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Vaillainess Vera and Malevolent Mal

Sorry, but no sugar plum anythings came on that night. There was only silence and an occasional rustle in the darkness…

“Aah! Get off of my lawn, bitch! I’ll drag you to hell if you ever come back here again! Muahahahaha!” It was Vera. What was she up to this morning? It just so happened that a member of the Church of the Latter Day Saints had made the decision to stop by. That was a poor choice on his part, but he had to fill his quota of Mormon recruiting attempts for the day. Mal left before he arrived but Vera was wide awake.

It was around ten-thirty a.m., and she was ready. Knock. Knock. Knock. She looked out the window at short brown hair in a bowl cut, a shirt and tie…he was like a younger version of Anthony. There was even a book in his hand, as one might expect. I found this a bit odd. It wasn’t out of place, but it was still weird. I liked many books, but there were none that I would read over and over and over again religiously and then try to force others to do the same. There weren’t any books that I could see myself ‘thumping’…maybe something from Sociology.

Vera ran into the bathroom and splurted some shaving cream out into her waiting hands. She smeared it all over her entire face, grabbed an Ouija board from a living room shelf, then headed for the door. Knock. Knock. Knock. She opened the door after putting an enormous fake smile on her face. This was sure to be exciting.

“Hello, uh…ma’am.” He seemed a bit taken aback. “Would you like to…”

“Nope! I don’t wanna fuck you today, lover boy. Sure don’t, bubzy! But I knew you’d be coming to visit. Good ol’ Lulu-Lucifer told me in my dreams. This Ouija board told me to ‘sacrifice the damn Mormon’ only fifteen minutes ago. You’ve drawn some shitty cards today, bubzy.” She held the Ouija board up for him to see.

“Death to you and your first born, sir! May ye be swarmed by the roaches of pestilence before the coming of the morrow!” She pulled out a can of roach killer from behind the front door and started spraying the man and his well-thumped book thoroughly. Finally, she ended with the “get off my lawn, bitch!” and whatnot.

“Infernal whore! Infernal whore!” The man screamed in horror as he ran back to his little car, peeled out, and drove off so fast that he probably thought our place was Amityville.

“Screeeeech!” His little car said.

“I’m the most infernal whore you’re ever going to see! Muahaha! I’m Villainess Vera! I’m Vera the Villainess!” She screamed as he sped away, then began chuckling hysterically.

“Damn!” I shouted as we were woken up by the commotion.

“Mormon attack?” Scéléra asked no one in particular.

“I’m pretty sure Vera’s on their ‘exorcism recommended’ list now.” This was probably nothing new for her. We quickly dressed, then walked to the living room to get a view of the craziness. She was just wiping the shaving cream off of her face when we entered.

“I think we’ll actually go to one of those damn holy hideouts in about a week or so. They give out free food and shit. But the one we’re going to isn’t Mormon, it’s Catholic. That means it’ll be all fancy-pantsy and expensive, kinda like the opposite of Jesus.” She made herself laugh before showing us the flier she received for the event. “I got this one just a few days ago. It’s still fresh! An active invitation to be deemed abominations! Hooray, hooray, our lucky day!” Damn. I was almost sure that she had already done some kind of drug this morning.

“Drake has gone away for a few days. I’m not sure where he went or if he’ll even be coming back, but Mal will be back in thirty minutes! He’s bringing Mistah H. with him. Do remember to be very nice to Mister H., okay? He’s been one of us for even longer than we’ve been ones of us.” I looked forward to meeting this ‘Mr. H’ then.

“Who is he? I haven’t heard of a Mister H. before,” Scéléra said.

“That’s because he’s incredibly mysterious. You weren’t told everything, but you’re basically a legal adult now, or close enough. I’m sure you’ve met people like H. Oh, and don’t think that the H. means he sells heroin. He doesn’t. We don’t do that here. But he does have oodles of connections, so don’t piss him off.” Vera sat down on the couch in front of the TV and turned it on to the midmorning news.

She sat on the left end of the couch, already smoking the bong. I didn’t really want to at the moment so I sat on the right side. Scéléra did, so she sat in the center. The sofa was more than big enough for the three of us. They began to smoke as we watched our city’s recent crimes flash across the screen. I decided to take a hit too, but only once…maybe twice.

“Candidate for State Senator, John J. Janglehorn, has been accused of brutally raping teenager Dorothy Dahlia, seventeen, on more than one occasion during the past month. Janglehorn, thirty-one, is facing a hefty prison sentence and will assuredly not be continuing his campaign, for doing so would deface the pure and orderly reputation of our state. His stigma would poison the image of our state government.” The news reporter blabbed and blabbed.

“This is just doubly sad,” I began as Vera took out a bag of white powder and started cutting up a line. “For one, a rapist politician is never good.” I suddenly was back inside of the house where I grew up. Anna was there beside me, as she had been before. Father was coming to visit…to play…’playing daddy,’ he called it.

“I do this because I love you,” he said. No. I didn’t want to be in this room with him.

“Snap out of it!” My younger self screamed at me. “Pull yourself together, Ivan!” And then I did. I was back in the living room, sitting on the couch with Scéléra and Vera. I was in front of the TV again.

“His arraignment will take place next Thursday at noon, and we’ll be there to provide all of you viewers with HD coverage! We all know how great and entertaining it is to watch criminal proceedings to see people’s lives go to hell, as long as we don’t know them personally! That’s the American way! And it’ll all be in HD! Beautiful HD! Isn’t that right, weatherman?”

