"The captain has lighted the fasten seatbelts sign. Get ready for some bouncing, folks."--honest flight attendant

The Saligia
by John Bauer ©2016

Hello God:

You’ve got to get me out of here before they kick the door in again. I’m too old and weak; I can’t keep stop them from gang-banging me on my own. You’ve made Your Point. I believe in You. I believe in Jesus. Please show me some mercy. Whatever happened to forgive seventy times seven? I can’t remember the exact verse. There’s no Bible here, You Know. No Google Search Engine either.

Look. (I don’t have to tell You everything since You’re All-Seeing, All-Knowing, Etc., Etc.). But I lived most of my life like You would’ve approved, two kids raised and departed; Labrador ran off and died when she was twelve; menopausal wife’s still around. Stay married, damn it. Not divorcing should be a couple of points in my favor.

We all went to church most Sundays (without the dog). Sometimes I slept in and missed a service or two. Sometimes I attended and nodded off during the sermon. Who hasn’t?

Sure I’d a bad thought or two. Okay, maybe more than one. But thinking shouldn’t be classified as a mortal sin. Prohibitions against evil ideas weren’t listed in the Ten Commandments, and You Wrote them twice.

Those brutes have come to torture me more than a dozen times. They’ll return. You could alter my eternal fate. Please consider the factual story. If You don’t grant a change of venue, perhaps You’d provide a minimal upgrade in physical treatment. You’re aware of my last egregious day:

You Know I was seated in Aisle Seat 10 D on Delta Flight 100752, my birth date--lucky huh? Minding my own business. The flight attendant almost poked me in the eye. Her hard nipples pricked out of her form-fitting Double-D push-up bra, tempting me. Would you penalize her? I was a normal heterosexual male, savoring the sight of those bodacious boobs. But I didn’t grab for them or anything; didn’t want to be escorted off the plane for sexual harassment.

Then, Ms. Cleavage, started shouting near my ear, “Mister Hay Zoos Martinez, Seat 37 A. Please raise your hand if you’re aboard. Mister Hay Zoos Martinez”. I didn’t complain, not after a half-dozen bourbon shots in the Dulles  Airport Lounge numbed my impatience during a two hour delay. Besides, her titties were inches from my dilating pupils.

So’s You Know, I discovered a red gecko on my left shoulder, standing on its hind legs, almost blocking my line-of-sight. After so much liquor, I figured I’d seen one too many Geico Commercials. Anyways, this creature whispered in my ear, “She’s got a Southern accent like hot maple syrup. You can dream, Chad - dream bro - deep-basted fried chicken, warm gravy over mashed potatoes, and a candied-yam tasting vagina.”  His sales pitch sounded pretty good.

Then a little green doughboy quietly muttered some words beside my right ear drum, “She’s wearing a wedding ring, Chad. You don’t want to commit adultery again.” That alcohol, I tell You. Off colored he was, but I recognized his Pillsbury Chef’s Hat anywhere. Shoot. I don’t think I should be punished so severely for my drunken stupor.

The rouge reptile said, “You can dream about her cream” Turned out he would be incorrect. Meanwhile, the verdant pastry kid said, “Contemplating got you in trouble before.” Turned out he would be correctamundo. The running conversation spun my head like a Jim Beam decanter.

In a voice a tad too loud, I said to an old codger who was seated to my right in window seat 10 F, “They’re holding the plane up for some spic who can’t understand English? Lets go, man. Let’s get outta here.” I understand now what I said then was not ’politically correct’. Sorry. I’m apologizing. Too late? Please say You’ll accept it. Then those buttinski bourbon beings started yammering in opposite ears again.

The gecko said, “Pops ain’t winning any fashion prizes. Wearing a black turtle neck under a black leather jacket in this summer heat and headed to Miami. Who bought his outfit? No one wears dickeys nowadays.”

The doughboy said, “Change your seat Chad. You’re sitting near Satan himself.”

“Too late to change seats now, dumbass. Bad advice will give you lice.” I kinda liked the rhyme; tells You how much I’d been drinking.

