Narrator: Gregory Cartier
I counted the minutes, far more eagerly than any student waiting for their next class or lack there of. And all the while, my handwriting spread furiously across the lesson planning sheet I had been assigned. I wasn't sure if I should be glad that I'd be teaching a class so much sooner than I was told, or if that meant the teachers I was shadowing were lazy. Oh well. Either way, I'd get good work experience out of it.
I found myself ahead of the clock. That made me feel elation and shock. Soon, I'd be gone for a walk. No, actually, I'd run like a jock, straight up the block, as all my blood went straight to my --
"Knock, knock, can I come in?"
I rolled my eyes. "It's your office, Mr. Wesborth." Even if all you do in it is play Counterstrike.
"No, while you're assisting me and Mr. Jame, I expect you to consider this your office as well, Mr. Cartier."
I could have sworn I was just a condescendingly enunciated Gregory this morning. All's well that ends well... Or in this case, 'All's well that ends soon.'
"You look like you're done that planning sheet. That was quick. You must be quite hungry."
I simpered. "Yes sir, I'm rather... errr... famished." Especially after last night. He better be in the mood now.
"There's nothing like a healthy appetite. Anyways, I was just checking in on you. I've got a class to teach, so I'll be off," said Mr. Wesborth.
"Take this and give it a read over when you can." I handed him my lesson plan.
"Great," he said. "Why are you so flushed?"
"Nervous, I guess."
"Oh. I hope I don't seem like some kind of intimidating college professor or anything of the sort."
"No, it's not you," I told him. Definitely not you. "Anyways, I'll be off."
"Where are you off to? There's nowhere close to go with just an hour 'til you're needed."
"Oh, I'm not driving anywhere. Just gonna sit in my car, with my laptop. Privacy, I guess. Beats getting caught playing games on the office computers."
He chuckled. "Don't be taking blows at me, Greg."
"Wouldn't dream of it, sir." What an awful choice of words.
"And if you ever meet up with a girlfriend or anything, use the recreation center's parking lot. It's more discrete. Oh, geez, you're turning redder."
"It's nothing sir. Just my ex, she's got a psych placement with the guidance department."
"That's new," he said in surprise.
"Yeah, it's sort of experimental..."
"Oh, drug testing on students, eh? That's fine," he said sarcastically. "Enough of them are stoned as it is."
"Now... you weren't together with her when you applied for these placements, were you?"
I smiled. "Does it matter?"
"No, it doesn't. Just don't get back together."
All I could do was repeat myself, "I wouldn't dream of it, sir."
"Make sure she won't dream of it, either, okay? Not that it's any of my business. I'm just..."
"Giving advice. I understand completely."
"And you two are... civil?"
"Yeah," I told him. "Very much so."
"Good. That takes maturity. Now, when you go out this door, make sure she doesn't catch you with that other woman." He paused to examine the look on my face. "Hah, I knew it. Now, looks like you've worked hard. So play even harder."
"Thanks for the tip, Coach."
"I'm not your Coach anymore, Mr. Cartier."
I rolled my eyes, "I know."
He laughed the room with a deep chuckle, and the door closed behind him.
Quickly, I adjusted myself so that I could walk inconspicuously. As I did so, I read the time on my clock. It was 11:03 AM, which meant he was already in the parking lot waiting for me. Almost all the way across the schoolyard from where I was now, the property line crossed onto the rec center parking lot with a short, steep hill.
I forced myself not to run in the hall, but as soon as I was out the door, I was running for all I was worth through the parking lot beside the soccer fields and the running track, all lined with bleachers. It felt so nostalgic, running into the wind across my old stomping grounds, trying to set right a relationship I regretted ending with every fibre of my being.
It was a while before I was breathing heavily, and I only began to sweat as my feet touched the hard, gray cement of the rec center's parking lot, striped with faded yellow paint here and there. It was dusty, in the wind, and I looked past all the cars for the one that was out of place.
And then I saw it at the top edge of my eyes, not in the rec center parking lot but parked on the roadside. I kept running towards it, not stopping for a breath, onto the grass and then onto gravel.
My foot hit more pavement then. And suddenly, a honking sports utility vehicle swerved out of the way and very nearly nicked the corner of the long automobile I had been aproaching.
It was long, sleek and black. I looked both ways, and then continued my approach, finally bothering to take my mortality into account. Then, I took everything into account. He was parked on the west side of the road, facing south, meaning he had come from the north. However, Brampton was to the south. Therefore, he must have turned out of the rec center parking lot after being unable to find a small enough spot.
And it made perfect sense to me, that Kieth would be driving such a car. Sleek. Tall. Dark. Handsome. Long. Just like him.
