For Your Consideration

For Your Consideration

By M. A. Stirnaman

Who is supposed to help you bury a body when you murder your best friend?

Gregory’s body is splayed out on the floor, his head rests on a pool of blood. His forehead, right above his left eye, had blossomed open like a corpse flower. It would have been beautiful if not so horribly real.

Morning will be here soon. Cocaine and hard liquor makes time speed up, slow to a crawl, and occasionally stop all together. There will be questions. The press will have a field day with this. I have to make it better.

I stumble through Gregory’s house. I find the junk drawer, the catch all for the assorted shit in our lives. The little tube with its hard plastic tip sits between old batteries and an ancient phone charger.

I trip over Gregory’s legs in my rush to get back. My face slams into the ottoman. My neck and back bend at opposite angles. I stare up at the ceiling fan, dazed. I stand and find the glue, but not either piece of the broken award. I lift the coffee table that I knocked over and look around it, but only find toppled evidence of the evening debauchery.

I attack the couch, flinging cushions, ignoring the sound of items falling off shelves. Three powerful bangs come from the door, it shakes hard in its frame. The impolite prick shouts something from the other side.

I run to the door and return the bangs. “Shut up, shut up, shut up.”

“You need to open the door, sir.”

“You need to shove your head up you’re a— “

“We will be coming in.”

I scream and rattle my hands against the mahogany door. I return to my search. I glance around the room. Gregory, still wearing his tuxedo, the same as mine, but now with the base of the statue clutched in his hand.

“How did that happen? You’re dead, Gregory. Dead people don’t need Golden Globes.” I drop to the ground and peer under the couch. The golden sphere sits in the dust, still wet with blood.

“Shameful.” I grab the head of the award and crawl to my friend. “This isn’t how we respect the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, Gregory.” His fingers are wrapped tight around the marble base. “Both of our names are on that, don’t be selfish.” I reach for the award. Gregory turns around and slams the statue against my temple. I don’t know if it is the drugs or the blow to the head, perhaps both, that make everything seem to spin. I shake my head. My vision returns to normal. Gregory stands over me. He looks angry, and surprisingly, alive.

“Gregory,” I say, “you’re bleeding.”

“I know I’m bleeding, you psycho. You did this to me.”

I offer him the globe and the glue. “Can you at least take this and fix it? We worked so hard for it. I hate to see it in that state.”

“What the hell is wrong with you?” He knocks my hand away. The ball falls and rolls under the bookcase.

“Look what you did.” I try to get up. Gregory kicks me back down. I reach behind me, pulling the gun from the waist of my pants. I point it right at him. “I found this.”

“Okay, calm down. I’ll put it back together, it’s just a statue.”

Click.

“Shit.” I try again.

Click.

Gregory yanks the gun from my hand.

The front door shakes violently and then splinters open. Beams of light and red dots fill the room. Gregory, startled, turns toward the noise, gun in hand. The sound is deafening as the police answer with their own weapons. He falls on top of me, his ragged breaths hot on my face. His heart pumps hot blood out of his body and onto mine. I look for life in his eyes, but realize I don’t know what that looks like.

“Gregory, I don’t know if you can hear me. Blink if you can hear me.” He closes his eyelids briefly. “Good. Listen, you should really start dusting under your couch.”