TO START THE CYCLE :
It’s only a siren’s song baby
Hey there Mr. Cthulhu
Got some toxic truth?
Squid Kings and Greek Fires
Welcome to Dorley, Population: O
THE DORLEY CYCLE
“Oh shit, sorry. Sir, are you in need of medical assistance?”
The light was lowered and when I blinked away back into darkness I had a glance of a tired moustached face and a red cross stitched on his jacket, reading below of St something’s hospital. I knew him, he’d been the desk guy at the cell who had injected the needle in my arm. Another cop joined and turned his flashlight on, returning the painful light.
“Everything all right here Stephens?”
“Would you look at that Kevana, our friend Victor from the cell, the drunk fella you sent home.”
Stepehns pulled aside the bulky guy who had unsuspiciously let me go with just a warning.
“Fuck I think he’s really badly injured, we should get him help.”
Then he turned back to me, shifting gaze from my hand pressed against my side to Eli, reciting out what he’d probably been doing ever since the whole place blew up. “Sir you shouldn’t be here, this is a danger zone. I can see you’re in need of medical assistance, and it’s my duty to see you get to an ambulance. The hospital here is over its capacity so we’re taking lesser injuries out to Salem and fatal wounds and higher degree burns to Boston Medical. Do you understand what I’m saying to you?”
Kevana took a step back, his flashlight going dim and all I caught was a ghost reaching for Stephens’s head and bashing it against the wall with a loud crack. His body slopped down in an awkward position, the wall all hair and blood and skin. Kevan sidestepped, lazily pulling his gun out of the holster and aiming it at us.
He looked down at Stephens bleeding his brains on the macadam and then laughed shaking his head, his calloused hand absentmindedly brushing away tears or sweat or both. Then his features contorted, mangled with some insanity just coming in.
“Get here boy. Now you little shit, move.”
Eli left my side and Kevana put a firm grip on him, the gun at the temple of the boy.
“Now you walk.”, he told me.
“What do you want?”, I asked him teeth now chattering too. I don’t get him, this cop, his nervous gestures and his gun swinging at my cousin’s face. He gawked at me like I was an enemy.
“Start to fucking walk Jackson or I’ll blow his brains out.”
I heard my name like a panic alarm, because it had been all over, there on the rocks, hadn’t it? Now Eli was struggling and Kevana had his sweaty mouth on his ear, whispering foul things and violent outcomes, and I, I was very cold. I crawled, not strong enough to walk. Kevana’s boot came at my side and kicked hard. I wailed, snot hanging from my nose as I cried at the pain that made me almost piss myself.
“Keep walking, Jackson.” Kevana prompted me. “Stand the fuck up you worthless shit.”
I climbed my body to a standing position, palms planted on the wall. I walked missing where the alley ended and the street began; missing where the world ended and the sea began, again. I tripped over the sidewalk curb and rolled into the main street where no one was because it was black and it smelled of gasoline and rubber, a detonation site of yellow tapes flopping at the breeze that lived inside me, chilling from within. This was the real face of Dorley, abandoned of all humanity, men slaughtering men, everywhere a state of ruin. A police car, I guess his was parked nearby lights on and doors locked; protection false.
“Why are you alive?” His voice was weak; it wobbled in his throat, the big bully guy feeding tremors of fear and tears through his massive body. “Why did I have to stay and look for that spastic, stuttering fuck Paulie when I could have been there and saved him, saved Guy from you two?!”
I understood now, that pain choking in his words – the left out son, the one that wasn’t trusted enough to be a part of the final game. I met him briefly, proud and doing his duty like a good son would. Now he felt betrayed. He was ready to punish, prove his worthiness after all, nevermind the lack of audience. It was his sick soul that wanted it.
“Guy isn’t coming back.”
Kevana quivered strangely and gave Eli a shake, pressing the tip of his pistol hard against his cheek. He turned his head absorbed by something in the dark and stayed like that, looking behind him for a long time, toneless and stiff. Then he focused back his wide eyes on me.
“You know what I should have done? Killed you in the cell. I told him I should.”
He pushed Eli aside and kicked again, the tip of his leather boot finding the hurtful spot that made me cough steel. I lay there just listening to him.
“Just put the gun down, it’s over. You lost.”
I admired Eli for his bravery, standing tall for execution, but it was me Kevana was mad at. He laughed again, giggling at some joke of his own rolling in that thick head of his.
“Jackson, I’m going to show you something better than my tongues.” He blurted that out and whistled and I heard car doors opening.