky,” Eric said.

“Damn right buddy!” Kenny replied.

“I think you mean ‘Dad’”

“Ah shit, you’re right…Dad!”

Despite being three years younger than Kenny and a half a foot shorter, Eric playfully put his stepson in a headlock and gave him a noogie. While the two men horsed around, Patricia came downstairs to join in the festivities.

“Mom,” Kenny said, “I finally feel like we’re a family again. I love you.”

“I love you too, son,” Patricia replied. “I just want to say that I’m thankful for the two men in my life. I feel like I’ve been given a second chance at life, so I’m proud to announce that I am two weeks sober.”

“But why?” Eric asked. “With Harvey Whinestine going to prison, you’re now a bank president. We’re also married, Kenny and I started a car detailing business, and we just got away with murder! So Fuck that sobriety shit, we’re untouchable!”

“Hmm, I didn’t think of it that way,” she replied, then went to the bar and started drinking directly from the tequila bottle.

***

Harvey Whinestine was later sentenced to 20 years in prison. Months later, he was released on appeal due to a shoddy police investigation. All evidence was later incinerated.

Eric and Kenny were never regarded as suspects for their role in Don Lemon’s death.

Patricia and Eric divorced three months later.

The grieving, pregnant widow of Don Lemon was left a single parent and never remarried.

THE END

“Untitled” (Part VII, i think)

Kenny’s enormous hands engulfed Eric’s as they greeted one another. “How do you know my mom?” asked Kenny.

Intimidated by such a fine male specimen, Eric began to stutter. “Uhh, uhh, I’m just here to fix the plumbing,” he replied.

“Eric is your cousin,” interrupted Patricia, “you know my sister that I haven’t spoken to in 40 years? Eric’s her son.”

“Is that so?” replied a skeptical Kenny. “Well it’s certainly nice of my mother to have taken her nephew in. She has shown you more compassion than she’s shown me these last few years.”

“Eric, will you excuse us?” asked Patricia.

“Certainly,” said Eric after sensing the awkwardness. He speedily left the room. “You have a lot of goddamn nerve,” Patricia told her son.

“I HAVE a lot of nerve?” said Kenny. “YOU’RE the drunk doctor that somehow killed a patient during a routine colonoscopy. YOU’RE the alcoholic wife that sucked and fucked the entire neighborhood. And it doesn’t appear that you’ve changed your ways either! Empty vodka bottles are everywhere and now it seems like you’re into going to GameStop and picking up younger guys!”

“Don’t give me that shit!” replied Patricia. “Your father was just as guilty as me, yet you chose to side with him!”

“You burned the goddamn house down MOM! What did you expect me to do after you tried to kill us?!”

Patricia covered her face with her hands. “You know that was an accident, Kenny,” she said. “How many times do you want me to say sorry?”

“Jesus Christ,” replied Kenny. He grabbed one of the numerous liquor bottles from the cabinet and poured a drink.

After several moments of silence, Patricia spoke up. “So what do you want from me?”

Kenny looked down at his glass. “I’ve been let go from another job,” he said. “Camila left me and now I can’t pay rent. So I’m coming home, Ma.”

***

That night, after another nasty fuck session, Patricia rolled over alone while Eric laid there in bed staring at the ceiling. Then a strange thought occurred to him: something was bothering her. Should he try to actually talk to her?

Eric tapped her on the shoulder. “Kenny seems like a pretty cool guy. Is he moving in?” he asked.

Though slightly annoyed, Patricia realized that this was Eric’s awkward attempt at conversation. She rolled over to look him in the eye. “Yes,” she said, “he’s fallen into hard times and I’m helping him out.”

“I guess you two haven’t always gotten along, huh?”

“No.”

“Do you care to talk about it?”

“No really.”

“Should I leave?”

Patricia didn’t know what it was about this stupid idiot lying in bed with her. From the outside, it would appear that they had nothing in common. But for this brief moment, this odd couple both knew there was something, however intangible, between them.

She placed her hand on Eric’s cheek to comfort him. “Just stay out of the way,” she said.

