Sunday, 24 June 2007

Chapter 5 - Space Invaders

"Who lives longer: the man who takes heroin for two years and dies, or the man who lives on roast beef, water and potatoes till ninety-five? One passes his twenty-four months in eternity. All the years of the beef-eater are lived only in time.”

Aldous Huxley

August 1993

Bad deals were an occupational hazard for would be small time drug peddlers like me. With an obsessive confrontational attitude I was constantly on the look out for situations where I might have to stand up for myself, I often overreacted to things people did and said. Later I would regret my actions but sometimes I just seemed to let my temper ride me, to take me on an intense aggression power trip. But it always backfired on me in the end like a karmic boomerang of destruction.

Dan was not returning my calls. The trips I had brought were crap, “wouldn’t get a fly high”, and so I wanted my money back or appropriate compensation.

“Hey Dan, that shit I got off you is crap man, you realise all those trips are duds? So you must be goin give me my money back……right?

“Look Dave, its not my fucking problem, I just bought the shit off Mitchell get on his fuckin case, any way I don’t have any fucking cash, so get off me back ya fuckhead!” With that Dan slammed the phone down.

I was rather annoyed by this outburst. Closing my eyes I imagined what the Godfather might do under similar circumstances. Images of men in black, bursts of gunfire and bodies in mincers came to mind. In order to protect my honour I had to make this dude feel my wrath. It was an irrational need to assert myself.

The problem was finding out where Dan lived. Then I had an idea. I would pretend to be from a local video store offering free movie vouchers and in order to receive it he would need to give me his address.

“Hi there, this is MegaVideo and we are having a special promotion at the moment, your number has been randomly selected to receive a voucher for 10 free video rentals…..”

“Look man I ‘m not interested” Dan slammed the phone down.

I paused and thought doesn’t like videos hey this calls for a more innovative approach. I am very persistent and don’t like it when people are rude to me. They say that the customer is always right and I tend to subscribe to this viewpoint.

Joey was a friend of Dan’s I knew that he would know his address. You see Joey was a junkie just like the rest of Dan’s mates, therefore I might be able to fool the little tool. He would probably be off his face and thus unlikely to pick up on my cunning ruse. I would pretend to be Mitchell, the guy I usually scored off and a mate of Joey’s.

“Hi Joey, its Mitchell here,” I said

“Hey, Mitch, “slurred Joey

“I need to catch up with Dan, whats his address again, I ah , lost my black book”

“Ah, yeh sure, just hang on a sec will ya, ……………..ah its 27 Ray St

“Thanks joey, I really appreciate that man”

“Hey yeah……… ah no worries Mitch, have a good one ey.”

I put the phone down and a wicked grin crept across my face, as I thought about what a shock Dan was going to get. I thought of all the things Dan had done to deserve it, ripping me off, hanging up on me, speaking to me rudely, general disrespect, it was fuckin outrageous. But I would need some backup. I no longer had the strength and physical size I did 12months ago. Since ceasing the administration of anabolic steroids and going to the gym, I had shrunk to a puny 70 kilos. I was 90 kilos of solid muscle 12 months ago, but a drug and drinking binge of had soon consumed the last of my muscle.

When I was a kid I saw Superman the movie and in it he gives up his super powers to have the love of Lois Lane. But he gets beaten up in a bar and is hurt and unable to protect her. I felt like I was Superjunkie, ready to trounce the wicked dealers who ripped me off, to swoop down upon them with righteous vengeance. Grand a plan as this may sound it would require some backup, because as superjukie I was a less than awing inspiring sight………….

My physical power had evaporated I was weak, so I would need some help. Luckily Dan was a wimpy dude so he would not pose much of a risk, I would also have Reggie for back up, he would be just the guy for the job.

Reggie Chang was a nasty piece of work. But he was also very intelligent and sensitive. If you were his friend he would do anything for you, but if you were his enemy god help you. Even his friends were wary of him, he was like a vicious dog who could turn in moment if you did the wrong thing. He bought a lot of dope from me on a regular basis.

He was also an aspiring serial killer a big fan of Hannibal Lecter, and great guitarist. His parents made him study dentistry although he hated it.

“How you doin Reggie?”

“Not, bad jus a bit sore ya know, had a fight with some skinheads last night”

Reggie was obsessed with Kung Fu and had a very aggressive streak. He was also struggling with schizophrenia. His Doctor put him on Respiridone (an anti-psychotic) which he took intermittently, in between all the cones, trips, speed, cigarettes and alcohol he was into.

“Look, mate I need you to do me a favour. This dude Dan, ripped me off, you know those shit trips I got that didn’t do shit, well he’s being a cunt and wont give me my money back, so I want to go get it. Will you give us a hand?”

“Yeah sure, man, lets kick his ass!”

“Well, I really just want the money but hey if we kick his ass that’s ok with me.”

“I wanna invade this mother fuckers space alright, no shit fucking space invaders, we are man, invading his space to kick his ass.” I had images of the game from the early eighties, the table top machines, twenty cents a go, and Reggie sitting their wriggling the joy stick and hit the buttons like a man who’s just had a wack of top shelf go-ee. It didn’t bode well for our mission but what the hell.

“Yeah we can do that Reggie but lets keep focused on the goal, which is the cash.”

Now all we needed were some wheels, so I gave Jody a call. Jody was a chick who loved her pot. She was also very attractive, tall and slim with nice round tits and was studying law at UQ. She smoked more than most girls and this made her unusual. I mean some girls will have the odd cone but Jody was like the rest of the guys she couldn’t go without it. I had always liked her, but had never cracked on to her although everyone else had. Anyway she had a car and could usually be counted on to lend it out.

“Hey Jody how you doing?”

“Not too bad thanks, what are you up to?”

“Well I was wondering if we could borrow your car, for an hour or so today?”

“Yeah sure, what you doin? Picking up pot?”

“Well sorta, its complicated, remember those dodgy acid trips, well I need to visit the dude that sold em to me.”

“Visit him hey, well whatever, that’s cool, hey by the way you know that ounce I got off you last Thursday, it was a wee bit lite on.”

“Oh sorry about that, how much was it down?”

“Ah only a couple of grams, but you know it all adds up, hey. You got any shit at the moment?”
”Yeah just the usual, come on over this afternoon and I’ll fix ya up”

“Could you just drop me back a fifty when you bring back the car?”

“Yeah no problem”

“I’ll see you in a couple of hours”



So we borrowed Jody’s car, a shitty old Toyota and set off on our mission. The excitement was building.

“This little cunt is going to shit his fuckin pants we he sees us, and I cant wait to see that!.” I looked over at Reggie and grinned.

We drove the car up to Paddington on Ray st and parked the car about 100 metres from the house. From there we proceeded on foot. I knocked on the door and we waited.

The door opened and our little mate was looking straight at us. He was only about 5’8” and fairly slim. As soon as I opened the door Reggie started hitting him in the head, as our quarry moved to retreat I quickly grabbed him in a headlock and wrestled him to the ground.

Dan kept screaming and asking for us to stop but Reggie continued to pound him. Unbeknownst to me, once we hit the ground Reggie pulled out his trusty butterfly knife and started to carve up our prey, while I held him fast.

“Where’s the fuckin drugs you fuck!’, I screamed at him, still unaware of what Reggie was up to.

“I don’t know, please man I don’t have shit, lets talk about it please man don’t cut me please.” He was sobbing.

Reggie cut Dan’s face and he let out a squeal like a pig, and begged for us to stop.

“Oh shit Reggie what the fuck are you doing man, fuckin jeezus…………”

Just then our little friend’s babe came screaming down the hall, and ran out the front door.

At this point I panicked. “Reg! We gotta go, that bitch’ll call the cops, “, the combination of blood spattered victim and a fleeing damsel in distress convinced me it was time.

Our victim was left in a pool of blood on the floor and as we ran out the front door, back down the hill to our escape vehicle. We had purposely left it a few blocks away so that it wouldn’t be connected with the crime.

We ran as fast as we could down that hill. Adrenalin flooded our systems as we ran desperate to get away. As we got to the car the realisation of what I had done hit me and I felt my stomach knotting up with fear. I realised that I didn’t like violence, I was scared of getting hurt myself.

Dan and his mates knew were I lived. There would be retribution.

We drove to a Her Majesty’s in the city and ordered bourbons and I chain smoked. I rang my mate Sebastian, who I had known since primary school, I needed some advice.

“Hey dude, shit man, you wont believe this crap…”

“Whats up man, something happened, you got busted?”

“No nothing like that dude, just me and Reggie we took some action”

“What’d ya mean?”

“We paid a visit to that dude that sold me the duds, and bashed him, Reggie slashed his face with a butterfly knife”

“Holy fuck man! You crazy fuckin cunt, what the fuck were you thinking, they will be after your ass man, Jesus, where are you now?”

“Down at the Her Majesty’s in the city.”

“I’ll come down dude. See ya soon. Just stay there. OK?

“Yeah, thanks dude, I really need to talk.”

“Reg what the fuck were you thinking back there?”

“Sorry man I just…… got carried away, I guess, I didn’t mean to do it”

“You stabbed him in the face man, it was pretty blatant…

“Yeah I know I just didn’t mean to cut him so much, his skin was so soft……………… ”

“Great fucking mission hey, bash the cunt, but cut his fucking face, jesus fucking Christ man that is fuckin crazy. Just bashing him that would have been ok if we had got some cash or drugs but, that bitch of his ran out and scared the shit out of us. Now we’re going to have his heavy mates on our assess. Fucking Great!“

Later that evening I went back home with Michelle and we made plans about what to do.

“Hey babe there is a phone call for you I thinks it that dude, he sounds really wasted he says he wants to talk to you. “

“Tell that fucker I am not here”

“But babe, he really sounds like he wants to talk to you, please just talk to him”

“OK give me the fucking phone.”

“So man…….. what are you trying to do to yourself…… and your buddy…. really fucked me good hey? But why you wanna do something like that? You know I gotta come and kick your ass…..”, Dan sounded wasted like he was on smack.

“Look it was a mistake OK, just a little misunderstanding you know”

Panic set in, what the fuck had I gotten myself into.

“Reg I need you to stay at my place tonight and I want you to bring all the weapons you have, and get that big mate of yours to come over tell him its urgent. The fuckers called here this afternoon, before the number got changed. They could be over here at any moment. “

“Yeah shit man, I’ll come right over, bring all my weapons and shit, I’ll ring my mate Grant and see if he can come, he is a big bastard, yeah it’ll be cool man, hang in there, see you soon.”

There was always a steady stream of traffic on Stanley st at East Brisbane, every passing car was a potential hit squad of psychopathic junkies come to kick my ass.

Reg sat at the table holding his bowie knife Christine, tapping his foot continually, shaking the table as the vibration reverberated throughout the floorboards of the grand old Queenslander. He was waiting.

“Hey Reg have a cone dude, and do you reckon you could stop tapping your foot?”

“Ah yeah sorry man, I didn’t realise, its just a habit you know unconscious, when I’m stressed, I want to be ready for these fuckers if they come, you know, it could get ugly, I need to keep alert.”

We were all asleep by about 2.30am, but no one came to torment us. I dreamt of people chasing me and shooting flame throwers in the Sahara.

The next day there was a small story in the courier mail about a “Knife attack”, two men fled on foot. I cut it out, gruesome, yet somehow I was proud of the aggression. I had really freaked that fucker out, no one rips me off. But in the end I was the one who was running scared.

We had to move or face the consequences which would not be pretty. Or so I thought.

Karma – the blood I spilled and my blood would be spilled

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