20070425

The Prologue to My Life's Flashback

by Victor S. Smith

Looking down the barrel of a Colt .45 tends to give you a perspective you might not have realized you were capable of having; I realized very quickly, as the cold steel slid between my teeth, that I had no business being in the bedroom of the house at 65 Ellerbee Lane. I also realized very quickly as the ever-so-slight pressure against my cheek spun me around so that my back was facing the door, that in Texas it was legal to shoot a man in your house as long he wasn't facing a door, or you weren't shooting the man in the back: the theory being that a man who is heading for a door is looking for an exit and if you shoot him in the back you are shooting in cold blood; but with my present body orientation there was nothing the police could do except write the report up and file it in some ridiculous file named Crimes of Passion. I couldn't really remember why I was even there; but when the hammer on the shiny weapon started to slowly withdraw from its resting place it came back in a blinding light: there was music turned up too loud in the seedy dive bar as we debated the twenty dollar drink-and-drown cover charge, a woman in a crimson halter-top passed by the entrance door and the decision was made for me so I passed through the bright blue door frame and into the belly of sin, twenty dollars poorer. My memory blinded by a drink called a Woo-Woo and copious amounts of bourbon I extracted from my alcohol soaked neurons the details that I could: she was older than I was, she looked emotionally neglected and I knew in the first five minutes that I was going to leave the bar with her; if there was a conversation about a husband I am sure that I didn't remember it—but it wouldn't have changed anything if I had, and it wouldn't have been the first time. Then nothing, a complete black out; until the sound of elephants storming up the stairs, screaming as something kicked down the four panel bedroom door brandishing the implement of a betrayed man's fury. I came to two conclusions, as the hammer on the shiny pistol started its return home; the first, that the sum total of my life would be pared down to a series of vignettes depicting drunken debauchery and second, that there was nothing even remotely funny about a crime of passion.

6S

Victor S. Smith, author of Next Stop: Fountain & LaSalle Square, is a recovering economist who caught a writing bug penicillin isn't clearing up. His two blogs are Like Pollution and Marlowe's Sketch Pad.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

One of my favorite 6S writers. Majorly cool piece, Victor.

V. said...

Wow, thanks... anonymous.

Madam Z said...

Man, I'm staying away from Texas and Woo-Woos! And my "crimson halter-top" will remain in the closet, thank you very much.

Thanks for an exciting, action-packed read, V.

hippieange83 said...

Thank God for semicolons, without which we would not have read this story here. Great work, V.

V. said...

Thanks guys.

Amy Guth said...

Super premium marvelousness, V. As always.

Adam Shprintzen said...

Wow, fantastic, as always. Please, please keep them coming.

Madame Goodrich said...

I have to agree - thank god for semicolons and commas!

Excellent and exciting.