brandon.

The Layout

with one comment

It’s an open casket.  Usually I would get creeped out, but she still looks pretty hot.  At least she did it with pills.  If she had put a gun to her head or something, who knows how bad she’d look.  I know I shouldn’t get this way, but even after she’s gone, I still get half a stalk from looking at her.

There’s a couple next to me.  Apparently I’m not the only horny person here.  The girl’s saying how pretty Julia was.  The guy’s saying that he almost fucked her once in high school.  The girl’s saying that she actually did.  

Boy was my girlfriend a slut.  I knew she was easy, but I just keep hearing these stories.  At the buffet table, there are two of my professors from school.  They’re talking about wanting to double-team Julia when they each had her during her freshman year.  And people wonder why it didn’t work out between us.  She was the object of everyone’s desire.  Why would she want to be tied down to my dumb ass?  She just kept on hurting me, over and over.  I took it for two years.  She kept telling me that she loved me after every mistake.  I kept telling myself that I loved her too.  I don’t know if I was right or not.

As long as I could keep on telling myself that I was happy to be with her, I could keep fooling myself into being happy.  I’m not sure what real happiness is.  I don’t think I’ve ever really felt it.  Maybe she really loved me.  I kept telling myself that I loved her.  What I wonder about is if I loved her, or if I could have loved just anybody.

Her mother telling me that there’s plenty to eat snaps me out of my spell.  I’m still standing by the buffet table.  There’s a huge spread.  Turkey.  Ham. Chicken.  Roast Beef.  Chips, carrots, and ranch dip.  There’s a salad bowl. A punch bowl.  This thing’s making me want to have a party, not mourn.  I’m half expecting streamers hanging over the casket.  We need some balloons by the guest book. 

I know everybody here, but I don’t really.  Everyone here is from Julia’s past.  A past she didn’t want me to be a part of.  She didn’t want me to know what she had done, and what she was doing behind my back.  How can you continue to love someone when you’re screwing around on them?  This always caused me to have inadequacy issues.  

The guy eating the turkey sandwich is saying Julia offed herself because she was failing out of school.  The guy with a mouthful of chips and dip said it was because she was pregnant.  The girl in front of the punchbowl said Julia couldn’t take the ridicule she received from having herpes.  

I’m starting to think I should see a doctor about these bumps.  

Julia’s mom walks by and all three of them shut up.  I don’t recognize their faces but I know I’ve seen the backs of their heads before.  People Julia was always hiding from me.  Whoever they are, they’re better looking than me.

Julia always surrounded herself with attractive people.  How I got close, I can’t figure out.

The one non-family member I know, our friend Amy, walks up to me with a smile.

Why are you smiling?

“Why not?  Look at all this food.  If I was a poor young college guy like you are, this table would cause a wet dream.”

You went to finishing school, right?

“Yeah.  It was kind of shitty.”

But it obviously did wonders for you.

“So are you all right?”

Yeah.  I’m fine.  I mean, I feel a little queasy.

“From the guilt of driving your ex-girlfriend to kill herself?”

No.  From the cheap-ass burrito I ate for lunch this afternoon.

“You should feel guilty though.”

About what?

“Julia.”

Why?  I don’t have to feel guilty about her.  

“Of course you should.”

Hey, it’s not like I put the pills in her applesauce or anything.

“You might as well have.  If you hadn’t made her feel like she was such a bad person, she wouldn’t have taken those pills at all.”

But she was a bad person.  And wait, I thought you were my friend.  Not hers.

“Yeah, and as your friend, it is my duty to make you feel like shit.”

What else are friends for?

“It’s a required thing.  Kind of like stealing your car keys when you’ve had too much to drink.”

Yeah, but what you really did was steal my car too, and wrecking that night, because you had too much to drink yourself.

“And you didn’t do your duty as a friend and take the keys away from me.”

But I was inebriated!  

“There’s no excuse for being a crappy friend.”

