Free short stories about Generation End

Archive for the ‘Relationships’ Category

MIRACLES IN WEST END

miracles in west end

I had become a mess so Christie told me to visit a lady in West End who performs miracles. Apparently, she helped cure a lady of her cancer, she helped cure a friend of his chronic back pains, she returned joy to a broken person’s life.

I went to the hall and sat down among a small group of others. The lights were dim and music was playing, and although I was thinking of nothing I wept. It was a ridiculous catastrophe: tears keep stumbling away from me and I had no idea why.

“I don’t have powers,” she said to the small crowd, “I am merely an instrument of God.”

After a while a queue had formed for people to come up to her to be healed. As each person would approach her, she’d say something to them, and no matter their size, they would fall to the ground.

I was invited to come up to her. She closed her eyes and clasped her hands and smiled, and she placed her hands in mine and she whispered in my ear: “You never have to feel lonely again. God is with you.” She blew onto my chest and I fell to the ground, and I lay there, thinking that nothing inside me had changed.

I stood up and returned to my seat, wondering what the hell just happened.

This guy who was around my age came from nowhere and sat next to me. “You don’t have to feel alone anymore,” he said without invitation, “I’m certainly not.” He spoke of other things – his addictions, his ego, the homes he’d lived in, and how his coming closer to God had cleaned his soul. He told me that everyone will go to heaven. “I think I’m supposed to talk to you and I don’t know why.” He hugged me, stood up and walked out of the hall.

I sat there on my own until ten in the evening. I was exhausted. When it was over I drove home and fell into a deep sleep.

 

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Book I’m reading: Walt Disney: The Triumph of the American Imagination 

Show I’m watching: Billions

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SELMA HAD LONG LEGS

selma had long legs

Selma had legs that could kill a football team and all the guys loved her, and they all flirted with her, and one day, when we were all walking towards the Pancake Manor I lifted up her skirt, and she had this lacy thong on, and poking out of the thong were both sides of her pad, and everyone roared with laughter but she didn’t – she ran, she ran fast, and it was then that I realised that 1) I’m not a good person 2) there was purity in her heart.

I found her later, sulking in the shadows somewhere. She was crying to someone on the phone, and I didn’t know what to say, so I just stood there, watching her cry to that person on the phone. I finally said: “I didn’t realise you had your period.” This made her cry even more, so I said, “Look I’m sorry,” and then, “it’s cold aren’t you cold?” and I put my jacket on her lap, and she continued to sob.

One year later, we were drinking and laughing again.

 

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SOMETHING IN YOUR STOMACH

Someone from work once gave me a moleskin, and for some time I just let it sit at the back of my car.

“If you don’t want to write in it, why don’t you draw something in it?” Christie asked me from her hospital bed.

“Yeah okay,” I complained. “Like drawing is so fucking easy.”

She got mad, so I drew something:

kanye west standing on 3 heads“How much drugs are you on?” she asked me.

“Nothing!” I lied, so I drew something else:
an evil spirit about to give you a handjob

She laughed at this one. Well it was a tiny laugh, but I still considered it a laugh.

Christie was in hospital for something they’d found in her uterus that was causing her to bleed.

“Apparently, there’s a chance I can’t have kids,” she said, her eyes turning a little red. There was a tube in her arm and she looked small in her hospital bed – she hadn’t been properly eating in days. “Will you still be with me if I can’t have kids?”

I looked at her and her family members standing behind her. They were pretending not to be listening to our conversation. “Of course.”

I remember once thinking that if I were to ever be a dad, I had to be a young dad, like a nineteen-year-old dad, or a twenty-one-year-old dad. I didn’t want to be some old dad who couldn’t relate to my kid. But then I grew older and older and I became almost thirty, and then I thought that if I were to have a kid, maybe I should adopt a twenty-one-year-old or something, someone who’s already grown past that shitty rebellious adolescent stage of life and is graduating and has an entry level job at some large and stable company, and is in a stable relationship, and any disturbing vices they may secretly carry would have nothing to do how I treated them when they were five years old, because I wasn’t there when they were five years old. Can I handle a child? Can I hold one, and feed one, and understand one, and love one no matter what? No matter what? I mean, why make one when you can adopt one, right? Can you even adopt a twenty-one year old?

