Doc Derelict [part 2, conversational intermezzo]


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X: Doc how is it? How is it? Nice to see you finally after such a long time. Spinning the good old wheels, are you? Can I get you something, cup of coffee? A croissant perhaps? I’d be much pleased, much pleased.

DD: Top of the morning to you, X. Shuuush, nice to see me you say? You will offer beverage and those articles to me? Look at me, look at my condition. I am dead, dead in life and you want to offer me coffee, a croissant. What is the punch line of this joke I cannot understand?

X: Oh, come, come now. Why are you being so harsh on me good old Doc. I do not intend to make light of your situation, I am just trying to be friendly over here. Do one little good deed a day, like how we learned with the boy scouts. Remember? Nobody’s ever died from being offered a cup of that choca mocca goodness, I believe. Please, place the grumpiness with the rest of your garbage, no offence and we can enjoy a couple of coups on me.

DD: You can stop there at your present place of standing or make the acquaintance of my stump. The years have passed X, yes or no, but your brain is worse even than mine. My opinion: you have learned nothing, you think things can be forgotten quickly, that the passage of time is like a new wallpaper that makes forgotten the scriptures on the wall. No, I tell, you, pauvre, vieux X, that is the general history of nations you have in mind there. The history of people, biographies is what I am meaning, they are illegible palimpsests. You, standing on two legs, offering beverages of good choice for atonement, can you follow?  It doesn’t matter. But I can tell you in the lovely here and now: I forget not, never, no kiddery. It is important to keep in mind at all times, certainly, that belated magnanimity is no substitute for lacuna of courage in times of greatest need.

Hahahahaha, huhuhuhuhuh. Your face is looking like a question mark itself, dear, stupid X. What can a coffee and a croissant help against such a lack of brains? Not much, believe you me. Well, let me jog your memory then. Those last fateful words you addressed to me “It is too late, it is too late, I’m sorry Doc”, after which with my terrible sensorium I saw your figure turned to me with the back, running away, the distinctive upwards and downwards motion of a white jump suit in a dark forest. Imagine me now, with this thing of a wheelchair in the forest. Oh hell, no, no, no. I must do now my work in the city, the city is my territory of responsibility. You know what is going on now, I think, with the swallowings. It is my duty at the level of the gutter perhaps, jup, but there are others and higher where the going is difficult for the person of two wheels.

X: Yes, it was so Doc. It was much too late. If not, I would have pulled you off into safety. But two dead instead of one, you really think this is a good solution? You have had a hard time off it out here in the cold streets, I am sure. But no reason to become so offensive you know. No matter the position in life, forgiveness will always be a virtue. Laugh, but sometimes I say what I think, which is good. And if you cannot, given the troublesomeness of your life, at least hold your tongue if all I do is offer you some food and drink. Food and drink, this is my show of friendship. You want me to be more what? Regretful? Empathetic? My display of groveling will change the past, will return your legs? No, exactly, we are in this moment and I am trying to be nice and move forward. Because I find out in this city, people don’t want to admit but we are sharks, we move all the time, not even necessarily forward or we die. Is the matter of actuality. Maybe you are more genius or more crazy than I, blithering all that unintelligible stuff but that is not why I have come to talk to you. I am here to pass a good little time Doc and remember the things that were well. With the force.

DD: Please, kiddo. Do not bowl below the waterline with me. The time when all was peaches? Shuuush. The time of goodness was constructed on a big fucking lie. Yes, listen, my moment of clarity, the time when everything stashed in the past is suddenly revealed. You knew that I knew about the planting of evidence of you and Foster, is why you left me to the train. It’s too late now, nobody listens to dead people, nobody can take the stink of dereliction even if it brings truth. And the relevance to me today is also of zero, less than the peanuts of the proverb, my dear friend. You are simply one more dog from Altra Luna, you folks from the other-moon city think you can get away with all things because of the depth of the network of violence. Ties to Nicholas White, the Cartel, big wheeling-and-dealing to impress the world out of everybody within gunshot, is your thinking. Not so much, no, not with me, the dead man does not stand impressed. You dogs from Altra Luna, like the real ones, there is the semblance of a backbone but when the going is difficile you become like a member from the family of the invertebrates.

Too late! Too late my stump you fool! If you want to bring distraction from my mission this little intermezzo is a joke of bad laughing, I swear by my anus. Just bring me the accursed coffee and be gone, get ouf my nutshell, you are causing time to go too slow, X. An Espresso Macchiato, you can begin to pay off my lower extremities with you bastard.

X: Ok, ok, old man. I can tell you a lot of river has passed under the bridge. But I will tell re-heat a few things for purpose of clarification: the only thing Foster and I ever planted was on that reknown scumbag Lamian Hirsch, which is even in the most exacting ethical system of your own choosing 98% acceptable. More than 10 people on that man’s list on account of “art”. That is unforgivable. And for the record Doc, Leroy was your stepnephew. Ok, that is one. Second, also for the straightening of the record: I do not stand up for A.L., look where all my tax money goes, my charity money. Check, if you can in your….condition, where I hold my fund-raisers. If you follow my money, it will never lead you to the lunar metropole. So don’t give me that shit of  me claiming to be an Altra Luna boy, righto? Never was, never will be.

Finally, if you actually, truly believe that you are still on a mission, snap out of it old man. There is no nice way of putting this: you are a vagrant, in a wheel chair, stinking, few teeth left, half-blind, even calling yourself “dead”. If there is any mission for you it is that of getting your flipping act together and have a decent evening of the life. That is it. And I am here offering you a few things against further dereliction so don’t give me that unforgiving, accusational, unfounded garbage. You need all the help you can get. If you’re a nice man for once, a decent person, who knows, I might come back to help out in other ways. Now if you excuse me I have to get your goddamn cup of coffee. You want some sugar with that?

DD: Naturally. But, yes or no, let me tell you just one more thing: what makes you certain your certainty, not for making you mad, but is not also some manifestation of shit?

X: Heavens Doc, enough, I am getting that Espresso Macchiato now.

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About tmabona

writer, reader [bolano, DW, bellow, deLillo], runner, badmintoneer
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