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The Last NIght in Paradise

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Through the kitchen window I could see the peeling wallpaper. I didn’t say anything about it though. It’s not really nice to draw attention to ugly things. Especially if you can’t do anything about them. Ugly things are better left alone rather than embarrassed by people pointing out how ugly they are. But it was only wallpaper, what did I care?

“Hey, you want some of this?”

I took the yellowing cigarette. The handmade folds were sloppy and some of the contents were slipping down to the floor. Someone flashed a lighter and the heavy scent of smoke filled my nose and throat. The ash began to trickle down in a stream mixing with the dried leaves. They fell on my bare leg, but they didn’t burn. I looked at them there, specks of dark green and gray against white. If I were an artist I suppose I’d think it interesting or poetic. But I’m not, and I didn’t.

There was music playing. It was heavy like the smoke with bass and electric guitar, but now it changed, softer, whining, pleading almost. Was it a man or a woman singing? I didn’t know, and it felt funny to ask, like I was just supposed to know. Why though? Is my brain so incredible that is knows a penis from a vagina just from hearing a voice? That’s pretty fantastic. But I didn’t say that out loud either. It didn’t seem like the right time.

“What the h*ll are you doing, man? Put that out!”

Someone was talking, but I couldn’t figure out who. Maybe my brain wasn’t so amazing after all and I was glad I didn’t say anything about it earlier. I could hear the voice still talking, the words though were slipping through my thoughts without me knowing what they were. Kind of like word ninjas. Or the FBI. Could they kill me if they wanted to? Maybe. You can never predict these kinds of things. I wonder how they would kill me. Would they pull a gun and if they did would I die with the first bullet or would it take another? I suppose they could run be over with a car, though I’ve never seen a ninja drive a car. Maybe they’ll come up behind me in the dark and break my neck with one twist of my head. That would be pretty cool, me laying on the ground, head snapped at an odd angle, mouth open in surprise. Maybe someone would be sad for me, but my friends would think it would be cool, at least they’d get it since I wouldn’t be there anymore.

I took another cigarette. This one was a little better, at least it wasn’t leaking all over me. Now someone was yelling. Loud. Now someone else was yelling too. I kind of wished they’d stop, but I didn’t care that much. It was a free country right? I wasn’t about to call the cops or anything stupid like that. People yell all the time. I guess that’s why we have mouths. For talking and for drinking.

I opened another one of the warm beers someone had left on the table. Was it a beer? It could have been a Pepsi. I guess I’m not that good of a judge. Now someone was laughing. I guess that’s better than yelling, but I still wished they’d keep it down. There was another noise too. Like a popping sound? Or maybe like a snap? I was pretty sure it wasn’t the music because someone had turned that off a while ago. The smoke was really thick. It made the room kind of hazy, like cloudy or something. I couldn’t find my beer or was it a Pepsi?
Someone was pulling my arm. Why were they doing that? I was trying to find my drink and there they were tugging on my arm. That wasn’t very nice, and here I didn’t even mention the ugly wallpaper. But they stopped pulling, and the yelling and laughing stopped too. I guess they got tired of their mouths, I know I do. The room was really bright. Like an orange color. I reached for another cigarette and someone lit it for me. I thought that was nice, all quiet except for that snapping sound and someone is still here give me a light. I’m not the most talkative guy, but I hope they knew that I appreciated it just the same.
The ash started to fall around me, kind of like snow I guess. But it was gray and snow is white. I was really hot, but someone took my drink. I didn’t mind much though, it was warm anyway. My arm started to hurt. I guess that’s where that person was pulling on me. My leg hurt too, but I couldn’t really explain that one so I just ignored it. The house looked better because I couldn’t see that wallpaper anymore. I sighed. The flames had crept up the couch next to me. They were kind of cute, like a high school couple. They were just as desperate too.





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