Story: The Boy Who Cried Help

By: Sasheera Gounden


I was sitting in the waiting room with fear soaking my armpits leaving a trail of odour behind. The many eyes surrounding my retina were repugnant. People tend to judge you if you’re a bit strange. I, however, considered myself very strange indeed.

I followed my gut feeling and left in a hurry with my bag of comics flung over my shoulder. I decided that I did not need to see a gargantuan pink-dressed psychologist telling me what was wrong with my life. I already knew my mama is a whore and I had no daddy but instead regular revisits of drunken truck drivers engraved with tattoos that signed “Earl” and gas station attendants with my mama brewing farewell coffee for them in the morning.
My mother, Doris knew how peculiar I was, her darling little boy. Doris had been a school teacher for two years until she had met “good old Ray.” Soon after this fateful meeting, she had left her job. I had found her one evening in a delightful mood, singing to Elvis’s “Hound dog” and making jam tarts which were my favourite. I found her to be ridiculous, singing like a fool in her pink-splashed yellow apron.

I pleaded with her, “Please don’t embarrass me mama, my friends live on this block.”
She looked at me with those red luscious lips and responded morosely, “you’re embarrassed of me.”

“I am,” I replied smugly.

She was an embarrassment compared to the other mothers that lived in our neighbourhood. There was a time when we were extremely poor. So poor in fact that my mother wore pantyhose with runs in them. All the other women in the neighbourhood snickered and gossiped behind her back.

All their husbands wanted a taste of her. She had several affairs. One or two times I would hear the bed bouncing and hitting the ground with a bang hard thud.

It all happened on a bright sunny, cloudless Saturday afternoon. I found her stoic behind our pastel green stove making Ray’s favourite medium rare steak with veins protruding from her clear water skin. Everything she did was for that caveman. The butter squealed and sizzled within the fatty meat to add to Ray’s high cholesterol levels.

I noticed something horrific about her.

“Mama, why do you have a raccoon’s eye?” I asked her.

She smiled at me pathetically and replied, “Nothing to worry about my dear. I waved to the milkman and Ray didn’t like it.”

She smirked with wrinkled skin like a tomato left to dry and rot in the sun and continued, “Don’t fret dear.”

The next morning, I found mama frying yellow-masala covered potatoes with a tender bluish eye.
“Mama, what happened?” I immediately inquired.
Mama smiled that familiar plastic pasted smile and replied, “No dear, Ray did not find the meat yesterday succulent enough; he said it tasted like cement dried up in his mouth.”
She quickly turned back to her domestic task, careful not to neglect the needy potatoes that cried out in the pool of oil.
Ray returned to our home at three in the afternoon with his breath stinking of fish oil and cheap brandy. He first staggered from his old pickup truck and fell in the mud like a disgusting swine. He crawled up to me on all fours clutching my denim jeans and staining it with his filthy flesh and earthly mud. He opened his god given mouth and said with specks of spit flying onto my face as if I had just been struck,
“Tommy my boy, your mother is a hump and bump machine my lad. All the old geysers in town tell me what a fun gal she really is! Even the milkman who waves at you every day has had Doris. They all say she is a screecher between the silk spreads and I couldn’t agree more! Tell me, of all the sly foxes she has been with, why did the old bird decide to have an ol bastard like you tromping around the house?”
Those were the last words Ray would ever utter. I decided I would surprise mama and Ray when in the heat of the moment.
It was a night filled with shards of ornaments in the limitless dark ocean of a sky. I carried my trusted broke, abandoning ass of a father’s handgun for my love and a cold mundane kitchen knife for Ray. I could hear them as I climbed the creaking soft-carpeted stairs. Mama screeched as if she was dying and then laughed after the blood-curdling cry. Ray snorted like a goat. In the bedroom when it came to the act of love making, he performed like an old mule. I could tell by his tired grunts and him gasping for air as if he had been submerged in the River Nile. I slowly opened their bedroom door and crept in like a stealthy soldier. Ray looked as if he had already killed mama as he remained on top of her minuscule bird-like body. His stomach was enormous as he heaved and thrust into her with his petulant red rod, grunting like a pig.
Despite his size, my mother thoroughly enjoyed the carnal act; I could see it on her face. She sneered with pleasure unlike the domesticated bird who over the years I had grown accustomed to. She had transitioned into a devilish creature with a sneer of a demon. At that very moment upon witnessing her pleasure, my heart raced and danced like a dervish. For all these years, I believed my mother to be a caged bird, helpless and vulnerable. I found out at this very moment that I had been duped. I felt like someone who had bet and lost millions from the senseless act of gambling.
With the click and lock of the bedroom door, they had nowhere to go. No escape. I swallowed the key like a fearless dragon with a heart made of fire and the body of armoured scales. I popped a bullet between her erotic cyanotic eyes. Her sex-dripped face now resembled that of a puff pastry. This salacious creature, my mother, only God could have her.
Ray looked at me with an unfamiliar look. His particular look at that very moment was the definition of fear. He ran around the bedroom like a straight jacketed lunatic.
“Pleez, pleez Tommy my dear boy, I’ll buy you anything you want. Remember that genuine red model car you spotted at Sally Henderson’s garage sale yesterday? It’s all yours my boy!” he pleaded, with slurred words of cheap drink.
He laughed an awkward, forced laugh. Negotiating had never been strong point for Ray. In fact, I don’t recall Ray ever having a strong point. He had been an empty wasted vessel. God begged me to remove him.
I slaughtered him like the swine that he was, stabbing him repeatedly and grabbing an earthly stone from my denim pocket and crushing his skull in. The drink eased his pain; I wish he had not touched the damn stuff.
I rearranged good old Ray’s intestines to spell out what should have been his birth name, “Pig.” Haven broken the door down, I slowly crept like a lizard down our creaky soft-carpeted staircase, I found a tray of perfectly preciously crafted jam tarts upon our small antique wooden kitchen table. They were prepared differently this time with sprinkles of powdered sugar upon the innocent little things. I wiped traces of Ray on my denim jeans leaving a trail of the kill behind. I flung the powdered sugar in the air and allowed it to descend upon my cherry tongue like crystal snowflakes. I popped one jam tart after the other in my gap of a mouth; it tasted like God having an orgasm in my mouth, a divine experience.
Placidly tapping my feet on the hard wooden floor to the tune of Elvis’s “Hound Dog,” I uttered my last few words to Doris,
“I will always remember you mother, my love.”


Categories: Fiction

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