The Goddamn Story
• • •
Before the old man could process Sully’s turn he was on the ground, bounced off his hotrod by the muscleboi’s punch. Sully wiped the old fagget’s essence off his knuckles and then folded his arms, looked down with a satisfied smile. The old man was struggling to get up, struggling very greatly.
“How’s that, y’old homo?”
The codge’ groaned. It was a warbly groan, like his stomach was trying to empty itself through his mouth despite having no contents to expel. His hand kept grasping and falling off the top of his ‘rod’s tire, he was trembling all over.
“That taste good? Teach y’t’stare at me, y’motherfucker. But y’ain’t never fucked a mother, have ya? Fuckin’ fagget. Y’r lucky I don’t kick y’r fuckin’ teeth in.”
“Ih…” moaned the old codger in the brown tweed suit as he tried and failed to climb his hotrod to his feet. “Ih… ih…”
“Whut, y’want s’more?” Sully snorted loudly, almost as if he was going to spit on the old homofag, but he swallowed instead. Swallowed like that old codger probably swallowed ‘manjuice the evening before, like he was swallowing his own Goddamn blood right then, probably. “I’ll give it t’ya, fuckface. You stand th’fuck up and I’ll fuckin’ give it right to ya.”
Slowly, shakily, the old codge’ climbed his hotrod and stood bent over with one hand flat on the hood. He wobbled back and forth.
“Ih…” he wheezed, that same sound over and over. “Ih… ih…”
“Whut’s’at?” Sully gritted his teeth, unfolded his arms. “You got somethin’ t’say t’me, y’old fuckin’ twink?”
“Y’better fuckin’ say it, then,” said Sully, cranking his neck back and for’ to release a series of intimidation cracks. “Maight be th’last thing y’ever fuckin’ say, fagget.”
The old man went still. “Ih… If that’s how you want it…” he said, then drove a knee hard into Sully’s groin, then swung and caught the underside of the hulk’s chin with an uppercut sharp enough to pierce the sky. Sully fell to the pavement with blood trickling from the tooth holes in his bottom lip.
“…then that’s the way I’ll Goddamn give it to you.” The old man spat on him. There was no blood in that spit. “Punk-ass.”
After a time, the world stopped spinning. Sully scrambled to his side, tried to get back on his feet, but the old codger was ready. He cracked the brick wall that was Sully’s abdomen with the toe of his right foot, reeled back, then kicked again, this time aiming for the young bastard’s Adam’s apple. By the way Sully grabbed at his throat and started choking, the old man figured he hit his mark.
The old codger stepped back and leaned against his hotrod with his arms folded to watch Sully struggle on the pavement. His hide was scraped red – struggling about shirtless on harsh asphalt will do that to you – and a myriad of pebbles and slivers of wood and everything else which festered on that backwoods parking lot were stuck to his skin. Glued there by the sweat, the old man thought. The foul sweat of misused adolescence. After Sully released his own throat the old man stood up straight and brought up his fists, ready for a round three, but Sully didn’t get up. He just laid there staring at the old man’s leather shoes with his arms clutching his gut, breathing heavily.
“Well?” he asked. “Are you going to get up? I have plenty of stock, if you’re trying to buy.”
“I’ll…” Sully said, then had to stop to wheeze. “I’ll… fuckin’…” More wheezing. “I’ll fuckin’… kill you… y’…old… fagget…”
“Christ, kid, what’s with all the faggot talk? You sound like an uneducated fucking hillbilly, it’s deplorable.” He lowered his hands into his pockets. “I’m not a homosexual, either, though I doubt that makes a difference to the pinball you have bouncing around in there between your eardrums.”
“Then… then why were… what were you lookin’ at me for?”
“Stand the fuck up and address me like a ‘man before I kick your Goddamn teeth in.”
Sully continued writhing for a short time before he finally staggered to his feet. There were a good couple meters between him and the man in the brown tweed suit.
“Well?” demanded the man, pockets empty.
