Infringement

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Infringement  

Will Decker

It hit me like a kick to the guts. I was just sitting there in my skivvies watching the early morning news on the telly while silently wishing that the heaters were more efficient or I'd have to put another layer of clothes on, when a piece on a new movie release catches my attention.

Actually, it was the name of one of the main characters in the movie that got me sitting upright in the wobbly old leather recliner. "Here's a young, good-looking new upstart, barely my own kid's age, and he's already landed his own T.V. series. I wonder who he knows," I think aloud, more a statement than an actual question.

But as slowly as the thought permeates through the gauzy matter in my skull, more commonly referred to as my brain, the real issue of what I'm seeing manifests itself and hence, the breathy exhalation that follows a swift kick below the belt. "They stole my story!"

Although my work may not be known far and wide, and I'm certainly a good distance from being a household name, I have been writing stories for quite a few years. Hence, a few of my stories have made the rounds. Yet, whether because my work wasn't worth plagiarizing, or the right copyright infringement artist hadn't yet discovered it; to my knowledge, no one ever made a movie from one of my stories.

But here I am, looking on in disbelief, as my story is being described in a short movie trailer; pitching the plot and even the blow-by-blow details of the action scenes as I wrote them ten year's prior. Of course, I have to admit, I am a bit flattered that the main character is being played by my favorite new actor, especially since the main character is also my alter ego.

"But toadying or not, they won't get away with this!" I indignantly spout, dribbling cold coffee down the front of my previously stained shorts. Although the new stains aren't of the same pattern as the previous stains, they do match in color.

Even as I reach for the phone, I remember that I no longer have service. It's not cheap staying connected to the real world and at the time the bill was due, the real world wasn't offering much incentive to stay connected.

Dropping the phone back into its cradle because the act of throwing it seems like too much effort, I struggle to my feet and make my way down the narrow hall to the bedroom, my once proud shoulders sliding along the slick brown paneling for support. It's still dark outside and when I reach the bedroom, I have to turn on the light. There's a putrid, treacly smell hanging in the cool morning air, but I've grown used to it, and continue on toward the closet door in search of clean clothes. 

Of course, there are no clean clothes. Instead, I find the same dirty old slacks and shirts that I've rehung after previously wearing and have been rehanging for the past several months. If they're permeating with stale sweat and feces, I'm no longer aware of it; the stench from the bed now overpowering any competition for the fresher air seeping down through the broken roof vent.

Dropping down on the edge of the mattress, I'm only vaguely aware that there is a sticky moistness greeting the flaccid cheeks of my ass. "Honey," I mouth, reaching behind and affectionately placing my right hand on her decaying corpse. "I'm going out for a bit."

Copyright © 2011 Will Decker  

All rights reserved.

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