Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Writing Competition part 2

The bells in the courtyard are chiming as the winds assault the little house. The windows open and shut repeatedly acting as the percussionists for the evening’s performance. The leaves rustling with perfect harmony complete the quartet, while the silence between notes bring the realization that the audience is entranced and calm. The thunder and lightening pound away and break the quartet, ushering in a period of pure silence. The eye of the storm is overhead. Sinners sin under god’s watchful eye, but when he is close by, when he makes his presence known, the lay wherever they can and play dead. The hide from his gaze, as do all the animals, plants, and windows. A crash ruins the wonderful silence. Now not even god exists and we may focus on that man. The gigantic hole in the ceiling of the 2 story apartment guides us to the exact location of the vagrant: First floor, living room, right next to the television. Sitting there with a beard as his only cover for his repulsive nudity, he unveils his scarred back and buttocks and hands. He looks as if he’d been whipped by the gods themselves, on the receiving end Poseidon’s wrath, Zeus’ fury, Einstein’s wit.
The six students living in the apartment-house tip-toe down the creaky stairs, each meeting th e gaze of the others cautiously, painfully, until the final stair came and they descended unto the living room floor and before them lay their plight: A now turned over (exposing his dangler), early 20’s, man. They looked at him and he looked back at them. He appeared uninterested, while they appeared concerned. Simultaneously they all thought the same things: “Is he okay?” “Should I call an ambulance?” “How’d he get naked?” “When will the ceiling be fixed?” The storm outside disappeared from their thoughts and they all began to huddle around him, throwing questions at him, searching for cell phones to call an ambulance. He lay motionless looking each one in the eye with insouciant delight. Slowly, they all put some distance between themselves and the body that lay on their living room floor and when the ambulance came, they all made their ways, slowly, back up the creaky stairs and lay their heads on their comfy pillows and drifted back into the dream world.
Morning came and the sun shone through the tired windows and a pleasant heat bounced off of the sex faces of the residents. A knock at the door sings a simple song to the sleepers…WAKE UP! They all arise and march down as if military soldiers eager to avoid punishment by their superior. Mike is first in line and he sees that guy, that bearded guy, standing there, smiling.
“Hey, uh, how are you?” asks Mike.
“I’m doing okay.” Answers that Guy.
“Good, good…” says Mike, searching for some reason for that Guy’s return.
“…” is all the Guy offers.
Greg becomes uneasy, and impatient and blurts out “Why are you here?”
“I’m going to take a nap. The couch looks like a comfortable spot, so you guys don’t have to give up any rooms.” That Guy says as he shuffles along to the living room, smiling and unleashes his weight upon the sofa. The rest of the group gather around the sofa, observing the 165 pound man fall into a deep sleep. The snoring is so loud, the group is almost positive he is faking. Greg, begins to touch the Guy in hopes of waking him up, when Sasha, a 21 year old Bio major stops him, and says, “No, it’s fine. He’ll probably leave when he wakes up. If he doesn’t we can just tell him about how this renting situation usually works.”
“Whatever.” Utters Tim, who has been, until now, lurking in the back, silently. He moves up the stairs first and the rest soon follow, each casting glances backward as they depart the naked invader. “Why doesn’t he have any clothes on yet?” asks Mike as he too makes his way up the stairs.

It’s now 11am and the house has been quiet for 3 hours now. Yawns from the living room begin to echo repeatedly, until finally Gerald, the youngest resident at 18 years, decides to explore the area of unrest. Gerald has completely forgotten that there is a Guy in his living room, and gasps as he sees the naked statue with arms outstretched in the air and his face jumbled up in what can only be called ecstasy.
“HEY BUDDY!” says that Guy.
“Hi, uh, what’s your name anyway?” answers Gerald.
“Where the fuck is the remote man? I’ve been looking! But, I haven’t been finding! Hey do me a favor and get me some bread.”
“My bread? Well I kind of paid for it, so—“
Yeah, I figured as much. Go ahead and get it out here. Hurry up too man, I’m starving.”
Gerald, in his typical submissive fashion, fetches the bread and decides to get some peanutbutter as well. “Here you go, uh, wait, what’s your name?”
“Ha, thanks, buddy. Wait. What the fuck is this? Peanut Butter? Did I ask for peanut butter? Did I want Peanut Butter?” That Guy implores as he pitches the jar of Gerald’s favorite peanut butter at Gerald.
“um, I, HEY, I… I didn’t even have to—“ Gerald begins
“Yeah, you didn’t have to. I’m allergic to peanut butter. You’re trying to kill me bud? Well, let’s see who wins first. HA! I’m kidding bud. Don’t do that again. I’m gonna just gobble this down in here. I kind of like to eat alone, so would you, scram man?” That Guy says. Gerald is easily manipulated and is quite afraid of this man standing and 6’1, shamelessly thrusting his nakedness around with every gesture. Gerald leaves, hoping to wait for someone else to deal with this.
