Sheltons Organic Turkey

if I empty out all the unimportant stuff here, maybe there'll be more room in my head for important things

name: shelton brett
location: western u.s.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

February 14, nada fiction

February 14, 1996

A lone candle flickered on the glass dining table. Shadows of the chairs danced on the mauve walls in the corner of the room. The candle provided the only light on this evening, it completely overpowered anything external, or internal, as his heart was as dark as tar. Not evil, just without any hope. He stared at the candle, its luminescence zigging and zagging around the wick, smoke making chaotic patterns into invisible space and beyond. He breathed deeply. Strawberry, and just a little bit of wax. Not like real strawberries , more like those fake strawberries that you recognize from card shops and trailer homes. He could hear the candle burning, actually hear it. A slight sizzle, sort of an airy wisp like a faint wind outside of a car window.

She called our relationship the essence of blissfulness, the core of ignorance.

The salisbury steak was history, and so were the potato buds and carrots that were crunchy (but were supposed to be soft). Beef gravy swirled the empty plate, cradling a fork, and a knife was perched on the edge. A tablecloth and a wadded paper napkin next to the lone brass candleholder completed the arrangement. He squinted beyond the candle into what is usually the family room, but the darkness enveloped everything but his dinner-setting. For all he knew, the other rooms had evaporated into nothingness like the smoke from the flame.

We ate calamari and drank two bottles of expensive wine, last year.

He pushed his plate back, toward the scented candle, and laid his forehead in his hands. He rubbed his scalp with his fingertips, massaged his temples, and unconsciously uncrossed his legs beneath the table to relieve the mounting pressure on his tingling thigh. What the hell? It's just another day, just another dinner. If there was one thing that he simply hated, just couldn't allow for himself, it was pity. Pity is for losers, for the weak-minded, for the people who were unlike him. There was no way that anyone could have the power to have that kind of effect on him.

Could they?

He was the one in control of the situation. He called the shots. He was the one who made others wonder what they did wrong, limp in their own sorrow. He created the unhappiness and dispensed it upon others. He was the doer, not the doee. It had always been that way. He did his own thing, made the decisions, and it was the others that would have to deal with them.

He had never been as uncomfortable as he was right then. He had the look and feel of bewildered freshness, like a baby recognizing his mother for the first time. Is that what this was? Is this the way he made countless others feel, when he let them know they were nothing to him? Meaningless? Meaningless.

He spasmed into a state of alertness. Looking around, he saw the familiar surroundings of his bedroom. He had jerked upright with a start, slowly succumbing to the reality of his environment. But before his mind pushed the brutal thoughts, memories, out of existence, he gazed to the other side of the mattress, toward where the love of his life slept. It was empty. Vacant, just like the past two months, three weeks, and four days. Happy Valentine's Day.