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The Return of Jack Collier (Chapter Forty-Four)

The Return of Jack Collier

A Jack Collier Story

By Brett N. Lashuay

 

 

Chapter Forty-Four: All For You

 

 

It’s hard to say what it is I see in you, wonder if I’ll always be with you, words can’t say it, I can’t do enough to prove, it’s all for you

Sister Hazel

 

 

            They didn’t like the idea of arresting me, which is what Jack always tells me when relating these stories later, so they sent Alice in to talk to me. She entered the room, looking harassed and tired. We weren’t in one of the rooms with mirrored glass, so I was pretty sure they weren’t watching us. Maybe there was a little camera, but at the moment it seemed like we were actually alone.

 

            “Got tired of talking to them?” She asked as she pulled the chair around the table so she could sit next to me instead of across.

 

            “I want to go home and go to bed.” I said. “I’m tired and I need a shower. And I just want to lay down in bed and hold onto Jack and never let him go.”

 

            “Me too.” She said.

 

            “What are we going to do Alice?” I asked.

 

            “Well, in a little bit I’ll make them let you go home and have a shower.” She shrugged. “And I’ll see about making them let Jack go.”

 

            “Does he go home with you or me?” I asked.

 

            “Is that the ‘what’ you were asking about?” She asked.

 

            “Yeah.” I said.

 

            I felt her hand on my knee then felt her fingers run across my thigh and grasp my hand. I grabbed back, because it was nice to have someone’s hand to hold. I found myself thinking that I did like her, she was nice, and how it wouldn’t be a bad match if the three of us were together. I shouldn’t have been thinking like that. We were in a lot of trouble, and there was going to be more trouble to come, I shouldn’t have been thinking how beautiful the line of her jaw made her.

 

            “Maybe I can bring him to your house.” She said. “Maybe he can sleep between us and we’ll split curling up against him between us.”

 

            “Maybe.” I agreed, except I know for a fact Jack never sleeps if you try to put him in the middle. I thought though that it wasn’t important to tell her that, and if she could sleep in the middle I sort of thought there were worse things that could happen then sleeping next to her.

 

            “Is this going to work?” She asked. “You were there first. Are you going to have… problems?”

 

            “I don’t know.” I said, wondering if she was thinking along the lines I was. “I don’t think so.”

 

            “We could give it a try for a while.” She said. “I think I’m about to have a long stretch of administrative leave anyway.”

 

            “We could give it a go.” I agreed. “We’ve just got to get Jack to agree.”

 

            “Do you think he won’t?” she asked,

 

            “He’s bad about deciding important things.” I told her. “He’ll have to do something, but he’s going to drag his feet.”

 

            “I see.” She nodded, “I’ve sort of noticed that.”

 

            “He thinks about you all the time though.” I told her.

 

            “Does he?”

 

            “I can sort of tell when he’s thinking about you.”

 

            “Can you?”

 

            “Yeah.”

 

            “Oh.” She blushed. “He’s like that is he?”

 

            “Yeah.” I told her. “You’ve just to forgive the fact that he thinks no one could ever possibly reciprocate a feeling towards him. He’s sort of an idiot like that.”

 

            “I don’t know how soon I can get him out of here.” She said. “I’ll do my best.”

 

            “Okay.”

 

            I was only there another ten minutes after that, and mostly it was waiting for Jack to be able to come and talk to me before I left. He looked like he wanted to start slapping cops when he got to the room where I was.

 

            “They’re going to let Alice take me back to your grandmother’s.” I told him as he closed the door behind him.

 

            “Okay.” He sat down across from me and looked at the table. “You’ll need the keys.” He pulled his keychain out of his pocket and slid it across to me. “The one with the G symbol is the back door. That’s the one we came in through. I assume you know what the two with the heron on them are.”

 

            “Yeah.” I smiled looking at those, my very own classic. “The round one is the door, the square is the ignition, right?”

 

            “That’s right.”

 

            “Can I ask something?”

 

            “Sure.”

 

            “How did you survive that fall?”

