Kenneth Burch

Oh, I got it now, let me see, remember to start off with something really cool, a real go getter kind of line, they like that, I know that now. Sometimes I'll spend a bit more time then is required, but I know that they like that, they really do........

Far be it for him to complain, it's always been like this. Ron Pearson made his way across the street to the corner of Thomson and Fourth Ave. He once again glanced over his shoulder and after seeing no one following him, made his way to the doorway of Anthony's Bar and Grill, so much was expected there. A smoke filled room with hints of red sauce and fried foods, called to the very senses of a hungry man. A quick glance over to the bar revealed that she was still working. He smiled to himself and after hanging up a brown leather coat worn too long, he motioned to Sam Haleson who had spotted him from the door and had already cleared his favorite table and after checking it once more, greeted him with a silly smile. "All set for ya Mr.Pearson, just like you like it, nice and dark." Sam was still wearing that grin that seemed to cling to his face. "Thank you Sam," he replied. "I'll have the same as always," he continued. "Coming right up sir," Sam said and walked towards the back room. There were sounds of glass and silverware being used by the guest, and after an occasional cough or laugh, a second or two of silence. It was that very second of calm that he loved the most.

What you doing?

I'm trying to write a story, do you mind?

A story...? You??.....hehe that's a good one.

Well, I am. Would you mind going away for a bit?

Going away? A bit pushy aren't we? Say please first.

Okay, do you mind going away please?

That's better......cya

Approaching page 243 of a 700 page book, Ron found himself looking back up at the surrounding dinning room. Some had left and others replaced them as the hours dragged on. He was about to return his attention once more to the pages of his worn paperback, when Sam returned. "Here you go Mr. Pearson, careful now, the plate is very hot, but then again you know that don't you sir?" "Yes I do Sam, but thank you anyway." He folded closed the paperback novel of a murder mystery set in France in the year 1823 and unfolded the dinner napkin, placing it across his lap. Looking up in time to see her now looking back at him, he tried to smile. She was Mary Wilcox and together with a body size of 6 and the most perfect set of gleaming white teeth and long brown hair and oval face, had made his heart thump at double time for the last six months. Whispering back to her forming the words "hello" he forced himself to look away and back to the platter still steaming below him.

Hello again.

What is it? I told you I'm busy.

Busy? Busy doing what?........oh yea, I almost forgot. You're writing right?

Yes! I'm writing. Could you please give me some room?

When did you get into this writing stuff? Why now?

Please go away, just leave me alone for now.

Are you raising your voice at me mister? Don't get besides yourself fucker. It doesn't work with me you know.

Alright, point taken. Don't you have something to do right now? I mean go away why don't you?

Ouch! a bit touchy this morning aren't you.? Why don't you let me help you? It would be fun.

Fun? You want fun? Go the fuck away and leave me be for awhile please..........PLEASE!

Well, what a fucking bore you are today.

Two spoonfuls and a sip of wine, brought the wonderful flavors of Anthony's home style pasta with claim sauce. Around the sides, a helping handful of parsley and freshly grated cheese. A side order of steamed broccoli bathed in butter and spotted with crisp bacon bits. Ron sat tasting his wine once more and looked up and over again to the bar where Mary who had been standing facing him, had moved to the other side, her back now facing him. She was talking to a young man who had walked in shortly before Ron's platter arrived and after waiting to be seated, spotted Mary and asked for a drink. "He's not much," Ron thought to himself. "No big deal and nothing to worry about," he continued, "She's just being nice is all, just being nice and friendly." he added.