Those two noisemakers were interrupted by the bazongas-enriched attendant who sang out, “Jesus Martinez, calling Jesus Martinez.”

The annoying lizard said, “She’s anglicized Jesus. Screw that... Ring or no ring. She’s got a rack.”

“Don’t listen to him,” the equally bothersome doughboy said while jumping up and down on my shoulder. I swore then never to have another drop of whiskey just to shut those critters up.

Then a slicked-backed greasy-haired, thin-mustachioed man wearing a poncho seated in 11C told her, “I’m his father. He went to bano. He think plane leave mas tarde.”

“We can’t hold the plane any longer Senor Martinez. Everyone’s boarded. I’m sorry.”

Senor Martinez arose from his seat and spoke Spanish to his congregation, apparently alerting the family to Jesus’s dilemma because some of the women started to wail like the world was ending. I don’t know. Just guessing, I wasn’t bi-lingual. Even if I could’ve spoken their language, there wasn’t anything I could or would change.

Then the gecko said something which foretold my evening would not be uneventful, “Relax Chad. Close your eyes. They’re just human noise makers. Maybe their heads will explode and you’ll have a quiet flight.”

“What an awful thing to say,” doughboy pasted.

“You won’t be sad if you’re bad.”Again the cheap rhymes which made some sense at the time.

My point in telling you all of the above is it wasn’t me chattering like those two characters. I shouldn’t be blamed for their conversation.

Sure I did mention to my eclectically dressed companion, “The illegals need to learn English. They should dress like Americans. This is the USA.” I don’t think it should be a sin to be proud of our country and our language.

Upon hearing my words, he smiled, displaying a set of sharp silver and black teeth.

“Oakland Raider’s  colors. What’s not to love? The red lizard chirped. Nothing would shut him up.

Anyway, the cabin’s door closed, the gangway retreated, and Jesus would have to catch the next flight. The plane taxied down the runway, positioning itself for takeoff. I closed my eyes; my head spun; I leaned back, envisioning my back account. I’d just clinched a large commercial real estate deal back in DC. A few hundred disadvantaged tenants would be displaced. Price of progress. Jobs would be created and salaries paid so dollars would trickle down to your urban poor; then they could afford to drive their late model Cadillacs around the capitol. Hey that’s what Your President wanted anyway. There was a yin and yang to every business deal. The indigent could find another place to live. They always had. In my own way, I’d helped the homeless as best I could. You should give me some sort of credit for my good deed.

And lots of money would trickle up to me, ‘The Silver-Tongued Closer’. Didn’t really need the dough. Was just a game. But You said somewhere, if You gave a man ten talents he should make them multiply as much as he possibly could. In a sense, it was You who first said ‘greed is good’, not Gordon Gecko. Sure I congratulated myself as I pulled the airline’s magazine from the seat’s pouch in front of me. Its cover had tanned, dark-haired women with outstretched bronzed hands, luring middle-aged, bleached white-skinned me to frolic in green waters.

I couldn’t fantasize very long. ‘The Liquor Dialogue’ wouldn’t end fast enough. I still had gecko and doughboy molesting my cerebellum. I swore then I’d never buy auto insurance nor eat another biscuit again.

“Maybe she’ll do a strip tease and lap dance later for you,” the red lizard said, referring to the attendant’s breasts my eyes had fixed themselves upon. They jiggled like Jell-O during an earthquake as the plane lifted off.

“You’re making him lust again,” the other said.

“Lust he must. It’s just. Don’t make him cuss.”Ah the poetry never ended.

“Chad, do the crossword puzzle. Get your mind off her flesh.”

I took his suggestion, flipping to the magazine’s back pages. I tried my best not to sin.

I shouted, “Holy shit. Hell no,” after I discovered the exact same crossword I’d completed more than a week ago on the flight up to DC was in my own handwriting done. I’d sat my ass in Seat 24 B on that flight. (I apologize to You for saying “hell”, “holy shit”, and “ass” but I didn’t use Your name in vain; didn’t utter the F-word or the N-word. Cut me some slack God on my colorful language; You Know my folks had potty mouths).