“It sure is, Mike. It sure is! Wow, did you say High Definition TV? We have only the finest at our wonderful news station!” The image of Father was still frozen in my mind, and John Janglehorn seemed quite similar to him. I wanted to avenge the poor girl who had suffered the same fate as I.

“He doesn’t deserve to make it to his arraignment. Someone should kill him before then,” I commented.

“Shall you be the rapist killer, love?” Scéléra asked. “They’d smear you too for being the one doing the killing.”

“Maybe I will be a rapist killer. Would people really hate me for that?”

“Calm down, jenga-jong, and snoot this.” Vera passed us a little dish with two lines of what seemed to be cocaine on it. Scéléra went first, as she was the most eager. I went next. I ‘snooted’ it but I didn’t feel very energetic. My soul exited my body and flew up into the air vents. What the fuck? It wasn’t cocaine.

“What…?” That was all I could voice.

“Dipsy, you just shnorfed some Ketamine. How are you doing? It’s the weekend. Relax! There’s no need to be trapped inside your bones today.” Scéléra was talking to me from all the way down there, an infinite distance away, sitting on the outline of a couch. This was ridiculous. Was I really anything at all anymore? A door knob turned and a door swung open. It happened way back down there in the other world, the one with the couch stencil in it. I was stuck to the ceiling like static electricity, and now Mal and Mr. H. were here.

Mal walked in first. I imagined some kind of soundtrack playing as the cocky cool guy with the gangster friend made his first appearance of the day. But it was distorted and played from far off in the distance...it all was coming from a parallel universe, an alternate reality.

“Da, na-nah, da, na-nah,” my imagination blurted. I felt like whatever a ghost turns into when it dies. But Mal still looked like Christmas with his dark green hair and red double-zeros. I imagined that he was Santa Claus, bringing X-rated gifts or drug bags with bows and stickers on them. Behind him was a tall black guy who had put on a few extra pounds and looked a lot like Biggie Smalls, but he wasn’t wearing a crown…just some loose white and grey pants and a Malcom X shirt. I liked H. already. Malcolm X was a doer, like me.

“Hey mane, I’m Mistah Heffalump Woozle. That’s Mistah H. for short.”

Mistah H. turned unimaginably neon and teleported into some kind of digital pixelated recording studio.

“I’m mothafuckin’ XannyClawz

I bring ya fuckin’ presents

I’m the mothafuckin’ king

Of all the mothafuckin’ peasants

You gotta fuckin problem, man?

Say it to my face

Then I put ya on a list

For mothafuckaz to erase”

“Bravo!” I cheered. But did any words come out of my mouth? I wasn’t even in my body at the moment. “You’re the next rung up the ladder of illegalities that Mal is trying to climb, ‘XannyClawz’?” I guess I was speaking. He heard me.

“You’d be right, but you don’t get to guess in the first place,” he answered. “So don’t. You got that?” He was quite serious, which was sort of funny…but I knew it wouldn’t be very funny to get in Woozle’s way. I imagined Mistah H. wearing a gold suit and standing in a room full of money as cash rained down upon him from somewhere up in the ceiling.

“Well now that this is done, me and H. are going into the kitchen…kitchen… kitchen…kit-kitchuhn…chun…chun-chun.” Mal said. What the hell? I was ions away but I could still hear and see him. I was certain that his mouth only uttered the word one time. Damn. Heffalump turned to follow him, but first he had something to say to me.

“The snow’s fallin’ like we’re in the tundra. If you want to buy into some skis and ride down the avalanche of fortune, you could hop on. You might be capable.” He walked into the kitchen with Mal. I was flattered, but I wasn’t sure that I wanted to do something like that right now…especially in my current mental state.

“You should do it,” Scéléra whispered rather loudly.

“I agree,” Shadowshade murmured. “I’m still here. Kill the politician. You know exactly what she was put through, at least to some degree. Do the world a favor. Implement justice.”

“Hill him for us.” Anna was for it. Kill him? Actually kill him? I liked the idea, but I hadn’t really killed anyone before. There were certainly a few maybes, but nothing so blatant. Was I even capable of something like that? Maybe I would be if I could come up with some kind of statement to make along with it, so I began to form one. I would be standing up to my past persistent demons by removing them from the present. Maybe I should kill him. Maybe I would kill him. I’d soon find out.

For a while after this, I wasn’t thinking of killing quite as much. I had stumbled into a huge and totally white realm, like when a character runs out onto a blank white screen in an old cartoon. Where had everything gone?

Red blobs swirled all around me, soon becoming wax bubbles in a lava lamp filled with white oil. I was swimming inside of it, trapped. I could sort of see an outline of Anna talking on a telephone on the other side of the glass. I have a theory that anyone who talks on a telephone develops Multiple Personality Disorder. Heffalump Woozle was suddenly inside the lava lamp with me and had something to say.

“Every perception, whether commendation or stigmatization, originates inside of the minds of those in the group in which it becomes manifest. It is molded and altered only by them, for no true or questionless reason at all. There is no such thing as a relevant concrete philosophy.

“Perfect concrete philosophy is impossible and the idea of an unfaltering manifesto is both illogical and unnecessary. Even the entirety of the human race, the complete and total collective consciousness, can only produce perception even at the peak of its functional capacity. Perception is the only relevant god of living things and is the very antithesis of a stagnant ideal.” I swam through the nothingness into very altered and disordered waves of sleep, littered with dreams that couldn’t quite decide whether they were nightmares or not.

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