#42 A Five-Year-Old’s Aspirations
#42 A Five-Year-Old’s Aspirations Sitting in the Beehive bar, I saw an ambulance speeding by with the siren’s deafening noise drowning out the tear jerker playing on the jukebox. “Can’t those assholes die at a decent hour?” Ron, the bartender complained because he had dropped money into the jukebox to hear some guy sing about how his bitch had done him wrong. “Probably another one of Joe’s victim’s on the way to the morgue,” I pointed to the scoreboard hanging behind the bar with 27 names on it. All victims who had crossed Joe, and he was suspected of killing them. “Yeah, he’s an asshole too,” Ron grabbed a piece of chalk and added number 28 and a question mark for a name. He’d put that in later after he read the obituaries. “I’d be careful about calling him names.” “That psychopath doesn’t scare me.” He pulled a pistol from beneath the bar and pointed it at me, “If he shows his face around here, he’ll get all six rounds in my 38.” “How will you know if he does? I’ve heard no one knows what he looks like.” Ron’s face showed he didn’t know how to answer. He put the gun beneath the bar and grabbed a cloth to wipe down the bar as he spoke. “Think I’d instinctively know. I’ve been tending bar for thirty years, and I can usually tell what a guy does for a living at a glance.” “So you think you’ll be able to spot Joe as soon as he walks through the door?” “Damn Right.” “Have you heard how he became what he is today?” “Sure, everybody knows when Joe was a boy he wanted to be like those he saw brutally beating anyone who stood in their way. Inspired, he sought to be the same.” “That’s right, but all the men he knew were deficient, and never did a thing but drink.” “How do you know that?” Ron set a cold beer in front of me “I grew up in that neighborhood, and It wasn’t so easy to be the best when every kid in the neighborhood fought for the title. They all wanted to be the worst, toughest, meanest one in the neighborhood. Joe discovered subtle terror worked better than outright aggression. If any offended him, he always found a way to get even with no risk to himself, a good thing too, because he was smaller than most other boys.” “So are you saying you know Joe?” “Well, you know, they say there’s no one alive who can identify him, and if there were, they wouldn’t be alive for long?” “Okay, okay, I get it, you can’t admit you know him, but go on with what you were saying.” “One day when Joe was around five, old man Fitzmorris yelled, ‘Get the fuck away from my house,’ because Joe played in front of it. The next day Fitzmorris’s dog died from a poisoned bone, the day after old man Fitzmorris died from drinking poisoned milk. There were several poison deaths, and Joe was suspected, but there was no evidence. When he grew a few years older parts of pets began to be found nailed to the doors of anyone who crossed Joe. “When he reached the age of fourteen he hired out his services. That was when the competition got tough.” “Okay, you know so much, tell me why you think victim number 28 was in the ambulance that just went by?” “The dead woman in there got caught by her husband who put a GPS chip in her purse and followed her to her stud’s house. Once he learned who was banging his old lady he put out the word he’d pay a good price to eliminate his wife and her boyfriend.” A worried look passed over Ron’s face. “How do you know so much about Joe?” “Relax, I was only speculating.” I saw he believed me by the look of relief on his face. A woman walked through the door. Ron ran over to her and threw his arms around her. “Thank God you’re okay. That jerk told me your husband had hired Joe to kill you.” He had pointed at me when he said, “That jerk.” I don’t take being called names lightly, but I didn’t want to start anything, yet. “I made a mistake,” I said, “Can I buy you and the lady a drink to make up for it?” She looked at me through her doe like eyes and Ron said, “Sure, why not.” He set three shot glasses on the bar and filled them with schnapps. I raised my glass for a toast and when three glasses clinked I said, “May we all live as long as we’re alive.” Ron refilled the glasses, raised his for a toast, “May her husband never find out,” he clinked his glass to the other two and emptied it. He refilled the glasses. “Look,” I shouted. They both turned their heads to gaze at another ambulance rushing by. The lady raised he glass for a toast, “To love,” she said. “Love sucks, instead let’s drink to justice for all.” “I don’t give a damn what we drink to,” Ron said, “just so we drink.” We clinked glasses to that, and all three glasses emptied fast. Then I said, “Ron, I’ve got to tell you your instincts suck.” As I said that his lady dropped to the floor. “I tricked you into admitting it was you who was screwing the wife and now that you’ve seen my face, you’ll know before you die what ‘Joe’ looks like.” He desperately searched for his gun, but convulsing as he was; he could only utter “How?” I poisoned your drinks when you looked at the ambulance. Now I must say goodbye. I picked up my glass, held it up in a toast, “May you burn in Hell.” I went to collect my fee after adding number 29 to the list behind the bar. The End For more stories, poems, & other stuff. http://joedibuduo.com/ http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=joe+DiBuduo