And then I realised that I was actually rambling the above monologue out loud to Christie, and her whole family was watching.

“The hell are you on about, Dean?” her brother asked me.

I continued holding Christie’s hand, and we continued talking about other things, and her family left, and I stayed until the nurse said I had to go. I leant my head against Christie’s chest, and I told her that I wanted to listen to her heart, and I listened to her heart, and then I stood up and said goodnight and I walked all the way home.

 

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VALENTINE’S DAY LOVE

Christie told me that she fell in love with Barry Edgar about four years ago. He didn’t know that she’d fallen in love with him, and understandably so: she didn’t tell him and she didn’t change anything about the way she treated him.

Barry Edgar was a waiter who once travelled to Europe. He also once travelled to India. He also once travelled to Beijing, to Philippines, to Peru. Barry was shorter than the average guy and he had hairy shoulders, and his deodorant had a strong, musky smell. There was nothing really special about Barry, but then there was really nothing that special about Christie, so she thought it fitting that they were destined to be together.

To Christie, falling in love was more than just a childish feeling of falling in love. She tried her best not to think of “falling in love” as something that was merely a product of evolution, of the movies, of pop songs, of seeing her parents, of hearing her friends. Christie wanted to fall in love in a completely unique way, in a way that was individual to her. But how could she do this when so much of her was a product of her environment? How much of her “falling in love” truly came from her heart?

Picturing herself as a bouquet of flowers, Christie spun in dramatic circles with the hope of shaking off any unruly untruths in her life. She meditated, she shed her skin, she consumed, she prayed, she sold, she gave up, she quit, she ran, she ignored – she dedicated an entire year to only telling the truth, of being completely honest with herself and shedding all insecurities, all bonds and all connections, even her physical connection with Barry. Feeling like a Buddhist, she detached herself from everything, and in her pursuit of complete honesty she found nothing but love. Not only love for Barry, but love for herself, and of the world, and of God.

About four years ago I told this girl I loved her because of the way she said the word “cunt”. This girl had a great smile and a great body and she rarely shaved her pubic hairs and she was taken by someone else. “I’m addicted, Dean,” she texted me, and I texted back, “To what???” and she replied with, “to everything there ever was.” And at one in the morning, the morning after Valentine’s, I picked her up, and we drove to McDonald’s and bought nuggets and we didn’t say much and I tried to kiss her in the parking lot, and she said, “Not until we take some,” and I said, “Some what???” and she replied with, “take some of everything that ever was.” And around noon we drove to some crowded beach at the Gold Coast and we ran into the sea.

LAST DINNER WITH CAROL

last dinner with carol - trees in distance

I’ve been writing about Carol for thousands of years now, and tonight will be the last time you hear about her. I’d only promised to write about eight dinners, you see, and you’re probably sick of her by now, and you’re probably wondering what the hell I’ve been up to. What the hell have I been up to?

The last dinner I had with Carol was at her place. She was in a soft blue robe and her hair was tied in a ponytail and I didn’t realise how big her ears were. They weren’t abnormally big, but they were large enough to notice.

“I didn’t realise how big your ears were,” I told her.

“I didn’t realise how small your hands were,” she said back.

The dinner wasn’t really a dinner: it was a few pieces of sweet bread she bought from Sunnybank and some tea. She leant on her elbows, looking at me and smiling.

“What?” I asked her.

“What?” she asked back.

“Why are you looking at me like that?”

“Why not?”

“Why not anything?”

“Let’s go somewhere tonight,” she said.

“I’m tired. It’s eleven.”

“You told me you used to start your evenings at eleven.”

“That was back in the day, when I wasn’t running out of time yet.”

“I’m picturing us,” she said, “driving in the snow.”

“There’s no snow in Brisbane.”

“We’re driving in the snow, and we park at some shopping mall, and we walk inside and we watch a movie and afterwards, we drive back to my place, and you make me wet, and then we argue and you make me wetter.”

“That’s a horrible story,” I said.

“Why is that a horrible story?”

“What’s the point of the snow in your fantasy? All we did was go to the movies. We could’ve built snowmen.”

“The snow just makes the background better.”

“Have you even seen snow?” I asked her.

“No. But I know you have.”

“How do you know? You don’t know.”

