Rocco had a job to do. He kicked Feather’s kidneys in. Feather pissed blood. It was bad. Rocco kneeled Feather down like he was a fucking altar boy. Feather began to cry. He said: It’s a mistake. I’m sorry. Please don’t… It didn’t matter. Rocco shot him two times, back of the head. Feather fell forward. His nose broke, his mouth broke on the sidewalk… pieces of teeth on the sidewalk… blood and brains on the sidewalk… Feather dead on the sidewalk. It was bad, real fucking bad. Benny watched. Benny wanted to scream.
Benny knew Feather died because Healey fucked it up.
Benny told Feather: The kind of guy Healey is would sell babies if he knew how to sell babies…
Feather didn’t listen. Feather smelled money. Feather smelled the old
lady’s money. Feather listened to Healey. Healey set it up. It’s easy, Healey said, easy. It wasn’t easy. Feather died because it wasn’t easy. Feather died because Healey fucked it up.
Healey told Feather: You know the old lady, the gimpy old lady drags her foot when she walks.
Feather said: Yeah.
-What I hear is she keeps cash, a lot of cash, in her house. What I hear is she’s goin away for couple of days, Healey said.
Feather listened. Feather liked it. Feather smelled money. It smelled good. Feather was hungry.
-So we go in, we find the money, we get out. Easy. A quick in-out, Healey said. Feather liked it.
Feather went in. Healey stayed out. The house was big. Feather smelled money. It smelled good. Feather was hungry. Feather followed his nose. Feather heard noises. Feather tried to hide. The front door opened. The old lady walked in. The old lady was holding a pocketbook. The old lady was holding a shopping bag. The old lady looked at Feather. She squinted her eyes. The old lady looked at Feather hard, did-she-know-him hard. Feather looked back hard, did-he-know-her hard. The old lady didn’t know Feather. Feather didn’t know the old lady. Feather froze. It was the wrong old lady. Healey fucked it up. Shit!
-You sure this is the right house? Feather asked Healey, wanting to be sure, no mistakes, no fuck-ups.
-Yeah, this is the right fuckin house, Healey said.
Healey was wrong… It was the wrong house. It was the wrong old lady. Healey fucked it up.
The old lady screamed. She was scared shitless. Feather was scared shitless. Feather grabbed her, put his hand over her mouth. It’s a mistake, he said. I’m sorry, he said. Please don’t scream, he said. The old lady bit his hand. Feather squeezed his hand over her mouth. The old lady kicked. Feather squeezed his hand tight, too tight. The old lady stopped kicking. The old lady stopped breathing. The old lady shit herself. The old lady turned gray as cement. The old lady turned cold as a sidewalk.
The old lady hit the floor. The shopping bag hit the floor. The pocketbook hit the floor. The pocketbook spilled out old lady shit… dimes, nickels, rosary, Mass card. The rosary beads were worn down smooth as bones. The Mass card said: In loving memory of… Feather read the name. Feather knew the name. Everybody knew the fucking name. Feather pissed his pants. Feather said: Help me, Jesus. Feather ran out the door like his hair was on fire. Healey was gone. Feather was alone. It was dark, pitch black, no moon. Feather was scared shitless.
Benny told Feather: The kind of guy Healey is would sell babies…
Feather didn’t listen. Healey fucked it up. Feather died. Rocco shot him.
Rocco asked around. It didn’t take long. Rocco found Feather at Benny’s place. Benny told Rocco it was a mistake, it was Healey fucked it up. Rocco said: I don’t know who the fuck Healey is. I don’t know who the fuck you are. Get out the way and let me do my job.
Rocco shot Feather two times, back of the head. It was bad, real fucking bad. Benny watched. Benny wanted to scream. Benny wanted to do something about it…
Benny asked around for Healey. It didn’t take long. Benny found Healey hiding in the boneyard. Healey was drunk. Healey was scared. Healey was pissing on some poor bastard’s grave. Healey told Benny maybe he got confused, it was dark that night, pitch black, no moon, maybe he made a mistake, wrong house, wrong old lady, but it was Feather snuffed her, not him.
Rocco was crouched down behind a tombstone. Rocco listened. Rocco heard every word. Rocco walked up behind Healey. Rocco shot Healey two times, back of the head. The muzzle flash caught Healey’s head on fire. Healey fell forward into his own piss. That was good. Healey’s head torched. That was better. Let the motherfucker burn, Benny told Rocco.
Benny and Rocco watched Healey burn.
Rocco asked Benny: What kinda guy was Healey would plan to rob an old lady?
-The kind of guy Healey was would sell babies if he knew how to sell babies, Benny said.
Rocco asked Benny: What kinda guy was Feather would rob an old lady?
-Feather was the kind of guy would listen to a guy like Healey, Benny said.
-Healey was bad luck for Feather, Rocco said.
-Healey was bad luck for the old lady, Benny said.
-Not all bad luck, Rocco said. Healey’s burning for both of them.
Rocco was right. Healey burned like dead skin. Healey burned and it stunk. It stunk like garbage stinks when it’s dumped in the street, and even the rats won’t touch it.
Benny didn’t mind the stink. Benny didn’t mind at all.
Copyright © 2011 by William J Fedigan
William J Fedigan writes about who he is, what he knows, where he’s been. His latest work appears in Swill Magazine, Horror-Sleaze-Trash, Yellow Mama, Short, Fast and Deadly, Muscle & Blood, Metal Scratches, Blackheart Magazine. Contact: HYPERLINK "mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org" email@example.com