Beautiless, Ugly reality left,
Progress a distance memory,
A cruel reminder of what has past,
Save me from silence,
Save me from still,
Save me from what might return,
But i know never will.
Never too good at standing tall,
But now a part of me is gone,
The silence remains.
Jessica O’Malley moved to the city five years ago, she drove a delivery truck. She was originally from Boston and as close to an Irish rose as you could be without being born on the emerald isle. She had long red hair, which on this gusty day was swept back into a pony tail and topped with a green woollen hat that the salesperson said brought out her eyes. Jess didn’t care, it kept her head warm. She had a body which like any 28 year old she wasn’t happy with. The guys at the delivery depot from which she was driving didn’t seem to notice any imperfections, but what did they know. Guys eh, she thought.
Guys, or rather, one particular guy was the reason she sat in New York City traffic. She’d moved to the city to be with him. They split after he had a string of illicit liaisons the last of which had been with her sister.
Mike was a jerk and Jess was glad to be rid of him. But she grew to love his city, so she stayed. She found a job and the guys there were fun to be around, no-one date worthy however. She loved her job and people she would meet but sometimes it got all too much so the cab of her truck gave her space and time to herself. An oasis amongst the people, traffic and the elements, a peaceful haven whenever she needed it. Usually.
A huge crash shattered her peace.
“Holy shit!” she exclaimed, not another accident. Her boss was gonna be pissed, but something was different. The impact seemed to push her cab down rather than the usual forward motion of a fender bender.
“Arrh” she heard coming from the back her truck. The traffic wasn’t going anywhere and people were looking strangely at her and the truck, pointing. So she killed the engine and clambered out to investigate.
A small crowd had gathered. Jess was confused, what the hell was going on? She pushed through the crowd slid up the rear door of the truck and peered inside, along with at least ten strangers.
“Look,” she said. “Back the fuck off, it’s just an accident. Stop being so goddamn nosey” Jess clambered up into the truck and slid the door down behind her, no-one was stealing anything from her truck!
She looked up, there was a hole in the roof of the truck. beneath the hole, in amongst todays cargo, which happened to be mattresses was a balding fat guy, cradling his arm and moaning in pain.
“What the hell man!” Jess said. “How the fuck did you…”
“I fell.” the man stuttered.
“Where the hell from? There isn’t a overhanging branch in this city”
“That apartment block. My arm really hurts.”
“Fuck your arm, look at my truck. How do I know this wasn’t a dumass plan to rob me or something?”
“It wasn’t I promise you, I just slipped.”
“What the fuck are you doing up there anyway?” Jess said. “You ain’t Spiderman, you one of those meth heads tryna fly?”
The man looked at Jess. Took a deep breath and spoke slowly.
“You may not know it, but you just saved my life. My arm hurts like hell, but I don’t regret falling anymore. I have never loved anyone more..”
He passed out.
Apparently it was true, your life does flash before your eyes before you die. I perhaps should have done more, but no regrets eh. Except maybe slipping, that was a major regret. But clumsiness leading to a inevitable fatal fall not the most glamorous way to go out. I had perhaps underestimated the effects of the wind on the human body at 15 stories high, but I blame her entirely. Her smile, her eyes, her hair..
Why did she have to live on the top floor?
Why could she not have lived on the ground floor? Easy access and a easy route to enable a guy to make silly romantic gestures. A ground floor apartment would have eliminated the need for climbing and indeed falling entirely. A ground floor apartment would have made it much easier for a rotund gentleman such as myself. Mind you the surprise element on the ground floor would have been lost somewhat, hard to make a dramatic entrance through the front door! How mundane.
Why did I never pay attention in science class?
I would have been able to work out how fast I am falling. Even now I’m thinking this a strange thing to think about, with seconds left. Science and the absurdity of thought! Not my Mom and my Dad… well not my Dad, my “special” Uncle. My real Dad is an ass and living in Missouri with someone my Mum called a “brazen hussy” meaning the woman had bigger tits than her. Dad was always a “breast man” ironic really as last time I saw him his were bigger than any woman’s I’ve seen. Still he has the last laugh I guess cos he is safe with this moobs and his hussy and I am currently plummeting to my death.
Will I get into Heaven?
Maybe God will save me, or Spiderman. Who knows they are both figments of someones imagination but as the wind swooshes by I’d be happy if I dunno, Snap Crackle and/or Pop wanted to turn up and catch me. If heaven exists in my wildest dreams, the girl on the top floor should be there waiting for me on a four poster bed covered in maple syrup. Her not the bed cos that would be silly. I dunno religious types down here spend so long going on about how bad sex is, I guess all of it would be be banned in heaven. Hell then!
Will people understand?
I’m a very loving guy. I lived my life meaning no harm to anyone. The girl on the top floor is but the latest in a long line of my loves. Each one I have treated the same, I am very attentive whereas other guys they’d go off to ball games or to bars. Not me, always around. Always looking. Sometimes I’d get rewarded for my patience, a little flash here a little peak there. They knew all about me, they did. They looked longingly into my eyes. The girl on the top floor, she had the most beautiful eyes. I’m sure she’d miss me, or even feel a little guilty that her silly court order had made me climb to her apartment to catch what I am certain now would be my last glimpse.
“You cannot underestimate the value of a perfect match.” Eddie said, clouds curling round his feet. “Get that right and this job is easy.”
It was Malcolms first day. Not with the company, he’d been with Cloud Solutions for five years, but this was a promotion, the big leagues, high profile matchmaking. He was nervous and it was clear that Eddie was looking for perfection, which wasn’t really helping. He’d been on top of Cumulus MMA for half an hour now and it just didn’t feel like he’d expected
“What happens if the match is wrong?” Malcolm asked, peering over his clipboard.
“Well at the very least you are looking at months of work. We don’t just randomly throw people together, my team have developed many algorithms that make sure every match we make is a hit.”
Malcolm was not a man who liked an “Algorithm”, he much preferred the personal touch. Especially when it came to matters of the heart. Eddie seemed cold and unemotional about it all but maybe it was the secret to remaining effective. Eddie was in his mid-fifties, chubby round the middle like he enjoyed more than the odd beer of a evening. He’s face was weather worn, and his features very defined, even though his mouth was almost hidden in-amongst thick stubble. He wore blue jeans topped off by an old leather jacket over a chunky knit black jumper.
Eddie caught Malcolm looking him over.
“What?” He asked.
“It’s just,” Replied Malcolm, hugging his clipboard for protection “you don’t exactly look like a typical match maker.”
“The clients don’t see us, we make the match and track how it unfolds. I could come to work in my boxers for all they care. They want us to do what is needed to fill the contract that’s it.”
“Oh. That’s not how it comes across in the magazines”
“What kinda magazines have you been reading? Jesus, look here.”
Eddie reached into the cloud and pulled out two files , opened them and began to talk through the contents of each in turn. “Look, this geezer here will be a great match for this girl. Really get the job done.”
Malcolm thought this to be a trifle blunt.
“He’s got a nice car, so that gives us options.” Eric continued. “He’s a big lad..”
“Oh please, do we have to..”
“Tall, gutter mind. He’s 6’7”
“Oh.” Malcolm replied tail firmly between his legs. “Does she have a say in this? I mean she might not like burly guys”
“Like him?” Eddie looked puzzled.
“Yes, have a general rapport, to begin with anyway.”
“You are twisted,” Eddie said, playfully punching Malcolms shoulder. “I like that.”
Malcolm rubbed his shoulder. He was, by now totally confused. Here he was starting a matchmaker job on Valentines Day, of all days. With a boss who didn’t seem to know anything about relationships or love.
“I have to ask,” he said. “Who have you put together? Anyone famous?”
“Well there was that south african guy. Oscar something.. with a beautiful girl. He did a really good job, excellent match. No-one expected that.”
“But he killed her. You think that was a good match.”
“Yes of course.” Eddie replied surprised. “Thats our purpose here.”
“What? But you are a matchmaker.. cupid, arrows everything.”
“Cupid?!” Eddie laughed. “The only arrow people get with us is right between the eyes. You got your paperwork?”
Malcolm fumbled in his pockets and handed the papers HR had given him to Eddie.
Looking at them he said. “Aha, I see. You want the lovey dovey crap on Cumulus MMC! I am a real matchmaker, I decide who dies and the best way for them to do it, to meet their match. Game over.”