“You’ve seen snow once, in Japan.” She sighed impatiently. “We’ve had a conversation like this before. I always remember what we talk about but you always forget. You’re always in your own head.”

“Give me some of that bread.” I took some of the bread and ate it nervously.

We argued about going somewhere for a while until I gave in and we went for a drive. I don’t remember where we went, but I remember a lot of red lights and pancakes and a parking lot and a highway that stretched on, and on, and on, and every so often one of our mobile phones would vibrate, and every so often we’d share stories, or laugh, or argue, or simply let our thoughts drip feed themselves into our minds only to be forgotten forever. In my CD player we played a few things: The Cranberries, Drake, James Blake, Beethoven; we then let the radio take over.

We return to her room. We watch her favourite movie: this horror movie about a ventriloquist’s doll that gets possessed by an evil spirit. I fall asleep halfway through and wake up around the end. I kiss her, and she holds my hands and she asks me why I don’t love her, and I tell her, “We’ve only had eight dinners,” and in a melodic tone she says that no matter how many dinners we have, she can tell I won’t love her and I ask her why she thinks this and she says she just knows; she says she can read under the skin and she knows I’ll never love her and she cries but she tells me that she can be fine with that, as long as I stay, as long as I always come home to her at the end of the day, as long as I embrace her in the cold, in the heat, when it snows, when it doesn’t, and in return she’ll buy me things to help me: a glass lunch box, a pair of glasses when I’m old, a typewriter, a wallet whenever my old ones need replacing; she’ll tell the world about my books, she’ll swallow even when she’s not in the mood, she’ll be more consistent with her leg shaving, she’ll bleach her arsehole, she’ll learn the piano just to write me a song and she’ll find the tears in my heart and wipe them away like she’ll wipe any dirty table. I drift in and out of dreams as she says this, and I say things I’ll never remember to her while wiping her hair behind her ears. I take off her clothes and this time there’s no violence – we’re completely boring and sentimental about it, but then lately I’ve been feeling lately that sex and fucking and making love and everything in between has been mistakenly placed on a pedestal by people like me, and is it something that beautiful, is it something to go to lengths for, is it something that great compared to the great things great people have accomplished in life? Why can’t artists romanticise celibacy? Why couldn’t I stick with Carol? Had I let myself become too damaged, was I just deliberately finding fault? This will continue if I don’t stop talking to her.

In the morning I wake up Carol and tell her I have to go. She smiles and says, “Okay,” and she walks me out, and I drive home.

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Book I’m reading: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

WATCHING CAROL SPIN

watching-carol-spin

This is my second last story about Carol. It starts off quite simply, and it ends quite simply. It starts at South Bank, during an evening, a Wednesday, with the both of us in a large Ferris wheel. I’d been with Carol since the night before, and during that time I’d made her breakfast and she’d helped me buy some shoes and we’d explored the art gallery and taken photos around the place and all that other bullshit.

“You know there’s a story in my book about this Ferris wheel.” We were right at the top when I told her this. “It was about me and an ex girlfriend, who’s kind of now a friend.”

“I don’t care about your ex girlfriends who are kind of now your friends.”

“Look out at the city,” I quickly changed the subject, peering out the window. “A hundred years from now it’ll be a completely different scene.”

“Every second is a completely different scene.”

“Have you ever considered the importance of it all? I mean, how significant are we really in this universe? We put ourselves on these pedestals, but who gave us the right to do so?”

“I think it’s all so magnificent,” Carol said, leaning against my shoulder. “I have a body and a mind that lets me be completely detached to the complexities of this universe and dedicate an entire second, an entire hour and even an entire day to simply being with you – even if I know I’ll never get this time back again. Isn’t it all so magnificent, Dean?”

The both of us were drunk on each other.

We left the Ferris wheel and entered a restaurant. For a while, she bothered me because she’d be tapping away at her phone without telling me what she was doing. In the end, I found out she was making sure there was enough money in her bank account so she could secretly pay for both of our meals.

We returned to my place and drank, and drank, and drank. She picked up my phone, deleted some photos and put on Spotify. She put on Regina Spektor, Samson, and she spun around before tripping over. I watched her, laughing, drinking, and she stood up and slurred something I’ll never, ever remember, and if I could transport myself back to that moment just to watch her again, I’d probably do it, but then I guess there’s something awfully taboo about longing for something clearly owned by the past. Carol brushed her teeth, and so did I, and she showered, and so did I, and she smiled, and so did I.