Having tried my hands at a game of chance now and again, I mused, what would be the odds?

Like he had telepathic powers, Pops pounced on my reaction. “Shame when others solve the puzzles. The airlines should refresh their magazines more often.”

“I did this one. It’s got the seven deadly sins in it. Four across. Three down. See em.”

Pops leered at the page and slowly read aloud, “Wrath, greed, sloth, pride, lust, envy, gluttony.” His breath smelled like a salesman’s old socks; I sure didn’t want him opening his ‘Oakland Raiders’ mouth again.

“The puzzle’s got seven virtues, Chad. You found them once too,” the green doughboy said.

But his rhyming red counterpart said, “Coulda, woulda, shoulda, not. Measure, pleasure, treasure snot.” I didn’t exactly understand all he said, but he sounded cooler than his opposite.

“Move from your seat Chad. Move away from Beelzebub.” I erroneously heard Beetlejuice. Regardless where You come down on my final dispensation, You have to admit that was one hilarious movie. This figment of my imagination was starting to nag me a little too much. Don’t do this. Don’t do that. I didn’t listen to him and continued talking to Pops.

“Over a week ago. Different seat altogether. Imagine that. What’s the probability?” I didn’t expect a response from the old man.

“Since this RJ holds two hundred, I’d guess two hundred to one.”

“Not so fast, Einstein,” I said, “The rag moved from the rear seat to this one. How often did it change hands? Plus, the odds of me sitting here. Do your multiplication tables. Unbelievable probabilities.”

“My flagrant error,” he said, “My apologies. Allow me to procure you a drink for my miscalculation.”

Couldn’t quite figure out this dude’s game? And his leathery looks? Almond eyes sunken deep inside an olive-skinned face, whose own wormy lips hid his signature silver and black molars. Need I mention his Doberman ears, pointed in Your Direction. Created in Your Image? A mutt, he was. Less human-appearing than the two chatterboxes on my shoulders.

Before I could object, he motioned for the attendant to bring us the booze, then continued gabbing while I sipped myself back into a nice buzz. “This is very much like a scene from the Twilight Zone,” he said ,winking one blood shot gray eye.

“Huh?” I said after swallowing, grateful I only had to use one ear now.

“Was a TV program. Rod Serling wrote and produced it. Years ago. Late fifties, early sixties. Only in black and white, I remember. A unique or rare event would occur in the show’s first five minutes. Like the improbable discovery of your solved crossword. The stage would be set for a quirky story and the characters would be propelled into a Twilight Zone. To quote Serling--a dimension not only of sight and sound, but of mind.”

“Well Chumley, with the Latin babies wailing their lungs off in the seats behind us, we’ve got sound. And the attendant’s provided ample sights for this bus ride. Nothing extraordinary. Thanks for the bourbon though. It’ll pacify my mind’s quirks awhile.”

Almost on a paranormal director’s cue, over the loudspeaker we heard, “This is your pilot. We’ll be experiencing some turbulence due to the tropical storm heading up the coast. Please keep your seat belts fastened and remain in your seats.” Then the cabin’s lights blinked off . We rode within an oxymoron, a high-flying abyss.

The plane ducked and weaved like an over-matched boxer dodging a thunderous left hook. Passengers bounced up and down like bobble-heads. Women screamed as if they were viewing exploding heads in a B-rated horror flick. Like they were aboard The Titanic, a quartet began singing The Battle Hymn of the Republic. Infants continued to wail and gnash their teeth.

The attendant shouted, “Put your heads down and keep seat belts on.” The loudspeaker crackled the pilot’s choking voice again, “Nothing to worry about. Please stay calm and don’t move about the cabin. We’ll be clear.” He didn’t finish his sentence. Lights blinked on and off again several times. The rear choir switched to Amazing Grace. Incessant Spanish chatter echoed like rotten burritos inside the cabin. The kids hadn’t missed a sobbing note either.

