Gazing off into the far distance

Gazing off into the far distance, I twisted my narrow lips into a thin smile, daydreaming that one of these overgrown boys had summarily died for me. I was about to make up for the debt through my chosen husband if I didn’t get home in time, and quick dry hand towels  I was immobilized by the thing called death that was behind me. What if the crazy sniper so much as saw another human back? Would I find a proper towel in time? What about the fat man’s lacy white kerchief? Would they arrest me if they thought I had stolen that? And that thing on the floor was no longer human; it was a motionless death trap. In the shadows, it loomed large – as the Specter of Death.

Not to worry, I told myself. I smiled the Black Cat, an African grin that means you’re not afraid, and began the search for towels. Sooner or later, they would come to collect the body. I wrangled with myself, and then I “got it up” – already – and went to the Spartan little bathroom, did my business, and flushed it, but shakily. It was like the room was spinning all around me, a kid’s ride in an obscene amusement park, waiting to die.

I successfully wiped, washed my hands and got out, but then I remembered I needed to get some towels. I had to go back and collect them – while facing the awful cataclysm in the room behind me. The dead great man’s body was in outer space for a moment, but I was definitely in my own disembodied living body, breathing for a space of time longer.

I received the anointment of the towels in a white shaggy pile against my chest, and stalked slowly out to the room. The great man’s sad corpse was still bunched up, lying there. He was partly turned onto his right side, wearing a dark grey business suit and oozing puddles of blood.

I looked behind me to see if anyone was watching, and gave the corpse a medium kick to see if anything was going on. Nothing was, so I began the mop up with the towels. I poked him gently, and then I looked closely at his beautiful, handsome black face, so Negro and with a fine mustache.

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