|Posted on April 7, 2012 at 10:05 AM|
Roger was on his second beer when he heard the bathroom door crack and start to split. He shot upright and went over to the door to look it over. He looked over at the teen, Nathan, and rolled his eyes and said to himself, "well this is proof positive why I never became a dad...got the kid drunk on five beers. I really AM a bad influence." Looking at the damaged door, and being a former carpenter, he guesstimated that they had all of about an hour, maybe an hour and a half tops, and then they had problems. He looked over at Nathan and kicked his foot then he said, "Martin, Nathan, time to make other plans mates!" Nathan just laughed and said, "I feel real good man! I say we crack a few more until we just don't give a shit what happens next." Roger rolled his eyes, filled two of the cans with cold water from the sink, and threw it on the boy. Nathan sputtered and shivered and said, "what the fuck man you can't get a person drunk and then kill their high! That's pretty shitty man..."
Roger glanced at him and said, "get up and rinse your face with the cold water, sober up friend cuz no amount of booze is going to knock ya senseless enough when those things start ripping you apart." Nathan somberly hoisted himself up, swayed in place for a few brief moments as he stood, and then made way to the sink. Meanwhile, Roger started thinking of ways they could get out of this in one piece, all with little time to spare. Looking up over the last stall was a smoky window that had gone unnoticed before because of the flickering of the lights and his migraine. He went into the first stall and pulled, ignoring the screaming of his upper arm, and grabbed the top of the toilet seat and twisted. It gave way with the second twist and the plastic joints holding it onto the toilet snapped free. He looked questioningly over at Nathan and asked, "sober now?" As Nathan grumbled and nodded in response he looked down at Martin and said softly, "we have to go friend. I think I found a way out."
At that moment, the door splintered further accentuating the need for haste. Roger moved fast, gathering all of the edibles up by the last stall and dumping out the big plastic garbage bag in the bathroom garbage can. He looked over at Nathan, scrabbling to pick up all of the unopened cans of beer and said incredulously, "really son? That's not on my list of priorities right now. Leave it." Nathan grinned and said, "waste not, want not...check THIS feature of my pants out!" As he watched, Nathan began shoving cans of beers into all of these random pockets of his pants. Roger said, "If that's the added weight you want to carry when we have to run like Hell from these things be my guest!" Nathan paused for a few moments thinking that statement over and Roger shook his head and rolled his eyes as the kid continued to stuff the last remaining can into his back pocket.
Roger was helping Martin up when the door splintered in the middle and a mangled mess of a human head and arm snaked through. It looked like what used to be a blonde man in a business suit had been using his head almost like a battering ram in his desperate attempt to reach them. The top of his skull had caved in all the way down to his eyebrows and he now looked something like Frankenstein because the features of his head and face were so distorted and damaged. His skin had split open like a broken zipper in the back of his head and what looked like a piece of a gleaming white porcelain bowl jutted out of the back. The man had completely broken apart the top of his skull.
Nathan screeched wildly and raised his arms back behind his head, metal garbage bin in between his hands, and brought the can down on top of the man's head and arm like he was testing his strength at a carnival game. As the can struck the man and his appendage, it sounded almost like a "gong", and the man's head all but separated from his body, remaining attached by the stretched skin under his neck. It hung down quivering ever so slightly a mess of hair, skin and bone, leaking it's contents onto the floor below. Seconds later a feminine hand snaked through, and her forearm rested directly onto what was left of the skin of the man's neck and as she slapped and pawed to reach them, she pushed the remains of his head around and it bobbed and banged against the door. Nathan said, "man I am sober as Hell now i'm out of here," and started backing away to the last stall.
Roger was helping Martin up when he pushed him away and he looked right at Roger and said, "thank you for everything you've done for me. I am old and broken, and to be quite frank with you, without Hazel I have nothing left. They're coming through the door friend, and realistically you don't have time to save both of us. I'm staying here, where my wife died a few hours ago, a few feet away." Roger looked hard into his eyes and saw truth. Martin would remain here, where his wife's remains were, would die where his wife died, out of loyalty and love. Roger shook his hand, handed him the broomstick, and dashed to the last stall. Martin went into the first stall, reached down and grabbed a rogue Coors Nathan had failed to pick up, and cracked it open sighing.
Nathan was standing on top of the tiny metal trash bin each individual stall had and was cleaning the glass off of the sill so they could drop out onto the ground outside directly below the window. He'd used the toilet seat ring to break through the glass and Roger handed him his shirt to lay down over the sill. The boy started to climb up to jump out and as he did so, one of the beers fell out of his pocket and hit Roger square in the head. Roger all but snarled and told the kid to move so he could throw the garbage bag full of supplies out first. Nathan jumped down and Roger frantically scrambled up the stall and leaned halfway out of the window to look around. He whispered to Nathan to hand him the garbage bag and grunted quietly as he wriggled the bag and it's contents around himself and out of the window. He dropped it to the ground below. Looking around one last time, he stuck his upper half back through the window and said, "go ahead son. When you jump out there is a metal garbage can and stacked boxes a few feet down to your left. Run there until I jump out and we will go from there."
He dropped down and Nathan scrambled up and out of the window while he called out to Martin one last time. Martin just said, "time to go friend. I've made my peace with this and so should you." Roger sighed and scrambled up to the window sill. His body screamed from all of the aches and pains and he thought to himself, "too damn old for this sh*t!" He sat on the sill to jump feet first and as he dropped to the ground he heard Martin talking. He paused to listen to see if he had changed his mind and he almost teared up at what Martin was saying. He was talking to Hazel, recounting their life together and how much she meant to him. As the door continued to splinter and he walked away, he heard Martin call out, "I love you Hazel...see you soon gorgeous."
Categories: Chapter 28