Always right on time, Sam made his way back over to Ron's table and asked the same question he always did when Ron came here for dinner. "How's everything Mr. Pearson?" Ron conjured up a smile trying not to show teeth working down his food and said, "Fine Sam, as always everything is fine." Sam smiled a little with pride as if he himself had made the dish and after sticking out his chest, walked back into the kitchen. A clang of forks and spoons broke up the steady flow of over lapping chatter and forced Ron's head up and around to see where it came from. Franklin Abotts, a new guy from downtown, had managed to once again break a few dishes and rattle the cage of the bartenders and a few guest close by. "Oh come on slippery hands, that's the second time this week, get a grip why don't ya!" The voice came from none other then Eric Dale, a regular. He'd been in this place a little too long for Ron's taste and had convinced some of the guest, that he was part owner here. A nice guy at times, but would often spend too much time at the bar drinking and of course talking, to Mary.

ZZZZZZZZZ.......I've got to tell you pal, this story so far is putting my feet to sleep. Where's the action and adventure man?

I don't remember asking you for advice, I thought you agreed to leave me alone for now.

I was leaving you alone. I was minding my own business when I couldn't help but notice, how boring your fucking story has become.

Don't you mean, how fucking boring?

Whatever, your story so far blows man. It's like a real waste of time if you ask me.

Well, I don't remember asking you. Besides, I'm still building here. It takes a bit of time you know.

Time.?......Time....Time is something we don't have buddy of mine. At this rate, we'll be 205 years old by the time you get this shit off the ground. Can't you cut to the chase? What's with the Ron guy?

Never mind the Ron guy, mind your business and leave me alone.

Fine then, I was having a much better time watching the sun rise.

Then watch it and fuck off!

"Shit! Sorry about that folks," shouted Franklin. He had managed to save most of the plates, but the last four on the end, well, no ones perfect. Ron had returned his attention to Mary who had come from behind the counter and was quickly helping to pick up the pieces of white ceramic plates, now broken into pieces on the floor. She reached over to Franklin and softly patted him on the shoulder, trying to tell him it was all right, pulling back strains of dark brown hair and smiling. Ron could see that she was wearing a pair of jade earrings. "Small ears," he said to himself. "I like small ears."

Wait! Just wait a damn minute! Small ears, I like small ears? What the fuck kind of line is that?

I thought the sun was coming up, what are you doing worrying about small ears, when the sun is coming up?

Well, I was watching the rise of a beautiful sun in the East, when I heard something about small ears. I couldn't help but be distracted. I mean it's not often that you hear something that sounds so stupid. I just couldn't help myself.

Well, if you'd mind your own business, thus leaving mine alone, we'd get this thing done a lot quicker.

I am minding my own business. And if you'd taken a moment to remove your head from your ass, you too would see a wonderful sun rise, it might even help you to write a better story.

Yea, right.

Sam had made his way back to Ron's table and after seeing Mary and Franklin trying to clean up Franklin's mess, shook his head and smiled turning away. "Never fails Mr. Pearson, second time this week for old Franklin. I'd swear the man has hands made of ice." Shaking his head once more he headed back to the kitchen. "What a place," Ron said to himself, now blotting the remaining claim sauce with a dinner roll hand made beyond the doors just behind him.

A smiling face chubby and round appeared from out of nowhere and asked if there was anything else he'd like. Ron had gazed outside the window two tables away and could see the night lights of the Harbor in Maine, just waking up for the evening.

Well, It's about fucking time mister!

What? What are you talking about?

What I am talking about is location, location, location. All this time you've spend rambling on and on about Ron and Mary and Sam and whoever the fuck there is, and you've failed to mention where the fuck all this is taking place. Some writer you are.

I'm doing the best I can pal, go back to sleep.

Not a chance! This is so funny, I can hardly wait to see what else you do wrong.


What was that? What did you say?

I said nothing, be quiet please.

