Rumor and Hearsay

Tuesday, March 29, 2016


Is this what it feels like? Constantly feeling as if you want to throw up? Constantly exhausted even after 8 hours in bed. Is this what it feels like knowing you never get to hear a new story in their voice? Zoning out in the kitchen where they taught you everything you know about culinary prowess. Is this what it feels like to realize your father will never see you attain your goals in life. Watching your mother try to sleep on the couch because going back to that bed is out of the question?

Is this what being truly broken feels like?

H.E. Wallace

2015: Prologue

Punk rock blasts over the amps set up in the back yard, Kelly and Mike are making a new round of shots for everyone at the party. "Get o'er here you assholes, drink arerrready!" Kelly exclaims, or slurs. There must be about 20 people here, all high, drunk, or both. The Crombie sisters were both wearing bikinis, Kyle couldn't tell if they were on X or if they just stop giving a shit as they started making out, good thing they weren't really sisters. Bryan and Jimmy were here too, old band mates from Bomb Shelter Fallout, a lividly raw experiment from college, which strangely enough, gave birth to Rock Me Raw, a group of sellouts tearing up the Los Angeles hardcore scene. The looking glass Jimmy handed over had engraving on the edge "Bombs Away", perfect rails laid out for the three. "It's good to have you back home man, crazy fuck we thought you were dead." Kyle slides the first rail hard, clean. Drip Drop. "FUCKERRS LESSSSGGO!" Kelly demands, spilling a shot on the table. Mike laughs, hard enough to seem like he'll die at any second. Jimmy, Bryan and Kyle make their way to the table, the Crombies right behind. "Here's to the prodigal son returning to the angels!" proclaims Mike as he sniffs hard, an effort to stop his running nose.


New Year's Eve with the angels, Jesus Christ.
Kelly probably wouldn't make it to midnight, Jimmy and Bryan are probably gonna try to bag the sisters, outside the close friends, Kyle doesn't really know anyone else. Some guy named Travis with this dimepiece Claire, evidently he's rich, or she's rich, or both. They seem cool enough while they rip cigs on the patio, the Claire chick eyeing Mike as he brings out a bong. Kelly follows closely behind, probably recovering due to the Colombian sugar one of the Crombies brought. Kyle hands Travis and Claire beers and goes back inside. He overhears a conversation, "Man 2015 was the shit, this new year better bring it hard, man!". "2015," Kyle repeats to himself, "fuck man, 2015...".

A few hours pass, Kelly and Mike are still going strong, the Ramones blast over the speakers, Kyle, is wasted. Bryan is missing his shirt, and probably his jeans, while in the hot tub with one of the sisters, Jimmy is busy making more shots. The other sister is nowhere to be found, maybe making out with herself in a mirror. Mike locks onto Kyles neck, dragging him towards the pool table. "Man, we fucking made it, bro, we survived!" Kyle has no idea what Mike means, but takes a pull from the bottle anyway. "Dude we kinda thought you weren't coming back, really bummed us out man, almost lost you to those rednecks."

Texas, that's right.

Fucking. Texas.

"Dude this year was goddamn weird" Kyle struggles to slur, "man, I could try to tell but you, you peoples would, not, believer me at all." "Holy shit Kelly, Kyle is fucking wasted babe!" WOO is the only response, Kyle thinks he sees Kelly with the missing sister, but he can't make out the scene. "Breathe, hard" commands Mike, Kyle obeys. A vial under his nose comes to life through a tingle between the eyes. "That's some good shit, it'll wake you up." Kyle takes another pull as he leans against the pool table, attempting to stop the patio from freaking out. A few minutes pass. Jimmy hands Kyle a smoke, they light up.

Inhale. Exhale.

Travis and Claire start handing Solo cups full of champagne or cheap whiskey, Russian Roulette style. Jimmy and Kyle still perched on the table, watching Bryan suck Kassi's face off, or Amy, they can't tell which sister it is. "Dude," Bryan starts, "the last few years have been a drag with you gone man, this last year was the worst, you wouldn't believe how stupid it was." "Man, don't even start with me bruh, I could write a book about that shit, but I'd have to sell it as fiction shit man, unbelievable." The other sister pulls Kyle's hair back as she empties the contents of a bottle down his throat, the burn is distinct, grain, it's pure grain alcohol.

This is the point where the shit, that had been thrown somewhere off in the void, slammed into the cosmic fan.

Everything slows, everything has trails.

That stupid song comes on, the one for New Year's.
You know the one.

A torrent of emotion grasped him by the throat, memories flooding his mind. It was all so surreal, every bit of it. Every drunken night, every hungover Sunday Funday, the motorcycle, the wreck, the fights shown like a newsreel in his mind. Damn Texas. "HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!" Amy or Kassi lift the Solo cup to his face as Jimmy winks at him and takes his shot. Mike and Kelly are singing that song, Jimmy is lighting another smoke. Travis drapes an arm over Kyle's shoulder, like if they were friends already, "Man fuck 2015 AMIRITE?! I was so tired of that piece of shit year, here's to bigger and better my man." "What would you know about a shit year, man?" Kyle angrily exclaims, "man, you have no idea."


"Holy shit, fuck off 2015!" Kyle screams at the top of his lungs, "seriously holy shit the whole, shit, like, fuck me man 2015 was fucking stupid!" "Dude, calm the fuck down...jus" "Nah man, fuck you, you don't know me you little prep school piece of shit!" Kyle and Travis stare at each other, neither flinching, everyone frozen, watching, waiting. Kyle takes a hard drag of his smoke, blowing the cloud in Travis' red-hot face. "You go through the last year I had in that redneck ass place, with all the bullshit and see how long you last, you little bitch." Travis blinks, shaking his head, "Man these peeps all hyped you up man, but you're broken, dude, get it together."

Kyle walks back into the house, the ground shifts, everything starts spinning again, he stumbles, hitting the ground hard, ignoring the shoe he looses, continuing through the house to the front. A lone beer bottle had survived the trek, and quickly was shattered via throw, which connected with Kelly's mailbox. Fireworks are lighting the sky on fire, City of Angels, skies aflame. Mike and Bryan follow behind the stumbling Kyle. "Dude what the fuck was that man, get back to the party dude." Bryan begs. "Dude, where is your shoe? Are you walking on broken glass?" Mike adds. An artillery shell sets the hazy air ablaze, lighting the entire street. Kyle, now in the road, looks down into a bloody puddle, tracked from the curb. In that flat flash, both Mike and Bryan can see the coke tainted blood draining from Kyle's nose, more shells explode overhead as he slowly wipes it away with a bare arm, his yes meeting theirs. "Dude," Bryan begins, "what happened to you last year?" by this time, more people have come outside to see the spectacle.

Like a fallen king, opposing his former court.

"You wanna know what happened?" he defiantly asks.
"I promise you won't believe it...but you gonna see..."
"Sit the fuck down I'm about to tell you a story." he commands.

He almost seems majestic in this one, beautiful, moment. As he closes his eyes, seeing the memories, feeling the emotions. It's like a silent movie, lightning quick transitions, disorganized, frantic, like dreaming in Hollywood Land.