“The smoke is hazy nectar, the smell of the flowers a violet ambrosia.”
“Can I show you?” Howard demands, his tone fury. “What the fuck is that supposed to mean?” He takes a step back, letting the college kid’s arm wilt to his side like a daisy sprayed with weedkiller. “You a fag or somethin’, bud? I don’t mean any hatred, I just don’t smoke cigarettes if you toke what I’m blowin’.”
“You just don’t s–… that’s very clever!” the kid comes back with. He steps towards Howard and Howard steps back. “What is this, what are we doing here Howard?”
“Nothin’ on both accounts,” Howard promises, though it comes off more like a threat. “But I think you ought to explain what you meant with that show me horseshit a minute ago. For both of our sakes.”
The guy grins then, and there’s something nice about that grin. Howard doesn’t know what it is, but he likes the young man’s grin, and perhaps that plays a role in Howard surviving the Rapture a few years down the road from now. Or perhaps he would have crawled into that church’s cellar to sleep off a buzz the night when things ended anyway. Who’s to say?
“I meant, since you have that one on you…” the college kid nods at the joint behind Howard’s ear as he gestures towards the door. “Nobody will call the cops or anything. I live alone on the top floor for a reason.”
‘Yeah, they probably didn’t have anywhere else to put you.’ “Okay, I see what you’re sayin’. Sure.” He looks at his watch. “This was my last run anyway, my shift is over now. I need to drive the car back to the pizza place after we smoke though, then I’m pro’l’y just gon’a walk home. Are you going to be all right alone with a high?”
Johannes gives him an eyebrow. “Would I not be all right for some reason? It’s just pot, right?”
Howard smirks. “Tell y’what: you follow me back to the pizza place, pick me up, and bring me back here. Then you can find out for yourself if it’s just pot. Sound good?”
“Sounds good!” the guy says, disappearing behind his colorless door.
Howard looks down the hall behind him, there are no other doors in the hallway. The windows are black, yet light shines through anyway. The color is bleeding out of the carpet and running down the walls, pooling out on the floor like sludge from a broken septic tank.
“You ready?” the kid – Jhesing? No… Johannes. His name used to be Johannes – asks with a tap on Howard’s shoulder. The world normalizes before Howard’s eyes as he turns to face Johannes.
“Yeah, I’m ready,” Howard challenges. “The question is: Are you ready? I have to warn you, Johannes, this pot we’re about to smoke? This shit is fire.”
Hello Commons, this has been the first subchapter of the fourth chapter of Flowers, a novel about a man who smokes the last of his pot.
Flowers is part of the Third Spiral, an anthology of sorts called The Here and Now which is comprised of stories told from the various planes of Existence.
Flowers is available to read for free in its entirety on my website. Click here to check it out.
I’ve written a few other books, too. Click here to see the list.
If you like Flowers and would like to help support my work, click here and buy an autographed copy of the book (or anything else!) from my store. Alternatively, you can snag a cheaper (and unsigned) copy from Amazon by clicking here.
Be well Commons~