Monday, December 17, 2012

"The Devil and the Drunk" (Story pt. 6: The End)

Part 5

The idiot! Maureen was walking towards the fountain, not bothering to stay out of sight! She was entranced with the man at the fountain. He was too busy to notice her yet. I heard a noise coming from the right. Turning, I saw a carabinero coming, swinging his baton as he whistled.

"Psst! Someone is coming! Let's get!"

Maureen was still walking to the fountain. I looked at the man. He was facing Maureen and smiling. It sent chills down my spine. "Maureen!"

She turned back. I waved and took a few steps. She wavered for a minute but followed. I looked back up the street as I prepared to sprint. I couldn't see the carabinero. All I saw was a woman winding away on the opposite side of the street.


The next night we approached the park at the same spot. We crouched at the edge of the park where we had before.

"You think he'll come?"

Suddenly we heard a splash. I jumped. The man was there. He emerged from the water, and, as he came up, he threw his hair over his back. Water sparkled in the moonlight. It landed all around the flowers. He looked at us. My heart stopped. He looked startled. He gave us a warm, if somewhat embarrassed, smile.

"I'm sorry; I didn't know someone was around. Could you get me my towel? It's next to the fountain here."

We both jumped to help. Someone grabbed my shoulder from behind. It was the drunk. I could smell the pisco as she whispered in my ear. "Don't go. Stop your friend."

"What the--"

"Do it!"

I looked at Maureen jogging towards the fountain. The man was crouched on the side with his hands on the cement in between his feet. He looked so seductive. So evil.


It was too late. She approached him and forgot all about the towel.

"Maureen, no!"

"It's too late, mi hija, let's get out of here."

I tore myself from her grip. Maureen embraced the devil and they slipped under the water.


The devil was appeased that night. The old woman says he won't return again for some years. I asked her how he could be a devil and be so beautiful. She said that evil is beautiful, that was its nature. Now, at night, I have trouble sleeping. I go out and wander the streets when that happens. Sometimes, when I look over my shoulder, I think I see a woman following me, staggering like a drunk.

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