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Last updateTue, 06 Aug 2013 2am

Back You are here: Home Stories Words for the People Short Stories All's Well That Ends Well
Monday, 05 August 2013 20:42

All's Well That Ends Well Featured

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“Hey, we’re talkin’ to you, you fuckin’ faggot.”

“Yeah, faggot.”

Dennis didn’t turn around, just sat down. His lunch tray made a thump in front of him. The school cafeteria was bustling, and the monitors never seemed to notice when this particular trio of varsity football players showed up, having a civil conversation with just another fat kid. Two students at the table got up and left. Didn’t want any part of this.

Trevor, David and William stood behind Dennis, snickering like jackals watching a water buffalo die from wounds they themselves could never inflict.

“Why you always wear black?” Trevor asked.

“Because it’s slimming, am I right?” David said, pressing a finger into Dennis’s roll. Sank down past the second knuckle.

Trevor laughs, “He’s better off smelling like taco salad than the dirt he stinks like now.”

“Yeah,” William said. “Hey piggy, spill some of that shit down your shirt so you’ll smell better.”

Dennis ignored them, took a bite. Thought about playing Modern Warfare when he got home. Kids from all four grades would just walk by, stared at this ritual. Probably hoping the jocks would stick to the Goth lard-ass and spare them. No one wants to endure this.

“Can’t you afford to bathe, piggy?”

“God knows his mom’s boyfriend ain’t payin’ the bills.”

“Yeah, ‘cuz we all know his dad ain’t doin’ it.”

“Can’t make money while you’re in jail. Ain’t that right, faggot?”

Dennis felt that fire rise. More and more lately. The one that seethes with the urge to hear what it sounds like when people scream. “Leave my dad alone.

“Oh, the faggot pipes up.” Trevor said.

“Well piggy-faggot, how is your daddy likin’ suckin’ all that dick in jail?”

Dennis turned around some, sneered. “My dad isn’t-”

“Oh, look at the piggy turning away from his trough.” David said, pointing a finger in Dennis’s face, bumps his glasses.

“Oink oink, you faggot-piggy.” Trevor said.

“You guys know good and well my dad is in jail for a bar fight and-”

“No nononono,” William said, waving his hands in Dennis’s face. “Your dad is in jail because he made the criminal decision to not drown you when you were born.”

“Yeah, he kept you alive.” Trevor giggled.

Flashes of people getting shot in the back. Sneaking up while someone is lying belly down and slitting his throat. Never even knew what happened. Fire. Blood. Dennis thought about all that. A better place than here.

“Why would your dad do that to society?” David asked.

“Yeah, faggot. Why would he?” Trevor lightly shoved Dennis.

That fire inside Dennis, it spit up into his throat. Behind his eyes. “It’s funny you keep calling me faggot when you’re the one with two dads.”

Staring right at Trevor.

Trevor’s parents divorced in middle school, but everybody’s parents were divorced. Sophomore year it came out that Trevor’s dad was gay, and understandably, his mom wasn’t down with it.

“You don’t ever talk about my dad, understand me?” Trevor went cold. Instantly the tone had changed. They weren’t picking on him anymore. Not bullying. This, this was getting ugly.

But Dennis’s fire had surfaced. “I’ll talk about whatever I want to, and if it’s about all the dick your dad is sucking then so be it. At least my dad is in jail, where everybody does it. Your dad likes it.”

William and David stood bolt still. Nothing. Trevor fumed, turned a boiled red.

“Now, fuck off. I’m trying to get fatter here.” Dennis turned around, faced his tray. Put a bite in his mouth.

“Now you’ve crossed the line,” Trevor drew back, punched Dennis in the back of the head. Walked away.

Dennis whipped forward. The bite went down, twisted in his throat. Got stuck. His glasses came off as his face plowed into the tray. He fell off the seat, met the floor. Hit his head with a thwack. Coughed. Vomited. No one came to help as he struggled to clear his throat. Bits came out, wet hacks and bile. His eyes watered, but saw perfectly his bent and cracked glasses on the floor near him. As he finally cleared his throat, his unbalanced lunch tray gave up against gravity and fell on him.

No one came to help.


Consumed by hatred, Dennis took inventory of his life that night.

Massacring folks on his video game, he was puzzled why he so fiercely defended his father. His earliest memory of that man was when he put out a cigarette on Dennis’s arm. The shouting. Dad was the first guy to call him a motherfucker. Trevor sounded just like dad as he’d sit in his easy chair, fueled by beer and listed off Dennis’s good qualities. His poor qualities list was longer.

His mother, ignoring Dennis while trying to work through the neighborhood as her husband rotted in county.

His closest friends, only friends, were people who he played with online. They were either twelve years old or fifty. Faceless and soulless beyond their avatars.

The decision as easier than he thought it’d be.

Dennis knew about his dad’s stash. That night, his mother slept drunk on the couch. Her sport fuck had slunk off hours prior. Dennis pried up the bedroom floorboard, sifted through the burnt spoon, the baggie, lighters. Old, blood-tipped needles.

Found it.

Went to sleep that night with it under his pillow. Dreamt of fire. Blood. And how he had nothing to live for.


A beautiful afternoon at school and Dennis hid in the bathroom until the jocks sat down at lunch.

They prowled for him, gave up. Finally Dennis approached. “You guys still don’t like me, do you?” Placid. Dennis had found peace.

Mocking laughter. Trevor said, “Well, Goth-faggot, let me tell you someth-”

But Trevor stopped talking as Dennis pulled it out. Let it start barking. They boys were good and dead when Dennis turned it on himself.

Peace tasted burnt as it devoured him.


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Last modified on Friday, 23 August 2013 19:31
Ryan Sayles

Ryan Sayles is the author of The Subtle Art of Brutality, published through Snubnose Press. He is the editor at The Noir Affliction column at Out of the Gutter. His work has appeared at sites such as Shotgun Honey, The Flash Fiction Offensive, Crime Factory and Beat to a Pulp. He may be contacted at www.vitriolandbarbies.wordpress.com.

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