By Andrew J. Stone
The So-Cal sun boils my flesh as I tantalize reality up-down the sidewalk. I am alone, am I alone, when that golden being leaps from the arctic bushes. No, they aren’t arctic. They are purple, or orange, or yellow, or green, golden green, Aslan roars a hole through my eardrum.
Johnny: The fuck? Aslan?
Aslan: The fuck? Johnny?
Aslan: Not again.
My feet hit light speed, no, ludicrous speed, until I find myself in the middle of a Los Angeles blizzard, the kind that creeps up on you in the middle of summer, like homelessness attaches itself to the homeless, except I’ve never been homeless, have I, no.
Johnny: How’d you catch up to me so fast?
Aslan: You didn’t go anywhere?
Johnny: But the blizzard?
Aslan: You’re in LA… What blizzard?
Johnny: Oh… yeah…
His tongue laps itself haphazardly across my chest, thighs, pinstriped eyes, and I wonder… wonder what would happen if Aslan disappears.
Johnny: The fuck? Aslan?
Johnny: Aslan? Oh, Aslan?
Shawn: The fuck? It’s Shawn.
Johnny: Yo, Shawn, how’s it hanging.
Johnny: Good one.
Johnny: You see Aslan come through here? I was just talking to him, but I can’t seem to remember where he has gone off.
Shawn: …You need some serious help.
Silent crickets chirp eeriness.
Johnny: Why God? WHY... Aslan. Come out come out wherever you aren’t.
Johnny: You hear that…
Johnny: Over there.
Shawn: You really need to stop talking to yourself. People are starting to get kinda freaked out. You’re starting to turn people away from you. Including me dude. You’re kinda freaking me out.
Johnny: You already said that.
Shawn: I have this psychiatrist who is top of the line. Top notch.
Shawn: Want his number? He’ll be able to help you?
Shawn: Aslan isn’t here. He’s back in Narnia with the rest of your friends.
Shawn: You really need help.
Clouds soar overhead. Swords dagger from the sky into my flesh. I catch one. Except it’s a fork. I remember I’m eating something. It’s warm. Nuked fresh from the microwave. Just like mother made it. Before she hung herself. Now I do the nuking.
Mother: Dinner’s ready.
She serves fish. Cold. Stiff. Like her corpse. Teeth quake.
Johnny: Mother, have you seen Aslan?
Mother: I love you Johnny… you need help.
Johnny: Are you real?
Crickets cease their chirp.
Johnny: Aslan! I knew you’d come back.
Aslan: I never left Johnny. We’ve been here the entire time.
Johnny: But the psychiatrist, the hanging, the nuking?
Aslan: All gone. It’s all in your mind Johnny. It’s all gone.
BIO: Andrew J. Stone lives and writes in a suburb of Los Angeles with two cats and coffee. His work has recently appeared at Danse Macabre, Yes Poetry, The Camel Saloon Gallery, and Short, Fast, and Deadly, among other places. As a recent high school graduate, his work has been translated into English. He sleeps with one eye open. This is a lie. He'll eat you at: http://andrewjstone.blogspot.com/