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Exquisite CorpseExquisite Corpse
Issue 10 - A Journal of Letters and Life
Stories from Picket Wire
by Dennis Brock
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Dogfight in Eulalie-land     
Summer was heading into dead heat. August wasn't over. For two weeks I heard nothing about Euphegenia being dead. Anymore if people thought anything about her weird death, they didn't feel like they needed to tell me all about it. I saw Rosalee at Pipple's and she didn't come at me with a knife. Jimmy Mack said hello at the flea market.
     I was just wandering hoping to get back in Vince's good graces. I went through that eBay money and nobody called me to pose naked for the Wednesday art ladies. Hildie even stopped trying to get money out of me for a minute. Still, Vince didn't cotton to the idea of me filling in for him on an odd Saturday.
     There was a guy from Pittsburgh who had a cabin in the woods. He hired me to pose naked for him and I spent an afternoon letting him grope me. He gave me a hundred dollars tip and said he'd be back in a few weeks, could he call me.
     I said yes.
     What's a guy to do.
     I'm living in one room above Ed Shackley's video store. I have a computer and a bed and one chair. I eat most of the time at MacDonald's. What's a person to do if he don't own a stove or a refrigerator.
     One time I found sixteen dollars at the laundromat. Sad Ackerman was busy somewhere and not paying attention, I guess, and I scatted my ass out of there real quick. Then I remembered I had laundry in the dryer and it didn't look suspicious if I was in there.
     Jesus, I'm getting jumpy.
     Tiffany Tiffany saw me at the flea market and talked to me a bit. I can get my mind working into overtime thinking about having sex with Tiffany Tiffany, but I ain't no fool. Won't never happen. Not me and her.
     Then the next thing you know, Eulalie Schoop is found dead out by Old Fred Spivvey's place. She was found in the stream that backs into Old Fred's pond. Coroner said she'd been dead probably three months or so.
     Everybody round here thought she just left town. She's done that before. Just disappear and come back when she's sick of balling whatever man took her away or when she can't get no more money. She's got three kids from three different men and leaves them at her mother's over in the third ward.
     You know them people over there. Cheap white trash what moved to town and thinks they're better than their country cousins. Hell, some of them have married country cousins.
     Eulalie just fucked them all.
     Next thing you know, everybody in town's remembering that me and Eulalie had a scheme to sell crap at the flea market and to make money on the internet ripping people off. We never had any such schemes, but you know how people have to talk.
     I even heard that Old Sadie Louise admitted to Eulalie and me trying to sell her whitewash for her house and saying we could paint it in nothing flat. What we told her was that we would be willing to paint her house cheaper that Chet Lester could. That's all we said. Cheaper.
     We were both broke looking to get some deposits down on summer work. Old Sadie Louise badmouthed us before we could get started. Then Eulalie disappeared from town and nobody thought much of it.
     Then next thing you know, Eulalie's floating in a creek with her hands cut off and she's been dead longer'n Euphegenia Buntton and there ain't no way in hell to even connect Luke to this one.
     Sure, everybody knows he had his turn with Eulalie. Shit, that was years ago. Maybe six or seven, when she was between birthing kids and before she had her insides ripped out so there'd be no more kids.
     Eulalie ain't the mothering kind.
     I sat in my one room above Ed Shackley's video store and I waited. I knew what was coming. I knew there'd be no way to avoid being questioned again. But Luke still had a connection too.      
     One the second day after finding Eulalie's body, Jimmy Poole and Cuss McCall came to get me.
     I sat in the back of the cruiser riding eighteen blocks to the police station. They took my picture and made my prints part of a permanent FBI record and began to ask their questions.
     Yes, I knew Eulalie.
     Yes, we were going to paint houses this summer but that didn't work out.
     No, I never had sex with Eulalie. I ain't seen her since she left. What could I know about her death. I ain't never killed nobody.
     This time Jimmy Poole asked the questions with Cuss sitting beside him.
     Except for an occasional "Shit, Jeffrey, tell the pissant FBI the goddam truth. Fuck, pal, you're swimming in a shitting cesspool, fucking here." Or "Listen, you bastard. Fucking tell us the pissant's fucking truth and, hell, it's fucking easy goddam street from here to fucking hell for you." Whatever he meant by that.
     Jimmy Poole would say, "Be quiet Clyde," and get back to his questions.
     No, I don't know who Eulalie was seeing. She was a pretty woman even if she was a slut. She had an old ladies name but she was only second to Tiffany Tiffany in town for being good looking.
     I had nothing to do with killing her, I said over and over.
     After a couple of hours, Jimmy Poole locked me up in the cell. Come morning I got a big breakfast sent over from Pipple's Diner which was so much better than anything I could afford at the moment.