The weather is beautiful today, but every now and then, it behaves childishly, raining for only a few drops and then going back to a cloudless wonderland. Thunder appears, only to be replaced by an hour of nothing and then a few pieces of hail. That Guy is responsible. He likes this little town and he likes the weather here, because the weather is whatever he would like it to be. He is That Guy, god(so-to-speak) of the weather, fondler of the clouds. He is here for a reason: He was bored. He has never been on land so he decided to do it while he could, before he got wrapped up in the family business, making drops fall on occasion, stroking the Californian egos with sunshine, making deals with the other guys for favorable or disastrous skies. “Who gives a fuck?” was That Guy’s main thought throughout the day.
Throughout the day each resident passed through the living room to exit. Each resident avoided eyesight, avoided the life in the living room. That Guy reached out with all his soul to the residents. Notice. Just notice. A simple hello would do. Anything would do. He just wanted the life of a person, living with a bunch of other people. Living.
Gerald inched in from a day at the park with his friends. Once again he forgot that someone foreign would be in his living room. “I picked up some lettuce at the grocery store earlier today.It’s in the fridge but don’t touch, okay chief?” These were the first words to rain on him when he entered the hallway with the living room directly next to it. “He’s buying food for the house now?” He thought as he began to briskly walk by and make his way up the stairs.
“Hey! Get down here. I wanna show you something.” That Guy remarked. “Please don’t be youyr weiner” was all Gerald could think.
“HA! You see this scar on my finger? You know how I got that? HA, it doesn’t matter, because I just wanted you to see it. Enough with the questions now, what the heck have you been doing all day, PAL?”
“Uh,um, well, not much. Listen, have you talked to anyone about staying here, because I don’t think you can just buy lettuce and expect to stay here as long as you want. Do you even go to this school? Which year are you?” Gerald quickly and nervously asked.
“I thought we discussed this. I said ENOUGH WITH THE QUESTIONS. Buddy, you’re ruining my buzz.” Heavy drops of rain rapidly fell on the house and the skies turned a depressing tone of grey. Gerald glances outside and realizes it wouldn’t be very nice to put him out in the rain, so becomes quiet. “Well, let’s see what’s on television.” Gerald mumbles, but the remote he has gripped from the dining room table is snatched out of his hands with an explanation coming simply in the forming of “Ump.” Gerald goes up to his room.

Gerald’s escape leaves That Guy feeling small and exasperated. Having no idea what is going on here, he is becoming quickly disillusioned. People aren’t as nice as you would think. Why does no one spend time with him? He has observed and applied everything he ahs learned from his years of observation to these few fleeting moments of social interaction. Slowly, he is beginning to think he has been lied to. People aren’t what he imagined them to be.
Henry enters the house and breaks That Guy’s train of thought. “Hey...guy. What are you doing?” He says. The question annoys That Guy because he is pretty sure that what he is doing (sitting on the sofa) is fairly obvious. He resigns himself to the fact that he will simply have to explain everything to everyone all the time. “I’m sitting on the sofa and thinking.” He replies after several seconds go by.
“Yeah, I know that douchebag!” That Guy doesn’t understand the name and simply replies “Yea. Hey, buddy would you mind getting out of here? I’m trying to think.” Flabergasted, Henry stumbles backward, and happens to trip on a carelessly placed object on the floor. Falling through the air he looks like a swan and just as quickly as his fall began, it ends, leaving him strewn across the floor, pain drawn clearly across his face, limps haplessly placed on the ground. As Henry lay on the ground That Guy looks over for a few seconds, and then says “Well are you gonna get out of here or not?” In the distance, the sky rumbles and it clouds momentarily dim the sun’s lighting of the building. The commotion reaches the ears of Gerald in his room up the stairs. He hurries down the steps and upon seeing Henry in pain on the ground and Gerald sitting on the sofa in strained thought, he is completely confused. “Should I call the police?” “Am I in danger.” “Oh my god.”
He rushes up to his room and bolts the door. Out of breath he rests in his room, on his bed, and begins to cry. His weakness is like a slap across his face. Like a baby after a proper reprimand from its mother, he is asleep within minutes and the two figures downstairs cease to exist again.
“Ahhehaeh.” Henry groans as Sasha enters the house. “O my god1 What’s Going ON!” Sasha exclaims. Dialing 911, her phone nearly slips out of her hands. In minutes the young man is wheeled out of the house and into an ambulance. That Guy remains seated on the sofa and as Sasha and the now present Mike begin to barrage him with questions, That Guy falls asleep, smiling, confused. The weather outside is calm, the clouds floating through the sky, the birds enjoying a slight breeze which caresses the sticks of their nests.
“We have to have a house meeting. That guy beat up Henry and now he is in the hospital. He’s a tyrant and we can’t let him run our lives! I tried to call the landlord but he is on vacation or some bull like that. This is ridiculous.” Sasha rambles in a high pitched voice that is known far and wide for slicing eardrums.
