Tuesday, January 5th, 2010...1:30 pm

zach king-smith | you win again

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You Win Again

When I got home from work she was gone. The ring I got her laid on the table. She didn’t leave a note. I went into the bedroom and all of her clothes were gone. I started feeling sick. I sat down burying my face into my hands and whimpered like a dog clipping under the rear wheels of a mac truck. Nothing felt right. I went to the liquor cabinet all the bottles were empty. I needed a drink. I wanted out. Her lousy smell was all over the place and made my skin crawl. I didn’t know anybody with a car so I put on my coat and hoofed it the three quarters of a mile to the nearest bar—Rusty’s. The neon sign was burnt out. The windows were caked with dust and cracked like the waitresses face’s. The floor was covered with sawdust and the bar and the bar stools were sturdy all mahogany at one time. The place was rotting from the inside out. It smelled of piss, beer, and stale smoke. The lights were dim and the jukebox was playing old country songs loud. That was my first time in that dive. I had seen it when I first moved to town a few months back then thought to myself that that was the place to be when you’re dizzy and the ground was coming for your face. A perfect place for a night like that night. Nobody talked. The bartender hardly looked at anyone. The waitresses did the same. I ordered drink and sat near the pooltable. Two men were playing. They took their shots then nursed their beers. The tab was adding up and I still wasn’t feeling much better. Nobody in that place felt good. One of the guys playing pool slammed his glass down beside me and I knocked it over by accident. His face distorted into a heap of flesh and teeth. I said sorry and told him I’d get him another—he was drunk and didn’t care. I stood up to shake his hand but he decked me. I felt something warm pour down my face he stood over me and told me to get up. I didn’t want to so I laid down among cigarettes butts and the sawdust on the floor .

You win again. by Zach King-Smith

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