"Ah yes, I'd like to order another platter please." Ron was still hungry and was now only feeling better after a bit of heart burn. "Sure Mr.Pearson." the chubby voice said. It belonged to Gail Rathers. A short tubby woman with a jolly face and glasses that seemed a bit outdated even for Maine. Her sneakers were a bit run down, but otherwise clean. She seemed to be rather neat although Ron could see that her name tag was slightly crooked. "Maybe she was in a hurry," he thought. "Let me see now, I'd like a small salad Anthony's house style and dressing please. And afterwards, I'll have the fried lobster tail and pineapple please." He finished looking over the menu and gently handed back to her, the folded form. "Okay mister Pearson, would you like another glass of wine?" He thought for a moment and after looking pass Gail and over to the counter where Mary had once again focused her attention to a woman wearing a red dress and over coat. Looking away and back to Gail he replied "No, make it a beer this time Gail, a good one, you pick." She smiled and for a minute even looked cute to him. "Then it's a Sam Adams Mr. Pearson, hope you like it." He sat back in his chair and looked once more out towards the window. "I've had one once before, many years ago. I remember, they're very good aren't they?" She giggled this time and after adding the menu to the stack she already had replied, "They're the best, only beer I drink Mr. Pearson." she added. And smiled again at him before walking away.

Jesus Christ! That's a lot of smiling for a stranger, don't you think?

Who the fuck asked you? Go back to your hole why don't you. Your input is not needed thank you.

Could have fooled me.

The woman in red and Mary had finished their brief conversation and after a few chuckles and burst of laughter, the two parted, the women in red left towards the table upfront to the right of the dinning room while Mary bent down behind the counter and came up with more clean beer and wine glasses. As Ron sat watching her from a distance very clear from involvement, he began drifting off in a daydream, or as one could say, dusk dream state of mind. It is here between the wordless sounds and idle chatter that he could clearly see a small but crystal clear glimpse of his future. In it he sees the visions of he and Mary, their children and wonderful home built by he and his best friends Edward and Dayton. They contract out the project, but do most of the personal additions themselves. He sees a beautiful daughter named Marie after his mother. His son Richard will grow up strong like he and his father did, and carry the name Pearson well. His children will respect both he and Mary and will live and learn the right way, not like those bastard children who later would rob and kill at any request. Mary and he will grow old together and share a life filled with wonderful memories worth writing about even if it's only in a song written by himself. The golden years will have them reflecting back at their youth together and the happy times they shared. Their grandchildren will keep them ever so busy, visiting and hugging. He and Mary will be forever happy, happy being together and as one.

He and Mary will be forever happy.......bullshit pal!


Oh, I'm sorry, I said BULLSHIT!

What do you want now? Why are you always trying to tell me what I think?

Because I don't think you know what the fuck your doing, that's why. Your talking about this Ron guy and that whore Mary being happy together forever, how the fuck would you know?

At this point, it's what I want, why would you bother screwing with what I want?

What you want doesn't add up to a fucking hill of beans pal, your fucked from day one on this shit ass story. Why don't you do yourself a favor and let it go, play a game or something, lord knows it's what you do best. Fact is, it's the only thing you've done lately.

Why don't you shut the fuck up! I'm trying to do something here, and every time I think I'm making headway, you pop the fuck up and from your mouth, bile.

Oh you are so fucking funny man. Why not take that act on the road asshole!

Mary's hair will gray gracefully and her warm face remain. His children will come to understand the magic of love that is their parents and will forever grateful of their teachings. They will once again thank............"Excuse me Mr.Pearson, your salad is ready." Ron's dream world is shattered for the moment as the voice of one chubby Gail person, bounces him back to the here and now. She's standing still in those worn but white sneakers, and she's holding a tray of Boston lettuce and an assortment of veggies. He looks up smiling and glancing once more out the window to his distance right, he notices that it's dark now, street lights have replaced the sun. "Thank you." he says, "Your very kind, may I have another glass of wine please?" and musters up a quick smile for her. "You sure can Mr.Pearson, white again, or would you like to try the red.?" He smiles more to himself this time, and replies the same. "White please, Gail." She smiles again and excuses herself as she reaches over and picks up his now empty glass. "Oh" he said. "Another glass of beer too, please." "Sure, no problem." she yelled back as she walked away.

