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Down Belladonna Street (Pt. 4 of 6)

This is part three. For the previous part, click here. For part one, click here.


It was 9:45 AM now, something was clearly off. Betty put her head out of the door, looked left and right. No one. Might as well go check. The old lady grabbed her cane and, carefully, made her way out of her room.
The vast majority of folks that stayed in the retirement home left to vote, save half a dozen folks that couldn't bother. Of those, Mrs. Okeke only knew Mr. Jerryway… But he wasn't worth much of one's attention. "Rotten", she'd call him.
She walked slowly through the corridor, she knew most of the cameras would catch her, but she couldn't bother. They'd only record footage for three hours, that was all what the systems could muster, Georgie had told her.
In the last years the retirement home security only got tighter, one would have the Foam to blame, but she was pretty sure that was hogwash. They'd use that excuse to get tighter and harsher security in schools too, but Betty herself wouldn't know how much. What she did know was that elderly folk didn't need prison grounds treatment because of an already eradicated Illness.
"But beware!", the security companies would say, "Illnesses can return at any moment without warning! Being prepared is a must!".
"Better safe than sorry!"
Thanks to their nonsense, visits needed to be on specified times and in limited amounts of only relatives, only allowed foods, rooms would be checked weekly (along with the least cooperative individuals), only one call per day, they would only cook crap and just the meanest treatment imaginable.
But… As far as she could remember, it wasn't much better for the old folk at her times. They'd tell her, at least. Well, now the kids couldn't even go and listen to her.
'As if they wanted that.'
She reached the front hall and…
Got puzzled.
The front entrance, it was… Barricaded? Panic struck Betty, what could that mean?!
It… couldn't be the Foam, could it? No, they had specific security measures for that, sirens would be on and all the staff ready.
She approached the barricade, it had been built with the tables and chairs from the dining room.
Who could do that?! The other folk were all gone, and would be too old to drag those all the way through the building.
Was that the staff? But, what would make them do that?! And the company would have them gone in a jiffy…
W-what could've have happened? Georgie was already there, she had to find him. They'd help each other out, and he most likely knew what was going on.
She hoped…

Betty started going as fast as she could, she had to reach Georgie's post and figure out just what in hell was going on.
It was on the other side of the building, which happened to be rather large.
"Baudel-Broider Retirement Home", the several small plastic plaques all over the place said.
"The safest place for those who can't do it for themselves!"
A truly disgusting way to put it, any of its residents would agree.
The place was an extremely large one floor building, equipped with several different halls and facilities. It had been made to be as close as it could to auto sufficiency, built facing south on the end of St. Camelia Street, in its front a huge garden, mostly automatically attended, behind its front doors its main hall, with a surprisingly sumptuous front desk and several waiting chairs and tables, all of which now blocked the doors, along with the dining hall tables. It was a rather long entrance.
In its northwest section the gym, with hydrogymnastics pool and full equipment, could be found, a dining hall with an automated kitchen attached by its right on the northeast, a huge open space in its center, filled with grass, benches and backyard table sets. Its east and west sectors were the living quarters, Mrs. Okeke stayed on the east one, as well as Mr. Jerryway. The other few elderly that decided to not vote were on the west quarters. The administration could be found in the southeast of the building, sharing some room with a library, while in the southwest stood the infirmary. On the very north of the building, though, there was a big show hall, in which several presentations were to be held.
From the outside, one could think of the place as a mansion of sorts, a modern one, specially considering its structure, but once inside it was clear it had been built with the its purpose in mind.
One might think that, such a place with a great array of methods for the passing of time, recreation, self-improvement and relaxing would be a saving grace for the people that lived in it.
Sadly, it wasn't the case.
Poor management, a strong focus on money amassement, mismanagement of both the area and its items and an overall lack of supervision on the employees caused true hell upon all that lived in that retirement home.
They'd never allow use of the gym, as management supposedly never hired anyone to teach or operate anything in it. The central garden would be closed off always for most of the elderly, unless you could convince the supervisors. They'd usually require a beer. Only the ones who got visited constantly, and given money during said visits, could fathom mustering the price. They'd have similar proceedings for renting books as well, and make sure any money directed to presentations got moved into their own pockets.
These folk made that place seem like prison, hell itself.
Still, Betty may have hated them…
…But she didn't want them dead.



“A clown can get away with murder.”

Ends meet in the end of our next part. For how long will you endure the show?
Figure it out next Friday at 23:59 EST!


Down Belladonna Street (Pt. 3 of 6)

This is part three. For the previous part, click here. For part one, click here.