     Jimmy Poole let me out around ten and told me not to leave town. I was now a suspect in Eulalie's murder. But at least, I got to see Luke Bunnton being brought in as I was being let go.

No Hands No Feet

So life settles in for being a pain in the ass. I still had plenty of my mama's stuff to list on eBay. She died last year, you know. She was living over in the Venango Trailer Park. She's been there even since Dad up and left her, but my mama, she's a scrapper. She sued him for everything he owned and proved she paid for most of it. Guess all them years of being thrown down the stairs and waiting her turn to throw him down taught her to be prepared.
     When that bus hit her when she was down in Pittsburgh last year, why nobody was ready for that. Eyewitnesses said she stepped out in front of it and what are you supposed to believe. Eyewitnesses are supposedly always right. They was there, they saw everything. Ain't that the way of it.
     She had loads of stuff crammed into that trailer. Stuff leftover from her mama and stuff from her own wedding day which I don't ever remember she ever used. There was even stuff I gave her for Christmas over the years and I never ever noticed she ever put it out. Just stored it all away in boxes. But it's been keeping me alive for the last year.
     I used to work at the state school but I was laid off right before she died. It was shit work. Cleaning up after all those lowgrades you ain't suppoed to mock and make fun of. Cleaning asses and feeding them cause I worked with the ones what's so twisted and deformed they can't live outside a wheelchair and most of them have trouble being out of a bed.
     They was going to close the state school down and send all these people out to halfway homes but most of them need so much medical care and all. Easier to keep them together I guess. Anyway, I'm there for near eight years when I got laid off. Budget cuts and all. State politics. What's a guy to do. I waited around hoping to get a janitor job or something, but it never happened.
     I am busy all this one day listing stuff on eBay, looking through books about glassware from the Depression days and glass called Carnival, and china called Noritake and Havilland. I get a lot listed and the proper pictures posted and I starting to get tired.
     It's into September and nobody's asked me any more questions about Euphegenia and Eulalie. Seems somebody's after women with funny names that start with E. Best I can make out.
     Only people to go missing lately are Ed Gatlin but turns out he's up in Erie shacking up with some skinny bitch and his wife fixing to kill the slut herself. She settles for divorce and the house. Then Mike Logan disappears telling everybody he's going to take a job in Scranton and when his brother tries to get hold of him, Mike ain't there. Couple of women go missing and people wonder about them. Elsie Burbank turns up in Harrisburg. Alice Mitchell is in Spokane pretending she ain't never even heard of this town. Can't rightly blame her. It ain't much to brag about.
     So it's a hot day. Kids are back in school and it's only noon. I drive out to Old Fred Spivvey's pond to soak for a while. It being a Wednesday, I figure I don't need no swimsuit.
     I get there and Jimmy Poole's nice Honda is parked there so this must be a pleasure outing for him. I don't give a jolly damn. Old Fred Spivvey's pond is for everybody. I can be there too. I ain't going to run just because Jimmy Poole is there. I ain't done nothing.
     I go down the path and find Jimmy Poole wearing the skimpiest swimsuit possible. And it's bright purple. Then I see Cuss McCall is all naked and I just settle in. Ain't no naked cop going to arrest me for skinny dipping. So I take off my clothes and settle into the warm water. All I want to do is soak anyway. Just for a hour or so.
     Jimmy waves at me and Cuss sends some curse words of greeting my way. They go on doing what they's doing. And I just fall asleep lying naked there on the edge of Old Fred Spivvey's pond.
     I must've dozed for quite a while. Next thing I know, Cuss McCall's let's out a howl and near screams, "Here's the feet!" and he holds up something. Looks to me like bones but I can't tell. Jimmy Poole's up there real quick looking and they begin to run up the path to Jimmy Poole's Honda.
     I get the hint. I don't even put on my clothes. I just grab'em and run naked to my car. I fumble in the pocket for my keys and I'm ready to tear ass out of there like the devil himself was pointing his finger at me. I know what's coming. I got to get out of town. But it's a Sunday and I got to find that damned card what'll let me pull out what little money I got in the bank.
     I ain't done nothing but I know where this is heading. All because I fell asleep in Vince's office at the flea market and I can't find nobody to say they saw me when Euphegenia went missing.
     I'm starting up my car and Jimmy Poole comes over to me and says. "You're not planning on going anywhere, are you Jeffrey."
     "I'm going back to my room." That's all I say.
     "Look Jeffrey, I know you didn't do anything, but if you disappear, it's going to look bad. Did you see what Clyde saw?"
     I never like it when Jimmy Poole asks me a real question. I want him to talk point blank like he knows everything and there ain't nothing you can tell him what he don't already know.
     "I saw bones. I don't know what they were."
