I heard Lou Murray beat his girlfriend blind on Thursday and I spent the next three days not sleeping, not showering, just driving the unlit streets.
I saw Lou on Sunday morning buying a case of Miller Lite and some franks for the Saints game. I got him to my car by flashing my badge.
“I’m clean as a pastor’s sheets, Jari,” Lou tells me.
“I got evidence on you right here,” I said and opened the cruiser’s trunk and when he looked into the empty space, I hit him with a brick until his eyes quit trying to open.
By noon, I had him set up in his one-barrel shotgun house.
I laid him by the gold skirt he’d bought his girl. I taped his neck down next to the cell phone he’d sent 200 threats and 400 apologies from. I spread under him the flannel comforter they’d slept together through 5 domestic battery charges and 2 hospital visits.
By six, I took Lou apart.
I dumped the scalpel I’d slit his knees’ tendons with into the sewer grate where the kids splash around in sepsis. I kept the blowtorch that burned his fingers off. I washed the pliers I’d removed his eyes with.
By eight, I joined Hakk on our couch.
“I taped the game you missed,” Hakk said.
But when he offered me a beer, my mind couldn’t stay blank. When he paused the game three times to ask what was wrong, I couldn’t tell him. When he slid his arm around me, it felt like a flannel comforter, and I shrugged it off.
“I’m going to sleep,” Hakk said at last, headed for our bed.
“You would,” I said.
I lay down on the couch and stared at the unlit streets until my eyes were sure they would stay blank and finally closed.