The deep peace I find in the comfort of my own company is unexplainable. The shadows of my own body and the stench of my cadaver' odor are familiar to me. My best friend is the sound of my voice when I say, "Fuck you." I despise myself, but less than I despise others. I like myself enough to know I'm worthy of my own company, and that's good enough for me.
The smell of stale piss clings to my mustache and I breathe it in like a madman because it may be my last breath. As sweat drips down my face and palms contain oceans of my apparent nervousness, the 8mm pistol is barely able to stay in my hand. Most of the support on my firearm is the clenching of my gunky, yellow teeth on the muzzle.I pull the trigger. I am sent to dream land, I see Ms. Florence, the old hooker I used take to funerals to get free food in exchange for intercourse.
I see my dead mother and the syringe still in her arm chalk full of heroin. The florescent lights of neon are almost too much, and in this wonder and amazement, I ask myself, "Why the fuck am I still here? How did I just open my eyelids to reveal my shit hole home?" I quickly discover the answer.
Instead of seeing my imagination spread across my self-portrait, I planned that out, I see a clean but sketchy piece of art with my face on it. "Why are my brains not everywhere?" No bullet. I pull the trigger again, and again, and again. I check the barrel. Nothing. I want to tear out my organs! Although being the whiney man I have shaped out to be refuses to endure pain, hence the gun, I couldn't do it. It's the most gut-wrenching feeling in the world, believing your dead for ten satisfying seconds, and opening your eyes to see your still here. In this moment, I fall back to a habit and inject all the heroin I could find. "God take me, I don't believe you are real which shows how desperate I am for you to take me away! You fucking asshole! You don't listen to a word I say! What do you say? What do you do?" I give up on the slightest doubt that there was a god right now. My shirt is covered in vomit, some of it is still moist. I've puked so much in this last hour that I forget that my shirt has a real design under all the bile. I walk to my bathroom and can hear the sound of my feet flopping from the moisture on my socks. I wipe off the blood from my lips and reveal the cuts from biting so hard on the muzzle of the gun. The snot is wiped away from my nose and I go in the shower, wash up, and lay back down, call my grandmother, ask her how her day is, fall asleep during my conversation from the drugs and tell her my phone cut out. She wouldn't have a clue.
"Hey you piece of shit wake up." is the first thing I hear, it is my step-dad. I am 27, he is 53, he still lives with me. Even though my mom died, he still calls me his "son."
"Hey asshole would you like some breakfast?" I reply.
"Shit, you're actually going to do something?"
"Yes, then afterwards me and my boyfriend are going out to dance." I am not homosexual, but he hates the thought of the closest thing that he has to a son to be a faggot, and I love pissing him off.
"You are not a god damn faggot!" He smacks me in the mouth again and again. I'll react when he doesn't expect it. I go downstairs to fry up some bacon thats been sitting out for a few days, most likely spoiled, and he watches me intently. The grease starts popping and I get a smirk on my face.
"What in the hell do you have to smile about?" he says in a form that doesn't sound like he wants me to reply. So I react instead. I swing the sizzling, bacon greased pan in the side of his cranium. It's only the second time I ever saw this shame of a man cry. The first is when he didn't have enough money for a hit of acid and performed dirty deeds to his dealer. He came home babbling about it while on the acid, I locked him in the bathroom to let him cool down but he broke down saying nobody loved him. Which was true in my mind.
"You little bastard! Get out of this house!" he screams.
"Alright alright, I love you. I'll call you later." I reply sarcastically with a crooked smile on my face.
I thought that the old bastard had died last night, he didn't come home last night, if you could call this home. Step daddy must've came home while I was passed out.
I took the usual route to get to Sidneys' house. Through the neighbors yard, under the south-town bridge, across the river, and then the maze of alleys full of the dealers that have become common sight for me. I run past these decrepid figures, lanky and frail in the way the stand. How they survive day by day I will never know. I make my way through the seemingly never ending hall of desperate body bags begging for a customer. It was strange, not one of them said a word to me. Usually they would cling to me as if they were deathly ill and I was the reaper, as if they were begging for me to save them, not take them away. I bolted up the stairs to Sidneys' apartment and grab a mask off the second step from the party the previous night. I strapped it on, it was a purple mask, my favorite color. It was one that I made for her. It hurt to see that she had thrown it down the staircase, maybe she forgot. I swung open the door in a rage of happiness. I saw Sidney with her eyes squeezed so hard that tears had fallen out.
