Friday was release day for a book I wrote called Beacon, book one of the Nation of Five series. The book is about young men and an impossible task they set before themselves. Well, I know a lot about impossible tasks. I’m a DID survivor who suffers from hallucinations. I have bipolar and Non-24-Hour Sleep-Wake Disorder. Getting through a day where I make dinner, hang out with my kids, be a husband to my wife, and not end the day screaming, is the completion of an impossible task. Well, it may be an impossible task that’s undertaken in the book Beacon, but it’s only even considered because of the friendship between four boys. Four teenage boys attempt this daunting feat. Got me thinking about the boys and men in my life. And so this weekend to celebrate the release of Beacon, I will be dropping upon you chapters from Reality of the Unreal Mind. These chapters are from the unreleased third volume, titled The Keep. I start at 7:30 in the evening on Friday, and will end at 9 at night on Sunday. So follow me now into the story of the men who made me possible.
The end came in August. It was pretty ugly. D was back in the delivery store, driving pizza to hungry people. Both of the girls were either fired or got no hours anymore, and I would lose the trailer quick. We get one more good night before all of it ends. I get molested by a horny girl, as does D, and I lose my job. I am back at the restaurant part-time. It’s all a big mess. It starts with my accident.
And now that I think about it, I’m pretty pissed.
I’m running late. The night before, we did not have a night at D’s house and I am at the apartment. I get out to the truck and I back out. The back of the truck jumps. I hear a crumbling, crushing of a car, and I jump out of the truck. I have rolled the bed over the hood of a car.
There is a construction crew next door that has kept me up all morning, hence the over sleeping, and I have fucked up one of their cars. The guy is very cool about it. As he should be. He tells me not to worry about it, it will all get worked out in court. He backs his car out of the way of my parking lot and I go to work.
Did you hear it? This fucker had parked right behind my truck. Well it is the company’s truck, and they don’t know the details. It is my first automotive incident, so I don’t know any better, and so much is badly described. The company’s insurance is working it all out.
It will be about two weeks before the court says that I need a class B license to drive that truck because it is a company vehicle, and until I get one, I am grounded. Mumble has to drive me back and forth to work and he hates that. But first, the lock and key.
Crow is back on the roof of the truck. He has backed the truck into the step. It is pretty bent now and the back bumper of the truck is showing wear. D is in the cooler with Baby. And after surveying the town for a while, Crow moves the truck and makes it into the trailer. Chevy is waiting for the work day to officially begin, and the door opens.
Shadow kicks it shut and hears someone on the other side curse. He locks the door, pulls back, and with dawning horror, sees the lock turn. This guy has a key. This is not Mumble. This is bad.
The door opens again, and the Big Boss walks in. He looks at me, shakes my hand, even though he knows me. He introduces himself and begins his inspection by opening the cooler.
D and Baby are in there. She has no shirt on and her bra is very lacy. D’s hands were very busy. The Big Boss politely asks her to get dressed. Waits until they come out, heads bowed, and he goes into the cooler. He is in there for a few minutes while we harshly whisper to each other in a panic, then he comes back out.
He checks the soda machines, and they have not worked for about a month. They broke, but we don’t sell that many sodas anyway, so I let it slide. The Big Boss works on them for a few minutes, after asking us how long they have not been working, then he fixes them. Asks me politely to please start selling soda and walks around the trailer. He scans the place for a while before he turns with a smile and politely asks me to give the trailer a deep clean before I leave tonight.
See, D and I are marginally cleaning this place at night. It is nowhere near unsanitary, but it is approaching it, and when he walks out of the trailer, I know we are fucked. I thank D and Baby for being nearly naked in the cooler, and we start our day.
The night is long and we are closed. We have scoured the place pretty good. I will find out that we were not thorough enough, but that will not happen until the next day when Mumble comes out with half an ass. See, the Big Boss has chewed off the other half.
That night we close, and we are about to get out, when the phone rings.
“Pizza Hut, I’m sorry we are closed,” I say.
“We know, but we were wondering if you could maybe make us a few pizzas anyway. We are having a little party and expecting more guests, and we will be hungry at the end of the party, so we want a pizza. Sorry it is so late, but can you make an exception?”
