A kick to the thigh jolts Dallas awake. “Gah!” he grunts groggily, blinded by the sunlight. “What the hell?”
“I could ask you the same thing, kid,” says the man standing over him. Dallas looks up and locks eyes with him, half expecting to see Hilter Odolf Williamson, or worse, the pilot of the plane, but it’s neither. It’s just some dude without any hair on his head. Or self-respect, evidenced by the sleeveless tee and boxer shorts he’s wearing whilst standing on the side of one of the busiest roads in the area, in broad daylight no less. “Do you usually fall asleep in graveyards?”
Dallas stands and tries to bat the mud off the back of his pants, but it’s caked on pretty good. “No I, uh… no. I just… my brother Johnny is buried here, this is the first time I’ve been able to come and see the grave. I guess I fell asleep.”
“Ah. Well, you’re lucky I’m not the groundskeeper, he’d have called the cops on you.”
“Oh… thanks. Who uh, who are you, then?”
The man makes a thumb and points it over his left shoulder. “I live right back there, first house next to the cemetery. I know, it probably seems weird, I got it at a fuckin’ steal, though. Made out like a burglar. You have someplace to go?”
Dallas nods. “Yeah, my… I have a place up in Treeburg.”
“You have a way to get there?”
“Hopefully. I parked at Quick Check, you think I got towed?”
“Nah,” the man bleats, then turns away and walks back to his house. His work here is done, it seems.
As is Dallas’s. He starts to walk away, then doubles back and looks behind the gravestone to see if the dagger and coaster are still there.
“Son of a bitch,” he says, then starts running towards the man who lives in the first house next to the cemetery. “Hey, wait up! Hey, dude!”
The dude turns around. “What?”
“Did you…” Dallas starts, but then sees the man has empty hands and no pockets. “Did uh… this is gonna sound stupid, but did you take a Lake George coaster and a… a bat dagger from behind that gravestone I was sleeping against?”
“A bat dagger?” the man asks incredulously. “No, but I wish I did. I love Batman! Never heard of a bat dagger, though.”
“No, it’s not…” he sighs. “Never mind. Sorry. Have uh, have a nice day. Thanks for waking me up.”
“Anytime,” the man says with a questioning grin. “You too, kid.”
Dallas walks back to Johnny’s gravestone and hunkers down in front of it. “Well Johnny, I did you that favor. But I guess you already knew that. Um… I don’t really know what to say now… I hope you and George are doing well, wherever you are. I know you’re happier now, you guys were brothers. I mean, you and me were brothers too, but… you know what I mean.”
Dallas stands up and looks at the gravestone for a few more seconds, then turns and walks back to Quick Check. His car is still there, but the pickup isn’t. Oh well, Dallas guesses it all worked out anyway… right?
“Right,” Dallas confidently says to himself once he’s behind the wheel. He drives to his uncle’s place – his place – in Treeburg without looking back.
Even as he passes Johnny’s grave, Dallas doesn’t look back.
Hello Commons, this has been the last subchapter of the fourteenth story from Convenient Incidents, an anthology of fifteen interconnected short stories which revolve around a man by the name of Hilter Odolf Williamson.
Convenient Incidents 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.
Convenient Incidents 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 Convenient Incidents 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 OR you can buy the ebook for even cheaper here.
If you’re there, hypothetical reader, thank you for being there. Be well Commons~