Flop (an excerpt)

Jennifer asked Brian if he wanted to hang out at her place after class. Her parents left for the city this morning to see Jennifer’s granny in the nursing home. Jennifer’s house had a rumpus room with a widescreen and surround sound, black leather couch, and her dad had built a mini bar in the basement and stocked it with all labels of Johnny Walker minus the red. They met up outside the school and took their time walking back to Jennifer’s place. Brian asked what dvds she had. They got to the house and Jennifer’s younger sister Beth was there sitting on the front steps. Jennifer sighed and rolled her eyes when she saw her. Told Beth she had to stay in her room and do her homework and not bother them. Beth told her she’d ratted her out for having a boy at home when her parents weren’t there.

They went inside and Brian asked to use the bathroom. The room smelt of potpourri and everything was spotless. The toilet lid had a knitted cover. Brain lifted it and the seat and unzipped. Noticing a small framed picture of Jesus on the toilet tank.  Brain felt strange with the saviour’s eyes on him as he tried to not tinkle on his shoe. He thought Jennifer’s dad must piss sitting down. He flushed and turned on the tap. Looking in the mirror, he opened the medicine cupboard. Pink razors, exlax, vials that with writing like Risperdal, Seroquel, Clozapine.  He picked up a bottle of gravol and slipped half a dozen into his pocket and shut the cupboard. One last look in the mirror.

In the kitchen, Jennifer told Beth to take Brian downstairs and get him to pick a movie. Jennifer would bring down a bottle of coke and chips. Brian searched through the wall of dvds and some vhs tapes. Beth came behind him and Brian jumped back when her hand slid under the front of his track pants. He looked at her and she told him that she’d tell her sister that he was the one that touched her. Brian stood on the carpet not knowing how to react. Being manipulated by a 14 year. Jennifer came down the stairs with a bag of Doritos and a two litre of coke. Beth grabbed three glass tumblers off her dad’s minibar. Jennifer looked annoyed when the door bell rang, and went upstairs to see who was there.

Behind the minibar, Beth said to Brain What’s your favourite colour, black, green or blue?  Brian told her it was blue out of those three. Beth lifted a bottle and asked if he ever had black before. She filled one of the tumblers with coke and said that’s her sisters. Then filled the other two glasses half and half with coke and Black Label Johnny Walker. Brian asked what the hell she was doing. Beth laughed and said that her dad never even drinks this stuff, it’s all for show when his stupid friends from work come here to play poker every other Sunday. Those two vodka bottles are actually contact solution and hairspray. We’ll probably fill this bottle back up with iced tea.  Brian said to Beth You know what, uh…you have any popcorn? Beth said sure and raced upstairs.

At the minibar, Brian moved the glass with all coke away from the other two. Dumped one of the glasses of booze into the sink and used the bottom of it to crush up two tablets of the gravol he took out of the bathroom. The powder went into Beth’s glass of half and half, and he filled his back up with straight coke.

The sisters came back down to the rumpus room with burnt microwave popcorn. Jennifer said some kid was at the door selling newspaper subscriptions. Why does this town even have a newspaper? Nothing ever happens here. Brian handed Jennifer the glass of coke and Beth took hers and drank half of it in one go. They sat on the couch with Brian in the middle and started watching Labrynth. Jennifer flopped a quilt on their laps as they sat on the leather couch together. She linked hands under the covers with Brain and rested her head on his shoulder. Brian was more concerned with the other hand that was down the front of his pants, feeling around as Beth sipped her cocktail with her other hand.

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R.Keith

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