Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Faking Clay




My watch beeped and signaled 1 PM. I was unjustifiably wiped. It was something I experienced with sporadic consistency since being a kid so I dismissed it. The doctor said it was my body’s way of telling me I was stressed. Well yes, no kidding.

“What is it with those spirits and bugs?” asked Clay. “There haven’t been any reports of a bee hangin’ around until now. I wonder why that is Migizi?” 

“You, I mean Thorny, said he and the bee were partners at spreading truth that was needed to bring about fruitful growth, like pollen, I supposed. I asked about the meaning of Thorny’s name as you suggested.”

“Yah? What was the answer?”

We reached the house and paused in the driveway. 

“He gave this clever spiel about pointed observations and getting to the point of things. Get it?”

The closed front door burdened me. His favorite Gal wasn’t there. I was still on my own with Clay.

“Hmmm. Interesting,” said Clay. “Come on, let’s go in and take a load off.”

Clay left the door open and a light breeze warmly followed us in. It whispered, “Take a nap.”

“Hey buddy, I need to lie down,” I said. “But, I’m concerned about you and won’t sleep unless I believe your personality and you will stay put.”

Opening the cabinet door, Clay opened the bottle of pills and took one.

“Go for it,” said Clay.

Taking Clay at his word, I stretched out on the couch and closed my eyes. Easing into sleep, intuition tried to get my attention.

Notice something odd about Clay? His typical manner of speaking was a bit different and he used your proper name the entire time after showing him the shell. Don’t you think he seemed a little too normal?”

“Maybe,” I thought and passed out.

Bang. The screen door slamming woke me. I sat up and checked my watch. My nap lasted an hour and left me feeling hungry. The coffee maker was in brew mode, half way through by the sound of its laboring. I didn’t hear or see any signs of Clay and my heart thumped harder. I got up and walked to the kitchen as Clay came in from outside.

“You’re up,” he said. “Hungry? I was about to make some mac and cheese.”

“I could eat but isn’t there some ground baloney left? Let’s just eat that before it goes bad.”

Clay nodded in agreement and we ate a late lunch in bug free silence. Sipping coffee, we looked at each other blankly and it bothered me.

“So what were you doing outside Clay?”

“I hushed up the dog next door. Didn’t want his barkin’ to wake you up. I thought maybe the phone ringin’ would do it but nope, you were gone. Oh, speaking of that, your wife left a message.”

“Really? Wow, never heard the phone or dog,” I said then yawned. “What’d she say?”

“Said she isn’t feelin’ so well and would prefer you come on home and be there for her.”

Something was off about Clay but I couldn’t nail it down.

“I wonder why she didn’t text me on my cell phone,” I said while getting up to look for my phone.

When I did, I looked down at the floor and saw a partially melted pill capsule stuck on the tile near a table leg. Clay had spit the thing out after he faked taking it. Oh joy.

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