Indefinite Length, Part 5


17. Apr. 2018


The brain can be tricked, and will often even trick itself, into hearing and seeing things that are not, objectively, there. You are a poor judge of the truth even on a good day, but the man who sits across from you at Your Friendly Neighborhood Bar & Grille(TM) looks real enough, even if Your Friendly Neighborhood Bar & Grille(TM) has somehow receded into the ether of before-and-after. You're not so sure of your own presence, though. You feel your lips move.

"I know you. Who are you?"

"Johnny Facenda."

"Yeah, got that part." Charlee looks at the man's face, and feels something tugging in the guts, or at the heart, or both. They stare at each other for a moment. Charlee's mind races, trying to connect dots that keep blinking in and out of existence. "What are you doing here?"

"Talking to one Charlee Hagwood, proprietor of a fine eatery and, let's admit it now, a sad sack with no light left inside."

Charlee's chest tightens. "How do you know me?"

"We've met later. You mix a great margarita. Now, though, at this particular point along the linear you, it's time to make you an offer." His hands, which are clasped in front of him on the table, part to reveal a small sphere. It is glowing a painful shade of chartreuse, the bright color of spring pollen. "You take this node," he says, and drops it into Charlee's palm.

You don't remember extending your hand. The—node?—feels weightless and fragile, like impossibly thin glass. It shifts against your skin, warm, and as you watch, it sinks into your hand until only a faint yellow sigil remains. It's a tall triangle, with smaller copies of itself arranged inside it, shrinking down in a spiral pattern until the tiniest triangle disappears. But you can see it. You can see the smaller ones, and smaller still. You blink to refocus. Your new tattoo tickles. You scratch it, and the node rises up again. "What do I do with this?"

"For now, put it away," he says, and the node wiggles and snuggles back down, leaving the sigil. "You can use it when you meet the right person."

Charlee's eyebrows rise. "I'm not interested in a relationship, man."

Johnny Facenda laughs, and it sounds a bit like a flute. "No one wants a relationship with you, either! Maybe after you get rid of your sludge." He points to the sigil. "When you find the person to give your darkness to, wake the node. It will handle the transfer. You'll be light as a feather again."


© KIM BREEDING-MERCER / OgFOMK ArTS -- 2018 All Rights Reserved. - "Indefinite Length, Part 5"
Indefinite Length, Part 5 -- Kim Breeding-Mercer




IN WHICH: His hands, which are clasped in front of him on the table, part to reveal a small sphere. It is glowing a painful shade of chartreuse, the bright color of spring pollen.

© KIM BREEDING-MERCER / OgFOMK ArTS -- 2018 All Rights Reserved. - "Indefinite Length, Part 5"

#OgFOMK #KimBreedingMercer #IndefiniteLength #IDP #Fiction #streamofconsciousness

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