“I… I said Why were y’starin’ at me like that? ” said Sully. His eyes were on the man’s shoes. The toe of the right was wet with his sweat. “I saw ya from across the damn lot, why th’fuck were y’starin’ at me for?”
“Because you’re an impressive human specimen,” the man answered. “What are you, six feet tall? You must weight at least two hundred pounds.”
“Two’ten,” Sully corrected. “An’not an ounce over.”
“Even better. So, considering how I found you at the gym at ten’thirty in the morning, I have to assume you don’t have a day job. Or any real responsibilities otherwise. Is that right?”
“It… is. Whut’s y’r point?”
“I’m looking for a ‘man who looks something like you to do a specific job for me. An important job.” He rubbed at his cheek. “You’ve got a hell of a right hook, kid. What’s your name?”
“Sully,” stated Sully. He was standing too far back to offer a shake. “Sully Donovan. Who th’fuck’r’you?”
“I’m Mark Graigo.” Graigo stepped forward and put his hand out again. Sully shook it. “You’ve heard of The Internet Culture Company, correct?”
“Course I have,” Sully said, dropping the man’s hand. “They made my computer, my cellular. Hell, they made half the shit I got back at home. Everyone fuckin’ knows The Internet Culture Company.”
“As they should.” The old man brushed his right shoulder, drying his hand in the process. “I’ve worked very hard to build it into the monolith it is today.”
Sully said nothing, merely cocked his head to one side.
“I’m the President of The Internet Culture Company, Sully.”
Sully shat a brick. A brick made of pure gold.
“Of the Bur City division, that is.” He reached into his blazer and pulled out a card, exchanged it for Sully’s time. “Give me a call in a few days, when your lip is patched up. I’d like to speak to you about an opportunity you’d be a fool to pass up. You look like a fool, Sully Donovan, and you speak like your cranium was used as a ping-pong ball when you were a child… but perhaps looks can be deceiving.”
He turned, opened his driver-side door.
“Time will tell. Give me a call.”
Sully watched Mark Graigo drive off. He looked down at the card, back up at the pristine old hotrod, then back down at the card. Said it right there:
The Internet Culture Company
Bur City Division | President
“Huh,” Sully huh’d. He looked up again but the hotrod was gone. He was standing shirtless in the parking lot of the gym, all covered in blood, sweat, and a whole mess of scratches from rolling around on the pavement. He looked around, blinking a few times as he did. Took another look at the card. “Huh.”
The business card went into Sully’s cup holder and stayed there for a few days until his lip was patched up, just like Mister Graigo instructed. Sully didn’t tell his folks about the encounter until after he made the call, and he left out a couple key details (they thought he busted his lip during a tiff with Courtney Doe’s brother Cletus, who was known to be a little bit protective of his sister) when he recounted the meeting, but he did ask to borrow his father’s car so he wouldn’t have to drive his beat-to-hell old pickup into Bur City for the interview he and Mister Graigo set up for the following week. Sully’s father said yes, of course. His mother didn’t even have to harp the old man into it. Their son was never a great student and all he did back in those days was dick around and lift his weights, but opportunity found him. He could actually have a chance at going somewhere in the world. Sully Donovan would move out one day…!
And he did move out. He went somewhere in the world, too. Matt’a’fact, he would go further than his parents ever thought possible, he would rise to the sky and orbit amongst the stars… then he would plummet head-first right back into Bionic Earth, but his parents would never find out about their son’s fall. They would be dead before he reentered the atmosphere.
This has been the end of the third subchapter of the third chapter of the book Over the River: The Emancipation of Jonathan Knox. Here is everything you need to know about it:
Over the River
The Emancipation of Jonathan Knox
Over the River is the third book in a trilogy called The Fall of the Seven Earths. I’ve also released that trilogy as a single book called The Fall of the Seven Earths. Here’s everything you need to know about it:
The Fall of the Seven Earths
The Hillside Commons is an actual library of content. Click here to peruse.
If supporting The Hillside Commons is something you want to do, click here for the GoFundMe.
If you’re there, hypothetical reader, thank you for being there. From this day on, we move forever forward~