     "You're to go back to your room, Jeffrey." Jimmy Poole's very direct and acting like ain't going to be nobody else in charge. "The FBI has already sent someone down to look into these deaths and they'll be able to find you if you run."
     I'm watching Cuss McCall. He ain't taken the time to get dressed yet, but he's taking a camera out of the car and loading it with film. I can tell. The shit is hitting the fan today.
     "Now go home, Jeffrey." Jimmy Poole tells me. "Put your clothes on and go home. Wait for me. Like I said, I don't think you have anything to do with this. I'm on your side."
     Next thing you know, I'm breaking down and bawling. I'm so scared. I can't get mixed up in another questioning. What if the FBI comes to question me. What if I can't explain where I been again. When you live alone and you make your money selling off your mama's stuff on the internet, how you going to prove you ain't been where they want to put you.
     And I let Jimmy Mack give me a blow job in the back of a police cruiser. How's that going to look. You know the FBI knows about that. And they're following my activities on the internet to hit me with not paying taxes. Shit I'm screwed.
     What can I do. I'm bawling and Jimmy Poole's telling me to go home. I ain't got no home. Hildie done took that away from me. Can't go to my mama's cause she's dead. Can't go to Jimmy Mack's. I don't want sex but if he'll give me a blow job, then at least I won't be so total alone.
     You know most of having sex is so you won't be total alone.
     All I can do is drive off. I see Cuss McCall going back down the path to Old Fred Spivvey's pond. He's still buck naked and I drive off and I'm buck naked. Jimmy Poole goes down the path and all he's wearing is that skimpy purple swimming suit.
     Loneliness is the meanest bitch in the world so I drive over to Jimmy Mack's. I don't want to be all by myself. I pull on my pants and go to knock on his door. I need somebody to hang onto real bad.
     Jimmy Mack stands at his door looking me over. "Anything on under them pants, Jeffrey?" he asks and I say no.
     "Drop 'em then. Like you made me drop my shorts at the flea market."
     Jimmy lives on a slow street. Not much traffic and mostly houses cut up into apartments. Not many kids around and most of them has seen everything already. Hell, they're having sex at twelve and looking for more.
     Jimmy Mack says he won't consider letting me in till I drop my pants. So I drop them and I'm standing naked on his porch. I'm holding my car keys in my hand jingling them cause I'm all nervous.
     Jimmy Mack takes my pants and says, "Get the hell out of here, Jeffrey and don't ever come back." He slams the door in my face with my pants in his hand.
     I know this is going to look bad. I know everybody is now on their porch watching me be naked on Jimmy Mack's porch and everyone will testify. I'm as fried as fried can be.
     There's nothing to do but run for the car and get back to my room. At least I can tie my shirt around me to get into my room.
     So I'm in that little room. I hook up to the internet real quick and see how many eBay bids I got going. There's enough to give me hope of getting through the next month and there's still plenty of my mama's boxes of stuff.
     So I lie down on the bed and let exhaustion take me off hoping I dream about Tiffany Tiffany, them dreams can give me some kind of hope. But sleep is no friend of mine. My heart is pounding. My head is pounding. My mind is filled with thoughts I don't want to have anymore.
     No matter how you look at it, I'm tried and convicted and carted off to some maximum security prison and ain't nobody going to save me.

Life in Cancun Can Be Beautiful

A fast trip to the ATM machine showed me I had $108.42 available to pull out. How did Hildlie miss that. I always thought she had spies in the bank. I took a hundred even. The damn machine thinks the world lives in multiples of twenty.
     It's late afternoon and I'm thinking how far can I get on a hundred dollars when up drives the guy from Pittsburgh. The one what hired me to pose naked for him and ended up feeling me up for a long time. Seems he needs money too.
     "Whatcha doing Jeffrey?" he asks me with sex on his lips. I can say that cause he's practically drooling with dirty thoughts.
     "I need two hundred bucks quick," I say and I'm ready for him to do anything. Now I'm thinking, three hundred will get me further. Maybe this'll be practice for a new profession.
     "It's not just pictures for that kind of money, Jeffrey. It's sex. Pure and simple and everything I want."
     "You're not going to tie me up and beat me, are you." I suddenly get a picture in my head and before he can answer, I get in my car and run away. Three hundred ain't that much.
     I drive out to Old Fred Spivvey's pond. I got to see what the hell is going on. I get waved on as I pass. Lots of people are there. Cuss McCall is dressed now, wearing blue jeans and a t-shirt and looking as if Jimmy Poole has him on an absolute no swearing jag. I hear him call some fat guy in a gray suit "butt cheese" and I think I better not stop.
