Three and a half minutes. That’s how long I can rub my hands together in fiendish glee, before even that gets boring. I just timed it. Kind of a let down. Doesn’t make sense to make a hobby out of it. Maybe I should get out the paints and see if being creative is still fun. Not tonight though.
I found out that an arch nemesis is about to be destroyed. The D.A. has him in the rack, and big iron bolts are clinking while he turns the crank. Financially he is ruined. All that remains to be seen is if he will do time. Regardless, it’s not too early to call it. Game Over.
The Blind Creature of Slime is crushed under the chariot wheels of Justice. Voltar is victorious! Time to leash the baying hounds. Light the woods with fire. Pour mead into our skull mugs. Throat lusty ballads of plunder and pillage. Invite the giant warlords to our victory feast.
Let us celebrate the smiting. Let us quaff from our joy eternal. While our foes eat flame in the Wasteland of Woe.
Drink up everybody.
I thought I’d feel happier.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy. It’s just that I thought I’d be happier.
Eight years I waited for this news. And now, well, part of me feels sorry for the guy. What kind of bullshit is this?
Why oh Lord, must all my victories be Pyrrhic?
How can I expect to loiter among the gods with this stain across my suit? This hot dog mustard of Humanity.
At least this one is karma-free. I didn’t lift a finger, drop a dime, arrange anything. He did it all to himself. Like I knew he would. Eventually.
I’ve stood by and watched this guy pull some scandalous shit over the years. Screwed a lot of people. Like me. Most importantly. Because I’m one of those people that don’t like to be fucked under deres, Pally. Capezio?
I had all kinds of chances to sting back. Trust me. Figured out some good ones. Couldn’t help it. I slide into Evil Chess Master mode easily. And this guy seemed to be designed for the express purpose of goading me to engage. To bring down some Byzantine bitch slap. Teach him what blind worship of Moloch can lead to. Help him see The Light. Steer him towards better citizenship.
But I never deployed. Came close. Started to squeeze, but never pulled the trigger of my V-Weapon. Practicing restraint, you see. Voltar was in the lap dance booth, but he was keeping his hands on the couch.
I can blame that on recovery. The whole thing reeked of some kind of a spiritual test. Biblical life that I now lead, I can smell a rat trap. Too temping this cheese. No. My deal would require trusting that there would be some kind of justice. Even without my vigilante assistance.
What can I say? Voltar likes to experiment in his lab. He wanted to see if all this shit was for real. This spiritual angle.
It was hard. The little fucker was getting away with murder. So it seemed. Dodging every projectile thrown by the angry mob. Bobbing and weaving, but somehow remaining untouched. Irritating to witness. Frustrating to grasp. Double-U, Tee, Eff.
It’s exactly at times like that , I would have expedited things. How about we save the Universe all the trouble of arranging some karmic payback, and I just kick his ass right now? You know, cut to the chase-o, Pedro.
Alas, my only weapon would be patience. My only medicine a dyspeptic tonic of tolerance. None of which I’d mastered or learned to stomach. I would also have to holster my magic powers of cunning and deceit, and forsake any Machiavellian machinations. Nor would I take advantage of the pro-bono attorney I had on speed dial. Basically, I set myself up for an ambush.
For no other reason than it might keep me from drinking, which is my favorite thing to do.
Sounds perfect. -Ly bad. Where do I sign up?
He did fuck me under. Many, many, many times. And for the most part, I just took it. Looking back, it was nothing I couldn’t recover from. But he did make life harder. Especially when I let him.
All the torrents of poisoned-tongued venom I held banging behind my teeth. All the tight-lipped, wide-nostrilled attempts at civility. Eye-lid spaz-flapping from the strain. White knuckles stuck in pockets. Mumbling my motherfucker mantra. Trying to keep it together. Keep cool. Grip the imaginary neck. Then let it go.
Good old-fashioned clenched teeth sobriety.
It’s not like I was an angel. But the bad things I did do back to him, we’re downright saintly compared to what I had cooking upstairs. There was a decided dial-down on the Nob of Wrath. Whatever lashes I whipped back were involuntary. Like when a friend unexpectedly chops you in the neck with an ironing board and you freak out on them, before realizing they were only fucking around. Knee-jerk stuff.
Besides that, I would try to leave him to himself, and let what happens to him… just happen. His fate I would see, like Ozzy said. “after forever.”
I can wait.
Tick. Tick. Tick.
I didn’t realize Eternity was so long.
“He’s a creature of God. Perfect in his apparent imperfection. A pilgrim on The Path. Beloved by the Creator.”
And a total dick. His personality poisons our pool with plague. I strongly suggest destruction.
“Everything you hate about him, you possess within yourself.”
Yeah okay, sorry for giving the high-hat. Go ahead and destroy us both. Just don’t let him get away.
And so it would go. Back and forth. To and froward. The struggle itself felt futile. There didn’t seem to be any pay-off.
Until one day, we parted ways, and I forgot all about him. He became an insignificant ghost in my mind. Maybe I didn’t love him. But I didn’t hate him anymore. I had managed to climb as far as Indifference on the spiritual ladder. What’s that like, good for a bronze? Anyway, it was definitely short of Compassion.
Until today. Like I said, now I kind of feel sorry for him. A little. It’s weird.
I know. I’m getting soft in my old age. But maybe we’re supposed to. Ripen. It’s what makes grandparents better than parents. A little more of the unconditional love. A little less Hammer of Thor.
We could all use a little less Hammer of Thor these days. Shit is hard enough. For everybody.
Unless of course, you’re just begging for a hammer blow. And Thor really wants to deliver one. A real smiter. Something to make the anvil ring across valleys of Valhalla. It’s golden echo sending black birds up from their trees–into red skies streaked with lightning.
Then we’ll have to honor that. As well. Accept it. Like all the other stuff.
It’s just that some stuff is easier to accept.
You know what I mean?