The idea for this story was from a dream I had where I met an old school friend who was only too happy to bugger off and be free of my company. There were overtones of female rivalry there in the background. It was inevitable the two would meet in this story - the two being the male aversion and love of a women. What better way to show the sweet bitterness of both in a tale of unrequited love. On top of that life can invariably trip you up - 'pride before a fall', in particular is a maxim I tend to use a lot so as not to be disappointed. In this case even good intentions can fall by the wayside should life choices be the stronger force.
This is a raw and quite ugly story with a style being in stark contrast to my other stories (all good practice). Some swearing too. You have been warned .The Lovesick Drunk
It couldn't be? Could it?
The same dark hair. Hardly seemed to have aged! Hell, it has to be at least 30-40 years since I saw him last.
Strange, he did see me, didn't he? Why did he look me up and down and then turn away? OK, maybe I'm not the svelte athlete I was at one time, but even so, give me a break, a lot of water has gone under the bridge since then. He must have recognised me, surely?
What is it with this guy? Why is he acting so shifty? All this time and he is still obsessed with appearance, or is he simply upset by mine?
So what, I drink too much. So what, I have put on a little weight. No big deal.
Christ, he couldn't wait to get away. What the hell? What do I care? Easy come, easy go. Just another faded memory come back to life for a short while. Join the rest. Nothing new there.
Look at him. Still some furtive glances my way so he must know who I am.
Colin, yeah, I remember him. Fancied himself as a bit of a lady killer.
Rather him than me. More trouble than they are worth. I still have this damn ring on my finger to remind me how much trouble they can be.
Ah, bollocks to this. I could do with a sit down. The park for me. Get away from them all. Petty people with petty lives.
Pigeons have been waiting for me by the looks of it. Always glad to see me. This here load of bread should do em proud. Broken up in my pocket a bit though. Haha, look at them vying for my attention. Sure is nice to be needed even if only by my fine feathered friends.
'Cum ere me lovelies.'
No-one around. Quick nip wouldn't harm. Never go anywhere without a jacket with big pockets is my motto.
Damn, that tastes so good. The first one always hits the spot. Technically this isn't the first though, come to think of it. First today at the park then. Still tasted wonderful. Hit me right between the eyes. Sod it, I need another shot after that encounter.
Who the fuck does he think he is anyway? Him and all the rest come to that. All living their wonderful lives with their wonderful wives and wonderful kids no-doubt. Wonderful my arse. Bet they are up to their necks in mortgage arrears or some such shit. Not me. What is so wonderful about being bogged down with kids and endless drudgery? Idiots if you ask me. What do they know?
Bit early, but one more slug wouldn't harm.
Look at that greedy bugger nicking all the crumbs.
'Get out of it you little toe rag.'
At least birds don't act all superior. Not like many people I know.
Look at this pair for instance. Walking around arm in arm as if they own the place. And what is it with them? Why are they keeping well away from me? Are they walking faster too? Haven't they seen a guy sitting on a park bench before feeding the pigeons?
'Yeah - bugger off, why don't you. I've had women a lot tastier than that on my arm. You had better believe it.'
Dead right I have. Where was I - oh yeah, feeding the sodding pigeons. I still have some drink on me, don't I? Phew, sure I do. Let's have another. I could do with a piss too.
Well, that is better. Handy bushes around here. I feel a little groggy, though so I had better watch it. I don't want to sober up though. Fuck that.
Blow it, another would do me just right I reckon.
What the hell. I don't look so bad. Stubble is in these days. Perhaps the cut on my head upset him. Everyone has an accident now and then. My clothes are a bit stained, come to think of it. I'm sure I can clean myself up a little. Blow it, why should I. What do I care.
This grog is making me a bit sleepy. Yeah, well I don't want to sleep. Last thing I want right now. Poxy dreams and a poxy life. No rest for the wicked so they say.
I was feeling pretty good until that arsehole upset me.
Colin, eh. Yeah, well I remember you, alright. You were nothing of any note back then either. Just another so and so. Pretty dumb then too. Still acting the same old stupid, childish ways. Christ, hasn't life taught him anything?
Damn it all I can hardly keep my eyes open. This sun isn't helping either.
Shit, I must have dropped off for a while there. What the hell time is it? Starting to feel a bit hungry now. Another slug is called for I think. Damn, I'm nearly out of booze. Oh well, back to the house for me. Kill 2 birds with one stone - food and whisky. I left a nearly full bottle on the table. I have enough on me for a small bottle though.
Certainly not steady on my feet. Yeah, well, not that far from home now. No-one around anyway so what the hell. I can neck this and still make it back OK.
Colin sure got me rattled. Shallow bastard. Boring bastard too I should think. Hell, I could pull women if I wanted too. Wouldn't take a lot to get back in shape. Rub his smarmy face in it. Fuck em all.
Women - Christ. Look at what that bitch did to me. And I still have this stinking ring on my finger. I bet she is knocking around with the likes of Colin now. Hell, perhaps he has had her too. Maybe that is why the rat took off.
Bloody bottle is empty again. Ha, smashed against something. What do I care.
Home sweet home. Christ, careful, nearly fell flat on my face then. Always that same step. I have good mind to smash it to bits.
Starving. What the hell is here? Chips. Yeah, chips would do it. Let's get the damn ring on. Right, gas and pan are on. I have to peel some bloody spuds now. What the hell, I can do that. Sit down first, though. Full bottle, eh. Yeah, I'll have some of that. I can peel the damn things here in comfort.
She was a crap cook too. What the hell good was she anyway? And here I am still wearing this bloody ring. What the hell for? The bitch is never coming back. Not seen or heard from her for fucking ages and ages. Can't contact her. Got no idea where she is. What the hell am I doing? Why think of her at all? What the hell is the matter with me. Just want to bash her bloody head in.
Who am I kidding? Christ, I dunno. My head swims when I think of her.
Yeah, well, I ain't standing for it any more. I have to do something. This bloody ring isn't helping.
Another drink will help. Oh god, I nearly vomited then. What was I doing? Cooking something. I need a sharp knife don't I?
Bloody starving. What's to eat here. Sod all. Bread - baked beans - fuck it, they will do.
Oh hell, I have to open the tin now. I can do it with this knife. Smack it in and cut around. That'll do it. I'm struggling here. Not getting up again. Tin - knife - beans.
Aghh, cut my sodding finger. Bloody ring finger. Ring - ring - ring. Always this bloody ring. Get the hell away from me. Gonna tear you off. Get off me . GET OFF ME. I'll cut my fucking finger off then. See if I care.
Arrrgggghhh - oh god. That hurt. Get a grip. Enough already. Blood everywhere. As if I would have. Cut my finger off for some tart - yeah right. She ain't worth it. Never was.
Look at the mess. Blood all over the place. Finger hurts like hell. Now that is funny - the ring is loose. The blood has freed it up. Haha - slipped off no prob. At last. No more of this sodding ring. There it is, amongst all the blood. Free at last!
I gotta eat something, though. Bread, yeah. That will do. Tastes disgusting - tangy. Whatever - I'm starving.
Bloody exhausted now. One last drink to take away the pain.
So tired. Need a piss. Fresh start tomorrow. No more of this for me. I have had enough. I'm free now. I just know it. Sleep. Just let me sleep.
Dave Preston had passed out. In urine soaked clothing he slept on oblivious to all around him. His dreams were as tangled and as unsettled as ever - not that he would have remembered them in the morning. Another embittered drunk who had fallen foul of his demons. Then again was he simply a man with a broken heart? Not all such men cower and shrink into themselves when afflicted in such a manner. Some scream and holler, lashing out at all around them. Dave had done plenty of that. One thing was for certain - he wouldn't be missed.
In the local paper mention was made of a death of one Dave Preston, of 'Somewhere' Avenue, who died from toxic fume inhalation. It appeared a fire had started in the kitchen and spread rapidly to the rest of the house. Dave Preston was known throughout the neighbourhood for his excessive drinking habits.