     A couple of cars are parked there. Old Fred Spivvey is standing by the side of the road pointing down the path to his pond. Jimmy Poole is with him. He ain't got his skimpy purple swimming suit on. He's wearing chinos and a white shirt. He's all calm and explaining something.
     I don't slow down to listen. I know I don't want to hear. I go on about a mile and cut over some dirt roads what's in such bad shape they don't even have names. This takes me back to town eventually.
     I want to go into Pipple's Diner and get some supper but I see Rosalee is working. She must be getting some overtime. I decide to get a barbecued chicken from Weston's and some beer. Seems a good night to get plastered.
     If I run, ain't nobody going to believe I had nothing to do with anybody being dead. Not Euphegenia. Not Eulalie. Not this person with her feet in Cuss McCall's hands that I get to see when I wake up from an innocent nap on the edge of Old Fred Spivvey's pond.
     I was only sleeping. I couldn't've put them feet there. Jimmy Poole and Cuss McCall was already there when I got there. They'll have to say so. They're policemen and they don't lie. Policemen don't. But that's what we're taught to believe. What happens if they get their story mixed up because nobody saw nothing and there's only evidence to point fingers not say definitelike. And I live all by myself. Who the hell's going to be my alibi!
     Then it's up for a jury to decide. How do you get a fair jury. They have to listen. What happens if one of them falls asleep and depends on somebody else to listen for him. What happens if some unmarried harpy what don't like men has to decide whether a man killed women or not. So far there ain't been no mention of rape.
     Good God. Imagine trying to rape Euphegenia Bunnton. The thought alone serves to calm me down. I'm fretting over nothing. I just happened to be at Old Fred Spivvey's pond the day Euphegenia's body was found. And when Eulalie's body was found. Now there's this here third body, well, a pair of feet that I saw.
     Shit. I ain't got a prayer. God help me. I just like laying naked on the edge of old Fred Spivvey's pond and taking a nap to get away from the worries of any given day.
     Was I dreaming of Tiffany Tiffany? Did I get a hard on over the thought? Did anybody see me with a hard on?
     Old Fred Early saw Jimmy Mack naked in the parking lot that day Euphegenia died. How often have I been naked at Old Fred Spivvey's pond. How many people could've seen me there and I don't know about it. I was sleeping for Christ's sake.
Who saw me naked on Jimmy Mack's porch? Who saw me come home with only a shirt tied around my waist? Did I have it tied so as to cover everything or was my bare ass sticking out and me not knowing it.
     Shit. I'm screwed.
     I see them pulling up to haul me out. Lots of men climbing out of cars all of them wearing suits and Jimmy Poole and Cuss McCall right from their afternoon swim. All this looks too official.
     They come up the stairs beside the video store and I lose sight of them. They got to come into the hallway what separates my room from the space used by John McTennerman for his bogus scam of the month. Then Eldard Lessard has a room next to me and Jules Kepnet has the other room. There's two bathrooms up here and we have to share them.
     Don't never leave your soap or shampoo in the bathroom cause John McTennerman will take them. And Eldard Lessard has a girlfriend that stays over a lot and she don't clean the shower when she's done. This is what I'm thinking when I wait for them to come get me. Not what I'll tell them. It's like I'm writing a note to tell the next person what lives here.
     I'm all nervous and sweating and ready to scream. If I run, maybe they'll shoot me and I'll be dead and it'll all be over.
     Is there time to jump out the window. It's only one story down but it's asphalt and that can cause a nasty sprain if you land wrong. Don't think the leg would break. I may not be as spry as I used to be, but I'm sure enough scared.
     Next thing is the banging on the door.
     "Mr. Tanner, open up," comes a husky voice. Sounds like a man too tall to tangle with. "FBI. We want to ask you some questions."
     There's some rumbling and I hear Jimmy Poole, "Jeffrey, we have to ask you some questions. That's all."
     "Mr. Tanner, it's better if you cooperate," the husky voice cuts in.
     So it's jump. I look out the window. I'm right over the parking lot and I do think if I jump, no one'll be expecting it. I see three men wearing suits standing next to the big car in the lot. People start to gather. They seem to know something's up.
     All I can do is open the door.
     Some bruiser grabs me and slaps hand cuffs on me and starts telling me my rights. He says I'm a suspect in their case and I got a right to an attorney. Jimmy Poole's saying them things ain't necessary, I ain't no danger to nobody. This can be done civillike.
     The bruiser just says, "It's standard procedure."
     They haul me down the stairs and into that big car and them guys in suits lock in on both sides of me like I could get a car door open with my hands in cuffs.
     Jimmy Poole is telling me I don't have to say anything, he says wait for a lawyer. Then they shove him aside and speed me off to the police station.