"Oi… night? I'm here buddy."
"Shut up, don't call me that in public!"
"Pff, yeah, public, I'm in your lawn, dickhead."
"W-we may being tapped, you fuck!"
"Sure, sure, say what you will you paranoid. As if we wouldn't already be behind bars had we not be caught. Come out, I hunger."
"Shut it."
He opened the doors and headed out to the grill.
"So," Carmichael once again intruded, "What will we have for the day?"
"What I'll have is prime ribs and some steaks."
"Aw, no lamb?"
"Don't pull that on me, you dumbass hate lamb."
He cleaned his throat, "No… Lamb?"
"Oh, fuck you and your dumbass Thomas Harris references."
"No, no lamb meat. Can't risk the place smelling like a goddamn crematorium, Dway."
"Oh, I see… I call you by your pretty codename and you get all pissy pissy, but if you call me by mine, oh no problems at all. Who cares if there's ears in yer walls, eh?"
"Fuck off, you should be happy I'm letting you eat at all."
"Of course you should let me eat," He said, making a comically austeric voice, "Because, you see, we of the troupe oughta stay together! And fight for our unity! Only this way may this country, or yes, this world may change!", he proceeded to make nonsensical sounds with that same voice.
"Shut up, at least the boss stands up for something."
Carmichael laughed and then continued, "Yeah, sure. He's just like all of us, night, he's doing this because he likes it. There's no ingrained philosophical reasoning to any of this and you know it, just like me you revel in it. He's just making excuses to make sure he doesn't get to his petty hell."
"Well, with that I agree. If there's a hell, we're all going to it."
"It'll be a good hell then, cos' nothing get's worse than this shitty world."
"Boys, boys..." Said a lady's voice, coming from behind them. They turned. "Hell isn't a place, it aint real. Hell is the state of mind in which all you think, do and act upon harms you. We're into this cos' we aint being into that shit state anymore."
"Cut the cheap philosophy, Bella.", replied Dway.
"Goddamnit," Said Mallory, startled, "How many flippin' times have I told ya to ring the friggin' doorbell?! Someday I'll stab one of y'all for coming not only uninvited but like that."
Dway laughed while Bella sat by the lawn's plastic table, putting her legs over it.
"Sure thing sweetie, and we all know you'd really enjoy twisting that knife, wouldn't ya?"
Mallory blushed, "Fuck off, we can't do crap until boss allows us to."
"Divale can go eat shit for all that matters." Replied Dway.
"Coprophagia aside… Yes, Donald got lost to the deep end of over thinking for a while now"
"Look who fucking says, the cheap ass philosopher herself."
"Guilty as charged, hehe. But at least I keep myself to the thoughts that collaborate on our reasonings, Don just spews nonsense lately."
"You could be Don talking about you and I wouldn't be able to tell a goddamn difference."
"Shut up, you two freeloaders.", interrupted Mallory, "I want to cook, so leave me at peace."
"Ooh, will it be, y'know, the good kind?"
"For a college idiot you don't much of Harris, do you?"
"Well, I don't find his work very good… You see…"
'They won't stop talking…'
Mallory fried the meat, focusing intently on it.
He focused on the drying veins, on the meat losing its color and the burning of the coal under, its lively tones.
It was funny how much one can fantasize about something they don't like very much. Seeing the alternative as the ultimate truth and making sure everything justifies their ends.
Rather sad, really.
The man, Carmichael, renamed Dway. Under average sized, subpar posture, unkempt clothes, not much of a brain. Very good at swearing though. One wouldn't be able to tell, but an above average con artist. Focus on artist, he'd make paintings and sign them with currently known artists. Having a long lost piece of someone when they were about to rise would always make the gallery owners and such drool more than they could think… Then he'd exploit them. A rather mediocre artist, but nothing a salesman of a gallery owner would bother by. The troupe would usually move before anyone would catch to his fakes, so he wouldn't be caught. He dreams of having a salmon farm. Got into the troupe after choosing to kill his con partner over having to die in one of their acts.
The woman, Cecille, renamed Bella. She was moderately tall and dressed in weird mismatched clothing. She secretly believes God is a lizard. She didn't bother much, she'd tell it was her sister's to anyone who asked. Only the troupe knew, but she had taken her place… So technically those were both hers and her sister's clothing. Whenever they needed to move she'd use contacts to get into enrolling into another college around the destination area, always changing courses in order to keep the system lost. Niece to the boss, Devil's Don.
The cook, Mallory, renamed Deadly Night. You know him, the neighborhood parasite, the one who'd pretend to listen but hate anything that went against what he thought, the guy who thought he could solve absolutely every single problem there is in this world, if only everyone could bother to care about his insight. If he could simply have his way on everything, nothing would ever go wrong. That kind of guy. Thinks the troupe is the solution he needs, and uses it to the what he wants. Got in it by being coincidentally being in the meeting in which it was created.
"Meat is done.", said the cook. "No, not the kind you want, you pigs."
"Saving it for yourself?", said Bella and Carmichael in chorus, mockingly.
"None of yer businesses…", he replied.
The doorbell rang.


    “I just wanted to see how it felt to shoot Grandma.”

Where's everybody? Who blocked the exits? What's up with music these days?
        Answer these riveting questions and more next Friday at 23:59 EST!


Down Belladonna Street (Pt. 2 of 6)

This is part two. For the previous part, click here.


Eyes open, it's 6:25 AM.
Mallory didn't remember what he was dreaming of, but he surely was enjoying it quite a bit. It didn't matter now.
He had sweated in his sleep again, despite the open window.
'Gotta hate the south.'
He tried air-conditioning too, but it made the room too dry, and god forbid paying for operating both a humidifier and the air-conditioning. He's not made of money.
Just meat, meat and anger.
He's up, it's going to be one of those days. Waking up frustrated, not knowing why, must be a real mood killer. Not like Mallory deserved a good mood.
He didn't expect to have any work today. You see, the man worked with doing favors. There wasn't much to like in doing such things, but he was willing to do most things that got him paid. And that neighborhood was innocent enough for him go by only doing that.
Why no work today? Election day, you see. Every peep in those parts partook in them, even though they weren't mandatory. But the closest election post was, for that year, in a ridiculously far school, out of town. No one stayed home for that day, all left early to make sure their votes were going to count, and one had to consider the huge lines that would ensure from sharing said post with the other nearby towns. The new system made the amount of voting booths was scarce and the officers per perimeter off the charts, all due to security. But it didn't matter, they wanted to exert their rights. Even the elderly demanded being taken, as they couldn't stand the idea of having the country going wrong again.
'Pffsh, nonsense…'
Mallory didn't believe in that nonsense though. Other people? They just said, thought and behaved in the ways of uther nonsense.
Or, putting into his words, 'Bullshit'.
They didn't make sense, and clearly were wrong because they never listened to him. He was clearly right, so for them to think differently could only mean they were dumb, stupid, retarded and another plethora of debilitating words.
Not like any words got to mean anything inside his head.
He heard what others said, concluded as his and sticked to it. But, regardless of those thoughts, he did what he wanted. That had worked so far, and whenever it didn't he could just blame the neverending prosecution on him.
He didn't believe in any of the masses stupidity. Democracy didn't exist, it was clearly all controlled by those who opposed all of his beliefs. All being manipulated behind his back, and the truth hidden in plain sight.
But he wasn't alone.
He had his guys, and they were running and making the world theirs. One day at a time.
Time to get up, breakfast would be nice. He was feeling… Barbecue today.
Just like yesterday.
And, of course, almost every day before that.
Some days were cocoa puff days.
Mallory got up and stretched, he reeked of something, but one wouldn't be quite sure of what. He went to the kitchen and opened his freezer.
He threw some pieces of meat on the counter, all of them still packaged. Couple of prime ribs and three briskets. He dropped everything inside a crater and put it beside a beer pack he just took from the fridge. Then he paused and opened a drawer. He skillfully removed several knifes and other cooking gear.
There was something methodical about the way he handled those items, almost as if he had a history with them.
His pupils dilated as he stared at his blurry reflection on one of the knifes.
He remembered it, the last time he used them. Not to cook, but for their real purpose.
The last time he really used them.
It was about a month ago, he was wearing his suit. It was dark all around, the folks  of that city were having some sort of festival in a park, near some woods.
He and the boys had all been invited, it was the time in which they manage to integrate themselves the best and he was darn proud of it. And he was even more proud of the moment every second of it went down the drain.
Well, that was the very reason why they integrated, so they could finally do that.
'You cook so you can eat, even if the later undoes the first entirely'
The waiting was always a pain, the agony of being recognized along the way was something they could barely muster. But their uniforms were there for that.
He really liked the one he had, he planned it out so well, after such a long afternoon thinking about it. He fantasized constantly of having something like that, of being with people like that, of having something going on. Now he did. Now he fulfilled all of his little head fantasies, he built up the pressure, he had his lovely alter ego, he walked with a bunch of weirdos, he was "accepted", but never loved.
Love was for the weak.
He had his desires, and with the others around him he managed to reach them in more than one occasion. Heaven in hell. He was now fulfilled, right?
'Yeah.', he told himself every time his mind wandered to the doubtful… Oh, I'm sorry, the wrong places.
We could say he was a simple man.
The world would better have him dead.
He and all of his trupe.
But that didn't matter now, he put the knife down. Deep down he knew he was wrong, but he didn't care. He thought of himself as a nihilist, and you see, nihilists were soo cool.
'Nietzsche knew what it was all about'
Thought the man who never read Nietzsche, as he headed outside.
As he dismantled his sea of locks, a gentle tap on the window.
"Oi, night?"
He turned in a haze.



        “The only thing they can get me for is running a funeral parlor without a license.”

Things heat up as different ideas are thrown in the pot! Does "not caring" counts as a viable argument? Find out next Friday at 23:59 EST!