I love this guilty feeling.  It’s the same kind of guilty feeling you get from your parents.  Everyone who is supposed to make you feel good ends up putting a burden of guilt about something on you, one way or another.  It’s the old saying, “You hurt the ones you love.”  It’s true.  People you love, they act like they hate you.  They’re trying to cause you harm.  They’re trying to damage you.  It’s all one big conspiracy against you.  Everybody’s in on it and you don’t even know who everybody is.  It’s scary.  One day, you wake up, and everyone you know, they’re out to get you.  It’s like you’re watching a movie where you’re being framed.  And you haven’t even graduated from high school yet.  I’m still talking about you being in homeroom.

Amy’s really trying to ignore me, and concentrate on the roast beef sandwich that she’s making.  She stops looking hot when the mayonnaise is dripping off of her chin.  Wait, she looks hotter.  What am I saying?  I’m not gonna pretend that I’m not a horny nineteen year old male.  I want sex.  I want hot girls.  I want hot girls I’ve been dying to fuck since high school with globs of white stuff dangling precariously from their chins.  Plural.  Speaking of which, I want multiple girls all at the same time.  But one can’t be greedy.  I’ll settle for just one.  Amy could be the one, but probably not.

Amy’s a rail.  She’s long, thin, and hard.  She runs, swims, and plays tennis in those cute little skirts nearly every day.  She lifts weights.  She’s totally built.  She could kick my ass.  She’s got the kind of muscular power needed to break your dick off if you fucked her.  I’d try, but I’m too scared.  But every guy’s scared.  She hasn’t had sex since she was 16.  She’s 22 now.  She hurt the guy.  His dick won’t stand up straight anymore.  Getting her legs to open up is probably like opening the wrought iron gates to Dracula’s castle.  You’re counting on a few things.  One, they’re so rusty, you know it’s gonna be a serious pain in the ass prying them apart.  Two, once you get inside, you know it’s gonna be really fucking dusty in there.  And three, you’ll have to watch out for blood sucking bats.  And it’s all because of this that I’m not trying to make Amy a rebound screw.  Even a blowjob would be like putting your dick in a bear’s mouth.  One wrong move and you’re never getting it back.

So anyway.  We’re standing there, she’s stuffing her face with food, and I’m thinking about the physical pain she could cause me.  

Julia’s mom’s doing the rounds again.  She’s telling me to eat up. I’m afraid there’s going to be something mixed in.  I’m worried about payback.  About punishment.  But she doesn’t really know why it happened.  She doesn’t know it’s because I lashed out at Julia.  Because I told Julia that she’s an evil bitch.  That she deserves punishment.  That she’s going to Hell for being a liar.

That’s why my sweet whore of a girlfriend’s dead.  Because she’s a slut and I made it clear that I thought her sexual transgressions made her a bad person.  I told her that she would keep doing this to people forever, and that she could never really be loved by anyone.  I told her that she should die alone.  I told her that I hated her.  I told her for an hour that I hated her.  I hounded her for weeks telling her all these things.  I wanted her to feel bad.  That was my M.O.

I may be an asshole, but at least I feel vindicated.  It helps the whole lack of self-esteem problem that I have.  It’s important to take pride in the work you do, even if it’s the kind that hurts other.  I kind of feel a little guilty.  Because I shouldn’t have kept harassing her like I did.  But I don’t feel bad about her killing herself.  That was all her.  I didn’t force her to do anything of the sort.

Amy’s saying she’s gotta hit the restroom.  I imagine she’s gonna bench press what comes out.  So now Amy’s gone.  It’s back to me with the buffet crowd.  The only one of them still standing around is the guy with the turkey sandwich.  He says his name is Larry.

I’m going back through my memory vault.  I’m going back through it, and I’m remembering Julia cheated on me with a guy named Larry.  This might not be the same guy.  But he very well could be.  I don’t know because I never saw him.  No pictures.  It wasn’t like she went to high school with him.  I just saw the back of his head one time.  Just like everybody else in her life.

