Hello, again. <3
More ocular pleasure for you tonight. This one was actually rejected by Weird Tales not too long ago. (Not because it sucked, but because it wasn't what they were looking for.)
"I had a dream about the Ramones last night. We were hanging out at their hotel, talking about Def Leppard, playing Street Fighter. Dee Dee got up to get drinks and Joey kept losing. Somewhere in the corner was Ringo Starr, in an Elton John-esque dark red velvet suit, laughing. Later, all of us got up and toured the hotel. It was huge, and gold-gilded in an antiquated sort of way that could only be found in those....Victorian? age digs. There was a ball going on in the lower level. People dressed up in stuffy clothes and fancy masks, that kind of thing. Slash was there in the middle, uncorking champagne and spraying anyone who came by. Nobody seemed to notice except us though. All of us got in the mix, partying, having a good time. And for some reason, the only thing that kept coming back to me was, how many times do you have to lose to Chun-Li to realize Cammy can't compete?"
"That's nice, Mr. Hackett. And then what?"
"Then....I woke up. Here. Looking into your smiling face, Sue."
She smiled. Bending at the waist, she leaned over to adjust the various pillows and other soft things that made the wicker deck chair he was in seem sinfully decadent. To his right, sat a weather worn side table, higher than usual, with a coupling of tattered books and pens. There was an empty drink glass too, with condensation sliding lazily down, pooling at its base. Great palms rustled in the soft, warm air, casting shadows on the white sandy beach beneath his toes. And above, the sun overhead was hinting at slight pinks and oranges just beyond the horizon.
"How's George?" he asked, suddenly sitting up a little higher.
"George...will be here soon. Then you can ask yourself."
"Always did think it was a strange name for such a beautiful girl. Makes you wonder what they might of named 'er if she was a boy. Maybe....Sophia. Or maybe something neutral, like Chris or Renee...."
"Now, Mr. Hackett. Remember what we told you."
"I know, I know. Polynesians are wonderful though, aren't they?" he said, grinning.
The sun slipped across the sky, sinking slowly into the darkening cerulean crystal just beyond its reach. He stared at his hands, both relaxed on either side of the chair, with an explorers watch on either wrist. He couldn't remember how he got them, or why they were there. Moreover, he couldn't remember where he was exactly. All he did know, was that he was in a good place. And that good places rarely needed to be questioned.
"Hey, Sue...." he said, rolling his head over to the empty glass, "...d'ya think you could refill that for me?"
"So soon? Wouldn't you like to wait a while?"
"No..." he said, tasting his lips, the tang of ocean just barely noticeable, "...I think I'd like another now, please. I feel kind of thirsty."
"Very well, Mr. Hackett. You wait right there, then, okay?"
"Wouldn't dream of it otherwise."
Moments later, when only half of the sky was visible, a pair of hands took his. He didn't have to look to know who was next to him. He felt the smooth nails and slightly calloused tips and something like the smell of sweet coffee and cinnamon pepper the air, warming his heart instantly.
"Hello, George. You're here, finally. I've been waiting."
"So Ms. Sue tells me. How are you today, Mr. Hackett?"
"A lot better, now that you're here. Where'ya been?"
"Oh, you know. Here and there."
"Tyler treating you well? Because, you know, if he don't, I can--"
"Yes, hes treating me well, don't worry. You're very sweet to think of me, though."
"A wonderful girl needs protection these days..." he said, feeling the first pangs of sleep float by, "...will Sue be back with that drink soon? It's almost dark out."
George forced half a smile and patted his hand again. "Don't worry Mr. Hackett, Sue will be here in a moment. She just has to get her supplies. Anything I can get you though?"
"A shoulder rub....would be nice. If its not too much..." he said, closing his eyes at the idea.
He could feel those same familiar hands come gently down on the area just below his neck, small, strong circles making his arms go limp with every pass, his legs cementing themselves to the sand, immobilized. If he had a thought in his head in that moment, it never survived.
In the distance, he could hear the ocean kissing the shore, the gentle pulsing of water on sand acting as a natural lullaby to sailors who had long lost the salt of their years. He felt his breathing slow, and his pulse hammer gently on, tipping his conscious to bed.
Soon, the darkness crept up and chilled him, and the potpouri of the island seemed to fade into something more clinical. His eyelids, leadened with the sandman's dust, refused to open. Weakly, he tried to move, without much success.
"Mr. Hackett, is something wrong?"
"Sue...? Its dark and cold. I cant seem to get up. Or open my eyes. Where's George? Whats going on...?"
"I'm right here, Mr. Hackett. Just try to relax, okay? Ms. Sue is going to help you. Just like last time, remember?"
Suddenly, he felt a pinch on his temples, and three cold spots on his forehead. Confused, he tried to move again, nothing responding to what his brain was ordering. The smell of coffee and cinnamon was gone. The lull of the waves was gone. The warm sand between his toes was gone. And he was cold. Very cold. His head was wet. He could hear a motor, purring, quietly, the small hairs on his body standing up. A peal of thunder, and....
"Good morning, Mr. Hackett. How are you?"
Dawn. He was in his wicker deck chair, feet in the sand, the serene glow of the pre-morning sun painting the skies in heavenly shades of blue. A coupling of tattered books sat next to him, on a higher than usual side table next to a few pens and a glass filled to the brim with something sweet and bright. He looked down at his hands and saw a two explorers watches, not really knowing how they got there. Nor did her know where he was. All he did know was that he was in a good place. And good places rarely needed to be questioned.
"Good morning, Sue. I had a dream about the Ramones last night."
"That's nice, Mr. Hackett."
More next time. I'm going to try to get some pictures out here. Let's hope my cell wont argue with me too much.
Until next time.