Ron couldn't help but smell the fabric softener in her blouse, it reminded him of the bubble bath his mother poured into the tub every night before bed as a child. For an instance, he was only six years old. It wasn't until the waitress Gail said she would be right back, did Ron return to the here and now. Gazing over a large plate of salad and toasted bread, he stared. He picked up the dressing, Anthony's special blend and poured it over, covering the outer sides and working inwards. He picked up his salad fork and had just placed a mouthful of greens when a man wearing a dark green coat and brown hat, walked in. He looked to be about 5 feet 11 inches weighing about 200 pounds. His blonde hair was newly cut and after he removed his hat and waited to be seated, Ron could see that he was much younger then he looked.

The man had taken a quick look around the place and had for a second, spotted Mary behind the counter. Ron watched as this young man paused for a second and stood eyes working up and down her firm body. He could see the young man liked what he saw and it was in that very space between heartbeats, where the moment of truth reared it's ugly head, did Ron Pearson feel rage.

Rage???? 'He felt rage,' did you say?

You know exactly what I said. Don't play dumb.

Dumb? Me play dumb? I don't need to play dumb. That's your job remember? And I must add that you're doing a great job at it my friend, a great job.

Shut up!

Had it not been for the return of chubby Gail and another glass of white wine, who knows what might have happened? "Here you go, Mr. Pearson," she said in a bright colorful way. Maybe it was her voice, an octave higher that called to him, maybe it was simply by chance. But something had defused him and it did it quick. The young man had removed his designer coat and flung it over the chair for which he now sat upon. Ron watched as he slid the chair closer to the table and smiled at the waitress, who had come over to greet him. As for Mary, she hadn't noticed the stranger yet, he thought. And if she did, she paid little or no attention to him. She was now busy pouring sets of Jack Daniel's for a party of five, a few from the table begging her not to skimp.

A pair of racing motorcycles pulled up to the light at the corner of the Hudson and Fremount Ave. From where Ron sat, he could see them sitting at the light from the window up front and he wondered if they were locals. The riders were talking to each other and despite the roaring sounds of the engines, seem to be getting they're point across. He could see their hands motioning back and fourth and one of the riders, seem to rub at his midsection and quickly pointed in the direction of the Bar and Grill. Ron figured that they would be heading in soon and was about to make a bet to himself when the light that forced them to stop, had turned green again. A loud roar came at the two riders, pulled down the throttles and put they're bikes in motion, screaming past the bar and down the street, the sound fading quickly. anyone out there listening to me?

What is it now?

Now? now I'm hungry. Do we plan on getting anything to eat or are we going to keep working on this shitty story, until we drop dead of starvation.

I was going to get something later, can't you wait?

As a matter of fact.....NO! I can't. I'm hungry now and I say let's get something in the tub damn it!

All right, give me a second will ya?

Okay, there's your second, let's stop and eat. All this shit about people eating in your story and it's driving me crazy. Let's eat already!

Fine then, just close that end of your hole and I'll order something in.

Hello? I don't want to order something in. What I want is something now. Just get off your fat ass and fix us something. I don't feel like waiting Mr. Chef. I remember seeing lunch meat downstairs, let's get going on that.

I was saving that for lunch man.

Lunch? well guess what dickhead, it's past 12:00 idiot! Time for something to eat, just like your story. They're eating, I say we join them.

All right, just stop taking so much.

.....................................Just try and make me.

Ron had made it halfway through his salad and had finished another one of those wonderful beers, when his second platter of the night, came. A bright red lobster with a crusty coating of some sort sat upon a bed of lettuce and fried onions. A side order of steamed corn with butter and dill. To his right, a small portion of coleslaw with cracked black pepper. "There you go Mr. Pearson," that bubble like voice said. "You're going to love that!" she added. Ron looked down and back up to her smiling. "It does look good, thank you," he said, and picked up a large fork and a small steak knife, using them to break open the remaining already split lobster tail.