I’m not in the mood to find out.  I’m looking for grieving cousins.  I see a slutty one.  Julia talked about a threesome with her cousin Sarah a few times.  My dumb ass should’ve done it.  Sarah’s got a bigger rack than Julia did.  Better ass too.  Fuck.  I picked the wrong cousin.  

Hi Sarah.  What’s up?

“What do you think?  I’m grieving.”

This was what I was looking for.

So I ask her if she’s handling it okay.

She says that she’s fine.  But that she could’ve been out with her friends, having fun.  Here, she’s watching fat guys eating sandwiches.  

And I’m thinking about my weight now.

“Shouldn’t you be crying and sobbing a little bit more?”

I tell her that I’ve cried all the tears that I can.

“So, what are you doing after this?”

I always knew she wanted me.

I want to keep flirting and scoping the cousins, but I think Larry’s stuck in the back of my head.  I’m the kind of person who has to keep digging for answers.  Larry’s not at the buffet table anymore. And I don’t see him anywhere.  So forget that.  

Amy’s back from her bathroom exercises.  

“The bathroom here is so dirty.”

This is not a funeral home.  It’s Julia’s parents’ house.  I’ve fucked in that bathroom.  I probably contributed to the filth somehow.  Maybe a glob of my dried semen’s behind the toilet.  

I tell Amy that I’ll be back in a few minutes.  I go upstairs to look at Julia’s old room.  I remember having sex on her childhood bed.  I remember being stuffed in the closet when we almost got caught when we were 17.  There are good memories and bad memories in here.  She keeps pics of her former boyfriends.  She kept them in her purse, right next to pictures of me.  Sometimes I never feel special at all.

I’m sitting on Julia’s death bed.  I’m sitting on some cartoon character’s face that’s covering the bedspread.  I’m looking at NSYNC posters on the wall.  I’m looking at her bubblegum pop CD collection.  I’m looking at all the things that were different about us.  I can see that she loved her family.  She had school pride.  She was my opposite.  But when we were together, we were in our own little world.  Whenever we were apart though, she wanted to be a different person.  She said she felt stifled.  She said that she didn’t want to be tied down at all.  But she kept telling me that she loved me, and wanted to be with me forever, be married, have a family together, but that she couldn’t.  She wanted me later, just not now.  It still sounds like horseshit to me.  After she cheated on me with Larry and lied about it, I couldn’t trust her.  Even when we tried to make it work after I found out and we broke up and got back together a bunch of times, she was still fooling around with some guy named Thomas behind my back.

And then her mom’s at the door telling me that I shouldn’t be here.  I’m wishing I hadn’t come up here.  I’m wishing I hadn’t come at all today.  I’m wishing that I could just forget about Julia completely.  

Back downstairs, there’s even more people there.  It’s the after dinner crowd.  The buffet’s nearly empty, but these folks have already eaten at some quaint yuppie restaurant.  They had the salmon, the lobster bisque.  They ate bad caviar.  They drank cheap house wine.  These are the friends of Julia’s parents.  These are her former teachers.  They are distant relatives.  They are the ones who care only slightly less about her than the men she was used by.  These people are my heroes.  They get to swoop in without having to sit through the hours of stale air-induced torture.  They stop by for twenty minutes and they get thanked. I stay for four hours and nobody except Amy the She Man even remembers that I’m around.  

I walk up to an older guy, and he’s munching on carrots and ranch dip.  He’s drinking cheap grocery store cola.  I’m asking him his name.  He says it’s Tom.  He’s wearing a polo shirt.  He’s a used car salesman.  He’s looking at the ceiling fan.  

I ask him how he knew Julia.  He works at the pharmacy with her mom.  He doesn’t know her.  He never met her.  But he was invited.  He couldn’t not show up.  Because that would just be rude.  He tells me that he’s ready to go home.

I walk up to a young woman.  She says that she taught Julia in high school. She was a student teacher then for American History.  I ask her about presidents.  She doesn’t know who Harry Truman was.  She’s proven she’s fit to teach in a public high school.

I can’t believe I don’t get to jet when these yuppies do.

