This is a story I felt forced to write one night, late. Hope you like it.

Photograph by Christopher Grant

It had been a man, once.

He thought of it while he gently tapped the red suitcase next to him, while he swiftly played his fingers across the dashboard in front of him. He thought about it while he waited.

It had been a man, once.

The radio blasted in the entrails of the repair truck he’d bought four years ago. Seated behind the wheel, Leonard started to lose his cool, tried to regain his breath.

For sure, he hoped it wouldn’t be a man this time. Men just were not the same thing. They had this


things between their legs which just made them not the same. At all.

Leonard leaned across the dashboard, upcross the wheel, feeling the cold of the glass underneath his fingertips. He closed his eyes.

He hoped it wasn’t a man, with his eyes closed, sensing the lights of the incoming car running over his body, then becoming still.

He thought she’d be scared while he extracted himself from his car. He’d knew she’d be fighting with herself. Torn between the fact that she’d already serviced nightshift workers and the dislike she had for the misplacement of this very special appointment, levelling the stillness of the nature all around.

She came to him, at odds. He knew she wouldn’t turn her back on him. Leonard liked her legs, still, though, she was too small for his tastes.

-What do you want to begin with ? she asked.

And he whacked her across the scalp with his hammer he’d put in his back pocket. Blood splatter missed him this time : while she fell to the ground and this was a good thing.

He stood there, all silent, while she tried to get up, and laid two more blows on her head while she scratched his legs. She, the anonymous she, moaned and tried to regain her breath and grabbed a handful of small rocks which were covering the floor and let them fell slowly.

Leonard, Leonard gently pressed his body against her, burying his nose between the rivulets of blood, he slowly kissed her neck.

He didn’t like the sounds she made, reminded him of a furnace, of cold watery places where children are taken away.

He’d never admit what he did to her. He just wasn’t this type of guy.

With her laying still, or slowly dying, or unconscious, he’d go get the suitcase, knowing it’d be just the right size. He put the body in, and pulled a cigarette out of his breast pocket and took his lighter and smoke for a little bit.

It had been a shitty week, what with colleagues making fun of his French accent and his lame-ass new boss. Leonard stood in the night with the moon high above his head and the suitcase next to him and both car’s lights still on.

He finished smoking and got in his tow-truck and put it right in front of the prostitute’s car. He took the hook, fixed it under the hood and got in the car and that’s when he heard the soft breath behind him.

Leonard turned around, gazed at the baby and got out of the car. He didn’t slam the door though, for he didn’t want to wake it up.

He watched the red suitcase and his tow-truck and smoke a new cigarette.

He thought of possibilities.

He knew it hadn’t been a man and part of him wished it wasn’t a boy that laid in the car. Leonard shook this thought off while he finished his fag. He re-entered the vehicle and took the baby’s sit and put it right next to the suitcase. He then got to the car and released the brakes and walked to his truck and upped the car a bit. Leonard turned off both vehicles and noticed the baby was now crying.

He walked to the mom and the child and first picked up the suitcase and took it to the hole and set it up. Leonard watched the red coffin for a time before he got up and walked over to the babe.

With his figure overshadowing the child, the baby became silent for but a moment and Leonard stood there and watched his glistening eyes.

The babe, it stuck its left index out, not knowing what to do with it, while Leonard glared at it silently and, in the silence all around, the child glared back.

With a short aspiration, he took the baby chair and brought it to the hole and fixed it on the suitcase and stood still for a moment before he grabbed the shovel.

He thought of him as some movie gravedigger in the eyes of the child which were turned shiny bright by the deep blue of the world all around. He thought of it while he shoved his first pile of dirt in the hole which missed the legs of the babe by a few inches, and then Leonard began to sing.

-Même si t’es pas v’nu pour danser, ici c’est comme à la maison…

And he continued while the dirt slowly covered the mom, the child and its screams.

-Même si t’es pas v’nu pour danser, n’aie pas honte devant les gens. Ouille ouille ouille, aïe, aïe, aïe. Ici c’est comme à l a maison.

Eventually, everything went silent again, the babe, the song, even Leonard.

Releasing a paper every Friday.

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