TO BE CONTINUED…

“Untitled” (Part VI)

“You don’t have to wear a condom, Eric,” Patricia said after getting rammed into next Tuesday. “I’m 60 years old. I’ve had a hysterectomy. I won’t be getting pregnant anytime soon.”

“I know that,” replied Eric (actually he had never heard the word hysterectomy), “I only wear one to to numb the feeling a bit. Because of that spinal injury, a slight change in weather makes me bust my pants. Besides, it’s still good protection from STDs”

“Yeah, with you, I’m DEFINITELY not worried about that,” Patricia said.

After their romantic pillow talk, Patricia sat up nude in bed and pulled out a pint of vodka. “Care for some?” she asked Eric.

“No thanks, that stuff dulls the senses,” he replied. “I have to be in tip top shape when I go live for Fortnite.”

“You know that shit’s for babies, right?”

“I ain’t a baby! I’m 33!”

“Whatever dude,” Patricia said as she pounded the pint, “do you even have a job?”

“What’s the point?!” screamed Eric. “The government’s just gonna tax half my check anyway! Besides, are you ever SOBER?”

“How fucking dare you!”

Passion was instantly reignited in the pair as they flung their naked bodies at one another in a frenzied, sexual fury. “You’re a sick, pathetic, loser!” Patricia orgasmically screamed. “And you’re a drunken spinster!” replied an equally euphoric Eric. Finally this inexplicable fervor came to an explosive climax and the two laid in bed, covered from head to toe in each other’s bodily fluids.

It was a disgusting sight.

“What just happened?” Patricia asked as she tried to catch her breath.

Eric had no answer.

Then, after several moments, a still befuddled Eric sat up. “I gotta get to the Xbox,” he said, then climbed out of bed.

Patricia just laid there in her own sweat, unable to make sense of anything. Then, while lost in her thoughts, there was a knock on the front door. She threw on her robe and took a quick glance in the mirror before rushing down stairs.

“What does this jackass want?” Patricia thought to herself. Then her jaw dropped when she opened the door.

“Hello Mom,” the visitor said.

TO BE CONTINUED…

“Untitled” (part v)

Patricia put down her cocktail and slammed her hands on the table. “Goddamnit!” she yelled, “Who the hell is knocking on my door?!”

She swung the front door open to find Eric just standing around with his mouth agape like a fool. “Oh it’s you,” Patricia said, “I just woke up! What kind of jackass knocks on my door at this hour?!”

Eric looked at his watch. “It’s 2:30 pm,” he replied.

“You’re goddamn right it is! What the hell do you want?”

“Mom kicked me out of the house. I’m just gonna crash here.”

“Huh? What?!” exclaimed Patricia. She then leaned forward and barfed all over potted plants on the front porch.

“If this is a bad time, I can come back later,” said Eric.

“No no,” Patricia replied while wiping vomit from her mouth, “come inside, we’ll work this out.”

She was afraid Eric was going to return after he informed her of his feelings. Despite being 30 years old, he seemed to innocent in the ways of the world; she didn’t want him reading too much into their sexual encounter.

“Look,” she explained, “it was a mistake to give you that handjob. As a trained doctor, that was unprofessional of me. But I had to determine if your spinal injuries would cause you to have unprovoked ejaculation!”

“Oh god, I think you were right,” Eric squealed as he busted in his pants. “This has been happening all week!”

Patricia shook her head. “I’m sorry if you feel like you were taken advantage of,” she said.

“Taken advantage of?” he replied. “No woman has ever touched me that way. That was the best thing that’s ever happened to me.”

Patricia was puzzled. “You mean…”

“Oh sure, sure. I’ve DEFINITELY had sex before,” Eric explained, “but a visit to the truck stop glory hole in Rockford, IL just ain’t the same thing, ya know?” Eric put down the Xbox he was hauling around and ran his fingers through his hair. “Patricia, I’ve always been an angry man,” he said as he struggled to find the right words, “but something inside me has changed. I don’t know if it was you crashing into me with your car, or holding me captive for two weeks while I recovered, your attempt at bribery, or the aforementioned handjob. But I feel like I’ve become a better person since meeting you.”