I didn’t pray. You Know I just wasn’t scared. I’d often flown this route and under worse conditions. Call it stupidity or insanity, but You Shouldn’t penalize me for not being a hypocrite. Sure I believed in You and all that. But I was only going to request special dispensation when I most required it. Like now. Like here. What do You Say? Please read these words and hear and know my remorse at whatever I did to deserve this fate. Only act fast. They’ll be coming soon. You Know what they’ll do to me after they bust down the door.

The plane continue to buck and jump like a rodeo bronco. I timed the action with my Rolex. Ten minutes max. Then the lights came on full blast. The entire cabin was lit like some gleaming oblong hall. In my opinion, more candle power than we needed after the abject darkness. I squinted. As if the pilot heard my thoughts, the lighting gradually normalized. And the sound volume decreased too. Maybe it was Your Doing, and if it was, thanks for quieting the children.

“We’re through the worst of the storm. Sorry for the bumpy ride. Keep your seat belts fastened. We should be landing in thirty minutes.” The pilot sounded as soothing as I’d imagine Saint Peter would be at the Pearly Gates. Hint. Hint.

“You superstitious?”  Pops was talking to me again.

I used my peripheral vision and answered, “Hell no. You heard the man. A little turbulence for a few minutes and everyone starts praying, crying, shouting and singing like they’d thought it’d do any good. Plenty of hot air.”

“Has all the ingredients, all the rarities of placing us in another dimension.”

“I watch Reality TV on a flat screen, Chumley, not fiction in a black box.”

Without showing a bit of discomfort (or recognition) at my sarcasm, he said, “You find a magazine you used over a week ago. Jesus didn’t get on the plane. The storm?”

“Jesus” A kid who can’t speaka da English named Hay Zoos wasn’t Jesus. I’ll grant you the crossword puzzle was one in a billion. The storm? Florida’s known for its sun and downpours.”

“Just saying.” He pushed his face close to mine, his grin extending from one pointy ear to the other. Unbuckling his seat belt, excusing himself, he passed by me and headed towards the rest room. I hoped he had constipation. Just a fleeting thought. That was all. It worked. He never returned.

A chick with long bare legs tapped my sleeping shoulder. She asked if she could sit in 10 E cause she wanted to deplane fast. Groggy, I of course nodded “yeah”, as her perfumed butt passed against my salacious nostrils. I felt like I’d ‘traded up’ and said a quick prayer Pops was out of toilet paper, and waiting for the attendant. In this case, prayer did work.

Besides me looking down at her legs, things overall were looking way up. A calm after the storm. No more Spanish yada yada yada. No more church hymns, not that I didn’t enjoy their singing Lord, but I was more into sixties rock and roll. No more little creatures giving advice in my ears. I was sober. Another fleeting thought, maybe that Twilight Zone crap Pops spouted was right on. I could only enjoy myself from here on out-- in ‘another dimension’ of course. Nothing real, God, You Know.

Like an Asian Eve in Eden’s Garden, she started tempting me with, “Me, Sue Mei. You be?”

Her broken English sounded soooooo cute. I thought she was my very own female fortune cookie. “Me Rod,” I said, “I mean, I’m Rod Serling.” Okay I fibbed, but for my own reasons.

“Me like Wod.” Behind her dark gray sun glasses, I was guessing she was late thirties, early forties. Not a child by any means, not with her querying.

“You Miami live?”  she asked, as she stretched her perfect pins and pointed her sandaled toes underneath the seat in front of her.

I stammered, “No. I’ve got a place near Fort Lauderdale.” Okay I omitted mentioning the menopausal wife in suburbia. An error of omission not commission, but not a fib.

Wod married?”  she inquired, her shades downcast at my ring.

“Oh this. Oh yeah.”

“Happy Wod?”

I enjoyed the mispronunciation of my ad hoc pseudonym, and I thought somehow she knew it.

“Isn’t everybody?” I punted her question with a question back to her.

“You?” She punted my question to her question with a question back to me.

“Well?” I paused.

“Deep subject, yes?” she said, not missing a beat, nor allowing me to finish. We both giggled. She adjusted her legs. Her knee touched my thigh. I almost injured my groin, jerking up from the seat while belted down.

“She’s not expecting me to arrive till tomorrow. I was going to surprise.”

