Storms Much Stronger and Other WoesDr. Heath Louis Goetsch / Thrillers & Crime
by Heath Louis Goetsch
Storms Much Stronger
Heath Louis Goetsch
Copyright 2014 Heath Louis Goetsch
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
About the Author
I invested in a small house in a little town in the middle of America. I had intended to anew for profit, but quickly fell in love with the minimalism that it imposed on yours so truly, one accustomed to the menacing antonym.
Time and weather had stripped the paint from the modest two-bedroom. In contrast, the interior was fit for royalty, or at least for a young man aspiring to conquer.
Upon approach, I felt different; I felt threatened, and I felt watched. Suspicions earned merit, when the walls began to talk. Not all walls, chatter came only from the beige walls. The persistent and pervasive voices catalyzed acute insomnia. I did not sleep until residency neared three sunrises.
Presumptuously, I appointed recent lost love as the cause of this overwhelming emotional cessation. I paced a lot. Reoccurring dreams became so vivid that they mimicked reality’s offer of tangibility. I had disconnected from social interaction a bit, but I had never enjoyed company enough to let this pause bother me. I talked to myself more; I had always conversed with myself, in fact some of my best debates have been held with no outside party.
I was attracted to this place like man to sin.
A traitor within me forced thought so strong that no words need be spoken to articulate sin. He often reminded me that at one time life really was new. That made me hurt much like the feeling of being crossed by a friend. I couldn’t help but recall distant memories in which the world seemed infinite and dreams still inspired me. Eyes were wide for the world’s surprise, but the world’s surprise did not arrive. I narrate, as if I had never known madness as I do now.
This morning I stared at my reflection in the bathroom mirror for fifteen minutes. I place my shaky hands against my cheeks and start kneading at my unkempt face.
My hands look rough, rigid, and worn. They look used, and the way they tremble under this duress provokes thoughts of cutting them off, if only such a task could be more than half accomplished.
I contrived to conquer men, now I’m hallowed by my own nature. If any longer I entertain these ideas of mediocrity, I will applaud the results as if they were desirable.
My eyes used to be kind. As I look at them now, they look lost and bitter. Before this mirror, they are a reaper; they allow me to acknowledge an existence without valor. After twelve years of schooling and twenty-two years of surviving, I am able to hold a conversation with myself and pull at the flesh on my face as my tired, baggy eyes confirm that I am indeed still alive, and that this is what I look like now.
How plush- through my front window, I can sight the alehouse. She’s courting me with her neon signs. I’m always too flirtatious. This will be the first time I leave home since my settlement in Camino. Not even two minutes have past before I’m standing before a stubborn wooden door. I throw it open because, well- don’t know why- love the location and its dissipative promise.
Vintage liquor bottles settle behind a slightly overweight twenty-something red-head. I order a whiskey and ice. The trend of her recession reveals that those antique containers are not around for nostalgia. She pours the bourbon, I watch dust fall into the bar glass. As she saunters away, I notice a bare spot around the neck of the bottle that had produced my drink. With the impression left from by her hand I could judge, with moderate accuracy, the last time that they sold a bourbon in that bar. It’s one of the best drinks I’ve ever had.
I decide to make small talk; I ask the waitress, “How are you this evening?” She leans in with a perplexed look on her face, concluding that I truly have spent too much time by myself, and that I am hardly capable of social interaction these days.
“What? I couldn’t hear you. You were mumbling.” She says.
I say, “Really? Sorry.” As she walks away hastily, I realize that I am the recluse that I once aspired to be. Now socially impaired, unfit for employment, and decidedly impatient.
The door that I had earlier thrown open, now gently slides inward as a beautiful girl presents herself. A stale, Spring night outlines her figure, which is darling beyond words. She shouldn’t be coming around places like this; not with eyes so endearing and that sensational hair flirting effortlessly as she approaches the bar. It entices with every bounce that accompanies the insouciant steps she takes.