 

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Book I’m thinking of reading: Infinite Jest

 

FIRST DINNER WITH CAROL

1-i-dont-know-how-i-talked-you-into-having-dinner-with-me 2-your-hair-was-still-brown 3-what-do-you-think-of-me 4-what-do-you-think-of-anything 5-we-walked-into-a-bar 6-afterwards-in-my-car 7-wheres-your-mobile-phone 8-and-when-you-sat-up

And then I ruined it all by saying, “I don’t want a relationship”. You shrugged and said, “That’s exactly what the previous guy said,” and you told me about this guy you met on Tinder who was in a long distance relationship. You told me that he was a decent guy with a pretty good body and pretty big dick, but he always kept insisting that he didn’t want anything serious because he was moving on from his girlfriend and that he was confused and bla bla bla, and then I thought, What do I say to get out of this? How do I emerge from this to make sure neither of us are undamaged? and then I blamed you and said, “Well when we first fuckin’ spoke you said you didn’t want to get married,” and you said, “I said married, but I still want to be in a relationship,” and, tapping on the glove compartment, you said, “I shouldn’t have given so much of myself away right away. It’s what I always do wrong,” and I comforted you by saying, “Nah,” and this little debate of ours would continue for the entirety of what we had.

DINNER AT CAROL’S PLACE

dinner at carols - lights

Carol lived with a few people, so I would always enter her place through a back door. She had one of the biggest rooms in the house, and I liked it because unlike my cramped room, she had a large bed with plenty of floor space. In the dark, from her bed, a few things would lay huddled in the corner next to her desk: a large hat, some shiny shoes, empty shopping bags. In a large plastic container to her right would be some old documents, as well as a strip of Ansell condoms she kept as backup. Underneath her bed was dust, and a toilet paper roll, and a packet of pads, and a bra, and abandoned lipstick, and a box of letters and movie tickets from old boyfriends.

I arrived at Carol’s place around midnight. I’d just come from another book reading and I was hungry. Grinning, she served me a bowl of soup.

“Is the soup shit? It’s shit, isn’t it?”

I put my spoon down. “It’s good.”

“No, it’s shit.”

“It’s good.”

She watched me as I had some more.

“You’re making this whole thing awkward,” I told her. “Stop watching me.”

“I can’t help it.”

“Yes you can.”

“No I can’t.”

“How long have we known each other?” I asked her.

“Too long.”

I looked at her. “Do you believe in ghosts?”

“I believe in everything.”

“You didn’t say that yesterday.”

“I was a different person yesterday.”

“Who were you yesterday?”

“Yesterday I was the sun.”

“And today you’re the moon?”

“No.”

“Then who are you?”

“I’m Carol.”

“That’s just fucked up.”

She laughed. Her eyes creased deeply when she laughed and she looked about three years older than she was supposed to. I remember visiting her one morning and seeing her without makeup. “Why are you looking at me like that?” she asked me, and two days later, when I hadn’t contacted her, she asked, “Did something happen when you came over? What did I do wrong? Were you disgusted by how I looked like?”

I finished eating and we walked inside Carol’s room and I closed the door and turned off the light and took off her clothes. I ran my finger along one of her tattoos.

“Can I take a video of this?” I asked her. “Of when I choke you?”

“No.”

Afterwards, she turned on her laptop and we watched the Korean version of The Lake House. She fell asleep and began snoring, so I covered her mouth until she woke up. She looked irritated, but then smiled and fell asleep again. I soon followed her, and when I woke up it was six in the morning on a Sunday. She walked me out, and as we approached her gate I looked at her, and she asked me, “What?” and I said, “Nothing,” and we said bye and I stepped inside my car and drove off.

At some point while I slept Carol had gotten into my car and placed a CD in my stereo. There was only one song in the CD, and it was A Case of You, by James Blake.

This was the fifth time I had dinner with Carol. In some ways I had fallen in love with Carol, and in other ways I hadn’t. There was no doubt that she loved me, or at least wanted to pursue something beyond what we were doing. Who the hell was I not to accept someone’s love? She cooked for me and asked me how my day was. Some people seek the fiction in my writing, but Carol was a real person. I write about these people to either forget them or to hold onto them for one last time. At some point Carol was once in my hands and at some point Carol did press against my lips, and there are noons and evenings and midnights where I have thought about her and her room and the dust on her floor.