"What's wrong berry?" I call her berry instead of baby. Berry is what my mother called me when I was a boy because she had a speech impediment. I told Sid this and she laughed hysterically at my mothers downfall, so we applied the name to each other.
"I can't believe you, you motherfucker! I knew this was going to happen! God damn you berry! If you can hear me, fuck you!" Sid was in a rage, what had happened to my berry I don't know, but obviously was mad at me.
"Sid, I can hear you fine, why are you yelling? What did I do now?" She did not say another word to me. Sidney left me alone in the apartment. As I stood there I observed all the blood that had spewed from her arm and the the piercing needle she used to carve out her flesh. Compared to what had happened to me at my house it was a kid shit, but none the less it was tragic and graphic. I peered into the alley way full of desperate men through the dirty window and saw the figure of my Sidney and the vultures clawing at her hoping to sell their share. To my surprise, I saw her extend her arm strapped and loaded. Sid wipped the gun to the dealers forehead and blew a hole clear through. It didn't seem to phase her that she had just murdered someone. Sid swiped the heroin from the jacket on the corpse as the vultures swooped across her back in an attempt to pry her away from the stash. Sid got away and ran out of the grim alleyway. I sat there stunned and wide eyed. For the first time in a long time, something shocked me to the point where I put my hand over my mouth and gasped. During the whole act of Sid and her takedown, I don't recall taking a single breath until the shot rang through my ears. I slowly exhaled and almost got all the air out of my lungs when the colorful substance from the pit of my stomach came back up and projected across the floor. At this moment I realized, "Fuck, now I have to change my shirt again.."
I eventually mustered up enough of myself to walk back out into the alley. I came to the bottom of the staircase in front of the door. I took in an enormous gulp of air and took a look around at my surroundings, for it may be the last thing I see if the lunatics outside decide to take revenge out on the next unlucky bastard to walk outside. I observed the bathroom colored paint, light blue with black, blue and red marker written all over. Even on the ceiling. I pondered how anyone had ever gotten to the ceiling of the staircase to write on it and why. One corner of the staircase stuck out to me more than any other writing, it said, "Berry+Sid Vicious=4ever."
Starting to become ashamed of myself for being afraid of the practically skeletal addicts, I swung the door open and shut the door. I was outside, helpless. I hesitated to start walking, until I realized none of these sick men had even taken notice to me. I scurried down the hallway unharmed. One man, who had seemingly taken the place of the man whom Sid had shot, had asked me if I was looking to score. I looked him in the eye sorely. It was clear that he could tell I had vomited recently.
"Well, looks like you just got through a bad batch, huh kid?"
"Yeah, you could say that." I turned and went to the river and sat there. The river always seemed like a safe place for me, but now it seemed like a haven. Me and Sid had both had horrible childhoods, hers worse than mine, but still we could relate to each other's memories. We would meet everyday in a pipe next to the water, and just hold each other. I met her when I was 8 and she was 10. I wasn't even interested in girls at this point but when I held her it all felt right. I can remember that day so well.
"Put your arm around my hip."
"Because that's what boyfriends to do their girlfriends." Sid said this with a grin and tears in her eyes.
"What are boyfriends and girlfriends?" I looked at her in wonder and amusement.
"It's a boy and a girl that are together their whole lives, they protect each other, they hold each other, they are honest, hide together, feed each other, and love each other. Like a mommy loves a daddy. They go everywhere together, they always want to be in each others company. Think of it as a best friend someone could ever have, but they kiss." This was my favorite description of lovers. It was the cutest thing I had ever heard.
"In this secret place I get my rest my favorite organ in your chest, feel it beating because it's me pleading for you to keep it stitched shut and keep me tucked away, and we'll lock it with our lips, and make a collage with our fingertips, swarming inside each others hearts is the lack of the dark , and the way we swim down the rabbit hole, would make anyone jealous, if only they would know" With that said, she took me by the neck and pulled my face into hers, with our lips still molded together we fell into the river together. That was my first kiss, she was the highlight of my childhood.