     I get fingerprinted and mugged shot. Some bruiser I ain't seen yet tells me my rights again and I see Jimmy Poole coming in with Cuss McCall. "This is my fucking office, gentlemen," he's screaming, "and this is my prisoner. You will release him to me. I already have a judge working out jurisdiction.." and I get lost in all the arguing what's going on. I'm shackled and shoved into a chair.
     Mitchkey appears and says, "You done it now, Jeffrey."
     I ain't never sunk so low in my life.
     They make me sit next to a wall and take my handcuffs so's I'm attached to a chrome steel pole that runs along it. What's a guy to do. I can't take much more of this. All I did was fall asleep. Too often from the looks of things. My luck ran out when they fired me from the state school. It ain't never come back to me.
     Just a fucking cesspool of insane accusations come hurling at me. You killed Euphegenia. You killed Eulalie. You killed this new one and this is the first I know it's a man.
     Why'd you cut off his head and hands and feet, they're asking me. Why'd you boil the flesh off the hands and feet. Why didn't you do that to the other victims. How many victims are there all told. I listen to all this and I'm scared shitless. I listen to everyone of their details and all I can do is bawl and bawl and bawl. I'm so scared. I just keep on, "I fell asleep. I didn't do nothing."
     Then this bully guy what must've terrorized his school playground stops talking and some nicer guy, still he's a big bruiser, starts to ask the same questions. Only he's quieter and has a pleasant voice. He asks did I do these killings and I say no. He asks where was I that day at the flea market and I say I fell asleep. He talks and talks with so many things he wants to know.
     What can I tell him when I don't know nothing. I start bawling all over again. Cuss McCall comes in. He's wearing his uniform now and he just takes me away. He unshackles me from the wall and takes me down the hall with the mean bruiser following him and screaming in his face.
     "You fucking little pissant piece of shit," Cuss McCall says to him. "I don't give a flying rat's ass who the fuck you think you fucking are. Coming in here like you're some goddam clown asswipe pissant hotshot. Get the hell away from me before I bust your fucking ass."
     That big bruiser never let up and Cuss McCall takes me into the jail and locks me into a cell. Jimmy Poole is there with someone else.
     "This is Jake Kovar, gentlemen. Jeffrey's attorney," Jimmy Poole. I learn later that Jimmy Poole had a feeling the FBI was going to railroad somebody into a murder conviction and had Jake ready to give the accused some breathing room.
     After all, there were three dead people with unusual deaths to account for. Jimmy Poole wanted the culprit caught too, but he didn't want to provoke a lynching. I guess I'd have to say, Jimmy Poole was always decent to me all through this. And Cuss too. Taking me away from the FBI and getting me a lawyer right away.
     I find out he's a public defender and he's paid by the state. At least I have someone on my side. He sits with me for a while. Tells me to not talk without him present. Tells me to not subject myself to a polygraph test. Those are not admissable in a court of law and can only complicate the issue. Obviously, I'm highly exciteable and thay will affect the results. So no lie detector tests.
     The FBI bruiser gets to talk with me a little later. Jake Kovar is with me every time I get questioned and he tells me it don't look good. They want a fast trial. There's something bigger happening than just three dead people. This one's coming at somebody's time for reelection and this can't be hanging round.
     Also there's two more dead bodies upstream what we ain't heard too much about down here. The Allegheny is a long river and it don't always bring good news.
     One body was found in January. The hands were sawn off and one was found in May with saw marks on the neck. This all came up at the grand jury hearing and I was accused of doing five murders. I never took the stand.
Hell, I never signed a confession. I stuck to my guns. Jake Kovar said all they had was circumstantial. Falling asleep was no crime. The FBI lawyers what were advisers to the local prosecutors had all sorts of motions and tried to block bail.
     I ain't got no money like the five million bail. I settled in for a long wait in jail. At least Jimmy Poole got my meals from Pipple's Diner. The food was good and I got a dessert every night. I could even ask for what I wanted
The Next Thing You Know

I get to sit in the jail cell and somehow listen to the arguments Jimmy Poole is making to not have me transferred to a maximum security prison. He's challenging them FBI boys and they're getting right pissed. And Jake Kovar ain't sitting still neither.
     He's filing motions and making complaints that I ain't never got a fair deal. He wants a new and impartial grand jury to hear the evidence. He even files a motion citing the judge what oversees this thing with misconduct.
     This goes on for days and the Pittsburgh Press arrives to see what the hell is going on. The national news services and television crews are all over the place. Suddenly this murder is on everyone's mind. Jake Kovar's pulling out every punch he can think of and then letting them that follows his lead pull a few more.
     Next thing you know, I got another grand jury hearing and the charges are dismissed due to lack of evidence. Justice has prevailed and I am free. It seems so incredible that I'm free, out from behind them bars and Jimmy Poole never let up on them FBI men what wanted to haul me out of the county and where nobody would even care if I did them murders or not.
     Jimmy asks me if I need a ride back to my room. If I still have a room. I say no and walk thinking all the while there's a new lock on the door and all my stuff is confiscated as evidence.
     The key works in the lock. Ain't nobody rented my room out from under me. But the room is stripped clean. The computer's gone. All the boxes of my mama's stuff is gone. Ain't even a blanket on he bed. It's like the FBI done took everything for evidence and this whole mess ain't even close to being over.
     All I can do is sit on the bed. They're only giving me a minute to breath. Soon they'll be busting down my door to haul me off again.
     "Jeffrey?" John McTennerman's coming into my room. All two hundred and fifty pounds of him. "Good God, Christ, Jeffrey, I thought you was a goner. I swear they had you locked away and waiting for the electricity to flow through you."
     I hadn't even thought beyond getting arrested again. Did they still electrocute people in this state?
     "Look, I got your stuff," John is telling me. "When they rushed you off, I was in my room and I hightailed it over here and took everything. I got your computer and your boxes. They came back and started looking through everything I left behind."
     John sat his big ass next to me. "Man, Jeffrey, you ain't no murderer. Hell, Euphegenia would've eaten you alive if you tried to get fresh with her. Imagine trying to kill her."
     And there we sat. John McTennerman telling me all sorts of ways I could never kill nobody and me barely hearing. I knew it was only a matter of time before they came for me again. How much time I had, I didn't know but I had to get money together and I had to run.
     They would be more careful next time. They would have more evidence to point with and more theories about why I done it and ways to trap me up and make me say so on paper. Them FBI people, they always want it on paper as if that makes it more true somehow.
     John McTennerman sort've hovered in the background talking away and I couldn't understand what he was saying.
     "I took it all over to my sister's and hid your stuff there. They didn't have a search warrant to look in my room and I ain't letting no fancy ass in a suit tell me what to do." John McTennerman's voice rattled on like a long sad lullabye.
     In time I think I fell asleep and when I woke up, John McTennerman was still sitting in my room. He was quiet and waiting. I rolled over and went back to sleep. After all, sleep is the best escape from life known to man.
     That is if your dreams don't become something to haunt you.

The Lonely Video Meanie     

So I sit there waiting. John McTennerman brings my stuff back and I get back to the auctions that have been going on. Some have closed and time's passed so I got lots of bad feedback. I got to create a new account and change my internet provider, but what's a person to do?
     John McTennerman comes over a lot thinking he's got a right to since he's saved all my stuff. My mama's boxes are back in my room and I bought some blankets. Even Hildie, that bitch exwife, is back to wanting money again. Nothing changes even though I've been accused of murder.
     Sometimes, John sits real close to me and fondles my privates. I let him though. He did save all my stuff. But he's a big bruiser and not at all like Jimmy Mack. He can just touch the merchandise. He did get my pants open and was playing a little too rough one time and I put an extra zero on an asking price. Damned if somebody didn't bid high on that auction and actually come through with a check.
     So I settle into working my new accounts and letting John McTannerman play with my cock. It seems, no matter what I do, some guy wants to play with my cock.
I'm posing for the Wednesday morning ladies art class again. I bet they're getting a real thrill drawing someone what might have murdered Euphegenia Bunnton. They make me lie all twisted up like I was a train wreck victim or sit with my legs spread wide open.
     That big bruiser from Pittsburgh shows up for a weekend and hires me to pose again and I say yes but it's going to cost him this time. If I'm going to be a male prostitute, I want them wages. He says two hundred dollars and I have to do what he says. I say no pain and no enemas. He says okay.
     So I go over to his place in the middle of the woods and let him take all my clothes off. He does it all real slow and makes me stand real still as he touches me all over. It's buttons, one at a time, then a slow draw on the zipper and pinching nipples and hand in the crotch and I am getting all hot and bothered because he's taking so long. When he does get all my clothes off, it's lathering up with scented oils time and I get one of the nicest messages I ever had,      
     I pretend he's Tiffany Tiffany and I pretend her boobs are touching my ass as she's working my legs, them ripe full Barbie Doll perfect bazoombies. And I'm so hard I think I'm going to explode, so I come back to this bruiser from Pittsburgh stroking my legs and sliding his hands along my ass. It's almost disappointing when I let go of that dream.
     The afternoon ain't what I thought it'd be. Not kinky sex and no bruises. He's nice to me and only wants to touch me all over. Then he paints me bright blue and takes pictures and I have to get a hard on so he can paint that and take more pictures. Man, this guy's whacked beyond belief and I thought I might be afraid of what he wants. It's pretty harmless far as I can tell. I collect my two hundred in cash and he gives me a fifty dollar tip for being so nice and says he'll call me next time he's up. It's getting chilly and he doesn't know how many more times he'll be up this year.