I walk past the kitchen, through the dining room, and out onto the back porch.  I need fresh air.  I need an escape. I need to find out if the Larry I’m now standing next to is the one who fucked my girlfriend.  If so, how the fuck did he get invited?  Her mother always did hate me.  Her father found out about Larry the first time he forced Julia to suck his dick.  But she kept on going back.  I don’t know why.  She said she wanted to be his friend.  She liked being used to fulfill other people’s desires.  I don’t think she had any of her own.  Her goal was to make people like her.  Larry’s cock must’ve really liked her a whole lot.  

He says hi again, and I launch into my interrogation session.

So I’m standing next to him. He smells like fancy cologne.  His hair is spiky.  He’s a boy band star.  He’s going to break out into a song about the girl down the street.  No wonder Julia wanted this guy.  But I still have to find if it’s the same guy.

So I ask him how he knew her.  He makes air quotation marks and says that they were “good friends.”  I ask him what he means by that.

He says, “Dude, we were fuck buddies.  Never have one before or something?”

Kind of, I say.  I tell him the girl I used to fuck didn’t really love me, but that she fucked me anyway.

“Best kinds of bitches aren’t they?”

And it’s taking every bit of will power I have not to jump onto him and repeatedly punch him in the face while screaming that he’s an evil bastard fuckhole.  I’m playing out in my head what it would be like to slit his gut open with a dull kitchen knife.  I’m wondering how long he could hang by his neck from a tree.  I’m hoping he gets ass cancer somewhere down the road, or that maybe his nuts shrivel up and fall off.

I’m thinking about inflicting lots of pain, but because I’m the kind of guy that likes to dig for answers, I ask how many times.  What did she do?  Was she good at it?

He says he lost count.  He says everything.  He says like a porno star.

I’m thinking I’m going to explode.

I’m thinking that he needs to die.  He needs to suffer as much as me.  I wanna shove the barrel of a shotgun up his ass and squeeze on the trigger till it goes “click.”  I want to spray every bit of his bodily fluids all over the backyard.  

Just as I’m working up the nerve to strangle him to death, Dickface tells me that he’s gonna go check on another bitch he was working on earlier at the buffet table.

And my momentum’s lost.  Fuck.

But not all hope is lost.  Because the bitch the Walking Hard-On’s trying to bag is Amy the Cock Breaker.  She’s flirting.  I’ve never really seen her do that before.  It’s scary to watch.  It’s like watching a cow hump a fencepost.  She’s smiling.  She’s starting to lead him upstairs.  About five minutes later, while I’m choking down another turkey sandwich, I hear this blood-curdling scream.  It’s Dickface. He’s crying.  His wailing’s so loud that you can hear it through the floor.  It’s funnier than the best dirty joke ever.  I’m chuckling.  People are panicking.  And sooner or later, the EMTs are gonna be dragging Leisure Suit Larry down the steps with a half broken cock.

After Bastard Fuckhole’s been taken to the E.R., Amy tells me that she knew who he was.  She did it to cheer me up.

I tell her that it was the nicest thing anyone’s ever done for me.  And I go home, feeling like I got a good night’s worth of entertainment in for free.  I feel satisfied for the most part.

My girlfriend fucked around on me.  She dumped me even though I should’ve been the one to dump her.  She’s dead now, and I’m not sure if we were really in love.  It should really bum me out.  And it does, but knowing that that guy can’t ever use his penis again, well that just brings a huge shit-eating grin to my sad little face.

I get home, and I see all these things at my house that remind me of Julia.  I see things that speak of a time when I was happy, maybe.  I could drag up all this shit from my past, over and over, but there’s no reason to.  There’s nothing there.  Everything perfect to you, it eventually dies; if it doesn’t become ruined before then.

When I get home and I check my answering machine, there’s a message from Sarah asking if I want to come over tomorrow.

Advertisements

Written by Brandon

June 1, 2008 at 10:27 pm

One Response

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. […] The Layout This is what Brad Felix would look like as a middle-aged woman. […]


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: