Mister Twister

The Word–COP

We were flying through the mountains, Durango to Denver, we were soaring. enough blow to cover these damn mountains, snow it back to winter again. Yeehaw! Davis shouted out into the wind. Still damn cold, piney mountain air rinsing us through the open window of the 442. We’d made it up here just over three hours, we’d make Denver in four, just like he told me he could do it. It was a seven hour trip with Dad at the wheel, but they always stopped to take pictures, the Sangre de Christos, South Park, pictures of nothing, cows.

But nothing Davis did surprised me.  Or maybe it was that everything did, so you were sort of ready for it. I felt awake with him, really awake, like I’d been sleeping all my life until I met him.  Sleeping Beauty, that was me.  My parents didn’t like him, of course–the man smelled of sex, just reeked of it, the way he’d stand there with his thumbs tucked in his belt.  “I don’t like you seeing so much of that boy,” Daddy said. He thought I should go out with someone from Fort Lewis Community College. “Somebody nice,” my mother said, meaning without a cock. Yeah, I knew what she meant.

I looked at Davis in the driver seat with that spring wind blowing, dancing the feathers on the roach clip hanging from the rearview mirror.  I was laughing, like I was champagne that got shook up and popped, all of me was just flowing out in a great jet of sparkling foam. We were going to meet some friends of his in Denver, have a real party. He kept saying, “Wait till we get us to Denver, baby, then we’re gonna have some fun.”

We were going fast enough through the turns that I had to hold onto the seat. Like Mister Twister at Elitch Gardens. Being with Davis was like being on a ride like that, you screamed your head off and then wet your pants laughing when you finally got off. We went squealing along, corners at eighty, patches of snow still on the ground among the pines.

“Oh shit,” Davis said.  And there was  Officer Law, lurking just off the highway, half hidden in the trees like some black-and-white tiger, just waiting for us, a few miles short of  Bailey. I felt Davis trying to slow without cramming on the brakes and putting us in a spin.  “Shit shit shit.” The cherry lights started to turn, then the siren.  Davis thrust the little folded paper of blow. “Tuck that in your bra, darlin’.”

I didn’t know what to do.  I felt this zing of panic.  Why was he giving it to me?  It wasn’t my blow.  And the cop was flashing his lights, he was getting pissed, wanting Davis to pull over.   “But what if we get arrested? What if they search me?”

“It’s just a traffic stop. And even if they did, what the fuck, you’re not 21, first offense. Trust me, it’ll be ok.”

The cop was right behind us, flashing his lights!  What was I supposed to do?  Even if they did?! I rolled down the window.

“What are you doing, don’t–  Don’t–”

I threw it out the window.

“The fuck! You stupid bitch!” The car swerved as he screamed. He was so mad! I was glad he had to hang onto the wheel, in fact I was kind of glad they were pulling us over.  He mighta hit me or something.

My heart was in my throat as we  stopped on a narrow piece of shoulder off the winding highway, cars whizzing past. Davis sat looking front with his hands on the wheel, his jaw working, his face sheet white. “shit, shit shit.”  Nobody was coming over. The cop just sat watching us.  Finally, he got out and came up to the car on my side, tapped on the window.  A clean shaven blonde about thirty poked his head in.   He looked us both over.  “ID and registration, folks.”

My parents would kill me if I got arrested up here, and my dad had to take off work to come get me.   I tried not to start crying. I never got arrested before.  I was stoned and high and scared, and Davis was really mad.

“Registration,” the cop said again.

Davis kept his hands on the wheel, but opened them  to show he wasn’t holding anything, I guess, spreading the fingers.  “It’s in the glove compartment. But I have to tell you, there’s a gun in there, okay?”

Davis had a gun in the glove compartment.  We’re doing eighty, coked out of our minds, and he has a gun in his glove compartment.  And he called me a bitch!   Suddenly I didn’t feel so good about this whole Denver idea.  What else didn’t I know about Davis? He wanted me to hold onto three hundred dollars worth of coke during a bust and then called me a bitch, and he had a gun?  I didn’t know who these people in Denver were. Anything could happen–and nobody knew where I was, they all thought I was in class.

“Will you open the glove compartment, Miss?”

Davis was trying to signal me something with his light green eyes, I usually liked them but they looked kind of lizardy to me now.  He looked like he would kill me once the cop left. I didn’t know what to do.  Was there something else in the glove compartment?

“I was just getting a ride,” I said, opening it. And there was the gun, a greasy handgun.  There was never a gun in there before.  “I was just getting a ride to Denver.”  I found the registration and gave it to the cop.

The cop went back for the longest time.

“Why’d you say that?” Davis asked.  “What kind of shit is that? We gotta stick together.”

I didn’t answer him.

We got our IDs back, and he had us get out of the car. The cop started to look around the car, shining a light under the seats, looking in my purse.  “I saw you throw something out of the car,” he said. “That gives me probable cause.”

He found some pot under the seat.  Davis looked mad. But it wasn’t my pot either.

“Can I go now?” I said to the cop.

He looked at me all squinty-eyed.  “Sure,” he said.  “But not him.”

“Clara.” How shocked he looked. “Baby.”

I hitched my bag with all my stuff over my shoulder and started walking towards Bailey.  Fuck Davis, man. Fuck Davis.

