…or How She and He Killed, Erotically, an Officer of the Law
Here is some erotica featuring heavy references to lyrics by the Mountain Goats. I have forfeited explanations.
I have been spending a lot of time on my own lately; I want to be accused of your murder. I can see that you are about to crack and in my greed I want to be the prime suspect. I have been watching television, but only reruns. I have been reading books. When the officers in blue knock on my door I will express shock that is not quite right, and I will have no alibi. They will point to your lousy suicide note and say they have never seen a worse forgery. Yes, this is what I want.
[Trigger Warnings: violence, murder, mental illness, abusive behaviour]
When we’re there in the car, my legs uncomfortably propped up like I’m a giant sitting on a treestump with my dangling hands touching my ankles, knees pointing upwards and outwards like parted trees, when we’re there in the car nothing else exists but us and the car. There is a fine layer of glass but the glass only half-exists – it shows me false images. When I open the door again, when we stop, when this hellish car ride is over, everything else might exist again, but right now when we’re there in the car, nothing else exists at all.
It is stunning then, even remarkable, that she should be crying. She should be driving; she should not be crying about someone who does not exist. There’s a false red light ahead of me and I stare at it, and I wonder what would happen if I rolled down my window there and then, but I don’t roll down my window and I don’t reach out into that blackness, even though I suspect that the red light might be real. The images shift. Flat people walk across zebra stripes. She is crying but she wipes her tears and presses the pedal at her feet that makes the images wash over us like we’re being pulled forward. She is telling me about him – that is why she is crying.
Some background might be needed.
An hour ago someone poured poison into my eyes and it ate its way into my brain. There were all the physical symtpoms of feeling happy, but I felt distressed. I felt the poison round my eyeballs and twine its way into the nerves that meet up with the happy nerves. The happy nerves were then cut off and the poison, which was eggs, hatched right there in my head right where my thoughts were, and the hatchlings grew together into one thing and it felt happy. It felt content. I felt nothing, but my body was relaxed and I stopped biting my nails, and the corners of my mouth twitched. The man in the labcoat told me he would kill the thing and reconnect my nerves, he just had to shine a lamp straight through me first, and he’s got little tweezers for my eyeballs. The pupil is where the light comes in and this man widened it for me and shone an evil light in through my skull, trying to find the poison creature. In the end he had to pluck my eye out just for a second and grab the little fucker, and then he said I’ll heal perfectly fine by myself. My eye retracted back into my socket exactly the way the cord retracts into the vacuum-cleaner again, only slower.
So I had to call someone, to drive me somewhere away. I called her. When we’re there in the car, and nothing else exists, she is crying.
Some background might be needed.
I come from the alternate universe in which I am not a coward, but that one had to shut down. It was too good to be true. I was reallocated. In this universe I am a coward, and I have not killed anybody with my bare hands. I sleep poorly.
He is still out there.
She is crying because he is so broken up about us not being a family. I ask her, “Are you sure you’re not projecting, here, because historically that has been the thing that you have had breakdowns about,” but I don’t ask her that. I let images course past us. I am not meant to be here. He tried to kill me, and she refused to witness so I had no case. Boys will be boys. He was just messing around. (The reason I know he was not messing around is that I hate him, and I want to kill him, and in exactly the way he tried to kill me, and I wanted to kill him long before he picked up that hammer. If you want to find out what someone truly thinks of you, let your thoughts drift and find out what you really do to them in your deep fantasies.) Now I somehow believe that I can ask for one favour without him being brought into the conversation. That is folly.
She explains how she has tried to explain the world to him. He won’t listen. He is depressed, like I said before when no-one would listen, like I know now when I won’t speak. I love him because he is human, the way I love any person, and it hurts to hear that he is catatonic, maybe suicidal. She is catatonic, maybe suicidal. I wish I had killed him properly, and not run away.
I wish she would drive full-throttle into that wall. There’s a drab, solid wall on our right side, but it’s easy to tell that nothing is real outside this car, because the people we almost run into sort of smear off at the edges; they blur out when they need to. Sometimes cars in the mirror will split in the middle and their parts will move away from each other, mitosing, and sometimes we run over big grates and the blue cars just sort lose coherence and fall through like they were liquid butter, which, of course, they were not. They’re not real. I wonder if she drives into the wall, if the wall will just fracture and rush over us like baleen teeth or if it will move away before we hit it.
I look into the eyes of a toddler who is standing up in her baby carriage, all by herself, and something tries to make it seem like she is looking into my eyes but she’s got the lateralization all wrong. Her left is supposed to be her right. From the moment I look at her she looks somewhere far ahead of me, and follows this imaginary thing (there are no cars where she is looking, not even the not-real cars that seem to be everywhere in this city) until I intersect with it and for a split-second I stare into her eyes and see the poison thing in those big black holes, and then she’s staring somewhere behind me until I stop looking at her, at which point she falls back into her carriage like a thing unpossessed.
To my left, there in the car, the driver is crying. She is showing all the outward signs of emotional toil, but inside she is already dead. I open the car door and the false images disappear and a great black expanse paints itself the colours of a new city.
This family has too many kitchen knives. They are all subtly varied, but that does not change the fact that there are too many of them. They are all branded knives, from three different companies. I think Mother had a set, and that Father brought a set when he moved in, and I think some relative gave us another full set for some anniversary or other. There is actually not enough space in the drawer for all the knives, so some of them are always in the sink. But the good news? No-one will notice if one knife goes missing.
I just don’t get it, who would want to hurt him? He had no enemies, he did god’s own work. He was a saint. I can’t believe that anyone would kill him, and especially not like that. It’s just unthinkable. Did you say 51 times? Tragic. Just tragic. I have no words. Would you say that your first impression of the crime scene was more awe-inspiring, or revolting? No, I’m just trying to – listen, I want to find the culprit just as much as you do. But as you can tell, everybody loved him. So, tell me, was it beautiful?
As his head explodes, as Jacqueline reaches back to collect pieces of him to puzzle him back together, before she realizes just how impossible that would be, some of the blood finds its way to your face. You rehearse what you will say to the journalists flocking there like hyenas to the mighty dead gazelle. Some of them will make their careers tonight, and they laugh as people run around trying to make things make sense. You get home and your mother tries to wipe the blood away with a wet napkin, but it has already fused with your skin.
Once upon a time there was a man who stabbed another man in the heart. The man got blood on his best shirt – by the time he had created an alibi, all dry-cleaners had closed. He had an important meeting the next morning: it was unacceptable to dress worse than his best. And everybody knew that Egyptian-cotton shirt. He wore it for confidence.
So he bought a flower to cover the stain. The flower smelled so good that the important people in the meeting demanded it. His boss glared at him. The meeting went well. Then he turned himself in.
It fans out in every direction, like shrapnel. It embeds itself in the skin of the little victims of your crime; your bereavement, your divorce. By killing one you remove both. And so there are orphanages and runaways and anti-social services.
The shrapnel not extracted runs inside them, so they will always piss blood when they piss.
And nineteen years later they might feel less diminutive, and twenty little years later you are free from good behaviour. You arm yourself with a shovel. You dig up the corpse, sully the crime scene. You haunt the little victims of your crime.