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Posts Tagged ‘crazy iguana owners’

47. JAMIE: Homecoming

e felt like he was wearing a diaper.  God, that was depressing, but not as depressing, he guessed, as ending up with one ball.  Not as depressing as lying dead in a field.  Not even as depressing as being 37 years old and having no job, no wife, no kids, no home, and not an ounce of fucking ambition.

He leaned on George, clutching the towel he was wearing like a skirt.

“I don’t know if I want to go back there,” he said, stopping outside the MAL, which looked weirdly like someone was trying to open it up again.

George sighed heavily.  “You don’t have anywhere else to go.  And your sister’s been out of her mind with worry about you.”

“She’s going to give me such a hard time.”

“Jeez, Jamie,” the vet said.  “Pull up your socks, would you?”

“Can’t I just stay with you?” Jamie said.  “I’ll sleep in the stable, help you with….whatever it is you do with horses.”

“No,” George said shortly.

“Jesus, Taryn was right,” Jamie said.  “You really can be a prick.”

“Listen,” George said, letting him go so precipitously he thought he was going to crumple right there on the sidewalk.  “I don’t need to do this.  I’ll leave you right now if you want.”

“No, man,” Jamie said.  “I’m sorry.  I want to go home.”

Want wasn’t exactly the word.  Need was more like it.  Didn’t have anywhere better to go at the moment, especially with one semi-detached ball, was the real story.

He hobbled up the staircase leaning on George’s now distinctly stiffer shoulder.  As they got toward the top of the flight, he could hear voices inside.  His sister haranguing the old man, no doubt, trying to get him to lay off the booze.  Just as she would undoubtedly do to Jamie.

But wait, he thought, as the voices became clearer.  That didn’t sound like his father.  That didn’t even sound like English.  Jamie had never quite made it over to Europe, but he recognized French when he heard it.