I loved the river, I looked into the pipe where we had first kissed and found her lying there. Her hair was a mess and the makeup was smeared, the needle stuck out of her arm and around the injection site, there were multiple holes. I counted five scabs, fresh. Sid had either injected six hits into her self, or missed five other times. Either way, it was less than opaque that she was in trouble. I embraced her with full force. My beard was full of sweat and it was basically a wash rag against her neck. Kissing her neck was what got her excited, but it showed no effect. I tried everything I could to wake her up with all the attempts failing. In one evening, I had beat the fuck out of my step-dad, fought with my lover, witnessed her murder a drug addict, and now I am seeing the beautiful Sid Vicious laid dormant in my arms. The girl who had loved me since day one of our adventure, was dead in my embrace.
"So much for forever berry." I can't belive I just said that, how fucking selfish of me. I am bitching at my fiance for suicide when I had just attempted the same thing myself less than twenty four hours ago. I can't stop thinking of what she is saying to me right now as a fantastic phantasm.
"Sidney! Christ I thought you were dead!"
"I thought the same fucking thing about you!"
"What the fuck were you thinking huh?"
"I was thinking I wanted to join you in the afterlife you prick!"
I don't know why we're arguing, this should be a happy reunion, I should be flattered that she was so lost without me that she felt the need to visit me in death, but I can't stop myself from being pissed off and hurt.
"Damn it bear, I am so glad your here."
As Sidney threw herself against me, I sub consciously grew a smile, so big my teeth bore out like hospital lights. I reach down for her hand. I see the cuts from earlier, the cuts have not scabbed over...but there's no blood.
"Sidney you were a saint."
"What do you mean, was? I still am berry, I am your savior, and you are mine."
"If you are my savior, and I am yours, then we have severely failed at the task given to us Sid." I start to realize what the hell had happened.
"Bear, what are you talking about? I am so worried about you, you've been through a lot the past twenty four hours, maybe you should get some rest."
"Tell me all you know about me and the past day."
"Well, we got into a fight yesterday about your drinking, and I'm sorry about that bear, I didn't know your grandma died."
"What?" I heard her clearly, but in utter shock, I had to hear it again to prove to myself this is what I heard. Sid didn't say it again, she just glared deep into my pupils and could see that I had no idea she had died and she could feel my pain.
"My GG is dead..." That was all I could say, my GG had raised me from the day I was born indirectly. GG was the one who bought my groceries, my clothes, and payed the lot rent. My mother worked, but was a prescription addict. Whenever she said she was going to pay the bills, it wasn't on the trailer, it was on medicine. My mother was nose deep in figure eights almost everyday, and I was neck deep in need of therapy. My mother never payed the rent once in her life. All the groceries and presents at Christmas and my birthday, were form GG, but mama took credit. GG believed in me, and loved me with every ounce in her peaceful body. We gave each other a level of relief that was un parallel to anyone I knew until I me Sid.
"-and I heard about your step-dad killing himself with your gun. Did you know he used the last bullet? I know that was the one you were saving for yourself. I was so scared, I found your gun before I knew he was dead and I saw that it was empty. I freaked out Bear. I thought you were a goner."
"Well, your right there Sid...I saw you kill a man today."
"What? How did you see that? Where the fuck were you? Why didn't you say anything?"
"I did, I was in the apartment when you were yelling at me."
"I didn't even see you! Holy shit! I'm sorry."
"You shot a dealer in the head."
"I didn't care, I was going to kill myself anyways and I don't believe in hell, I had no fear."
"He talked to me..."
"So? It's not like you were friends. Right?"
"No said, I talked to him after you shot him." With all this realization, I bawl my eyes out. I cry so much I could drown myself in it, but there would be no point.
"Okay berry, this is getting fucked up."
"Oh you have no idea." I break out laughing, a mad laugh, I bet I look pathetic right now, crying with snot and spit flying out everywhere as I chuckle uncontrollably.
"Tell me what you mean bear, please."
"I talked to me GG today, I hit my step-dad today, I talked to the dealer, I saw you crying but you couldn't see me, and that was before you took the heroin."
"Oh my god bear..."
"Your not a saint anymore. You have cuts, but your not leaking." I knew she figured it out. What had happened to us. We ended at the same place we started.
"Angels don't bleed."