Patricia exhaled as she considered her response. Eric was handsome in his own slobbish way, she thought. She didn’t know if it was the combination of Xanax, Ambien, and alcohol flowing through her, but she was slightly moved by his little speech. Yet the truth was, just as Eric was deprived sexually, she was deprived of any emotional connection.

Plus, there was lingering guilt from the car crash.

“Alright,” Patricia said, “you can stay here. Just…”

“…anything Patricia! I’ll do anything!” happily cried Eric.

“…just stay away from my booze.”

TO BE CONTINUED…

“Untitled” (part iv)

“I fucking hate you,” Eric’s mom informed him. “You disappear for two weeks without letting me know where you were! How disrespectful of you, you piece of shit!”

“Mom, put down the booze and listen!” Eric replied. “Like I said, I got drunk at a bar, walked home, got HIT by a drunk driver, she nursed me back to health, and now we’re in love. Are you fucking stupid?”

“That’s the craziest thing I’ve ever heard!”

“There’s nothing crazy about it at all. It happens everyday!”

Eric’s mom shook her head. “Your father would be disappointed in you if he were still alive.”

“He is still alive. He just lives in Indiana!”

“Get out!” she screamed. “You’re not welcome back in this house. You’ve been nothing but a burden to me. You sleep all day, you do nothing but clog the toilet and play Xbox. And I’ve even caught you wearing my underwear! You’re a disgusting pervert!”

“Ma, I’m a man goddamnit! A MAN!“ Eric shouted. “And as the man of this household, I will not be addressed in that tone! I’m a proud libertarian and I believe in working for everything I’ve got! You’re not kicking me out! I’m unplugging my Xbox and LEAVING!”

Eric yanked the plug out of the wall, kicked the door open, and stomped his way over to Don Lemon’s house a block away. He pounded on the door until Don’s pregnant wife, Stacy, answered.

“Don’s not here, sweetheart,” she said to him.

“Oh that’s okay, I’m just gonna play Xbox and crash in your basement for awhile. Don will be cool with it.”

“Uhh, I don’t think so,” she replied as she tried to block him from entering. “Don and I have to discuss this first.”

“Darling,” Eric said, “with all due respect, Don is the man of the house and I’ve known him longer than you. So please, step aside and let a grown ass man play some goddamn Minecraft!”

Right then, Don Lemon pulled up in his 4-cylinder Honda CR-V. “Don, can you believe this shit?” Eric said to him, “your wife won’t let me through the door. Who does she think she is?”

A puzzled Don looked over to Stacy. “What’s going on here?” he asked her.

“Eric wants to….”

“Let me explain, Don,” Eric interrupted, “Ma was being a bitch, so I told her to fuck off. I came over here to crash for awhile until I can talk my girlfriend into letting me move in with her. It’s not a big deal!”

“Your girlfriend? Move in? I don’t understand…”

“Yeah, my girlfriend dude, I told you! She’s like 60 years old, but still pretty hot, you know what I’m saying? Plus she’s rich. Anyways, I’m trying not to make things weird because we’ve only known each other for two weeks, so it’s probably too early to move in together. So I’m just gonna stay in your basement until enough time passes and I can move in with her. It’s quite simple.”

“I don’t think so, Eric,” Don replied, “Stacy’s due at any moment and we’ve got enough going on in this household…”

“I see, I see…,” Eric nodded, “so I guess our friendship means nothing to you. I should have known. Stacy’s totally domesticated you. You’ll never be Enkidu to my Gilgamesh, Robin to my Batman, or Spock to my Kirk. Oh well! A real man must forge his own path anyway.”

Eric straightened himself up, ran fingers through his hair, and with the Xbox in hand, he started marching proudly down the street. Then he stopped in his tracks. “Can you drive me to my girlfriends?” he asked Don.

TO BE CONTINUED…