I’m starting to wonder if Monica and Bennington are ever coming back from their sojourn down south. To me, anything beneath the state of Massachusetts is part of the Confederacy, and I still don’t trust them. Keep in mind that we were alive when all that shit went down, and it wasn’t fun. We sheltered many people, but don’t like to talk about it. Still worried about retribution, to be honest. I had a man in his pajamas and suspenders come to me in a Durham mall in the mid-1980s with murder in his eyes and a gun in his hand, and he said he remembered and that, “the South will rise again.” Well, his pajamas weren’t the only thing red that day: luckily, the police were able to convince him to commit suicide rather than waste anyone else’s life, someone who might have something to offer other than blood and spit.
Sometimes I can be callous and mean, and if that suggests that I should move down to the “the Big City,” I reject you, and them, because their whole thing is being curt on the surface but ultimately kind-hearted. I’m just straight-up rude, my wife’s on constant Cuntmode, and Bennington’s basically a goblin, so I’m sure they’re making out okay in Manhattan. But I want them back—I NEED them back. Monica has my medication and Bennington has the password to the Wi-Fi in the shed and sometimes I like to write in there and take my long soaks to the tune of This American Life. It’s a guilty pleasure—even if I don’t believe in those (everyone has one—mine is this sentence).
“Severin? Yeah. Yeah, it’s Rooster. Can you get me a line into the bordellos underneath Manhattan? Yes, it’s about my cousin. But also—yes, Bennington—but also my wife, Monica. I—yes, I know, well—well she’s been rather good but as of late I’m beginning to get a bit concerned…” Severin was an old friend in the underworld I had for reporting and novel research. We did so many drugs together it was insane. But that was decades ago. Now she tips me off about avian malfeasance on the East Coast. She got back to me in half an hour. “They’re staying in Times Square, the Bitmore.” The what? “It’s owned by Bitcoin somehow… but it’s cash only? I don’t get it, but they’re there. One of my peacocks sold them half a bag of Fenty yes—“ WHAT?!??!!?!
Severin didn’t inform me that “Fenty” was not in fact Fentanyl but a much weaker form of the chemical Kratom, commonly available in most health food stores. I arrived in New York in a panic, and found my wife and cousin very much alive in front of where I got off, at Penn Station: they were in line to see Green Day at Madison Square Garden. I walked up to them and they barely recognized me: “We’re going home.” They started complaining and eventually screaming, but we’re “chickens,” so no one noticed. No one ever notices our pains or pleasures.
“Roo, I’m tired of these pretzels. I want a personal pizza.” For once, my wife could use a personal pizza, or two. “Get me three.” Somehow, Bennington remained fat during his millionth junkie sojourn, a first for him. Monica must’ve fixed up in the bathroom because she’s not sweating or shaking, whereas Bennington is so used to withdrawal that he’s just normal spilling fluids and writhing in pain. “So did you guys have fun? Huh?” I had to rub it in, they put such a burden on me. I do so much for them, and for what? Bupkis. I’m the ATM for these degenerate freeloaders, and I know this isn’t the last time I’ll have to rescue them. So did they have fun?
“We had fun,” Monica said.
“We had fun,” Bennington moaned.
And now I’m smiling. Next time, we’ll have fun. Even if they leave, I’m coming. I’m too big for my cabin.
—Follow Rooster Quibbits on Twitter: @RoosterQuibbits