My dreams are so terrifying, that I have developed a phobia of my bed. We’ll talk about it later...
This woman, no this girl, has been batting her lashes at me all night. Modesty aside, I am the only man worth-while in a place like this. She may or may not already know this. She moves from seclusion, a bar-chair at the corner of the bar; she sits next to me, the man previously adjacent sulking at the other corner of the bar.
I must converse. Social interaction is a positive thing. As much as I wish to avoid it, I know that a contributing citizen has relations and friends. I must shake dexterity and tell her what she wants to hear.
I say, “You’re a little overdressed for this place.” She’s wearing a t-shirt encouraging 4-H, and jeans that fit so well.
“You’re a little cultured for this place, huh?” How intriguing. Upon introduction, I expected spit-out words of conceit and dishonor, instead she mimics my words and adds flair of her own; for a moment I’m in love.
“Why don’t we get out of here?” She said it, not I. Quite aggressive this move, then quite smitten my mood. This young lady was courting me, her saunter had already slandered the neon signs, and her impulsive demeanor is impossible to deny.
“How about a drink?” I’m implying that we get to know one another before we advance. She is intuitive enough to pick up on this. The precarious vixen catches eyes with the bartender then points to my drink. A little bourbon for the little lady? How lush.
At this juncture, something innate is maliciously attacking me with harsh words and disapproval. Why are you still in this bar when there is a beautiful girl sitting next to you, practically fucking you with her eyes? I don’t get out much. Abandon your introspective rants you sick shell of a human being. I suppose I should talk to this girl for a bit, it would derail the debate that I’ve been having with myself; that’s a good thing.
Our conversation, I can hardly grasp, but her words sound poetic. I was sipping my second glass and nearly ready for a third, so my reception may be unusually forgiving. Her pretty eyes look so well rested. She reminds me of the type you fall in love with, rather than the kind you lust. One might wonder why this turns me away, and I may wonder as well. The bartender waddles over to me. Her stand-offish way of tending is implying that she would rather sit on her fat ass than pour me another drink. Still, she knows her responsibility, and I know I require another. My impulses are dying to lie with miss pretty eyes and stare at the stars for hours. Something in her smile suggests she’d have more fun lying in my bed.
I drink quickly- the only way I’m going to walk out of here without her company is to drink enough to entertain the idea that she is a whore, and that I would be better off alone this evening. Three drinks wasn’t enough. The fourth one sent me home. I didn’t speak much. I didn’t allow her to get know me, even though she did her very best to encourage participation in this tête-á-tête. I stand up slowly, bid her a wonderful evening, and sorrowfully take small steps towards the door. I push it open slowly.
My home is short steps away, as I told you before; however, the walk takes fifteen minutes since I round three blocks unnecessarily. Why did you leave her there? I haven’t the time, effort, or ambition required to establish even the most minimal of relationships. When that question’s been answered, I forget the spark in her eyes, the deviance of her smile, and how damn great she looked in drab linens. When I arrive home, at my leisure, I will lie on my roof and stare at the stars. I will search for the bright one and wish it were I. I will think about life and wonder why I’m still here.
When I awaken, I can still feel the effects of the liquor that I had consumed the night before. The harsh bourbon that I had eagerly invited into my body now burns my throat. Day has broken; this I hate. The bright sun peeks through open curtains. I close them. There is ambience now. In the next few weeks, sunlight will be a non-issue. Just last week, I felt ambitious, driven, and in my opinion capable of many great things, obviously that has changed.
I’m pacing; walking back and forth with jerky movements and eccentric arm flails. As I do this, I am conversing with myself. I ask the questions and give the advice. I needn’t speak out loud to accomplish this, however I do. I’m learning a lot about myself. The inquisitive mind within my own is quite invasive- still, it is much wiser than I. He answers the questions that I need answered, and in return I do as I’m told. Keep in mind that