Wednesday, March 24, 2010

A Twist Of Noir 399 - Jimmy Callaway


Three hundred years, they gave me.

Well, two hundred and ninety-seven, if you wanna be picky about it.

The first ninety-nine was for Pop. Don’t regret that at all. Bastard had it coming for years. Always hitting Ma, hitting me. Doing God knows what to Betsy in her room late at night. So he got a clip emptied into him from my Glock.

The second was for Ma, and I do kinda regret that. They found her, her throat slit open, my fingerprints on the knife. The knife I’d used to help Ma make dinner when I’d visited last.

Still, I feel bad. Sure, Ma married the bastard. Sure, she brought me and Betsy into this miserable existence, and then just crawled into a bottle. Still. I feel bad.

But the last ninety-nine, that was for Betsy. She’d reloaded my Glock already. Her hands were shaking, and the gloves made it hard, but she’d done it.

And she was pointing it at herself.

I’d dropped the bag of groceries I’d brought, oranges spilling everywhere. I’d barely taken the scene in, but I knew what had gone down.

We wrestled and wrestled. Like when we were kids, and I wanted The Three Stooges and she wanted Saved by the Bell. Sounds stupid, but this was just as fierce.

I’d almost had it away from her. I had my hand on the butt, as she gripped the barrel with both hands. Then she said those three little words:

“It’s your fault.”

I’m sorry. I’m sorry I didn’t kill Pop myself. I’m sorry my Ma died. But Betsy...

Am I sorry I killed her?

Or am I sorry that she was right?

Well, I got three hundred years to mull it over. Two hundred and ninety-seven, if you wanna be picky about it.

BIO: Jimmy Callaway blah blah blah


Paul D Brazill said...

Brilliant. Funny and sad.

Joyce said...

Amazing. It has real biting wit, but still is desparately sad. Really good, Jimmy.