Splash of Sunset News
Oscar Rembert stared at his reflection in the rippling black water. His smile was twisted and awkward, his teeth gapped and much too large for his small mouth, which was much too small for his face. On his shoulders sat a head that was disproportionate to the rest of him. For a lifetime he had been aware of the fact that he was different, but not that different anymore.
Loins still burning with desire, his erection throbbed in memory of the young girl. She was so pretty. Smelled so good. Felt even better. Better than anything he could have possibly ever imagined. He shoved his hands down the front of his pants and massaged himself for several moments before withdrawing it. Inhaling deeply through his nose he smelled his fingers. Smelled her. Remembered her.
A tinge of guilt nibbled at him like a puppy coaxing its master to play. Not painful, a little irritating, and not really all that unpleasant. Deep inside he knew what he had done was wrong, but it was also so good. And he deserved love too. Momma had told him so.
“Someday boy, you’ll meet a girl who will love you for who you are.”
Tears rolled down his cheeks in memory of his Momma. He missed her so much. It seemed like only yesterday, and yet, it seemed like a lifetime ago.
Oscar was a lot further away from home than he had ever been before. But he wasn’t afraid anymore. He was still different, but he proved he could do what normal boys did. He didn’t have to be afraid anymore. He was strong, just as strong as they were, maybe even stronger. The girl never had a chance of getting away from him. He flexed his muscles and felt the ripples in his arms and chest.
Dipping his hands into the icy water of the Detroit River, Oscar pushed the chunks of ice back out toward deeper water and stared at his reflection. He could see a little of his mother in his face and that felt comfortable. Warm. Like she was right there with him. Thoughts of his mother merged with the young girl struggling beneath his power as he entered her. Those images sent burning spikes of pain radiating throughout his brain. They weren’t right. They were bad. He was bad. He let out a cry that was beastlike and slammed his fists against his head. Wrong. But it felt so right. He was loved again. He couldn’t begin to understand the myriad of emotions coursing through his veins.
Oscar’s reverie was broken by the sound of footsteps intermingled with that of the distant passing traffic and looked behind him. It was him. The man who taught him how to love. How to be like everyone else. He was smiling at Oscar, smiling and walking rapidly towards him.
He stood up and turned to face the man who was returning his warm, friendly smile. He held his large hand up in the air in an open handed wave. The man didn’t wave, and he didn’t seem so happy anymore.
“Hey, buddy,” Oscar said, his voice deep and laced with innocence.
“Hello, you little son of a bitch,” the man said, swinging a large, steely object at him. It crashed into Oscar’s outstretched hand, splintering the bones in his fingers. He let out a yelp of pain and recoiled in confusion.
Before he could react defensively, the other hand took a direct blow. Tears of pain and uncertainty streamed down his face as he clutched his broken hands to his chest. He stared back at the man in bewilderment.
“I had everything set up the way I wanted it. And you, you little bastard, you had to go and ruin everything. I’ll be damned if I’ll let you fuck this up for me,” he swung the large flashlight as hard as he could, connecting with the side of idiot’s neck.
Oscar crumbled like an old scarecrow and the man fell upon him, still swinging the club. He tried to struggle, first because of the pain, and then because his internal instinct to survive realized that he was going to die if he didn’t fight back. But it was too late. Much too late.
His body hurt in more places than he could count. The sharp stabs were slowly subsiding into dull aching throbs. The man stopped hitting him and Oscar slowly opened his eyes. Contradicting his baffling situation, he giggled. His vision was funny, like when he would hold an empty paper towel tube up to his eye and pretend he was a pirate scanning the horizon for a scrap of land.
“Now, what in the hell am I going to do with you?”
Oscar lay, immobilized, staring through optic shadows trying to reason through what was happening to him. He felt his legs being lifted up, but then again, didn’t quite feel anything at all. It was merely a sensation of movement. Then the clouds began to move faster, but jerky. He heard the man’s raspy, labored breathing and then the clouds stopped moving.
“You shit, you’re such a shit,” he turned and kicked Oscar in the groin repeatedly.
Oscar cried out in pain. There was still feeling in his special place. Now he understood what was happening to him. He was being punished for doing dirty things. He wasn’t supposed to use his special place with the girl. The man never had, he had always laid on top of them, but he never pulled his thing out like Oscar had done. The dolt began to weep, tears tickling the sides of his face as they streamed down onto the cold asphalt.
Rested, the man picked up Oscar’s legs and began dragging him toward the water’s edge. His mind was racing a mile a minute and he had no clue what to do next. The only thing he knew was that, like an asshole, he had let his temper get the better of him. More than two years and he had never screwed up and now this moron comes along and changes everything. Now the rules of the game had changed. He had changed. He was no longer in control.
Oscar felt the cold wetness of the river lapping up around his neck. The clouds started to move again, less jerky, smooth. The water was cold, so cold. The first stream of frigid water shot down his nostrils and he panicked. He flailed his arms, trying to swim, but they didn’t move. The funny tunnels around his eyes began to get blurry as he sank deeper and deeper into the depths of the Detroit River. He took a deep breath and tried to scream. His lungs burned and ached, then, they didn’t work at all. Oscar could hear his mother’s soothing voice, whispering, comforting him while he sank into the depths of hell.