She sounded cute. And we had a bad night, selling about ten pizzas all night long. This town is far too small to support a Pizza Hut, even one as small as ours, and we know they will shut us down soon. We are losing money and I want to make one more sale if I can.
“We are closed, but I will make an exception, sure. What do you want?”
D is in the background waving me off. He wants to go home. We are at the climax of a very intense game and he wants to play.
They wanted two pan supremes and they want to pay cash. They promised a tip. But see, I have already closed the register and I can’t start it up again. I forgot that when I agreed to make their order, so I will be giving this girl her pizza free.
I tell her so and she says no. “If I can’t pay the restaurant, then I will pay you.”
“Can’t do that. I could get fired.” Then I hear it in her voice.
This girl wants more than pizza.
“We won’t tell if you don’t.”
We make the pizza, even though D is complaining the entire time. We are out the door and waiting for this girl to get here when they pull up in a truck—damn near everyone in this town drives a truck—and they get out.
No two girls had ever dressed more provocatively. One is in a short skirt and halter top. The other is wearing a dress so tight it could be a tattoo. They separate and go to each one of us, because this was planned and they have chosen who gets who.
“We have your pizza,” I say. I have no idea what to say beyond that. I sound like an idiot because I have never seen a girl this pretty, and I have never seen a girl dressed to fuck before. D has the pizza, and his girl walks to him with a wad of cash in her hand.
He is unphased. He sees this sort of thing all the time.
“Just take it for free. We want to keep our jobs.”
Mine grins at me. She has a wad of cash, too.
“We are having a party at my house. My parents are out of town and we have all night,” she says.
“Sorry, we can’t. We have to close out the books and do the dishes,” I say. I can’t stop staring at this girl’s lips and she can see it.
“If you guys don’t come, it will just be us two,” the other says. She is coming at D now, and he is backing up. This girl is hungry, but could not care less about the pizza in D’s hand.
“We have to drive straight to the store after this and clean up,” I say.
D says, “We are in gross pizza clothes and smell like pepperoni.”
For some reason, when you finish a shift at Pizza Hut, you always smell like pepperoni. It is odd.
“You don’t have to wear those clothes at all,” my girl says.
All the things Sin has told me about run through my head. Shadow has moved his eyes from her lips to her body now, and he can’t stop staring at her hips. He can’t see her ass, and he wonders if there is a nice one back there.
“Here is your pizza,” D says. “Now we have to get out of here.”
“You can’t come to our party? Not even after you close the store?” she whines, but it is that sexy whine that girls do. The “but you are in control” whine, when everyone there knows we are not.
“Can’t come. Got plans and it is a thirty-minute drive back. Then about thirty minutes of dishes. Then a thirty-minute drive back. It is already late. We can’t make it. Give up the dream.”
The girl takes her pizza and looks over the bed of the truck at the other girl. They are both massaging the cash in their hands. On some unseen signal, they move at the same time.
“Well, we have to pay you for this,” my girl says. She grabs the front of my pants, as D’s girl grabs the front of his, and they shove a wad of cash in our underwear.
She grazes my crotch and her eyes light up. I have dollar bills stuck to my dick and she says, “Please come home with us. We know what to do with those.”
Well, no party. We fight our way to our vehicles and buzz off, but I keep those bills in my underwear until I get to D’s house.
Washed dishes. Closed out books. Pizza made. Wings, and in the car. Back to D’s house, where I finally take the bills out of my pants. I’ll keep that cash until I am starving one night in my apartment and I have to walk to Waffle House to get dinner. Before I spent them I washed them, so don’t make that face.
A few months later D is cleaning out his basement and lifts the end of the love seat to clean under it. He hears rattling and rolling, and he sets it down. He flips the love seat over as the last of the bones roll out from inside the torn underside.
These bones are stripped as clean as bones can get. This is Gurvin’s hiding spot. The ferret D loved so much had been stealing away with those bones every night.
Months’ worth of bones are in a great pile, and D laughs until he cries.
Our summer in Richland ended with Mumble being pissed at me and not talking to me for a few months. Rose said I had made an idiot out of him. The Big Boss took the trailer to Lebanon, where it prospered, and that was that.
It was the most fun summer of my life. And it will never be forgotten.
This chapter is from Reality of the Unreal Mind, Vol. 3: The Keep.