 

            He smiled like a little kid who was just asked how the magic trick worked. I could see that for a moment he didn’t want to tell me.

 

            “There was a tree.”

 

            “A what?”

 

            “A tree.” He said. “About half way down the hill there was a tree. I aimed for that, which is why I had to jump myself. The limb I hit broke, but I caught the trunk and I didn’t fall. Then I just pressed against the hillside really flat and when they were done shooting I started climbing up.”

 

            “Oh.” I said. “That makes sense.”

 

            “The rest will have to wait until I can sell the book rights.” He looked at his cell phone for the time. “Right now I’ll have to go see what they want to do about Jill.”

 

            “You know how long they’re going to keep you?”

 

            “No.” He shook his head and looked annoyed. “However Alice said she’s starting to get annoyed and that she may announce we’re done as soon as the local superior gets her and gives her the green light.”

 

            “Are you going home then?” I asked, trying not to ask leading questions about coming to my place and curling up next to me. I didn’t want to look too eager. “I mean if you wanted to come to my place and curl up next to me that would be nice. You could even bring Alice if you wanted, I wouldn’t mind.”

 

            I didn’t say I succeeded, I said I was trying.

 

            “Funny.” He said. “She asked roughly the same thing. Only she said she was sure you wouldn’t mind if we came over together. She was talking about sleeping on the couch, but you two have clearly conspired differently.”

 

            “Not yet.” I tried to smile, but I was tired.

 

            “Karen is probably the only one left at my Grandma’s house now.” He was holding his head up with his arms, and just looked tired now. “Unless they brought her here too. We’ve got to get Cindy back to Chicago, ask Greta to come get her or something. Find out which guys they killed, do something for their families.”

 

            His arms fell on the table and he fell forward. His head made a pretty good thunk sound as it hit the table. He muttered something that sounded like ow, but I couldn’t be sure. He looked so tired, I wondered if snoring wouldn’t be too much effort for him today.

 

            “I’m pretty sure things can be done tomorrow.” I told him. “Right now, Cindy probably just wants a shower and a bed like the rest of us.”

 

            “Aren’t I sleeping with enough of you?” He asked and then giggled. “You’ve got a pretty big bed but it ain’t that big.”

 

            There was a knock at the door and some cop who knew Jack well enough to call him by his first name popped his head in.

 

            “Jack?” He asked.

 

            “Mmm?” He asked, not lifting his head.

 

            “Miss Piper says she needs you.”

 

            “Oh?” He asked.

 

            “Well, she’s a little scary anyway.”

 

            “Why?”

 

            “When they told her that her father had been killed she just said ‘Good’ and asked if we’d get you.” He said.

 

            “Two minutes.” Jack waved.

 

            “Okay.”

 

            “That is another complication.” He didn’t even bother raising his head up to look at me. “Jill is…”

 

            “Still enamored of you?” I asked.

 

            “Yeah.” He nodded with his forehead on the table, which meant most of his body moved instead. “That’s a way to put it.”

 

            “And you slept with her because she’s a pretty girl and you’re Jack Collier.” I told him. “You didn’t mean it to happen like this, but it did and now she thinks she planted a flag on your pole and you’re not sure about the whole thing.”

 

            “Um…”

 

            “And she’s not going to take kindly to being shoved to one side.”

 

            “No.” He shook his head.

 

            “But we really don’t have to shove her aside.” I told him.

 

            “Maybe.” He said. “I’m not sure. I don’t know.”

 

            “You’re going to have to come to a conclusion about that sometime.” I got up and gave him a kiss on the ear. “For now though, claim that things are moving very fast and you don’t want to hurt anyone and that’s why you can’t dump any of us. You’d hurt one of us, and make the rest of us think you were a cad if you decided to stop with any one of us. You’ll have to just keep the plates spinning for now.”

 

            “I do love you.” He said. “You know that right?”

 

            “Yes.” I said. “And I love you.”

 

            “I didn’t sleep with Cindy.” He said that like it was really the most important part of all. “I didn’t sleep with Shiri either, but she’s a lesbian and in a committed relationship.”

