This one takes me back. Shane is one of the first authors to really grasp the RBY spirit. We are very excited to have him be part of our PushCart Prize series. I won’t give anything away, but this story really shows how a little problem can add up quickly…
Ist Das Ein Zwerg
by Shane Fraizer
Farah was swiftly becoming dead-weight. Swinging pendulum-like, I look down in fatigued awe as I heard her drunken snores escalate in volume. Her left arm locking with mine, we look like some overgrown-yet-diminutive Barrel of Monkeys; she is swinging freely and passed the fuck out. Ignoring curious and confused stares, I need to time my exhausted legs to move with her weight, but my own substance-fog prevents me from achieving any sort of synchronization. Fighting her swaying body, I stumble once–twice–shit–three times before I hit the lift bay. I’m too close. Her lolling noggin, covered by the green-and aqua Munchkin wig, isn’t enough to stop her head from hitting the wall. I can feel the crunch of head meeting wig meeting metal door – the vibration – even thru our simian embrace. Shaken but not stirred, my hobbit hostage-slash-drunken-purse ceases her nasal snoring for only a second – then she motors on. I guess twelve Altbier Cola shots will do that to you.
Stepping inside the lift I once again lose control of my midget-rig and bump her head on the door as I swing her in. A German version of I Touch Myself by the Divinyls is playing through the capsule; my unconscious charge starts to keep the beat with her snores. I want to laugh at it, but hold off for reasons unknown. In the 15 seconds it takes the door to open and close, my weed-faded mind recounts the events that lead me to this sad and sorry state half way around the world – the joint, the talk, the dare, and the wee woman in the Munchkin costume and the German shots that preceded the pass-out and fall; the flat, flesh-slap sound of a drunken midget’s body hitting the floor, the Munchkin shoes sticking almost vertical out of bright orange pants. Me and Eric, both higher than Pearly Sweetcakes during the Smoke Off; and of course me seizing this Golden Opportunity for a Grand Mistake.
Ding. The door opens. I hear the sounds of this side of Berlin – cars driving on cold, rained-on roads. People from across the globe doin’ what people do. Across from me, I see a poster for Iron Sky, one of the entries vying for an award this year. I gaze at the actress’ picture that plays the POTUS, drawn in by some reverie due to her Palin-ness. I think I would have stood there another ten minutes if it wasn’t for a car horn sharply echoing in the parking structure, its suddenness shunting me out of my own stupor. Ignoring Space Nazis on the moon and Silver Bears, I swing my hostage out of the lift, and await Eric’s arrival.
People waiting to get in my lift are staring. I should have taken the Ewok instead. At least then I could say it was a dog and drag him behind a leash. But no. I had to go for the Wizard of Oz trollop. Somewhere oooverrrrr the rainbowwww – this bitch is getting heavy. My arm is noodlin’ from holding and bumping this Little Person into transportation devices. Fuck it. I let her fall the eight inches of so to the concrete. She lands with a ragdoll quality that mimics a dead body, and falls silent; her snores, snorts and mumblings suddenly quiescent.
I freeze. I stare at her. Jeeziss. Is she breathing? I look for a rising-chest motion that betrays respiration, and see nothing but a rainbow-colored hot mess, lying prone and unresponsive on the second floor of a German restaurants’ parking structure. Eric pulls up in the rental, his slack gaze looking more loaded than mine. Seeing my face, he gets out. I bend down over her, trying to see any proof of life or consciousness. Why can’t I see if Mini Missus is breathin’? Holy Jesus, did I just kill a Munchkin? Do you go to Hell for that? Dammit, an Ewok would have bounced – I’ve seen them in movies jumping down from trees – but Munchkins, fucking Munchkins go splat. Ignoring Eric’s question as to what the hell happened, I lean closer to her head. Her bloodshot eyes fly open.
Unfocused delirium snaps to focused anger. I look up from the Munchkin-delivered head-butt that just laid me out and the whole country hears her loud, slurred expletives. Who knew a suddenly-conscious but drunken for hours-short person would have a forehead like steel and a mouth like a hooligan. The sting in my damaged head rushes in tidal-like, sweeping back the alcohol and weed buffers. The red-black pain hits my head and shuts down all rational thought and motor skills alike. I lay back down. All I hear is her yelling and cursing. I don’t see the size 4 green-and-yellow shoe fly into my face, but my nose bursts in blood. I cover up as four feet of vicious jumps on my prone, smoke-hazed head. The last thing I see between punches is Eric hovering over me with something in his hand. Is that little fucker taping this with his phone? I try not to squeal out when mini fists puncture my vision, and then remember she is only about 23 kilos. I shove the weight from my chest.
I think I hear Eric, but I’m not sure. Fuzzy on the draw and nothing in reserve, I try to sit up and assess. Rising just in time, I witness my brother quickly stumble over to the Munchkin as she is trying to get up off of her back. He hesitates for a few seconds, and he calmly pulls back his cocked fist. The next thing I can make out is a flying midget sailing over the water fountain.
The area, once filled with her sailor’s-grade cussing (I do think a few of those words said something about my dubious parentage, but I will have to get out the German-English app out later and figure that shit out,) goes quiet as she hits the ground (again) and is out – way out. Eric, standing over her, looks at me and simply shrugs as she slowly begins her snoring session once more.
I rise to my feet slowly, rubbing my forehead over a newly-tender area, wincing. Eric takes out a black foldy-thing and magically produces the large duffel bag that we left in the car. Confused, hurting, and suddenly un-high, I watch him unzip the bag, and start to place her prone little legs (now wearing only one bright green and yellow checkered shoe) in the bag. Seeing my confused look, he says calmly “Just don’t want this lil’ white hellion jumpin’ on my neck when I’m drivin’”. True dat, but I can’t form the words to agree with him. My lip is swelling from the kick and my nose feels plugged up with blood. I do manage to stand there dumbly; however, aching and convinced that maybe this particular dare wasn’t the right idea. It was this musing that enabled me to completely miss the two Segway-mounted polizei who rolled down the level-ramp and stop not eight meters away from us when Eee realized that we were not alone.
Ceasing his body-stuffing activities, Eric looks lost and caught. Our small guest, still knocked the fuck out, was half way in the bag, with her brightly-clad legs and one shoe sticking out of the bag. Blood was dripping down my face mixing in with the tears caused from the assault. My lip, swollen and busted, matches my scratched-up neck and slowly swollen left eye. I knew we should have taken the Ewok signing autographs. Fuck Munchkins. We must have looked like some touristy body-snatchers, robbing some graveyard from the Land of Oz, to transport our victim back to the real world for tallow processing. Turning at the waist, and still rubbing my head, I gaze at Berlin’s finest. Both of them, still astride their two-wheeled steeds, are bundled against the cold. One officers’ gaze seems tuned-in on our knocked-out package; I swallow and attempt to not look caught.
“Ist das ein zwerg?” speaks the stockier of the two. Eric and I look at each other, not knowing what to say. Standing mute, we both strike the pose of two guilty-ass, semi-black tourists caught doing something bad in Germany. Stammering out a slaughtered “hängen auf“- and holding up my hand in a peace-bearing gesture, I slowly reach to pull my phone out. Nervous, more than slightly stoned, and sporting a growing bruise in the middle of my dome to match the one on my eye, I skittishly search my screen for the translator. Typing in ‘say again please’ and repeating the words sage es noch einmal bitte. Looking annoyed, the officer, stepping off of his Big Wheel, says slowly, Ist. Das.Ein. Zwerg. Typing…typing…still typing…results. Is that your dwarf?
Why yes officer, it is my midget….
Things got a bit strange after that.