• Dzama

The Spirit of Trusty

There was a thud.  There was another thud. You’ve got to stop this Max. There’s— AAAEECHHHH!!!! And the room was quiet. Paul the terrier, soaked from the rain, padded back under the bench. A lake of blood widened until it reached the rug, there it simply soaked in and darkened the pattern. Trusty spun his arms around, wind-milling half on the rug and half off. The arrows stuck out of his back at random angles and twitched as he moved his arms.
The first arrow came out very smoothly, he hardly felt a thing. He threw it aside and it clattered on the slate tiles. The second arrow felt like a mean pinch but then it landed over by the first. The third arrow was an experience.  There were five different levels of pain: purple, red, blue, then fucking white pain. And then after the last was out it felt like a piece of it must still be stuck in there because it smarted.
Trusty pushed himself against the wall and, still dripping, got to his feet. He tapped a couple of steps across and then collapsed half on the table. There were birds in the house, he didn’t know how they got in there, one red, one yellow, and they flew madly around his head like in a cartoon. He tried swatting at them but in the process almost fell off the table. This was when the doorbell rang. His head jerked up at the sound and he stared beyond the doorway into the darkness of the front hall. Paul the dog growled low from under the bench. As Trusty pushed himself up and took seasick steps toward the doorway the growling increased in volume.
His shoe slipped from under him and he went crashing down, now in the semi-darkness. He slid around a little- everything had turned wet and slimy. But propping himself in the narrow hallway, one hand on each wall, he managed to rise and lurch at the door with its glowing peephole. He hit against it and looked though with his one good eye. There was a girl out there: braids, some kind of puffy candy-colored dress, short, and with a plastic purse. Big eyes. Big, inflated lips that said, Trusty MacLaine? Are you there, Mr. Trusty?
Trusty thought of some words to say, just like he always did before speaking, but this time he simply slumped to the floor. He did manage a few knocks on the wood with his bloody knuckles. TRUSTY!! TRUSTY!! The girl started crying and pulled hard at the doorknob. I don’t think he’s there, another voice said. Then Trusty heard her whisper like her face was pressed up to the opening at the bottom of the door. Trusty, she breathed. There are a lot of us now. You started something.
He smiled for a second. Then he choked and blood spilled out to her side. Ew. Jesus. Yup. You’re right. Trusty’s not making it. She got quickly to her feet and brushed off her dress. She took three steps down toward the elevators. Then turned back and rapped the door lightly. Bye, Trust, she whispered. Then spun around, hurrying down the hall to join the others.

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