Barbed Wire and Razor Blades


Chapter One: St. Louis



I thought I was going to miss my train again…that would be typical. Last time I got wasted and ended up spending the night in Oklahoma City because I got caught up in watching some kind of freestyle BMX ballet competition. Oklahoma fucking City! What a nightmare.


The train was already moving and picking up speed when I hopped on. I slumped into a seat in the front of the car next to an elderly Asian woman with a startling amount of facial hair. Maybe she was a sex change case, who knows.


“Keep your hands to yourself young man”, she grumbled as she clutched her bag to her chest. Guess she didn’t like the looks of me. I closed my eyes and thought about how pissed off my asshole of a roommate, Penis, was going to be when he came around and realized I took all the smack with me when I left. Thats Penis, pronounced Peh-ness by the way. An interesting guy to say the least, his parents named his sister Vagina (rhymes with Regina). No wonder they’re rotten individuals, you would be too if you went through life with names like that. I always wondered why they didn’t just change their names, maybe because they’re morons?


Ah fuck it, I had an addiction to deal with.


After a few minutes I stood up and made my way to the bathroom to do a quick bump. I’m not shooting up anymore, just snorting. Hey, baby steps…gotta start somewhere. Maybe I’ll kick tomorrow. Fat chance. The bathroom smelled like shit, big surprise, maybe because there was about a pound of it smeared on the wall next to the toilet. How does that happen? I shrugged and pulled the bag out of my pocket and dipped my key in. I couldn’t help taking a long look at myself in the mirror before I breathed in the junk. I looked painfully thin, deep dark circles around my eyes. No wonder old Korean bitches didn’t want to sit next to me on trains, I looked like a fucking monster. Oh well, in a couple of seconds I wouldn’t care.


That feeling of warmth washed over me, all the bullshit melted away in an instant. I felt like Paris Hilton at a cock festival. I slid down the wall, sat on the floor and lit a cigarette. When I woke up I was in St. Louis.


I must have been out for at least 15 hours; the guy who carried me off the train had set me down on a bench outside the St. Louis station, he was slapping my face. “Hey! Hey kid! You OK? What’s your name?


He had a round pudgy face with a wide mouth and a body like a toothpick, he looked like one of those scarecrows with a pumpkin for a head. He must of had a stomach banding or bypass surgery or something, where your body deflates and you’re left with your same old fat head. Wonder what he did with all the excess skin?


“You can stop slapping me now dude”, my eyes focused on his, then drifted to the crowd of assholes that was swiftly gathering in a circle around me. Someone yelled, “Give him some air!” The self-appointed head numbnut in charge told everyone to step back and ordered his wife or girlfriend or whatever to go fetch some water, I was pretty thirsty. My savior was beaming. He stood up proudly and stumbled a little, I guess he was still getting used to balancing his enormous melon on his new, thin frame. The woman ran over to me with a bottled water, barely able to contain her excitement. She seemed to be getting a kick out of being so helpful. “Here ya go! Take a drink”, she insisted. She was breathless, and she felt of my forehead for some reason…the motherly type I guess. I snatched the bottle from her quivering hand and took a long swallow and felt around in my pockets for the dope. I kept searching frantically long after I realized it was gone. “I’ve got your wallet right here, son”, declared gravy head, “and your ticket is inside. Looks like you’ve got a two hour wait for your bus, going to Chicago huh? I got a cousin in Chicago.” “Thanks”, I snapped as I grabbed my stylish nylon, velcro billfold out of his hand. I picked myself up, made my way through the crowd and yanked open the glass door; as I stumbled into the station a massive head rush hit me and I fell flat on my face, luckily my chin struck the vinyl tiled floor of the train station lobby and broke my fall. I tasted blood. I jumped to my feet, ignoring the gawkers all around me and headed for the bathroom.


I turned on the faucet and splashed some water on my face, then made the mistake of looking in the mirror. I looked away real fucking fast. The monster was still there, a ghoulish reminder of what I used to be when I was alive. The beast’s chin had already begun to swell, adding to it’s already charming allure.


“Fuck me!”, I pulled my cigarette pack out of my pocket and lit up the last one. It was broken in half so I had to pinch it together in the middle so I could smoke it. I sat down in an empty stall to gather my thoughts. Assessment: No dope, no money, no smokes, no self-respect, no dignity. Ah ha! A bus ticket to Chicago! And two hours to kill.


The bathroom reminded me of the institutional style washrooms in high school, minus the sweet smell of weed but the stench of excrement was still plentiful. No doors on the stalls, a sink halfway ripped off the wall…nice.


The door opened and I jumped, I was already twitching from withdrawals so it wasn’t all that hard to give me a jolt. A guy in jeans and a jacket with elbow pads walked in, college professor maybe? I always hated those stupid looking jackets. He muttered something under his breath, something like, “Loser.” He at least had the balls to make eye contact. I glared at him as he strolled over to the urinal, unzipped his pants and struggled to get a stream going. He was nervous…stage fright. He laughed and said, “Lost little boy?”


I looked around and spotted a stainless steel trash can by the door, the kind with the foot pedal at the base so you can open it without getting your precious little hands dirty; then wrap those sparkling clean fingers around the feces laden door handle on your way out.


I picked the can up and bounced it off the back of his head, driving his face into the brick wall in front of him. I kicked him in the back of the knee and heard a snap and a pop, but no crackle. I thought of the little faggoty Rice Krispies mascots as I watched him fall to the floor, I kicked him in the soft spot beneath his rib cage first, screaming at the top of my lungs, “Where the FUCK is Crackle, mutherfucker? What have you done with Crackle???”


His nose had exploded when he hit the wall. He may have been a handsome devil when he walked into this train station bathroom, but now he was downright unpleasant looking. I crouched down and grabbed a handful of his hair in one hand and pummeled him in the face repeatedly with the other, laughing maniacally and demanding to know the whereabouts of my dear friend Crackle. The prick sniveled and wailed and begged for mercy and insisted he’d never heard of anyone called Crackle, he even accused me of being some kind of lunatic! Said I was “out of my mind”! Can you imagine?


I slammed his head into the floor and got back on my feet, I cracked his ribs with one more swift kick and I shouted out with glee, “There he is!”


My new friend on the floor appeared to have passed out and could not share in my relief, what a shame. What would Snap and Pop do without their beloved Crackle? A team is a team, and a team sticks together. I rummaged through his pockets and pulled out his wallet. “Fourteen dollars!!! Fourteen FUCKING dollars??? You fucking asshole!!!”, I howled as I kicked him once more in the side of the head. I slammed the door hard as I left the bathroom and wished I had taken the time to wash my hands before leaving.


The sun was setting, and I stood there in the middle of the station wondering what people carry on about when they rave and gush romantically over the awe inspiring beauty of a sunset. Every night, since the beginning of time, what’s the big, fucking deal?


Blood dripped from my knuckles as I trudged toward the exit, I could almost hear the drops hit the floor over the sound of little brats screaming and the dull roar of the crowd that echoed through the station…almost.


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