Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Part 4: The Elf

David finally left the apartment the next morning, carrying the elf beneath his arm. He returned to the Warehouse Thrift Shop, and slammed the cardboard cookie man down on the wide wood counter. "It’s defective,' he growled, his voice unused to speaking, 'I want my money back.'

The elderly clerk stared at him, her folding jowls wobbling in disbelief. "We don’t do refun’s" she warbled. When David opened his mouth, she pointed nonchalantly to a sign at her elbow that read, "This is a class ESTABLISHMENT: Please conduct yourself Accordinly"

David stalked out of the store, elf in tow, and tromped back to his apartment.

That night, David cleared out a section of the bedroom floor and curled up amidst the piles of thrift store rubbish. He slept only fitfully, rolling back and forth between the precarious walls until a relic finally came crashing down upon his head. With a terrified scream, David threw the Keebler elf across the room, and sat down in the corner to rock himself and cry.

As his sobs subsided, David heard a gurgling murmur from the other corner of the room. Stifling his sniffling, he cocked his head to one side and listened. Through the smothering heaps of trash, he heard the sounds of a wee elf’s wails of misery. Suddenly, David felt guilty for hurting the poor thing, and he crawled over to where the cookieman lay.

"Don’t… uh… don’t cry… little man,” stuttered David, “I’m sorry…"

"Fat Bastard!" cried the elf, and smashed David in the nose.

"OW!! Fuck!" whined David, recoiling into a toaster oven and a Barbie lunchbox. "What the hell’d you do that for?"

"Fat bastard…" whimpered the Keebler Elf.

"Why do you keep saying that??"

The elf sat up, wiped his eyes and shot a glare at David. "I’m just trying to point out that you are fat, and you’re a bastard."

David was silent.


On the morning after the third night of these new and awful dreams, Karen did not get out of bed. Karen lay and stared at the blank white ceiling or the blank white walls or her blank white comforter (which brought her no comfort). She ate neither breakfast nor lunch that day, and no one at the small cafĂ© on the office building’s second floor missed her. For dinner she ate a bowl of Cap’n Crunch before returning to her bed. At 9 p.m., Karen went to sleep.

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