Black and Blue and Mona

“Good morning. Oh. What the fuck happened to your face?”

“Is it noticeable?”

“You have a black eye and your lips is swollen. It is slightly noticeable.”

“There was an altercation.”

“Tell me the other guy looks worse than you.”

“No.”

“No? You didn’t fight back?”

“No.”

“What happened?”

“Do you remember the girl from the bar last week?”

“The one that told you she was a squirter?”

“Yes.”

“And you replied, that’s okay I gargle?”

“Yes.”

“Didn’t you take her home?”

“Yes.”

“So what happened? That was last week.”

“I saw her again.”

“And?”

“She was with another guy. No big deal. It happens. So I sat at the opposite end of the bar and chatted with the bartender.”

“The brunette or the blonde?”

“The blonde, though she dyed her hair blue.”

“How’d it look?”

“She pulls it off perfectly.”

“Okay. So you are talking to the bartender.”

“You know how we always joke back and forth?”

“If you mean how she flirts with you and you ignore her advances because you don’t understand human interactions, yes.”

“She is way out of my league.”

“She’s not… Never mind. And?”

“Well the other girl saw us laughing and for some reason she got mad at me.”

“What do you mean?”

“I don’t know. She just got super pissed off for some reason.”

“Did you call her after?”

“I did.”

“And what happened?”

“I don’t know. She got all distant and weird. I took it as a sign she didn’t want to talk to me.”

“How did she get distant and weird?”

“She just seemed preoccupied. Short answers. If she answered. No interest. I don’t know.”

“So you stopped talking to her.”

“Figured she would text me if she was interested.”

“Then what happened?”

“She came down and got in my face. Yelling about how I was an asshole for not returning her texts.”

“Huh?”

“I showed her my phone and the texts we had. She got all kinds of confused. Then she hit me in the face with a beer bottle. A couple times.”

“Did they call the cops?”

“No. I wouldn’t let them.”

“Why not?”

“I figured there was an explanation for her behavior.”

“Was there?”

“Yeah. She has an ex named Mike. And she thought I was him when I texted since we were both in her phone as Mike. She had been texting her ex thinking it was me.”

“So she thought you hit it and quit it.”

“Vulgar way to put it.”

“You taught me the expression.”

“Hmmm. That does sound like me.”

“It should.”

“It vaguely does.”

“So what happened?”

“The bartender made me a bag of ice to put on my face. She was super sweet about it.”

“Of course she was.”

“Yeah. I really like her.”

“You should call her.”

“No.”

“Because she’s out of your league, I forgot.”

“Right.”

“What about old Squirts?”

“She felt pretty bad.”

“I can only imagine.”

“Yeah.”

“You had sex with her again, didn’t you?”

“No. My face hurt too bad.”

“That does look painful.”

“I blame my parents.”

“For the most common name imaginable?”

“Yes. If ever have kids they will be named after goddesses and literary geniuses.”

“One small problem there.”

“The fact that I will die alone?”

“I was going to say you have to find someone first.”

“Tomato potato.”

“She really hit you good.”

“Well. It wasn’t all her.”

“What?”

“She clocked me good in the mouth twice.”

“Wait. How’d you get the black eye.”

“I was sitting there, minding my own business with the ice bag on my mouth. Just drinking and talking to her as she was apologising.”

“Okay.”

“The guy she had been talking to when I got there? He took offense at her talking to me.”

“Oh no.”

“He was the other Mike. She had sent him the texts that were supposed to go to me.”

“Mistaken Mike.”

“Yep. Well when he realized that the things she said to me but accidentally sent to him were about me and not him…”

“He sucker punched you.”

“He sucker punched me.”

“It just kept getting worse.”

“It did.”

“What happened to him?”

“It’s kind of a blur. I was sitting there chatting and then I felt his fist on my face. The next thing I know Squirts is on his back hitting him in the head with a beer bottle.”

“She is a feisty one isn’t she?”

“Yeah. Too feisty for me. They both got kicked out of the bar and sent away in cuffs.”

“And you went home alone with a battered face.”

“Pretty much.”

“At least you didn’t get arrested or go to jail.”

“All I did was get abused. Like being a kid all over again.”

“I’ve gotta know something.”

“Did she squirt?”

“Yeah.”

“Yes she did.”

“But you didn’t…”

“Yes I did.”

“Ew.”

“If you’re going to make a statement you need to live up to it.”

“Nope.”

“It’s hard living by a moral code Mona. Some people just aren’t about that life.”

“For good reason.”

“When I was a kid on the mean streets…”

“Not this again.”

“We had a saying. Snitches get stitches.”

“No.”

“Oh yes we did. You’d see a 5-0 roll up and everyone scattered.”

“Did you get a concussion from the hit?”

“I don’t remember.”

“I’m sorry. Continue your fantasy.”

“See Mona, it was a good day when we didn’t have to fire the AK.”

“I’ve heard that before.”

“It’s a common hood saying.”

“That has to be it.”

“I’m sure.”

“So are you going to take Squirts out again?”

“No. She is just on the wrong side of the crazy hot graph for me.”

“Probably the right choice.”

“I’m capable occasionally.”

“Rarely.”

“True.”

“So what’s the plan tonight then?”

“Stay in and read.”

“Less likely to get punched in the face that way.”

“Agreed.”

“You’re too pretty to get into fights anyway.”

“Yeah. That’s me alright. Too pretty.”

“Handsome?”

“Quit while you’re ahead Mona. We both know I’m neither.”

“Ruggedly good looking?”

“Are concussions contagious?”

“I don’t remember.”

“Oh shit. How many fingers am i holding up?”

“Just your middle one.”

“You’ll be fine then Mona. You’ll be fine.”

“What are you going to do after you read?”

“I’m tired. So tired. Shut it all down.”

“Shut what down?”

“The poetry for a bit. Sleep. Try and get my head right.”

“Makes sense. What about the blog?”

“They won’t even notice I have disappeared. Most don’t read it. The rest won’t care.”

“So you’re shutting down?”

“For a day or week. Yes.”

“I’ll miss you.”

“I’ll miss you too.”

“I hope it gets better.”

“Fuck. I do to.”

“You’re your own worst critic Mikey. You know that, right?”

“I do.”

“Maybe it’ll be good for you.”

“Or maybe it’ll be horrible. Who knows?”

“Who indeed?”

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