Sunday, August 22, 2010

A Twist Of Noir 553 - AJ Hayes

BEASTS - AJ HAYES

Across the alley, in the back of the junkyard, a man was beating a dog. The man’s arm rose and fell slowly. The dog—a pit bull mix—stood still, staring at nothing in particular. The drizzling rain had soaked them through. Neither seemed to notice. Both looked bored. They said that, once, the dog attacked a guy. Almost killed him. They said the man had helped.

I got a plate of leftovers and a gun.

“Hey,” I called.

They both looked up.

“One of you can change,” I said.

I shot the man and fed the dog.

BIO: AJ Hayes is from San Diego and – god help him – good friends with Jimmy (Mad Dog) Callaway and Josh (Gut Ripper) Converse, who provide great advice and the occasional smack in the mouth with the butt of a .45.

13 comments:

Chad said...

Nice.

Beautifully short and sharp.

One of your best.

Paul D. Brazill said...

Man's best fiend! It bites!

Jimmy Callaway said...

One of my favorites of Hayes'. It's funny 'cause it's true.

Chris Hugh said...

I like it. Animals aren't moral agents; they aren't good or evil. But people can be evil.

P.S. That being said, I know, all dogs are good dogs:) Cats too.

Ian Ayris said...

Brilliant, AJ. Setting the scene and the protagonists with perfect timing word efficiency. Loved 'Both looked bored'. The routine of abuse summed up in three terrifying words. And when the third party comes on the scene, you just know something is about to occur. Brilliantly comic, yet darkly disturbing. Just how I like my noir :)

Great stuff, AJ.

Richard Godwin said...

This is great aphoristic noir writing. Right decision.

Alan Griffiths said...

Cut to the bone; lean, mean and very well written.

Des Nnochiri said...

Short and sweet. Just the way it should be.

Charles Gramlich said...

I wonder if this one will have a sequel?

"I shot the dog too."

Michael Solender said...

Mike Vick -take note.

Al Tucher said...

Des, I was going to say, short and not sweet at all. That's the best kind of flash.

Josh Converse said...

How the fuck did I miss this? Very nice, sir.

Naomi Johnson said...

I'm slow to the party, but yes. Well done, AJ.