Jonas Story

by Nora M. Hudson

Carnival, Residue, Maudlin

The maudlin smell of poverty littered with the residue of the carnival like atmosphere of self-hatred hung heavily in the room. Jonas looked as if the smell had human form. He could almost touch the remnants of pain. "Kira what do you think happened here?" he asked, as he picked up a forlorn shoe and rolled it in his hands as if measuring the weight of it. I have never seen anything like it. I don't know what to put in the report. The Lieutenant is going to ream me a new one. This is the second time in as many nights that this, what do I call it, carnage? maybe no, maybe animal, surely not human. Perhaps he or is it a she did it to themselves.

Jonas stomach heaved and the perfect breakfast cooked by his wife threatened to further soil the room. He made a face and swallowed. Too many people were present looking at him to allow them to see his disgust and need to leave this place. He calmed himself by going to his happy place. The second little Jonas slid all wet and warm into this world. He walked to the window gazing into the dark alley. There was no refuge in sight he thought if only I could see the sun. I would not have to believe that this was probable even possible. He had to quit and get out of this first responder position. He visibly gagged when he almost stepped on an eyeball. Damn why didn't the coroner take all of his meat with him. Now where did that term come from, "meat" not flesh or human beings but pieces of meat to be packed up and moved out as if from a grocery freezer.

The beat boys walked from the bedroom, disgust present in the drag of their footsteps. Walking familiarly between them was Ashaj, the occupant of this dwelling. Her lips moved with her eyes and Jonas stepped away from her . What was it he felt was she going to laugh, to cry to smile, to attack. He looked at her with a side eye and was removed to a place where lovers go. She smelled of lemons or was lemons what she used to season her guest. She seemed so out of place. This was the trophy wife men craved. She moved as if she was in service to a man. Palpable vibes resonated from her. In the middle of this maudlin carnival she was more than a popcorn girl. He looked at her and her stared dared him to see her. He did not have the words to describe her only lemons. He sensed the room watching him. He had something to do but just did not seem to grasp it. The largest of the beat boys said are you going to question her here or take her downtown. Where was here Jonas wondered. He had lost himself in that few seconds. What did he say or what should he say. I did not really resonate with him. FR where do you want her? the beat boy asked in a very loud voice.

Kira stepped up and said we will talk to her downtown after we close this place. Kira began giving orders telling the cleanup to call the coroner to come and get what they left. It was very important that this bust be handled properly from start to finish. After the beat boys left with their cargo Kira turned to Jonas and said in a strained voice, "What happened...where are you at? You know every 'I' must be dotted and every 't' crossed."

"Earth to Jonas where are you..." Kira laughed. "You act like some rookie Beat boy." Jonas stood without moving...just standing. Nobody seemed to notice that they were standing in the middle of a maudlin carnival with human residue spread all around. It was only when Kira touched his arm that Jonas grabbed reality and held it tightly enough to walk out of the room. He gulped in deep breaths of air trying to clean his lungs of the taste and the scent of the last hours.

Something had changed in those last few hours. The world seemed to be a little meaner, tilted off its axis. Maybe it was the moon. He gazed up at the moonless sky, leaned over the curb and relieved himself of his wife's perfect breakfast, chunks of homemade waffles and brittle bits bacon splashed mixed with the acidity of the orange juice. He tasted maple syrup and heaved some more. He remembered he should have had lunch but things had just gotten so out of hand. He didn't see when Kira moved as he melted into the concrete sidewalk inches away from the curb.

Jonas Story by Nora M. Hudson

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