Jimmy when inebriated thought that he was affable, gregarious, a ladies man, but he wasn’t it spilled out in a miasma of obnoxiousness, pugnacity, he created a vorax and all were engulfed….”

by paul kavanagh

It’s bloody raining, screamed Jimmy.

It’s not raining love, pleaded Sue.

Let it rain I say, bellowed Jimmy.

The moon’s out, we can see the stars, said Sue.

Jimmy removed his tie, unbuttoned his shirt. Sue dutifully picked up the tie and shirt. Jimmy was feral; Sue inhaled deeply and fought back the fear. Instinctively she knew it was better to shadow him instead of leading him home. Sue was silent, Jimmy was loud and bellowed.

Have a drink, said Mick.

No thank you, said Jimmy.

What’s up? Asked Mick.

He doesn’t drink anymore, said Sue.

Jimmy fought as though his life depended on the struggle. He foamed at the mouth and his eyes were blank as though he didn’t register the pain inflicted upon him. He seemed to swallow the pepperspray and his body absorbed the blows of the truncheons. The policemen kicked and punched him but still Jimmy fought with unconjecturable strength. Sue sat by the curb and wept.

Just a quick one, said Jimmy.

But you said, said Sue.

It’s not going to kill me, said Jimmy.

But it might kill me, said Sue.

The kids were asleep and the babysitter was watching something on the television. Why she was called a babysitter when the boys were boys perplexed Jimmy. They were little urchins and once the door was closed they would be up with alacrity and creating a brouhaha. Jimmy felt sympathy for the babysitter, see even he was doing it. Babysitter.

Give me a kiss, said Jimmy.

Go back to bed, said the babysitter.

Look me cock is hard, said Jimmy.

Bloody hell wait till your mother and father gets home, said the babysitter.

Mick was an affable, gregarious fellow. When inebriated he would laugh, sing and loquaciously chat to the ladies. He always had a lady upon his arm; this cad once had Sue upon his arm. She was once a coquettish frilly and Mick was no paladin. Always dressed in a coruscating suit, Mick elevated himself above the canaille and it was inevitable that Sue would gravitate towards him.

Not here, pleaded Sue.

Be quiet, nobody’s about, said Mick.

You’re too rough, cried Sue.

You love it, said Mick.

Jimmy did the driving. He always drove the car. First he would open the door for Sue and make sure she was comfortable. Before starting up the engine Jimmy would lean over and kiss Sue. He would run his hand up her leg until it reached silk and there he would stop and giggle. To Sue he was jejune, puerile, but cute. That’s the word. Cute.

Whiskey you bastard! Bellowed Jimmy.

Not another, pleaded Sue.

Leave him, he’s having a wonderful time, said Mick.

You leave him; you’re messing with him, said Sue.

It was otiose. Jimmy was diametrically opposite to Mick in every way. Jimmy when inebriated thought that he was affable, gregarious, a ladies man, but he wasn’t it spilled out in a miasma of obnoxiousness, pugnacity, he created a vorax and all were engulfed. He sang obstreperously, gesticulated and dribbled.

Don’t drink tonight, pleaded Sue.

I won’t I promise, said Jimmy.

If Mick winds you up, forget it, said Sue.

He’s a shit that’s all, said Jimmy.

The glass exploded upon impact. Nobody saw it coming; it was with amazing alacrity that it happened. Only afterwards did all know what had happened and who did what. Sue was covered in whiskey and blood. She was in shock. The girl next to her, one of Mick’s girls, pissed herself and wept hysterically. Mick could not see; blood obfuscated his vision. Confused and in pain Mick slipped into the center of his own being, there he was comfortable while all around him the circumambience exploded into a melee.

I think we should be going home, said Sue.

That’s the line she played on me, said Mick.

You what? asked Jimmy.

He’s playing you Jimmy, said Sue.

Originally published:
Issue Forty-One
February 2006

Paul Kavanagh was born in England in1971 and now lives in South Carolina. He is happy. His wife is happy. Together they are happy. H. Langden says: “Paul Kavanagh cannot sit still, he drinks too much tea, he succumbs to Pascal’s melancholy for he is unable to remain quietly in a room.” Paul Kavanagh has been published in Thieves Jargon, Underground Voices, Unlikely stories, Milk Magazine, Laurahird, Cellar Door, The Layabout, Skive Magazine, Mad Swirl, Zygote in my Coffee, The Lampshade, Girls with Insurance, zafusy Poetry Journal and a few others.

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