 

            “I’m choosing to view that as an oversight on your part.” I told him. “You just haven’t had an hour with her since she actually turned eighteen. Now that she has, I’m sure you can slip in an hour with her.”

 

            “I’m so glad my claims of love mean that much to you.”

 

            “I never doubted that you love me for a second.” I said as I opened the door to go. “I just know you can love so many other people, you show concern for so many, and you do have a limited skill set in that you can get girls to go to bed with you and then b so good that they pant after you for another ride. Don’t think I’m insulting you, but I’m perfectly willing to stay with you forever without an exclusive contract, so just long as I get a regular dose of affection.”

 

            “Love you.”

 

            “Love you too.” I told him, and I went to get my car and go home.

 

October 2, 2011 Posted by | Fiction, Jack | | Leave a comment

DO NOT TRY TO EAT AT BAGGER DAVE’S!

There is a new burger place called Bagger Dave’s in our area. AVOID THIS PLACE! Do not go there, they will fuck up your order, a lot. I got my order fucked up three times and after that I didn’t even look at it to see if it was right. I can’t say that I ate at this shit hole, I can only say I tried to eat there. Also, fucking over priced! Had they not decided to take the food I wasn’t able to eat off the bill, magnanimously I should add, it would have cost us about $80 to eat there. FOR BURGERS!

The first problem is in ordering, you don’t just look at a menu and order. There are little slips of paper, each one has a series of options fore things you can have on your burger that you check off. I’m not sure why they do this, because they clearly don’t pay attention to what you’ve selected. Every person at our table had their order screwed up to various degrees. Mine was not right in any way. It was completely screwed up.

They made mine a double large, when I’d selected a small burger, and they covered it in all kinds of crap like green olives that I didn’t order. My fries were similarly screwed. Nothing was right about the first order I got, mine was the worst of the bunch.

Now here’s the funny part, the waitress argued with us about what we ordered. She told us that, no, we totally ordered that. She could have brought out the cards, but instead she just decided to tell us we were stupid for complaining about them screwing up our order. I explained, as politely as I could, that I did not want green olives on my burger and she would kindly send it back and get me a new one.

So I sent it back, and they brought back the wrong order again. A different wrong order, I’ll admit that, but still wrong. The single through line of these burgers was the inclusion of those green olives, which the waitress kept insisting that I wanted. The third time the fries were right, but the burger was still covered in green olives. And when I say covered, we’re talking about a quarter of a cup of the fucking things. There was more green olive than meat on this burger. At this point, I was so annoyed that I didn’t even want to look at the thing so I set it on the floor.

When the waitress came back she looked at the table with confusion and then at everyone but me who was pointing at the floor. I was no pointing at the floor because I was asking Syd at what point was I allowed to just leave this fucking place. The waitress picked the burger from the place I’d deposited it (on the plate, I’m not a complete asshole) and set it on the table and asked me what was wrong with it this time. To which I pulled the top of the bun off, showed her the incredible mountain of green olives and spoke. “The main point in telling you I didn’t want green olives on the burger, was that I didn’t want green olives on my burger.”

Now mind, this was the THIRD burger she had brought, and this was the THIRD time I’d explained my position on the green olive issue. This was the third time we were going through this bullshit song and dance of her telling me what I ordered and my telling her that I didn’t want what was presented and that she should make an adjustment. At this point the waitress saw the light of day and admitted that maybe I didn’t want green olives after all and that she had been misunderstanding what I thought was a simple point of “I don’t want green olives” to somehow mean that I wanted more green olives that anyone had ever had before. She got me a fourth burger, which I didn’t even look at because I was so disgusted with the process at that point.

No one at the table enjoyed their burgers in case you’re wondering. “Sub-Red Robin Levels” was the judgment from the panel of burger eating experts. Also, at Red Robin, they usually get my order right the first time. I’m not even all that fond of Red Robin, but they aren’t complete and total fuck-ups like the shit heads at Bagger Dave’s are.

October 2, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment