On forum: 05/25/2004
Boy Part Two
I started this a week ago, and it's finished. But there's a lot more of the story to be told.
Money slipped from my father's hand to the guard's hand. One smooth hand met another dirty and scarred hand. The guard waved his hand to another one of the guards smoking a cigarette and pulled down a lever. The hand rose up to the man's face, and he looked greedily down at the money he had just gotten so easily.
The rusty gates shuddered and started to open. We walked through the gates and they closed with a screech.
All you could hear was the wind before a heavy storm, I would be hearing that sound a lot. The malevolent clouds were getting closer to us, waiting for us. There were only a few scattered trees around the entrance area, and they were only the ones that were just clinging on to life as long as they could before their grip failed like the many men here.
"Dad, how will we be able to get into Chernobyl without protective suits?" I looked into my dad's great big blue eyes again wondering.
"Well in the city, I heard that there was a small shop maybe a kilometer from where there would be enough radiation to kill us." At the time neither of us knew radiation was still getting us, even though un-threateningly for a few months, but if I get out of here I'll probably develop some sort of disease and die. But since we didn't know that, we kept on going.
After about ten more minutes of walking through the desolate area, we finally found a small shack with broken windows and what looked like holes on the sides of the walls. We walked right in and saw a skinny fellow with very, very pale skin. He turned his head our way when we came in. He talked in a strange language. He then noticed we didn't know what he was saying, and then said." How may I help you?" He had a very high and squeaky voice.
"We are looking for suits."
He looked at me and started laughing again. I clenched my fists. "You serious?"
"Yes," My dad always kept staring at people when he was in one of his thoughtful moods, "try to find him a smaller one."
"OK, if you're sure." Still chuckling a little. He got up from the wooden chair, and it started screeching a bit. He went into the back, and a few minutes later he was carrying in two suits. There were some areas where there was a different cloth then the original suit had been made from. They must have been sewn on over holes in the suit. He handed my dad one and then the other to me. We heard some loud movement outside the door and before we knew it, there was a large fat man with a shotgun in one hand and a vodka bottle in the other. He swayed back and forth a lot and coughed, he was obviously drunk. His mouth started moving and a deep and dark voice poured out, "Braviosko, I told you to give me the money last month!" he was swaying back and forth, "give me the money now, or I'll put twenty bullets in you." He raised his shotgun.
The man named Braviosko answered in the same high voice, except scared, "I, I don't have the money," he stammered, "it's been a slow mo…" but before he could finish the sentence the big man pumped the shotgun and fired and fired and fired. Blood sprayed the wall and me. I looked down on my shirt and saw blood everywhere. The man went over to the desk and looked through it, taking out all the money and weapons. I looked at the wall and the body and myself again, I threw up. The aroma was so disgusting I threw up again and again. The man now noticed us, and pointed the shotgun towards us. "Give me your money." He then put his hand on his stomaching, putting the shotgun and bottle on the floor and threw up. With our suits hand, we sprinted out as fast as we could. We could then hear him yelling at us. "You dirty sons of bitches and sluts." And then a gun shot, but we were now away from him.
We lessened our pace and then sat down to rest. We then realized we should put on our suits. Now off in the distance we could see the outlines of what looked like a camp. Supposedly that was where the infamous stalkers were, that was our destination. And behind this camp, there were destroyed and desolate buildings.
The camp looked like a slum. On the streets, shit and all that other type of stuff was everywhere. The main stores seemed to be bars and strip clubs. There might be the occasional run down apartments, and also there was a huge gun and supply store. We walked in.
The lights were dim in this cold place. It had the feel of a cellar and the looks of an abandoned warehouse, and everywhere there were broken crates and bottles. There were a few of the people called stalkers. I eyed them, making sure they didn't do anything. Though I knew that I couldn't do a thing.
There was a fat man, like the one we had seen earlier at the shack, but was shorter and had an arm missing. He was smoking a cigar and letting out large puffs. I estimated that we had 2000 rubles, but I didn't know what we would use them on. The next moment my father looked around the room and picked up an AK-47 along with five cartridges and a few boxes of ammo. My mouth was hanging open and probably dripping saliva. I couldn't believe it. My father the man who had always said that killing someone was pure evil, that stalkers were evil. Now he was a stalker. "Dad, what are you doing?" his eyes were now set on mine.
"I must son, it's the only way." He then walked over to another crate and picked up, what I now know, a PM Makarov and cartridges and a few boxes of ammo. All this time the fat man was looking at me, glaringly, and also embarrassingly.
He then started laughing, "You are going to bring that little runt in here. He's not worth a hair on my ass." He had the same voice as the drunkard. The glares of all the stalkers in the room were on me now. My anger rose once more and I clenched my hand into a fist. “Look, he’s getting angry.” I thought of jumping, and squeezing his eyes out. Just ripping his goddamn...
My dad looked at me for a second and then looked back at the dealer. "Couldn't he do some work around the camp, clean, cook, anything." My dad's protective eyes, blue, intelligent, were looking into dull, black, dark eyes
The dealer's face lit up into the malicious laugh again. "Who needs a clean place? Most stalkers here don't even have a shelter. And as for cooking, only I sell food, so don’t get any ideas." The dealer started laughing out loud again. My father put all the things down on the desk, in front of the dealer. Again in the hoarse, rough voice, "That will be 1150 rubles." My father looked the man in the eye, and then shoved the money on the desk. The desk shook when the hand hit it, dust flew off. My dad turned on his heels, looked back at the dealer and we left.
We walked out onto the street. Over our heads were even larger clouds, more menacing then ever. A man on the street was throwing up all over the place. A group of stalkers came out of the bar and started beating the man up, and clouted him on the side of the head with their pistol butts. The man keeled over and gasped, grabbed at his holster and pulled out a pistol. There were a few screams in an unknown language, and a few shots. All was quiet again. I fell on the road and threw up again.
We walked down the now silent road. I looked around at the buildings. They were all gray from dust and ash and all sorts of stuff. Most windows were broken, and in some walls there were many different sized holes. There were a few people on the street, but they seemed to be homeless. They wore torn up rags and had dirt and mud all over themselves. Their eyes were dull, like they were stoned. Some were drinking vodka; the others were sleeping on papers or the ground. We passed by them all. We walked among the silent buildings until we got to a little motel type building and we went in.
Ding, ding. A tall man with a large beard came out of a room with a cigarette in his mouth, "How much for a room here?"
The man looked down at me and then father, "It will be about twenty-five rubles a night. There is a couch and a bed, and a sink. The bathroom is pretty close. Room 27, level two." My dad put down twenty-five rubles, and the man put the keys into dad's hands. We walked up the stairs.
There was a dark red stairway that screeched. Bullet holes riddled all the walls. We finally got to room 27; a stench of onions was wafting into my nostrils. The room was dark, and the only light came from a little lamp in the corner that had two bulbs out. On the walls was writing, “Fuck you.” “Hell cometh only here.” That type of stuff. I hadn’t really seen that type of stuff before since I lived on the farm, but I got used to it. Roaches scurried across the floor, it seemed they didn’t like the room much either. I tried to keep optimistic. I felt depressed; it was a new sensation for me. It wasn’t sadness, it was deeper then that. Sadness is an emotion; depression is a state of thought on your current environment. I couldn’t really talk, just thought. Not about home or the room, or Chernobyl. I was thinking of a battle between the void and light. And the center was God. If one side started gaining an edge over the other, then God would step in and help the losing side.
There was nothing but void here. Here in this well of despair, beer, and hopelessness. I screamed inside myself, to father, to mother, to my family, to the world, and to God. But my mouth didn’t move. No muscles twitched. Energy had left. Life had left. God had left.
My dad picked up his things and left, I closed the door behind him and thought, void and bare. The clouds were getting closer.
“There’s no point in complaining, I have to go. We need more money. I’ll only be gone for a week.” The scraped and tarnished hand reached into the faded pocket and pulled out, two hundred, or maybe three hundred rubles. The blue eyes hadn’t lost their shine, just their will. Like he had been drugged many times. He had gotten addicted to this life style, just after six months. I had too, to be honest. Just like cigarettes. I hated it all, everything here. But I needed it.
