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*He is not a secret agent. Not at all.



Microfiction by Michael Patrick Sullivan

I came to terms very early with the possibility that I may well be a jerk, to put it lightly. I accept it. I own it. I am at one with it. So, fuck you if you don’t like it. Asshole.

My self-awareness on this particular subject came about the summer that I was nine years old. As one might expect, a baseball and a fenced in yard was involved. That’s getting ahead of things, though. That was the summer that we moved into the house on Everwood Glen Road. It wasn't until I was thirteen that I decided that that would be my porn star name. Fortunately (for pretty much everyone), it was when I was nineteen that I decided I wouldn’t be a porn star

On the one side was my best friend by default, Alex Bernal. He was my best friend for little other reason than he was the kid next door. On the other side was the default neighborhood crabby guy. Default because whenever I looked at him, he was looking at me and he was scowling like he’d just got back from the gun store in time to watch a democrat rape his dog. I always wanted to ask him what he was looking at, but then he might regard me as a copycat, since he always got there first. With a look like that, poor Old Man Greene down at the end of the road never stood a chance, despite having fifty years on Old Man Harkins.

That’s right, Old Man Harkins was about thirtysomething. Not old by yours or my standards now, but I was nine and this guy was older than my dad. That’s how it works.

One mild summer day, Alex and I were playing baseball in the road. Playing baseball, to us, meant one threw the ball with all the ungodly force that can be summoned forth by a nine-year-old at the other. The other simply had to block the ball with the bat without getting hit and without stepping out of the 3'x 3' chalk square drawn on the road. We may have been chaotic, but even in chaos there is order.

One day, the ball fouled off my bat and landed in Old Man Harkins yard. I ran over to grab it and when I looked up, there was Old Man Harkins, complete with the dog-rape scowl. He told me to drop the ball and get out of his yard. I was frozen in place. I couldn’t feel a thing. Old Man Harkins came down off his front steps and yelled even louder. I couldn’t feel a thing.

“That ball is in my yard, so it’s mine. If you don’t drop my property and get off my property, I’m gonna call the cops. They’re friends of mine so I can get them to treat you like they treat adult tweakers. You ever had a billy club shoved in your poo hole, kid?” His words, not mine. He grabbed me by the arm. I couldn’t feel a thing.

Then I had what I thought was a clever idea. I him in the knees with my baseball bat, making him fall down like a pair of Wal-Mart generic socks. I don’t know what I did more damage with, the aluminum baseball bat on his abdomen or my Keds in his crotch. He managed to crawl back into his house under his own power and call nine-one-one. I never felt a thing.

He told his “cop friend” that a hooker he called in from the city did it after he tried to short "her" twenty bucks. He moved out the next month. I didn’t see him again for eight years.
©2024 Michael Patrick Sullivan
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