Monday, November 29, 2010

A Twist Of Noir 635 - Steve Weddle

HOLD YOU - STEVE WEDDLE

In the story I’m writing, you want me to hold you down. Tie you up. You say you like a man who knows what he wants. You say you’re glad I found you. What took me so long?

This wasn’t easy.

At first, I didn’t even know you. I’d seen your picture online when I clicked a friend’s vacation album. Your eyes. The diamond-like twinkle. Like it was before they made me take those tablets. The lip-smacking good ones. Haha. That’s a joke.

No, this wasn’t easy. You were so very careful. I can see why. So pretty. So very, very pretty. Like a porcelain angel. So fragile.

When I saw your picture, it was like you were the one. Like I had found the answer to a math problem I’d been working on for twenty-five years. “Show your work.” Haha. Oh, I will. So pretty.

I was worried you wouldn’t accept my friend request. I do not take rejection well. So I had to set up an entirely new person just to be safe. You have to be safe. People are crazy.

That’s why I made her go to the same college as you. And I found so many people with so many friends. Did you know that a person who has more than 500 friends will just automatically add you? I made a chart. People with a couple hundred friends, maybe they know all of those people. You can’t just request to be their friends. You do not have very many friends, but your friends do. So I added some of them. The friendly ones. So funny. Like we all went to the same college.

Also, finding a nice looking girl online is difficult. One who is not a whore. More of them are whores. I tried some search terms and finally decided “homely pretty girl midwest” would work best. I didn’t want to be too pretty, you know? Or a whore. No one likes a whore. Not for more than a few minutes, anyway. Haha.

I updated my status, liked some of the things you liked. Mad Men. Nickelback. This was a fun game. Not easy, like I said. But fun. When you needed a machine gun for mob wars, I was your guy. Or girl.

It was only by accident that I friended your husband. I don’t like him. I think he is too flirty with the women he knew from high school. Why would he do that to you? And that goatee? Puh-lease. I have been watching his status for months, too. Boy, does he bitch about work all the time. Can you imagine if his boss reads his page? You can’t be too careful. People are crazy. Haha.

If I were him, I would not go away for a “boys’ weekend” like he did. I would not have left you alone tonight in that house. They could go. I would be waiting at home for you when you got here at six-thirty. I would have made you the chicken alfredo from the recipe you linked to last week. Mmmhm. That was good. I had to try it. Like we were having dinner together.

Maybe we can have breakfast in that room you just remodeled. The pine floors look so much better. Don’t listen to people and their silly comments. You’re so sensitive. So fragile. So beautiful.

When you invited your friends over last week and showed the mapquest directions, I knew what was going on. Fate. Like the math problem was coming to a close.

Like I said, in the story I’m writing, you want me to hold you down. Which is why I packed this bag. Which is why I am waiting by the gazebo, waiting for you to turn out the light in the den and go upstairs.

BIO: A former English professor, Steve Weddle has an MFA in poetry and hates guns. Every Monday, he takes a break from being a complete sissy to blog about crime fiction at DoSomeDamage. He is the editor of Needle, a magazine of crime fiction, featuring work by Christopher Grant and others. Weddle's work has appeared at Beat To A Pulp and CrimeFactory.

31 comments:

David Cranmer said...

VERY fine writing of the possible menace that lurks on the internet for any one of us.

Evil Ray said...

Well done, sir. Have you been hanging around with Hilary Davidson?

Al Tucher said...

Up-to-the-minute noir, and well done.

Richard Godwin said...

This is lyrical and menacing at the same time Steve. Great story.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I read this minutes after wondering why my brother lists his address on his facebook page. Holy cow!

Chris Benton said...

A voice filled with awful, all too real focus. Great writing.

Sean Patrick Reardon said...

Very well done and so believable that this could really and probably does happen in "real" life. Reminds me of "Ravens" by George Dawes Green.

R.S. Bohn said...

GREAT voice in this piece! Okay, terrifying voice. That too.

And now I'm going to change a few things to make myself harder to find...

Pop Culture Nerd said...

Thank you! I TOLD my friends the pine floors would work better but they were all, "Go with the slate."

Wait, the gazebo? As in MY gazebo? Tie me down?? Who are you, really? I'm calling the pol---

[Great stuff, Steve.]

Brad Parks said...

Weddle, when you wake up tomorrow and have 100 fewer friends on Facebook, at least you'll know why.

Kidding.

Some.

Good stuff, though.

Steve Weddle said...

Thanks for the nice words, folks. Glad you liked.

Some really good flash pieces in this ATON numbered series. Glad to be a part of it.

nigel p bird said...

Steve, that's a gem. The opening line really had me on my toes and i stayed on them all the way through. there's real menace here but, more than that, there's real craft. A plus

Hilary Davidson said...

Love, love, love this story, Steve. It's absolutely fantastic. Bravo!

PS I'm off to post it on Facebook.

M. C. Funk said...

My kind of eHarmony.

Straightforward, steady in its unfolding and subtly sinister. It did well being creepy without sounding like it was trying to. It made it clear that some of the worst menaces are those speaking so quietly that we can't make them out.

Thanks for tapping on our Windows and whispering in our ears.

Kathleen A. Ryan said...

Scary stuff, Mr. Weddle! Awesome job.

Chris Rhatigan said...

Sheer brilliance. And super creepy. Loved this one, Steve.

Joyce said...

This was super. The voice is so matter-of-fact and I believe that is what makes it as positively terrifying as it is. Like all this person is saying, doing and planning are all 'normal' and routine. This person is also very comfortable with what is being said, and that's the stuff nightmares are made of. Problem is, this could, and probably does, actually happen. That's the scariest thing of all. Excellent!

Steve Weddle said...

Thanks a bunch for the comments. Still not sure what some of you found creepy and scary about it. Seems like a perfectly nice love story to me.

Kevin Michaels said...

Excellent - great voice, great pacing, and vividly descriptive (not to mention timely and topical). Well done.

Now I'm off to make sure my daughters change their FB pages.....

Paul D. Brazill said...

Splendidly chilling.The first Gacebook noir?

Austin Carr said...

I'd like to meet and shake your hand for this one, Steve. But only in a public area.

AJ Hayes said...

That vast clicking noise you hear is everybody on facebook frantically updating their privacy settings. Too late. Too bad. For some. Turn around.
Way Cool Weddle strikes again.

Michael Solender said...

Suspenseful build and maniacal voice lend an overall creep factor to this one that takes us to the very edge. Delicious.

Kieran Shea said...

this is so fucking cool

Jane said...

creepy good

Anonymous said...

I knew there was I reason I didn't like Facebook...
Nice Flash!
Kelly

Naomi Johnson said...

This is creepy beyond words. I'd un-friend you on fb but PopCultureNerd is right, the pine DOES work so much better.

You really nailed the voice. I'm just glad I don't have a gazebo.

jerzygirl45 said...

Um ... I'm going to recheck all the doors and windows in my house now.

That was deeply unnerving.

Dana King said...

Weddle is the goods. As good as he always is, this is among his best.

Ixxy said...

Positively incredible.

C.J. said...

Awesome and more real to life than most want to think about.