Part  of a semi-weekly series of short short stories based on a writing exercise, The Word.  “Inspired by a simple word, chosen at random, write a two-page double-spaced story, using the Word at least once.”

Next week’s word is: SOCK


8 Responses to “Mister Twister”

  1. Diana Simpson Says:

    I wonder if it’s the same Mister Twister, I thought when I saw the title of this Blog post. Growing up in Denver, everyone had their stories about the Twister to share. I was happy to see that it was the same Mister Twister, but this roller coaster was an emotional one. How often do we put ourselves in situations that we only half understand? The post touched me because of the references to my home in Colorado, and it also pulled me in by connecting me to the characters. Thank you for using Colorado as your setting here:)

  2. Loved this story!

    In a few brief paragraphs you built suspense and raised our pulses. Maybe because some of us can recall a couple of times, back in the day, when we got just a little too close to the edge, and like Clara, took a hike, just in time.

  3. alisawood Says:

    Adam was cruising carefully alongside Macarthur Park searching high and low for Carlos, “the man,” His heart sank as he scanned the vacant spot where the life giving transfusion usually took place. His hands shaking so hard now, it was hard to grip the steering wheel. “That’s it; I’ll just pull over and call him again.” Maybe he didn’t get my last message.” The cell phone key pad seemed smaller than usual as he fat fingered the number. After three tries, finally, the tiniest bit of relief, “a ring; a ring!” That was the ring that brought Adam hope each morning before rehearsal. It was the ring gave him air in his lunges, and food on his plate. The phone grew silent. The ring just faded into nothingness, a terrifying silence he knew all too well. “Oh god, this couldn’t be happening.” He didn’t mean for this to happen. He was going to do it just once to tame his nerves, his damn nerves!
    He should have been happy when his agent called to say he had the part. Actually, he was happy, really happy but the excitement was so intense it felt like his gut was bursting. “I just need to calm down, in through the nose, out through the mouth.” Out of the 40 or so auditions that took place, the part was his! It was a dream come true, but the voice was starting: Oh not that voice. “You little faggot!” You worthless little queen.” He remembered his stepfather calling him that after finding him dancing in front of the mirror one day, singing to himself in women’s lipstick, “life is a cabaret old chum.” “Go away!” he yelled into the air, fingering the empty burnt spoon; he would use to melt the “Heroin” with.
    He reflected back to the evening before when he and Tom raised their champagne glasses to celebrate. “Here’s to you!” Tom said with his that alluring grin Adam once found so irresistible.
    A separate dialogue started to take place in Adam’s head that muffled Tom’s words, “You are so inadequate! This is too good to be true,” whispered the voice. “You’re nothing, you’re shit, and you got nothing to give in this world.” Wait till they find out about you.” You’re the kid who cried in school and everyone laughed. You’re a coward. “You have ADD, daydreaming disorder.” That’s what the kids at school who used to stalk him in the hall would say. One of the boys in particular pulled up his t-shirt, exposing a nipple and grabbing his crotch. “Here ya go baby, suck on this.”
    Now, it felt like the inside of Adam’s car was closing in on him, suffocating him. His skin felt tight and his legs were beginning to ache relentlessly. He knew all too well from past experience what this meant, he was starting to kick hard and if he didn’t cop soon it was gonna be bad, real bad.
    Adam remembered the first time he saw Carlos, he felt fine, like a secret agent on a mission. He liked the way Carlos clandestinely approached his car scanning/ surveying the street back and forth to make sure no one was watching them. “Chiva.” “You have negra chiva?” He felt proud of himself for knowing negra meant black and chiva was heroin. Carlos would know, black tar was what he was wanted. Adam watched excitedly as Carlos peeled open his heavy coat revealing a semi-automatic weapon. “Shit, this dude ain’t playin!” Adam began to feel aroused as the small red balloon appeared carrying the magical substance that would add that certain numb sparkle he desperately craved. The sparkle he needed to make him feel okay, the way everyone else felt, normal. Deep down, he knew he just wasn’t “normal.”
    Adam was now writhing in pain. He got out of his car and began to pace back and forth on the sidewalk. Talking aloud to himself. “Come on, come on!” Suddenly he realized what he must look like to passersby and though he scarcely cared, he got back into his car resolutely gripping the steering wheel and clumsily inserted the key into the ignition switch. Still talking assuredly to himself. “Okay, okay, I’ll drive around the block one more time.”
    As he pulled away from the curb he viewed a black and white in his rear view mirror. “Oh no god please, keep it cool, just act normal!” “Maintain!” He tried to place his hands on the steering wheel the way a normal person would. Was it two o’clock, ten o’clock? No normal people act more casual. Maybe they steer with one hand, not two. His heart was pounding hard now as he anticipated the red lights would start flashing behind him. Oh god, oh god, liquid started running down the back of his pants. He wanted to sob but he was too afraid.
    Adam cringed and took one more look in the rear view mirror. To his surprise, the black and white was gone. His relief was short lived because he was kicking full blown now. He pulled over, climbed into the back seat of his car and this time, he really did sob. He no longer cared who walked by or saw him, he really sobbed. He was a bought and he knew it.

  4. alisawood Says:

    Thank you so much.

  5. Very edgy and fun. And we’re glad Clara has the presence of mind to extricate herself from this situation.

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