He went over to the chair and got his AK and some magazines. “Dammit, where did I put those nades?” His head bobbed around the room, I was in a median between reality and God. Reality was winning
He handed me the Makarov and three magazines. I had shot this gun off a few times before, he also handed me a knife. “If anyone comes in, kill them. You know what to do.” That’s all blue eyes said. I didn’t think I really had the guts to kill anyone, especially with a knife. Everyone thinks that, because they want to reassure themselves that they’re good people. Everyone can kill. That’s the bottom line. I just lay down on the bed a few hours, it might’ve been ten p.m. and I started to hear a thumping in the other room. I knew what I heard. I was young; I wasn’t knowledgeable in kissing or sex. But my nature told me what it was. Some instinct from a hundred thousand years told me what it was. I put my ear against the wall.
Then I heard a women’s voice. But it was shrill, the time in Chernobyl showing. “Okay, now give me the fucking money. Or I’m telling the Dealer.” There was hitting, a bash.
The man started shouting in a harsh Russian, “Die you mother fucker. Die!” A few shots told me it was over. I lay down on the bed I started crying. There were no happy books, or stories to protect me here. I wept for innocence, which I would soon lose in this god-forsaken place. One life had begun, another died. The effects had yet to be seen.
Two days had passed. Nothing happened, nothing ever happens in the camp. Just the killings you hear about. Some robberies, then hangings. But the camp was usually quiet, at least around our part. But a knock on the cracking door, got my attention. A thunderous beating. I quickly got up and got the Makarov. It shook in my hand, and I swept to the door. I tripped over some box. “Who is it?” my voice was leaving me.
The familiar voice of the motel keeper, “You didn’t pay your rent. You owe me fifty rubles.” I opened the door just a little. Pointing the gun at the man.
My voice shook like a swinging overhead lamp. I couldn’t say anything, but, “My dad paid you a few days ago for the week. He told me.” He usually did, especially before a mission. The keeper took out a black jack and I don’t remember anything after that.
I was in my old bed, the nice clean one. My family was around me, a doctor looking over me. I remember that it was when I fell off something, I can’t remember. My mother soothed me and sang me to sleep. Bam! I was in a pile of blood. I couldn’t breathe. My head felt like a something was jumping in my head. And bouncing off all sides. I started coughing, blood, saliva, dirt. I fell asleep on the floor.
When I awoke again, I felt a little better. It was eleven at night. I got up and fell down in a slump. I finally managed to get up without falling down. I turned on the dimming light in the corner and walked over to the sink, spit some blood that was mixed with dirt. My teeth gritted, “Son of a bitch!” I walked over to where I thought I had pistol. Nothing, must have sold it. I guessed he thought I was dead, because he took the keys off the couch. My knife. It was under the sink for some reason. I wiped some dirt off of it.
Something in me rose, not just anger this time. Rage, determination, perfection. I trudged out the cracked door. I walked down the creaking steps. There was a tv on in the keeper’s room. I swept in. There he was. Asleep, beer bottle fallen on ground, stains on his t-shirt. Everything was going so quickly, I couldn’t get a hold myself. I hesitated a moment. But I couldn’t wait longer. I got the knife ready, my hand was shaking. All my past was telling me not to do it. A battle was raging inside of me, I couldn’t move. The stories, all of the stories I had read. They all said that I would lose in the end, if I was brought down to the bastard’s level. But, the other side of me was winning. It was the instincts, the part of me that had been in the human race for a million years, and had been a part of the animal races for a hundred million years. I looked at the knife, it smiled at me, I blinked an brought the knife to his throat.
Blood spat into my eyes, my mouth, my soul. It was dirty blood, murderer’s blood. Now that blood resided in me, I was the killer. He had passed it to me. I didn’t stay long enough to see the consequences. I just heard a moan, choking, cussing, and shocked praying. When I got back to the room, I cried. I cried for a long time, I had lost something inside of me, and gained another. The wolves howled, and the storms rolled closer.
Like the fella says, in Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love - they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock.