Sunday Scribblings: Tradition

The these over at Sunday Scribblings is “Tradition.” This popped into my head and I decided to explore what it would be like for a son to follow in his father’s footsteps, even if it was very, very wrong.

Like Father, Like Son

“Reality is a complete pisser.”
Dad said that, most often when he was pissed himself, unsteady in stocking feet, jingling a tumbler of bourbon and ice, tie loosened, starched white shirt undone at the collar. And most often it was late, his rogue figure backlit by the giant stone fireplace he kept stoked all winter.
A ring of piss slowly dried in my black wool slacks, an uncomfortable wetness, a sour smell that turned my stomach.
“Boy, reality is a fucking pisser,” he said, pointing a finger at me, the others clutching the glass.
Like him, I was dressed is a starched white shirt, black jacket, black pants, black wingtips three sizes too big. Hell, our ties were black too, slim outdated. The Fedoras? Black as coal.
He was a merchant of death, a malicious whirlygig who moved through shadows. But instead of a child’s nightmare, he scared the bejeebuz out of men who crossed other, more powerful men.
The marks were delivered in red envelopes, wrapped in plastic wrap.
Today was Take Your Son To Work Day.
He threw himself into his overstuffed leather chair, leaned back, reclined. He studied the tears that had dried to my face, the load of snot still bubbling from my nostrils.
“That’s the franchise,” he said, barely above a whisper. “Take it, or leave it. It’s what we do, like my father before me.”
I took the .45 from the shoulder holster – the one he’d presented me in its cherrywood box hours ago - cocked a round into the chamber, pointed it at his face.
“Reality dad? Reality is death.”
“Ain’t that a pisser?” he asked, laughing. “Grab yourself a drink, let’s have a toast. Father and son, incorporated.”
I re-holstered the .45, went to the bar, poured my bourbon neat and turned back to him.
“We really need to talk about new uniforms – something a little less retro.”


Anonymous said...

You’re an idea machine, consistently cranking out these hellacious fiction bites. “What zone do go to to get this stuff, for crissakes?” is the question that won’t leave me alone. This is another hot one with hits like rogue figure backlit and malicious whirligig. The red, plastic-wrapped envelopes reminded me of “Grosse Pointe Blank,” one of my top five films.

peachesandplums said...

you have a thing with guns huh?