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Book I’m reading: Tender Is the Night

THE TRUTH

the truth

There’s a particular spot I like to drive to near the Valley. I won’t tell you exactly where it is, but if you turn right at a certain traffic light and keep driving straight you’ll end up in a private area full of expensive apartments overlooking the river. I like it because of the view, and I like it because of the silence, and I like it because the magnificently designed apartments remind me that one day I will have the ability to buy my way into a better life.

After dinner I took Carol to this spot of mine, and as we walked by the apartments and the view she took my hand and asked me, “What do you want to do this weekend?”

I shrugged.

“I was thinking about something,” she said.

“About what?”

“About honesty.”

“I hate honesty.”

Carol tucked some hair behind her ear. “I’ve been thinking like, you know what? I think we already know everything.”

“What the hell are you on about?”

“We know everything. We know how to live. But everyone else’s thoughts, the books we read, our own laziness – it buries what we know and how we truly feel deep inside. When can you honestly say you’ve spent time just trying to find the truth not from the outside world, but from inside yourself? It’s all there. We go and spend all this time and money on finding out the truth but really,” she touched her chest, “it’s all in here, I think.”

“And what truth have you found in yourself?”

She kept quiet for a while, tapping her lip with her index finger. “I don’t know what to ask myself yet.”

We reached a railing. She smiled at me and I smiled back and she put her arms around my waist. She leant her head into my shoulder and whispered, “Everything is perfect. Why don’t you want to be with me?”

“I do…”

“You don’t.”

And I thought about her vagina, and I thought about the way she kissed me, and I thought about our arguments, and I thought about her face without makeup, and I thought about the things she’d say. I stared at an apartment in the distance.

 

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Graphic novel I’m reading: The Descender

LOVE

what is love

“I don’t believe in love,” was what Carol told me when we were at Carol’s home, having late dinner that she cooked, listening or not listening to music that may or may not have been playing from a small speaker in another room.

“You believe in love,” I told her.

“I don’t.”

“You do.”

She sighed. “You can’t just dictate what I do and don’t believe in.”

“Yes I can.”

“How long have I known you for?”

“A few days.”

“You can’t dictate then. You don’t have permission.”

“Why not?” I teased.

“What is love anyway? It’s a word. It’s nothing. Actions are more important than words.”

“Such as saying ‘I love you’.”

“If love were real, you only need to say ‘I love you’ once, but we can’t live with just hearing ‘I love you’ once. It’s conditional. Love has always been conditional, which in turn defies the definition of what love is.”

“But then can’t you say the same about friendship? Why do we need to see friends more than once in order for them to remain our friends?”

“Who says we need to?”

I took a sip of water, thought about her nonsense for a second, then put my glass back down. “Have you ever been in love? Have you ever told a guy, ‘I love you’?”

“Of course I have. But I was stupid. I don’t love them now. I don’t speak to them, and if I see them, I will not have any feelings for them. Even if they begged me, I will never take them back because there’s nothing there. I’ve changed. My body, my perceptions, it’s all changed. Love is meant to be eternal and constant, but us people, we’re always changing. Something that’s constant cannot get along well with something that’s changing. Just like success. I don’t think you should call someone successful until you’re able to see their entire life. For you to see love in its entirety, you need to watch this person’s love in its entirety. Which is impossible.”

“You’ve just been hurt,” I said.

“Who hasn’t?”

“There’s no one definition of love. Who says it has to be eternal?”

“Who says it doesn’t have to?”

And then we debated Eva Cassidy songs, and then we debated John Lennon and Yoko Ono, and then we debated Love Actually, and then we debated Romeo and Juliet, and then we debated Obama and Michelle, and then we debated Kim and Kanye. By this time I’d already told Carol that I wasn’t looking for a relationship, and I knew this hurt her. We went to bed, and I told her how perfect her body was, which was true. She had an amazing vagina. I’d never experienced a vagina quite like it, and because of that I used it to my heart’s content. I left at about three in the morning, and she told me to text her when I’d gotten home.

 

Book I’m re-reading: Strange Animals.