     That's fine with me. He gives me the phone number of a friend of his who might want to take pictures of me too. He says this guy is harmless and won't hurt me either. But I have to go to Pittsburgh for this. He never leaves the city.
     So I call and find I'm driving down to Pittsburgh to be picture took by this clown who says he likes them older, meaning not eighteen, and he likes them not buffed. I know I ain't fat and I ain't going to pot yet. But I ain't no buffed body builder either and I expect that he'll send me away when he sees me. I never did say, I'm over forty. Maybe he don't want someone that old.
     I find the place, one of them warehouse building what's been converted into yuppie places, you know, studios and fancy living spaces like you see in magazines.
     His place is huge without no walls and he says his name is Aberdine. It takes me twenty minutes before I realize I didn't hear his first name which is Paul. He's short and naked when he opens the door and has that swishy way about him that Jimmy Mack gets sometimes when he's trying real hard to make a sale to someone what don't care about his package showing thought the spandex.
     Paul tells me to take all my clothes off and then he introduces me to Garth, a big titted body builder what ain't got no clothes on. He tells me, Garth is going to pose with me today.
     I ask what I'm getting paid. He says if I sign a waver, five hundred dollars. I sign the waver and he takes my drivers license and photocopies it. He's got a photocopier there in his place. "Legalities," he says.
     So Garth begins to feel me up and this guy, Lucky McGrath comes out of a room. He's wearing clothes which looks kind of weird with us three naked. He gets behind a video camera and says he's ready.
     "What's this for?" I am getting nervous.
     "I sell amateur vidoes on the internet," Swishy Paul says. He's getting real excited and I'm more nervous.
     "Tell'm to do a strip show," Lucky says. "I like strip shows."
     "Not this time, darling," Swishy Paul says and begins to tell us what to do.
     For two hours Garth is groping me and smacking me and forcing me down on him. Paul's job, it seems is to keep us hard without making us come. He obviously enjoys this part of video making the most. Lucky just points the camera and shoots film.
     In the last fifteen minutes, Garth upends me and rams his condom covered prick up my ass and it's not pleasant but for five hundred dollars I let him.
     It takes me back to the thoughts of the murders I'm supposed to have done and I think about prison again. If I had to do this, could I get used to it. Not that I'd like it but if it gets me protection. Garth ain't gentle, but he's probably ain't as rough as some of them hardcore inmates in prison might be.
     Then Garth is ready to explode and Lucky comes in for a close-up and Garth rips off the condom and he just shoots all over me. Then it's my turn to come and the job is over.
     Swishy Paul shows me where I can take a shower and I get dressed. He gives me five hundred dollars cash and says I can all him again if I need more money. So now I'm a porn star and my ass hurts like hell.      

So It Happens
I'm sitting at my computer one day. The weather's getting colder and I'm scrambling hard again to make ends meet. I've called Swishy Paul to see if he wants me for another video. He says not now, maybe after the holidays. Fine for him but I need to get some cash together here.
     The auctions are going fine and I still have some of my mama's stuff to sell, but even me, Hell, I ain't an endless supply of things. The boxes ain't as many as they used to be. And I still have to take pictures and upload all this shit. Christ, it's like spending time at a real job.
     Jim Hannerly let me pump gas for a couple of days when his wife needed to go into the hospital. God, that woman's got six kids already. Did she expect anything but problems with another one. Then she gets triplets. Fool woman didn't even get one of them things what tell you if it's a boy or a girl. Now there's nine Hannerly brats and everyone knows Jim don't give a crap what they do.
     Why Ed Hannerly robbed a store there a while back and is still waiting in juvie for the trial. Little bastards. That's what little kids are. Should all be locked away if you ask me.
     I was walking along Liberty Street the other day when one of them little shits flung a rock at me and called me a headless fucker. I know what's up. I know it's all waiting to crush me down again. I got to leave soon as I can. Head for anywhere but here.
     That's why I called Swishy Paul. Ain't because I want to do that shit. I have to.
     That bruiser what painted me and took pictures ain't come back and the ladies of the Wednesday art group ain't had me pose for a while now. Guess I'm just a stale murderer with no staying power, like O.J.
     No more bodies come up headless but there's still a couple of FBI men coming to Jimmy Poole's office to check on things. Jake Kovar tells me to rest easy, they're looking elsewhere for clues.
     Some bigshot high paid profiler came up with a description of the kind of man this would be, this guy chopping off heads. Nobody much listens. It's all pretty ordinary stuff. Hank Sessums out at Eatonville ain't too bright and he said the same thing. Some sick whacko is doing it. Them's Hank's exact words.
