A-S-…

A-S-…

Posted on May 5, 2022 at 8:03 am by Murphy Doyle Maher

THEN

 

The small ranch style house that the town of Evansville, Minnesota had gifted Murphy Doyle Maher had come with rooms full of furniture, personal effects, and the like of a life long lived. Murphy had done his best to try and clean the place out by himself, but it was far more dfficult than he thought. With a pain in his chest he picked up his cell and called the one person he knew would help him with it in the bat of an eye. But she was busy so he had to call his friend/mentor, Kal X Wolf, instead.

 

That was one week ago. As much as Murphy adored his mentor/friend, it had been one of the longest weeks of his life. The bedroom had been filled with new clothes never worn. Outfits consister of cowboy shirts with fur lining to deal with the cold and cordoroy pants that he a, did not know they still mad, and b, did not know they made in colors such as teal and mustard yellow. He had an odd sense of style, the man who lived here pre-mortem, but he had style none the less. However it took an entire day to pack that ‘style’ up and place in the garage as a holding area, until his BFF could come sort through it and see what she wanted for herslef and to give as christmas presents.

 

As the week went on, and Kal began to complain about the smell of the town, which was terrible, and The fact that damn near everything closed at 8, except for Murphy’s bar, the Irish Tiger, and how the people were strange at minimum, and completely suspect for giving Murphy a home and a business for no real reason other than to ‘be nice.’

 

But Murphy was never one to look a gift horse in the mouth. As he had found out far too many times, if you look close enough, you’ll find what you’re looking for, but you might not like it.

 

NOW

 

A full week later, and Kal and Murphy had gotten all but the office cleaned out. The last room all the way to the rear of the house, and by far the one with the most in it. Thankfully it was incredibly well managed. Just about five metal cabinets with locks and a computer and desk set up, with bits and pieces of other stuff spread about here and there. Before heading into the room, Kal and Murphy sat down at the small wooden table in the kitchen, and ribeye steaks they’d grilled on the former owners charcoal grill. They didn’t talk. They didn’t even look at each other. They just ate. It was perfect. And then Kal had to go and fuck it up.

 

“I was thinking. Someone fucking asked this guy to help you out. Someone with pull. And since you and Vhodka are b-f-fucking-f now, I think it was Vin.”

 

“Oh fucks sake, shut it down. I know it was yeh. Yeh keep bringing it teh fuck up like yeh gonna remove me suspicions of yeh. I knew it was yeh the second it happened, arse. Now just come fuckin clean about it and be quiet.”

 

“Fine. it was m-”

 

“YEH FUCKIN’ JERKOFF. WHAT MAKES YEH THINK I NEED YE-I’m just playing. But yeh gonna let me pay it off, yeh get me?”

 

“I’ll take it. Do I have to go into my reasons why?”

 

“Blah blah me grandfather was like a dah teh yeh, blah blah. Just eat yeh meat, pissbaby.”

 

15 minutes and sizeable piece of cow digested each, the two men entered the office and looked at the cabinets. Tall, four drawer metal style filing cabinets with the lock bar going down the left side vertically, with a padlock in place to stop the bar from being removed. Kal looked at the lock, and said something about seeing a key in the kitchen.

 

Murphy looked at a crowbar in the corner of the room, and popped the lock off the second Kal had left the room. Inside he finds multiple zipped up folders of the same size, color and type. Opening them, he finds sleeve after sleeve of four slot cd holds, each with a silver cd snug in its place. Murphy walked the entire folder over to a stereo he’d not noticed prior, and popped the CD into the CD drawer. But no sound came out. In fact, the only noise at all was what could only be confusion by the CD reader.

 

“You got it open?” Kal said, walking in with a beer in each hand.

 

“Aye. But is broken it seems. Nay plays a sound.”

 

“Mmm. Those are data cds.”

 

“Date a Cds?”

 

“Data. DAT. AH. Like for files.”

 

“Who the hell listens to files?”

 

“Put it in the computer. This guy did signs and shit, he probably saved his designs.”

 

Murphy stepped up to the computer, and ‘hacked’ into it by entering the username and password on the post it note taped to the desk. Once the computer booted up, he placed the cd into the tray and waited for a beat. And then, he sat there frozen.

 

A picutre of a young woman popped up. Blonde, blue eyed, tan, and smiling. She was bent over a bench in front of a lit fireplace. Her supple and perky breasts displayed, and a neat landing strip of short pubic hair lead from her lace thong to just below her belly button. Murphy cackled and Kal took a sip of beer.

 

“So that’s unexpected.” Kal said right as Murphy clicked the mouse to look at the next photo, which was really unexpected.

 

A woman of at least sixty was seen in front of a fireplace. She was smiling but her teeth were in terrible shape, if there at all. Her eyes were glossy and almost cataracked. Her saggy liver spotted breasts fell to her stomach where they met with a bush of pubic hair that would put the 70’s style to shame. Murphy gagged as he took this all in, and Kal reached down calmly and switched back to the photo of the woman before. And then back to the older woman. And then again.

 

“Ok, what the fuck are yeh doing??”

 

“It’s the same fucking pic.”

 

“Teh fuck it is!”

 

“No, look. Same woman, same place. Same photo.”

 

“Are yeh telling me this sick fuck took pictures of this lass twice with 40 years apart??”

 

“No. This guy…he was a graphic designer, right? I think he used photoshop to make these women older. So he could…you know.”

 

“I don’t know if this is teh grossest thing I ever saw or teh weirdest.”

 

“I think it’s sweet.”

 

“God help yeh wife if this is what yeh call sweet.”

 

Kal slowly turns and looks at the filing cabinets. The open draw offering a clear view of the quite a few other folders, all the same size as the one before them. He looks back at Murphy, who is studying the differences between the two photos, and taps him on the side of the head.

 

“There’s a fuck ton more of this shit, kid. Want to just fucking burn it?”

 

“What? Ruin a man’s life work? The least we can do is sit here and look at each and every one, judge them based on skill level, and then put them away f’rever.”

 

“I like the way you think.” Kal turned to leave the room, but his phone went off and turned him around. As he reached for it h could see messages and missed calls piling up by the millisecond. The closer his hand got to it, the more concern filled his being. He looked at the alerts, and the messages, at the calls, and then to Murphy.

 

“I have to go..”

 

Murphy stood up and looked at the phone. His eyes not believing what they were taking in, began to unfocus, causing him to blink rapidly but unpredictably. He looked at Kal, one of the strongest men he’d ever known, and watched the strength drain from him in an instant.

 

“I’m coming with.”

 

___________________________

 

PRIOR (to all that above)

 

STRONK IS BIG.


STRONK IS BAD

(at speaking mostly)

 

STRONK IS IN DANGER OF COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT.

 

Incredible Hulk impression aside, Stronk Goodson is as entertaining as the rest of the HOW talent. Which, beng in the group meself, is to say, not at all.

 

He’s not a fighter. He’s not a champion grade warrior. He’s a chicken that plays bingo. He’s a dog that knows how teh dance. He’s a god damn jester, dancing all wee crazy like for the amusement of those easily amused. Did he win a title, or did he simply pick it up because somebody else put it down? Yeh, he’s got strength, but most people like him tend to, don’t they?

 

It’s like yeh brain has a limit to the amount of strength yeh suppose teh have, and then it gets damaged and that part gets turned teh fuck awf. Now all of a sudden yeh a wee kindergartener mentally but yeh can hip toss a highland cow with yeh pinky. I don’t know if this giant was all lady gaga’d with the mental shite or he got it from one punch too many or one breath too few, and I dun care. If the ‘powers’ that be want me to fight the handicap, they came to the right fucking place.

 

I’ll toss yeh sorry ass out yeh wheelchair and take that spot up front meself, I dun give a fuck. And that’s just about the smallest bit of self interest. This, this is feh a title. A title means moneh. Moneh is something, if not the only thing, I’m in this business teh earn. Call me crazy, but am thinking I’d do well teh win it, neh?

 

If only there wasn’t teh sneaky fuckin’ suspicion of what was truly behind me getting teh shot at it teh begin with. Am one feh tew. I beat a person who barely showed up, and has since been released. Am teh guy that got his ass dented by a man whats nothing more than a mustache and nationalism. So teh question begs ask; are teh feeding me to ‘em? Or ‘em to meh?

 

I think we fuckin know ‘zactly the answer to that, don’we?

 

They like Stronk. He tickles ‘em in all teh places they likes teh be tickled. What better way to give ‘em a title run then to throw him an easy meal right off. Am not appreciated by teh talent, that’s no secret. I make jokes at their expense, not because it’s easy, which tis, But because they’re all jokes to me, which tis the part I assume they find the issue.

 

I’m no gimmick. I di’n start fighting all them years ago to put on a sparkly pair of underpants and matching knee pads, to jiggle about in the ring like I’s made of pony whispers and unicorn dreams. I come to this business to scrape the flesh from me knuckles on the teeth of me fucking opponents because I ain’t good at nothin’ fuckin else. If I could build a fuckin table, or run a wire from to and fro, maybe I’d have made a different choice. But I di’nent. I made me choice to be a professional god damn fighter, and a professional I’ll goddamn be.

 

Or at least my version of fuckin professional.

 

So nay, i won’t be succumbing to the shite that passes for entertaining around here. I see the rest of yeh, putting on yeh masks and yeh little unitard costumes and hoping that the schtick yeh do will make yeh stand out from the schtick everyone else done. Cowboy this, american that. It’s madness, neh? Pretending to be something or someone. One of the greatest injustice a man can do to ‘self is to lookit’s refection and deny what he sees.

 

I don’t deny meself the truth. Yeh gonna come to know me well, I guess. Yeh gonna know that I don’t squeeze people like a fuckin snake did J-Lo in the movie about teh snake that starred J-Lo. I don’t claim to be the best american in all teh world, or whatever the fuck the stache was on about. I claim nothing at all, except for this.

 

Yeh gonna t’ink me an asshole. Not because is me gimmick. But because it’s what I fucking am. Teh only thing I like better ‘en punching a face, is making that face bright red with teh rage just before I do it. I’m gonna make yeh hate me. I’m gonna make yeh think there’s no way you could possibly hate me more. And then, am gonna do that, too.

 

So throw me at yeh mentally handicapable champion for the sake of entertainment, I’m game. Usually I fight the handicap for free, so it’s a pleasant change of pace, really. I know a thing or two about this business, and I know the chances of me walking about with that title is about as solid as Stronk walking down an isle with a diploma for aynthing but sorting fucking colors. But I know this as well;

 

I may not win that fucking title. But I’m gonna make pretty fucking certain that Stronk fucking earns it.