• Dzama


Cheap yellow hotel light feels like it’s heating my scalp as I stare at the digital characters on the ATM. Money drops down and feels fuzzy in my hand. I look at it and actual fuzzy ridges grow out of the face and undulate like purple grasses blowing in the wind. I put the bill into my metal wallet and slam it shut, producing a puff of purple smoke that makes me laugh. Then I look up at a little plastic doll sitting on the edge of the ATM. Plastic pink and blue skirt, huge, staring eyes. Plastic arms reaching out. I glance around- who could have just put this there? Marble hotel floors reflect yellow lights, pillars, a hotel valet in a light blue suit far at the other end crosses.

Then back at the doll that appears anime but antique at the same time. I pick it up and realize she’s not plastic but made out of porcelain and the clothing is some kind of brittle rice paper, painted brightly. I admire her features, beautiful, perfect face with a cute, turned up nose. Nice, round breasts, skinny waist, tiny feet. Perfect, delicate hands. I put her in my chest pocket and go into the hotel bathroom. Everything marble and modern. I wash my face, careful not to splash the doll. My face looks like I’ve had surgery, like I used to be a different race. “Don’t look at your face,” I tell myself. I glance over at the urinals. Should I try peeing? I’m afraid of hallucinations but do it anyway, telling the doll not to look. I don’t look either but out of the corner of my eye I see my dick flopping back and forth like an eel. Told you not to look, I think to myself.

In front of the mirror again, washing my hands. The water feels warm and comforting like when my grandmother used to wash my hands. The doll sits on the marble counter, shaking her head. I stare, and yes, she is in fact shaking her head. “Why are you shaking your head?”

Then her black eyes lock directly with mine. “You don’t deserve this,” she croaks, with an old lady voice. “Grow up! Grow up!” I jump and gasp but then look over and there is an old raggedy homeless lady making her way to one of the stalls, talking to herself. “Grow up, you’re never going to grow up,” she says. I look back to the doll but the doll is gone. The stall door slams. The old lady lets out a scratchy sigh.

“Hey, you took the doll! That’s my doll!” Silence from inside the stall. “Hey!” I bang on the stall door, wanting to stop this before she gets down to business in there. “Hey!” More banging. Then some drunken jocks burst in and one goes to the sink, one to the urinals. They’re barking at each other like dogs. I hit the door again and it opens, revealing an empty stall. I go in, to get away from the jocks. Shut the door, sit on the edge of the toilet. Tap my chest pocket and the doll’s back in there. “Hey,” I whisper.

“What?” One of the jocks says. “I didn’t say anything,” the other one retorts. They go on barking at each other, aggrojibberish.

I turn my attention back to the doll and start peeling her clothes off. The porcelain underneath is anatomically perfect and feels warm and soft. Suddenly she squirms out of my hand but I catch her at the last minute and she bites my finger with razor teeth so that the tip of my finger is hanging on by a tiny thread of skin. Blood spurts out all over my shirt and pants. I wipe blood off my face with my sleeve. The doll leaps at my face and attacks one of my eyes, the pain is extreme, I bang around in the stall in a circle, spattering blood all around. I yank the doll away from my face but she still has my eye, clutching it like a crystal ball, peering into it. Then she holds it to her chest. “What if mine were this big?” She cackles, with a high-pitches little girl voice now. I stare at her with my remaining eye, holding her away from me. “What? What?” she twitters.

“You bitch,” I whisper, under my breath.

“No, you’re the bitch! Bitch bitch bitch!” I try to put her clothes back on but she bites at me. “Here, catch!” She swings the eyeball around like she’s aiming a basketball. Then she throws it and it lands perfectly in my socket. I can see again although the image is a little blurry. Then she squirms out of my hand and drops to the floor, clattering across the tiles like a crab. I burst out of the stall and find the bathroom is now full of four or five business men, talking about stocks rising and falling, numbers. I squeeze between the suits, scanning the floor for the doll. There’s a mouse-hole in the corner but it becomes smaller and smaller as I watch. “Damn.”

Back at the sink with the businessmen gone I wash my hands again. I look at my watch “Fuck. Four more hours.” I walk towards the door but it doesn’t seem to be getting any closer. I laugh and shake my head, leaning back on the sink. “Here we go.” I sit up on the sink and wait…

Copyright © 2008. All Rights Reserved.

This entry was posted in Short Story. Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>