“Sue Mei stay at Saligia Hotel in North Beach.” She smiled gleaming ivories.

You Know Everything, so You have to be lenient. From the moment I met Sue Mei, I don’t think anything I did or didn’t do should count against me. By my logic, dead persons don’t sin. But hurry God. I think I heard footsteps. They’ll start pounding the door in at any moment.

Wasn’t it yesterday when I walked hand-in-hand with my lithe, long-legged lynx? I felt like I’d just won a sex lottery. I should’ve guessed something was amiss when all the waiting gates were vacant and the usually turgid Miami airport terminal was coldly deserted. On overhead TV monitors, I scanned CNN pictures of a plane crash and bodies aflame in the rubble. Poor unlucky bastards, I thought to myself. Wouldn’t that count as some degree of compassion?

We found my black SUV where I’d parked it a week ago in a morgue-like garage. Clueless me. Mine was the only vehicle in the place. Maybe this was how things were supposed to play out in ‘another dimension’, as I watched her sink her tiny butt into the leather bucket seat.

I should’ve recognized the ‘signs’, but my mind was focused on other hormonal notions. The exit arrows painted dark purple--a tad unusual for Miami but then they always did crazy shit here. Next they’d paint em hot pink, I opined. I made one left turn after another, not remembering the street’s exit being this far underground. Forty levels. (Sue Mei’s squeezing my leg with her left hand distracted me big time). A blackened wooden hand descended at we approached the final exit and traveled further downhill.

She’d said she was hungry so we stopped at this posh place which happened to be around the corner from the parking garage. The golden tables were crowded with folks chewing steaks, lobster, and I thought I saw trays of caviar and escargot. After being seated, I found myself consuming more than I wanted. The food was soooooooooo good and Sue Mei, who just picked at her plate, was soooooo nice to stare at. What the hell. My stomach ached when I finally pushed back, stood up, and waddled to my vehicle.

We drove to the Saligia without further incident. I did a double-take when I recognized the desk clerk.

“I know you,” I said, “You were in the window seat near me.”

“Sorry, Sir. You’ve mistaken me for someone else.”

“No it’s you, Pops. Purple turtleneck? Black leather jacket? Some crazy-ass twilight zone story?”

“I’ve been working here since this morning. Couldn’t leave. Not with the storm and the plane crash. We’re booked full.”

“Sue Mei. This guy was on the plane, went to restroom, and never returned. You took his seat.” But she’d already departed for the room and didn’t hear my words.

“You don’t remember the storm, babies crying, and you bought me a drink. Jesus or Hay Zoos missed the flight.”

“Sorry.” He shook his head from side-to-side.

“The solved crossword. I found the same magazine with my puzzle from a week ago.”

“Again my apologies,” he said.

I shook my head and said, “I know it’s you, Pops. Don’t know why you won’t admit it.” I cursed. The guy was being a real butthead for no good reason, I thought. He smiled, displaying a full set of silver and black choppers. He then passed me the key to Sue Mei’s suite.

Although I didn’t recall him being so much taller than I, he looked down at me with bloodshot, pale gray eyes and said, “Those Twilight Zone Shows were great. They don’t make black and white shows like those anymore. It’s all Reality TV now. It’s nice you remembered.”

“I never saw the stupid program, you old coot. You told me about it on the plane. You were on that flight, damn it. You can’t fool me otherwise.” (But as You God are well aware, he had).

I pressed the elevator’s button, but instead of ascending, it descended. Forty floors. Getting to be a pattern, I’d too late recognized. Hers was the only door to open in this basement. What’s the opposite of penthouse, I wondered? Would it have nine letters, across or down? I’d have an eternity to ponder the answer.

As You Know, I opened the door and groped for the light switch. Couldn’t immediately find it as I entered and the door closed behind me. The bedside lamp clicked on.

“Surprise!” Sue Mei and the buxom flight attendant sprawled in their birthday suits on a blood red king-sized bed. Where had she come from? I’d never been one to look a gift girl in the mouth, so I threw my key on the dresser and began to disrobe.

