The last thing my mother said before spilling out white foam from her mouth was, 'You look like a fucking brown weasel."
And I replied, 'Weasels are brown, mum," like the asshole I am.
And then my 13 year old sister and I were running through hospital vestibules, as our mother lay dead upon the stretcher, a scowl set on her face like the loyal companion it had been since our father had left us for Foxy Methoxy.
My name is Heathen Hunt, and I almost deserve that name.
When I was 5, I asked mum what my name meant, and she told me it had something to do with a legendary Chinese-Lebanese deity of Confucius who my father really admired.
When I turned 11, I asked her again, because I could find no such man on any library shelves. This time, she told me
that my father was Pagan, and hence the name.
I am 20 now, and I was really thinking of asking her again, but I'll need about a 1000 apple seeds for that.
Yesterday was Ma's funeral. I hadn't written a eulogy to recite and my mind didn't have an extemporary sob speech to melancholize either.
So whilst my dyslexic, synesthetic and tame little sister tried to form words to express her grief, I sat in the front row, glaring at the picture of mother shadowed upon by rows of lilacs. She was allergic to lilacs. I bought them on purpose.
"-I don't remember. She is pretty, very pretty, she has a weird nose, though," My sister continued. No one reacted to her unintentionally unceremonious beliefs, because obviously, the world thinks of people who can see the truth as insane. And loyal to them was the justification of my sister being medically psycho.
Jo flipped her page backside and then glanced at me. My expression was constant.
"Em, rest in peace, mum. Auntie Shelly told me you'll be with god in heaven. And you'll have lots of candy there. Wait- " She paused and frowned at Auntie Shelly who was sitting in the front row with a blue kerchief in her hand.
"- Auntie, mum didn't like candies. She liked rum and cocai-" And then everyone was shuffling and the priest had taken over the microphone.
I got up and went over to get Jo as she stepped down the cemented steps of the stage whilst the priest recited some hymns.
"How'd I do, Heath?" She asked.
"Did you tell Auntie Felicia about the cocaine?"
She looked past me and slumped.
" She offered me some."
"What?!" I bellowed. "She offered you cocaine?!"
She stood up on her toes and poked my nose. " Yeah. She said we gotta keep the tradition going."
I rolled my eyes and led her to a table where I asked her to stay for a while. I went off to find Auntie Felicia and possibly call the cops on her, hoping and believing it wasn't my own cocaine she'd fed Jo. I'd be in deep shit otherwise.
"Hunt." A familiar voice lathed with a thick french accent called.
I shut my eyes and prayed it wasn't who I was thinking it was.
Turning around slowly, I formed a fake smile on my face as I acknowledged him.
There he stood, in a black hoodie, denim shorts and these big ass shoes reaching up his ankles. Axel Daly. Cocky bastard. Vegetarian gypsy. He modeled for a Buddhist campaign once. He stole an ancient lucky cat artefact from there and spent a month in jail. He pretended to be a skydiving assistant and managed to skydive without paying for it. Nobody knows how he earns a living and he lives alone. He performed a Heimlich Maneuver in a restaurant where someone had choked on an artichoke and he was successful at it. No one knows how he pulled that shit off. Om Mani fucking padme hum.
"I liked Jo's speech." He said.
I glared at him. "It was a eulogy. Fuck you."I replied and turned away from him, pretending to be on my phone.
I could hear him chuckle. "Gladly. Although I do need to talk to you in private."
I turned around again and glanced behind him, checking to see if Jo was still where I'd left her. She was.
I huffed. "Fine."