Just as Anthony's menu had said, it was very special. Highly flavored butter sauce, came running out of the crusty tail and the bread crumb coating added that one of a kind flavor. A small shell cracker was provided for those claw lovers and Ron, still chewing parts of the tail, decided to attack this colorful coated sea creature there.

He had just taken a break from looking down at the table and his meal when he noticed the young man wearing the dark green coat, had been walking towards him. Armed with a steak knife and the will to use it, Ron eyed the young man and fixed his gaze directly towards the young eyes moving towards him. The man had not noticed Ron and was walking past a table where two women had been sitting. The one woman had short brown hair which contained streaks of blonde highlights. Her face was too round for the hair style, Ron thought but she seemed to look kinda cute with it. Her girlfriend, the one with curly red hair, had green eyes and a complexion born right out of Ireland. The two had looked at the young man walking towards him and stared at his backside, the red head smiling with delight first.

"If he comes much closer, I'll have no choice but to do him. I'll cut his fucking throat, I'll swear," he thought. Ron carefully picked up his steak knife and held it tight. "I'll have but a second or two at the most. Must get him first," his mind spoke. The young man had closed in to about 15 feet from the table where a now edgy Ron Pearson three bites into his second platter, sat with a small stainless steel steak knife and a strain of sweat now making it's way down the right side of his face.

Oh shit, something's going to happen right? Something bad?

Shut up, I'm thinking here.

Yea right, you haven't had a real thought in years.

I mean it, be quiet.

Make me.


The sounds of the dinning room had dropped to a minimum and Ron could almost hear his heart beating wildly. Five feet away the man is now smiling, a devilish grin that seems to nerve Ron's temper and set him closer to his breaking point. As if in a movie, the following frames slowed to where each step made by this stranger of a man, clicked between now moving spaces of a calm heart beat. Ron had been chewing what was left of a mouthful of food and would not have been surprised to see that his motions had all but slowed. He replayed his plan over and over again as he readied himself for defense.

"One more step closer and I'll kill you where you stand fucker," were the thoughts bouncing from the left to the right side of his head. "Come on bitch, it's your life but I'll take it just the same," he added.

He began backing up from the table and setting himself for attack, his legs steady. The man had now turned in Ron's direction, his face full of life and youth. As Ron had pushed back the chair for which he sat and braced himself against the wall behind him, a loud pop came from the right side of his vision. The sound snapped him out of his trance, and he quickly turned away from the man walking by him and towards the location of the sound. A beer bottle, had fallen from the tray of a waitress, it's popping sound almost muffled by the beer inside. Ron looked to see a series of apologies handed out by both the waitress and the gentlemen who apparently startled her to begin with.

By the time Ron's attention had returned to the matter at hand, the young stranger had walked past him and into the men's room a few feet behind him in the back. He took a quick look around and then turned slowly, heading back to the men's room.

Who the hell asked you?

I asked me dummy. You had the story flowing right, a little mystery going on for a second and then, well you dropped the ball again. How can you call yourself a writer, when you keep dropping the ball?

I would be doing a lot better if you 'd simply shut the fuck up and let me write this damn thing.

If I told you once, I've told you a thousand times, your not a writer! Never have, never been.

You know, it'd be nice sometimes to get a little support from you, besides your sideline insults.

Well, I'm just pointing out the facts pal. If you can't handle it, then quit. Stop the fucking story now and go watch T.V. and get a beer, why don't you...

At least I'm trying damnit! Better to give it a go, then to just sit there looking stupid.

Looking stupid? Who's looking stupid? Your the dumb fuck who got us both into this and now you haven't a clue how to get us out.

Who's the one that's got us stuck? We're not stuck and I know what I'm doing. I know how to finish the story, I just want you to fuck off and stop butting in. Just close that fucking shit hole of a mouth for a minute and let me finish what I started.

You see what I mean? This is just what I'm talking about. You haven't started a thing to begin with. All you did is plop down a few worthless lines of crap and you expect something to come from it. It's shit I tell you, plain and simple shit.

You know, I'm beginning to hat....

Go ahead, say it.

No, forget it

No forget it, say it fucker. Tell me what you really think.

Come on.......

Say it!

You want me?


I HATE YOU!.....there, you like that? I fucking HATE YOU!

There, feel better?


Well, I do


The men's room of Anthony's bar and grill was large with a few framed newspaper pages that had yellowed over time. The wallpaper was plaid and made up of colors of green, brown and black. Ron walked over to the first urinal and unzipped his fly. He could see that someone, the stranger maybe was in the stall behind him. He thought about waiting and maybe catching the stranger on the way out. He was just about to put this idea into motion when he heard a cough from the next stall over. "Damn!" he thought. "Fuck, I can't do them both, someone will surely catch me." He placed the knife in the pocket of his sport jacket and walked over to the sink to wash his hands.

Keeping an eye on both stalls and one on what he was doing, he counted to himself the steps needed to attack this stranger of men. The stall to the right opened and out came an older man with a balding head. He was short, about 5 foot 3 and looked to be having trouble zipping up his own pants. He looked up at Ron and nodded, showing a worn grin. Ron watched as he walked over to the sink, washed his hands and after hitching his pants up, opened the door and walked out. "Now's my chance," he said to himself, "I must move quickly".

Reaching back inside the pocket of his sport jacket, Ron removed the steak knife and walked towards the stall to his left. He could see that the stranger was still sitting and figured he could kill him and leave him sitting until closing. After all, how many people would bother a man sitting in a stall taking a shit? He walked closer now, hand gripped tightly around the knife, when out of nowhere came a whistle. He stopped for a second and listen. The stranger, the evil man who had come in Anthony's Bar and Grill and walked over to Mary smiling his youthful smile and warm greeting, was whistling a beatles song in the stall, while taking a shit.

Hey Jude, came out clearly and in that instant between the tapping of seconds, Ron Pearson returned to the here and now. He tilted his head much like a dog does when it doesn't understand, and decided at that exact moment that the young man, who had walked in the Anthony's smiling at Mary, ordering food, taking a shit and whistling "Hey Jude" was a stranger that had to be okay.

Ron smiled to himself, returning the knife to his pocket and for the third time, washed his hands and walked out of the men's' room of Anthony's and back over to his table where most of his deep fried breaded lobster remained. Gail, the chubby waitress had returned with another one of those Samuel Adams beers he was beginning to like so much

Oh my God. What the fuck was that?

What? What's wrong with that?

Nothing, if you like shit. Man that whole section sucked. All that time Ron sweating and heart beating and going in to kill this fucker only let him go because he's whistling some fucking song? man is that for shit. Why don't you let me write this story? Anything would be better then this shit.

It's not about that, I was trying to show that the man has some serious problems and that somewhere inside his dead, he's fucked. The song bit, only reminds him of a time from the past.

Don't play me for a fool pal. I can see what you were trying to do. I'm just saying that you fucked it up is all. I mean damn, all that wasted writing for nothing.

It's not wasted writing, it's a plan I have to keep the story going and add a little depth is all.

If you wanted depth, you should have got up this morning fixed us something to eat and went back to bed, that would have been more depth then this ass of a story your writing.

It's always something with you isn't it? I mean you never let up do you? never do you ever give me something to hold on to? Once, just once I'd like to see you break down and show me some support, I'm trying to do something here.

Oh man, I'm glad you stopped talking. I was just about to start crying over that. Cry me a river, why don't you. Sing us a Shire song why don't you. Get it? A Shire song?

Yea, I got it. I'm not stupid you know.

Could have fooled me.

Glancing at his watch, he realized that the evening had moved forward at a fast pace. Mary had been wiping down the counter and had waved good bye to a couple wearing the same color coats and matching hats. They waved back and although Ron's seat and table had been a great deal away, he could still hear them thanking Mary for her hospitality and great company. Mary had now turned from the couple heading out and looked up a the clock which hung above the counter, behind the bar. It must have been close to quitting time because, Ron could see her checking and matching her watch to the time above. A gentle smile appeared around the rim of her warm face and Ron knew it was getting close.

Gentle smile and warm face, oh please........give us a break with this candy coated shit.

Who the fuck asked you? I'm writing this and I'm about tired of your remarks and asshole like statements, go to sleep why don't you. Go anywhere as long as it's away from me.

Now, just think about what you just said. Think about how stupid of a statement, that was. I'll go for now, but rest assured, I'll drop in and back any god damn time I feel like it.

Gail the waitress with the tubby figure and white sneakers, had returned to Ron's table asking if there had been anything else, he'd like this evening. She still had the smile of hers, but it seem to be wearing down a bit. He guessed the day had been a long one. "A cup of coffee please." he said and smiled as she picked up the platter of lobster shells and remaining side dishes. Ron had left some of the wine, but had finished the beer. He slid the wine glass off to the side suggesting that he wasn't finished with it yet. He looked up just in time to see that the young stranger who had unknowingly come close to death this evening, was getting up from the table and after having left a tip, picked up the dark green coat that Ron thought now look like those worn by faggots, and headed out the front door. "He just left, just picked up and left he did, never once did he even look her way, he just walked out the door and he was gone," Ron thought.

9:36 pm according to his watch, and all was not well. He had finished his first and second cup of coffee and now knew it was showtime. He had watched couples come and go throughout the evening and had decided that it was now or never.

Oh boy, here we go.

Shut up!

I believe the phrase is....."make me"

Ron Pearson backed from his chair and stood up. He had been siting for quite awhile and found that his legs had cramped up a little. Reaching around, he pulled his coat from the chair behind him and waved Gail over. Now that he was standing he could see that Gail was not only chubby, but shorter then he thought. He smiled and asked that she total and bring him his check. "Sure Mr. Pearson, I'll be right back," she said. As she walked away Ron could see that the famous bar and grill had began emptying out as the locals and some touring guest, headed out.

By the time Gail returned, Ron had put on his coat and had removed his wallet, he held it now opened and waiting. "Here you go Mr. Pearson," she said. "I'll take that whenever your ready."

Without looking at the total, Ron placed two one hundred dollar bills and Gail's hand and after thanking her for a fine job and great service, smiled and even worked up a wink for her. She looked down and back up to him smiling and thanking him, asking that he come back soon. "I will," he said. "Sooner then you think," he thought.

As he walked towards the door leading out into the street, he turned once more to Mary who had bent down to restock glasses and straws, for the evening's closing. As she stood up, she looked towards the closing door and a man, who had been sitting in the back for most of t he evening, walking out. "Goodnight," she said, to a pair of ears that never heard her.

Nice, best few lines of the story I think.

Who asked you?

In truth, you did. You always did.

The evening's air had turned crisp as Ron Pearson walked back across Thomas and Fourth Avenue, to where his green BMW had been parked. The streets had quiet down considerably and many of the shops, along the main street had closed for the evening. Little puffs of steam escaped from a mouth moving on it's own. He walked first around and then to the back of his car as if checking for dents. He then reached in his left coat pocket and removed his set of keys. Bright white lights flashed from behind, as he stopped in the rear of the car and waited for the lights to leave. More puffs of steam, coming more rapidly now as he put the key in and turned, releasing the trunk.

Oh shit.......

Shhhhhhh.....quiet please.

The trunk door opened and exposed a large tool box and assorted car cleaning supplies. A full sized spare tire had been bolted down and covered with a blanket, matching the interior. It was to the left of that tire, did his attention go. Placed longways from front to back, was a long brown baseball bat. Measuring some 34 inches and weighing in at 7 pounds, Ron could see that the black electrical tape that had covered the lower half, was still intact. He reached down and pulled it from the trunk, closing it afterwards. One more glance across the street and after checking both sides of Thomson Ave, he headed across the street and back to Anthony's famous Bar and Grill.