Cautiously, I opened a door into back row of the limousine from the roadside. "You weren't kidding about your new job, were you?"
My only answer was a faint beeping from the car, the kind beep that said it was not waiting for something to happen. It was also the beeping a bomb might make shortly before going off.
There was music playing ambiently within the interior. It was electro-pop, and the tune seemed familiar. I thought for a second that I knew it, but then an unexpected male vocal line began.
I thought that you ought to know.
Why can't you just let me be?
You're turning psycho on me!"
I closed the door behind me. And immediately, the lock buttons snapped down. Auto-lock! That explains the beeping. "I'm not usually the one who enjoys being restrained, Kieth."
Beyond the other seats, the driver's window was up. And every padded bench of a seat was covered in plastic, probably so that neither one of us stained the vehicle.
And the song continued. I swore the volume was cranked higher, now.
"You better rethink your life;
I'll never be your wife.
I feel just like Anna Lee.
You're turning psycho on me!"
Then, it stopped entirely as my shoes fell from my feet.
"Kieth?" I asked, as I pulled off my pants and began to unbotton my shirt. "Hello?"
A set of four screens folded slowly down from above. There was one visible from every seat. Then they began to display something. They were choppy clips of video footage. The sound was distorted, and it was creepy as it flashed from scene to scene with static. First, I saw a card game in what looked like a casino, where everyone was blind folded. Then, a race between two athletes, swear pouring off their bodies. And then there was a video clip, one I had filmed, of Kieth and I making love. My hands spread the cheeks of his buttocks, and my head moved in with an eager tongue.
Then it flashed to the next scene and took longer to do so, subjecting me to louder static accompanied by the screaming of a man having a very loud orgasm.
When it was over, it displayed the card game again. It looked like some sort of poker game. And then the camera zoomed in, to show that one of the three players had an ace up his sleeve, marked with ridges of braille. As it pulled back, it went to his face and centered upon his mouth which twisted into a wild grin.
"What is this, Kieth?" I asked.
A woman's voice, in a French-Canadian accent, came over the intercom, speaking languidly, "Bonjours, grande enculée. Just keep watching, Gregory."
I knew the first three words were french. The first was 'hello' or literally 'good day'. The other two were a noun and an adjective, feminine ones. I had no doubt that they were directed at me.
"Who are you?" I asked.
The screen now showed the runners again. And they kept running. And running. And running. However, one kept looking sidelong at the other. Then his foot came out the side and tripped his teammate. At that point, both athletes fell in a cloud of dust. However, the one who had tripped the other was on his feet first, and began to repeatedly kick his opponent aggressively, in a way that churned my stomach.
And then it zoomed in upon the face of the fallen man. And somehow, the footage had transitioned into yet another video I had filmed. It was Kieth, wounded and bleeding on the roadside right where we were parked. It was September of my senior year.
He spat out blood, "Don't tell me you're sorry, Greg. 'C-cause I know y-you're not. You're just l-l-lucky I d-don't tell them exactly- exactly what you are!"
A shiver ran down my spine.
Then the static came, unforgivingly, and eclipsed his bruised and beaten face. The scream came again, from the same man, but it was not at all a scream of pleasure or delight. It was torture, which rang out so clearly that I covered my ears and wept as it never ceased to end for many a moment.
When it was finally over, I looked up at the screen.
There was a naked twink with a nipple piercing lying asleep on a bed, tangled in sheets, with dried ejaculate on his face.
"Tell me," the woman said again over the intercom. "Who is this man?"
"I don't recognize him. I don't think I've ever seen him before in my life!"
"Don't lie to us, Gregory. That's your cum on his face!"
"I... I don't..."
She laughed so derisively that I cringed. "You don't remember the guys you fuck around with, do you?"
The screen changed to another guy, lying on his stomach with bloody gashes across his back.
"You don't remember this one, either, do you my dear?"
I was at a loss for words.
"Or this one?"
Jason flashed across the screen with semen spread across his lower chest.
"Tell me you remember that one, 'cause it is your most recent."
"What do you want from me, you bitch?" I yelled in anguish.
"My name is Marissa, but I suppose 'you bitch' will do just fine... for one of us at least."
Kieth's voice came over the intercom, almost too sad to say anything, "Y-you bitch, how could you..."
"I'm coming back there, Greg," warned Marissa. "And I'm not going to stop hurting you until you've told us everything. What we want from you, you bitch, is the truth! La mauvaise verité."
I grabbed my phone from my pocket and leaned over it in the corner so that they couldn't see what I was doing. Quickly, I texted Crystal for help as concisely as I could manage.