“I don’t really care as long as he doesn’t touch my stash. Seriously, just chill.” Tim says in between yawns. “This is serious! Our lives are in danger…” Sasha pleads.
From behind them, they hear “Speak a little more quietly, guys.” That Guy is standing behind them, rubbing his eyes, smiling slightly.
“You need to leave.” Sasha says, just before the sky rumbles a bit.
“Oh, yea, no thanks guys. Wanna play some cards tonight? Hey Sasha I’m feeling a little hungry, could you order a pizza or something?”
“Everyone meet me in the next room except for you” says Sasha, signaling That Guy as the exception. That Guy, doesn’t seem to hear them and withdraws back into the living room. In the next room the roommates meet. “Guys, I don’t know who the fuck this guy is but we need to call the cops.” says Sasha. “Fuck no. I’ve got kush lining this entire building. If you want him gone, tell him or just push his fuckin ass out. I’m going up to my room, squares. Don’t bother me.” Tim says as he exits in a very slow fashion. The roommates reach an agreement that Tim is an asshole pothead and then agree that they should remove That Guy by force, and if possible Tim as well. They hatch a plan and wait. The sun goes down and the night is quiet, the roommates are all waiting in their rooms for a signal, That Guy lay asleep on the living room sofa with a slight smile on his face. He is dreaming of snow storms. The roommates are imagining a bad night ahead. A whistle sounds on the second floor and the doors open at almost the same time. Sasha leads the group down the stairs and they surround the sofa. They grasp That Guy’s limbs in hand and he doesn’t move a bit. Gerald is disturbed by the lack of reaction and says loudly “What the fuck?” That Guy awakens and says “Hey Buddy, that peanut butter was on the counter and not the pantry when I walked into the kitchen. Put your SHIT UP!” Gerald gets his wits about him and the group proceeds to lead him out of the house and he remains silent. They throw him on the ground outside and walk back inside, but fail to notice he has walked back in with them. Sasha says “Well, that was really easy. This has been pretty weird, let’s just—“ “Can you guys get out of here? I’m trying to sleep, but we can hang out tomorrow. By the way, this has been really nice. You guys are the best!”
The group is shocked and as That Guy lays his beard and head on sofa pillow, the residents give each other a look that says “Back to work, again…” They repeat the action of griping his limbs, raising that Guy’s body, as he silently is carried away. This time as they dump the body they ensure he doesn’t reenter, and he blankly looks at them as a child does when something terrible but incomprehensible happens. The storm clouds gather round the house and the wind blows. The windows clank against the house, the house rocks, and “Hey guys, get something to drink later?” blares out at them and is all they can hear. Hail and rain and snow drop into the house via the hole That Guy left when he fell into the house. Standing outside, That Guy is twiddling his thumbs and wondering what is going on. He still can’t understand why they picked him up, why they threw him and out and did it all again even as he did them the favor of reentering. All the roommates are back in their rooms, scared, cold, and unsure. Tim comes down the stairs and opens the door, blunt in hand and says “Get out of here, man.” That Guy walks under Tim’s arms and back into the house and plops down on the couch. He falls asleep and the storm dissipates. Tim is left standing, arm still hanging from the ajar door.
In the morning, the house is empty. Everyone is gone, everything is gone, even Thawt Guy’s best friend Gerald.
Despair washes over That Guy and he thinks about home. Over the clouds, guarding the heavens and the rainbows, regulating people’s lives. His newfound helpless state has made him weak. He cries as he sits on the sofa. He cries under the hole where he fell in. He cries on the stairs. The sky though seemingly cloudless, lets heavy drops fall unto the ground, until puddles emerge. The puddles become deeper and wider and more ominous until the house begins to become immersed in water. Oblivious to the chaos around him, That Guy weeps uncontrollably until he is completely under water. Unable to breath, unable to think, he is dying, but still crying. That Guy dies. The water stops flowing, the sun is unrestrained, the winds don’t exist. The door opens and the water flows out, carrying his body out, mimicking the ease with which the residents ushered his body out.
From that day on, things weren’t the same. People died. Suicide rates soared as people endured the unrelieved heat of the summer, cloudless winters, the disappearing flowers and trees. The ocean ran dry, the rivers ran dry, humanity ran dry and there was death. That Guy left them with death all because those assholes didn’t want to play cards with him. I’m writing as the last man in existence, the last bearer of the bad news, the last suffering man. After the story of That Guy became known, the 6 roommates were executed. Their bellies split and guts hung for people to rejoice in. In times of pain, even this small concession made a difference to the people. The people came from far and wide to see the carcasses and upon seeing them many died from exhaustion in the heat. Eventually, no one could tell which bodies were those of the 6 residents and which were of passersby, and which ones were tourists.

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