     So I take photos of mama's china and upload them onto eBay and I don't let John McTennerman feel me up no more. I know I ain't getting the kind of sex I want, but does that mean I have to let every man in town what's thinking about doing it with another guy do it with me? Shit, I'm beginning to feel awful used here.
     One day round Halloween, I hear a squawking and a squeaking noise coming from down the hall and I go out to see if maybe the floor's done ready to fall away. Nobody's fixed anything in this building since it was built. Ain't nothing but concrete blocks and shaky floors. People in the video store hear every toilet flush, every curse word, and every shower we take. Ain't no privacy.
     The sqawking's coming from John McTennerman's room and I open it like I always do when I got something to say to John McTennerman. Seems like he's my only friend at the moment. Everybody else is ready to hang me.
     This was my big mistake. There I see John McTennerman humping Rebeccah-Jean Oslow-Mankeiwicz like nobody cared. Now John's a big guy. I think I already told you that. And Rebeccah-Jean is quite the heifer herself. She's all naked and uncovered and ain't supposed to be anyone to see so much naked flesh as was shown by these two.
I'm ready to beat it out of there when Rebeccah-Jean stops and says, "Oh, Jeffrey, hon. Why don't you crawl in here with us. Johnny here's been telling me all about you letting him feel you up. You can have both of us, sweetie. Why'd you think ole John done felt you up like that. I been wanting you bad, Jeffrey. Real bad."
     I slam that door and hightail it out of that building, away from that hellish thought. I may want female company, but not with John McTennerman in the same room. AND NAKED. And not with Rebeccah-Jean Oslow-Mankiewicz! ALSO NAKED!
     I run to Pipple's Diner and order a cheap supper even though it's only four in the afternoon. With some luck, I can stretch it out until Rebeccah-Jean has finished with John McTennerman and it's safe to go back there. All I can think of is an ambush in the hallway.
     Next thing you know, one of them'll turn up dead with saw marks on their arms or with a head missing and the FBI is pounding on my door. I got to list everything I got left on eBay and be done with it and take the money and head for Mexico or Canada.
     Maybe Mexico. I could be a prostitute in Cancun. I wanted to go there once. Even looked into a travel plan. Never had the money though. Got laid off and began this long drawn out time in my life where I'm broke most of the time.
     Mitchkey comes into the diner while I'm thinking what to do and he sits at the counter next to me.
     Now me, I'm not a booth man. You can get trapped in a booth and end up having to talk to somebody what wants to gab for hours. Always happens to me. Everybody's got a sob story and I get to hear all the details. The bastard pisses me off. This bitch smacked me cold with a frying pan. On and on. I heard it all before and usually saw it on some Bugs Bunny cartoon when I was a kid. Don't these people ever grow up and try something new. If you got to bore me with details, tell me you shoved your honey off the cliff at Old Fred Spivvey's pond. Then mangled the body…well, maybe it's best I move on. Thoughts I keep getting are lately of sending that bitch Hildie over that very cliff and I'm going to slip with some wiseass crack and the FBI'll be all over me.
     "You up to anything, Jeffrey?" Mitchkey asks me. Suddenly I'm nervous thinking I must've said something out loud.
     "Who me? No. I ain't going nowhere. Nobody new's come up missing. I ain't done nothing." I'm all panicked and I want to run out of there.
     Doralinda puts my food down in front of me.
     She's a new waitress being all of seventeen. She quit high school and she wasn't even pregnant. Go figure kids these days. In my day, they stayed in school until they got knocked up.
     "Yeah, it's quite the thing," Mitchkey is going on. "Just some coffee sweetie."
     "Yeah," I agree and begin to chomp on my burger.
     "Nobody knows who did those murders, Jeffrey. I know Jimmy Poole's a soft touch. You ever give him a blow job, Jeffrey?" Only he whispers blow job.
     "Oh, that's right," Mitchkey leans so close to me, "You only get them from Jimmy Mack. Isn't that right, Jeffrey."
     He says Jeffrey like my name is Charlie Manson or Ted Bundy. I been reading about these guys lately. I'm been trying to figure out how to protect myself. All I ever did was fall asleep at the flea market. If I was awake that day when Euphegenia disappeared, people would've seen me and I would never got blamed for this mess.
     "We'll get you, Jeffie, old boy. You might fool Jimmy Poole. He's soft anyhow. So's Cuss. But I got your number fella." He looks at me all meanlike and I throw money on the counter and hightail it out of there. Having sex with Rebeccah-Jean and John McTennerman now seems like a better idea than getting supper with Mitchkey talking beside me.
     But I don't go back to my room. I just walk around and start to feel scared all over again.           


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