When Zach woke up the following morning, he slowly rolled out of bed. He grimaced as he straightened his back wondering where the pain came from. He felt as though he was beaten with a baseball bat. When he glanced in the mirror, he noticed dried mud on his clothes, and when he opened his shirt, a bruise had already formed on his chest resembling a footprint. Then it suddenly dawned on him where the footprint came from. Okay Sullivan, that’s the way ya want it?
Later that morning, Zach and Ben were practicing their juggling act under the big tent. They were riding on their unicycles, tossing pins to each other, when one pin slipped through Zach’s hand and disappeared behind the stage equipment. Ben was frustrated with Zach. He knew Zach was hungover and not performing up to par because of it. Ben had noticed his drinking had become worse and more frequent lately. And if Zach didn’t slow down soon, he’d have to confront him about it.
“Okay, that’s enough for today,” Ben said. “We’ll continue tomorrow.” He set his unicycle against the stage, lit up a cigarette, and left.
Zach felt bad that he made Ben upset, but he felt as though he was wasting his life away. He always thought there was more to life than performing stunts in a crummy carnival. He knew that he drank too much. He felt stuck, and he didn’t know a way out. He knew that there had to be a better life out there. If only he knew what to do, his life would change for the better, and maybe he’d finally be happy.
Zach’s head was filled with all kinds of thoughts as he went searching for the pin. Suddenly he came upon a large hole in the tent behind the stage. When he examined it, he saw the pin near some crates that were stacked neatly on the other side of the tent. He decided to squeeze through the hole and get it. When he was able to reach the pin, he thought he heard voices coming from the other side of the crates. The voices were low and sounded intimate, which raised his curiosity. He couldn’t resist and just had to see who it was. When Zach peeked around one of the crates, he was shocked to see Camille in Sullivan’s arms. Poor, dumb kid.
Sullivan was speaking softly as he kissed Camille’s neck. Zach listened carefully, he didn’t want to miss a single word. “Okay, tonight then?” Sullivan said.
“This sneaking around is making me a nervous wreck,” Camille said. “What if we get caught?”
“Don’t worry, baby,” Sullivan said. “Just stick to the plan and everything will be fine. We just need to be careful.”
She reminded him that she didn’t forget his promise to her—how he’d take care of her if anything were to ever happened between her and her husband. And each time she reminded him, he became agitated. Sullivan, however, was as sly as a fox and wore his charming smile as she reminded him.
“Of course I’ll take care of you, baby,” he said to her in his usual response. Followed by a reassuring pat on the buttocks.
“Okay then,” Camille said. “Well, I better be going. Salvatore’s probably wondering where I am.”
“Okay, see you tonight,” Sullivan said. He was eager and could hardly wait.
Zach made sure he remained out of sight until they both left. He envisioned Sullivan licking drool from his jowls, like a wild animal stalking its prey. Interesting, very interesting indeed, he thought. When he left the tent, he wondered how he could use the information against Sullivan. He wanted his revenge and thought it would be sweet to see it come to fruition.
When Zach reached his trailer, he sat on the steps and thought for almost an hour. He knew if Salvatore ever found out about his wife and Sullivan, he’d surely go after Sullivan like a madman. Then it came to him and a smile formed on his face. I got it. Now you’ll pay, Sullivan, now you’ll pay.