“Come on, Mister Chad,” Sue Mei said, “We waiting you.” I surmised the supposed attendant had told her my real name.  Guessed it didn’t matter.

“I was detained by the desk clerk. He was.” ah never mind. Unimportant, A threesome? It was on my bucket list.

The phone rang like a prize fight bell, only in reverse, delaying foreplay. The last person

I wanted to hear from at this very moment was the desk clerk.

“Mr. Fallow. I’ve a message. I should’ve given you before handing you your key.?

Listen Pops or whoever you’re pretending to be. I’m, we’re busy,” I said with the phone cocked against my head as my shoes and socks were being thrown aside.

“The room is booked for a week in?”

“I don’t care. Just staying one night. I’m not a porn star, man. Got some age on me.”

“But sir. I think you should know?”

I cut him off. Easy to second guess myself now. Twenty-twenty hindsight and all that other retrospective shit.

“Here’s something you should know Pops. You never met me before. I never met you. Let’s swear not to bother one another ever again.” I slammed the phone into its receiver.

I know You frown on foreplay and sexual pleasure as an end in itself, so I’ll spare You most of the erotic details. More important, the pounding on the door has begun, and it’ll be a matter of minutes before they break it in again.

The women laid on either side of me with their tongues deep down my ears, canals, probing to kiss my hypothalamus. I enjoyed the moment which changed faster than premature ejaculation. I could feel their bodies? bloods boiling, like I was lying next to two female cauldrons. Searing. I attempted to get up, but strong fingers squeezed my testicles and I screamed. Couldn’t budge. Sadomasochism wasn’t on my bucket list.

I turned towards Sue Mei, pulling her tongue out of my lobe. Her tiny face had begun to bubble and distort; her almond skin started to stretch like cheap plastic. Larger and larger. The ‘flight attendant’ too; her boobs as well. (Didn’t think that was possible, but then I didn’t believe any of this was real). Their extremities had swelled up like giant blood-satiated ticks. Then, without a pin-prick to burst em, the ladies exploded blood, guts, bones bits, and brains all over me, everywhere. A horrid dimension to state the obvious.

“Hell no,” I remembered shouting to no one but yours truly. I smacked my face and ordered myself to awaken. Nothing changed. I slid off the bed and punched the front desks number. It rang and rang and rang without an answer. I’d remembered I’d ordered Pops not to disturb me, ever again.

I stood up and faced the full length mirror naked. My breasts had grown to the size of the ‘attendants’. Worse. I didn’t have a penis any more. Worse still. The knocking on the door had stopped. Three muscular brutes shattered it. They stopped my androgynous gazing and held me down on my still-bloated stomach. I was too old, weak to resist. One rammed his penis up my butt, while another stuck his rod down my throat. They took turns. Painful. Degrading. Very nasty.

They left. Before I’d awaken from my very black and white hell, Maintenance would arrive to repair the door. It’d be fixed before the savages would pound and kick it down again. They’ve returned at irregular hours, as they’re about to do again, to rape and sodomize me.

I’m asking You to reconsider my endless assignment to this torture. I never killed, intentionally stole, nor ever raped or child-molested anyone. Most of my sins were mental and verbal, not actual deeds. Review what actually happened my very last day on earth for bleep-bleep sakes. Note: I didn’t curse just then.

I figured this pen and paper wouldn’t have been left on the desk here if You Didn’t want me to use them to express my repentance. After all I’ve written, if You Still Believe I belong here, could you at least have Maintenance come and sanitize the walls, remove the bodies parts and rotted remains. I understand why I can’t have a TV. Some clean sheets? Running water would be nice, though I’m aware it’d flow out extra scalding.

A last small request. If someone could drop off several crossword puzzles. I’ve got plenty of time to work on them.

They’ve broken down the door again. The fellatio and anal sex have not been pleasant. To think I once put them on my bucket list.

Respectfully,

Chad Fallow

The end

A PG13 (perhaps even an ‘R’) story is unusual for anotherealm, but this one was too good to omit. Horrific fantasy with a comic twist, not a typical combination. I liked this one a lot. Hope you do too. Tell me about it on our BBS.

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