Mary would be just finishing up one last pour for a man sitting at the bar. He was Steven Hobbs from Portland Maine, who had come in for a nightcap before returning to his hotel room down the road where his wife and eight year old daughter quietly slept. She would smile at him and had just thanked him for his tip, the two were just about to finish chatting about how the area was getting more busy during the off seasons, when she turned to see the man who had sat in the back table for most of the night, eating. Her first thought was that he had forgot something, a wallet or maybe a hat. She was just about to greet him again, when she noticed the object in his hand. As if frozen by the night air of Maine's winter, there was little she could do but scream inside as the returning man had raised the wooden object that she knew now was a baseball bat, and swung it towards her, cracking her skull. Blood flew from the side of her head and sprayed onto the Anthony's Bar and Grill mirror behind her. Fragments of both bone and hair followed as she tried to gather what thoughts she could inside a head with only partial remains. Her small body did little to aid her as it slowly fell backwards, but not before being hit one last time.

Fuck me! What the fuck are you doing man?


Steven Hobbs had locked up in his seat, unable to do anything but pray for an ending to what he hoped was a nightmare. A chance to leave this place and return hopefully to his room where he would awaken to find his wife asking if everything was okay and how he should have not eaten that second bowl of chili. He was praying for the moment and hoping to hold her one last time and tell her that he loved her and his family. Steven Hobbs would never get the chance, his death would quickly follow t he young and beautiful bartender who had only greeted him and those who came through Anthony's Bar and Grill, with a smile.

Chaos erupted in form of screams and yells. Ron had stood still now looking down at what he had done. He looked around at those running from him and those towards him and knew that his time was near. With the bat still in his hands and dripping blood, Ron Pearson turned slowly around to where he saw an off duty police officer, holding up a pistol and shouting something he couldn't quite hear. Seconds later,

Jesus Christ! Your a fucking animal man! A fucking animal! Get away from me you fucking freak! Get away from me now!

Freak? Animal? hmmmm..... I don't see these things my old friend. Perhaps your looking at someone else maybe?

No! No! No! I'm looking at you motherfucker! Your a fucking freak who should be locked the fuck up for what you did. You didn't have to do that man, didn't have to fuck everything up like that!

Oh yes I did. I had to do something, wasn't I boring you, weren't you getting bored watching me write this?

Sick, Sick, sick. Your fucking sick man, sick and you need help like a motherfucker. Damn! I can't believe what you have done! You fucking animal!

Oh, so now I sick am I? Too sick for you, I guess huh? Didn't like the ending either huh?

No! I didn't like the ending of your otherwise shity story, fuck this story, fuck you and fuck the ending. I hate you for what you did! I HATE YOU!

Oh come now, calm down old friend. You getting out of control and it's not good for you. You've got to watch your blood pressure, you're going to blow something, if you're not careful.

Blow something? Blow me you asshole! You've gone to far man! Too fucking far this time, I'm out of here pal, out of here! Do you hear me!

Don't leave yet buddy, I haven't finished the story. There's just one last part needed.

One last part! How the fuck can there be one last part? You killed off the guy and the girl and even managed to throw one extra in for good measure, what more!?

Something very special, you'll see.

What are you doing? What are you doing, show me now. What the fuck are you doing.!

Why I'm ending the story.....old friend



In a time where all things must come to a close, Richard Preston came to be. He had written his first novel since returning from the hospital where he had suffered his second nervous breakdown. Try as he might, he had come to t he understanding that the gift he had taken for granted, had escaped him one night, while driving home from a party in the rain. His wife of 14 years Marie, had taken their two children and moved back to New York.

On this rainy Friday evening, she picked up the phone and called to an ex- husband who had been late with the checks this month. She intended to make the conversation short, trying not to let it slip that she still loved him.