Deeds of Doods
Copper drifted deep into the night, bouyed by a much-patched innertube printed with faded images of Xcaret. Her red mane trailed from under her red ball cap into the soft-lapping water of the lagoon, her naked ass drooped into the cool water, a length of hanky ski rope moored her to Winston’s floating island, about as attached as she ever got to anything.
Her mind was addled beyond cognition, a situation of her own doing. Addle-pated was her vacation from the tyranny of detail, the persecution by memory. IWhen the past eats at the emotions and the future looms ominous and arbitrary there was just nothing she’d found like the eternal present of Ketamine. A little present for herself.
She’d just taken another massive hoover of the white flake she’d cooked out of the liquid she’d bought from the veterinary in Cancun where she was an old, if not exactly cherished, customer. She’d promised herself she wouldn’t do it all up this time because she needed the money if she was going to get to Boston and twirl her flames in that Aerosmith comeback video. She’d turned cat softener into a cottage industry in her past sweeps from Mexico to The Excited States, as she called it. Hitting critter pharmacies where she knew they could bet the stuff by the liter and not ask any recriminating, if not incriminating, questions. Then chaperoning it on a flight to the Big Scrapple, an innocent clear fluid in a water bottle carefully resealed with a soldering iron. True, tougher since 9/11, but she could still inject it into Kahlua bottles in her checked luggage. For the same old markup of several thousand percent. Precise numbers weren’t her forté at the moment, riding a rubberduck bob in the perpetual “Vitamin K” nulltone and watching the moon stutter along like a film jerking along at the quirky half speed of K’s noted freezeframe presentation.
She always felt at home on Winston’s floating folly, as good a metaphor for her itinerate life as anything. She felt swaddled and inviolable in the warm tropic night. No need for clothes here, for technology and gimmicks, for anything other than tepid water and holy fire in the damp black air. She leaned her head back until her ears were underwater, sang a few bars of her favorite healing song, “She’s got all that I need, pharmacy keys…” The water closed in on her hidden membranes, softening them and massaging them with a dull roar that grew more and more insistent, a throbbing tremor that contained with in it a high-pitched, bitchy whine.
Chimi, nee Agosto Cesar Ronchel, leaned forward over the grips of his JetSki pointing in irritation, “¡Por alla, pendejo! Right over there by those mangroves.” Chango was a dumfuk, all right, couldn’t even see in broad moonlight.
Chango (known to his rich, dickhead parents as Aquiles Dominquero or even “Quichi”) squinted into the darkness, revving his Kawasaki JS750 compulsively. He wasn’t really into scoping things out, by nature. More of an action toy. He didn’t see any floating island and had serious doubts there was such a thing. Wouldn’t an island just sink? He gave up and plaintively whined, “Why don’t we just go over there, then? Have a good look?”
Chimi, by far the most intelligent of The Lords of Xibalba, always stressed the need for reconnaissance and prior plotting, but thinking things out wasn’t exactly the long suit for his band of monied, hedonistic scions. And the growling chorus around him made it clear they were all into immediate gratification. He shrugged. “Time to run that pinche hippie out of our ocean, chavos. And teach that redhead twat why to respect what a man has hanging.”
A group howl answered that address to the troops, followed by the deep thunder of Corcho’s glasspacked Yamaha Superjet, then the ear-splitting screams of tweaked motors driving after-market impeller pumps to blast the gang across the lagoon, a dozen white roostertails of spumed water flickering in the moonlight as the pack loped greedily towards Winston’s hand-crafted homeland.
It was occurring to Copper, in that syrupy fuzzbrain K way that things were getting rather loud. And the water was being uncharacteristically rambunctious around her. And that therefore, she should take a look, or (ha, ha) think about these things. In some way, in other words, react. No hurry, was her feeling. And yet…
Then the boisterous action of the water increased dramatically. The main drama being that it tossed her little plastic/air donut violently into the air. The tube flipped, flashing her soggy bare ass to the moon, and as her head came briefly out of the water before crashing back in again, her ears were boxed by a cacophony of demonic shrieking in a piped-up, two-cycle mode that hammered at her so hard even the K couldn’t modulate it.
In fact, as she broke surface, grasping frantically for her non-approved flotation device, the Ketamine got mean on her, all pretense at psychic shelter vanishing in her frantic perception of what was causing the hellish choir of internal combustion overload. With her eyes exactly at sea level and her monkey-prune fingers clinging to the slippery surface of the tube, she was buffeted and buggered by the jet banshees, and horrified to see the dark shapes darting in from the night like an avenging posse of killer whales on crack.
She was very fortunate they didn’t see her in the water; something she figured out hours later. But her thoughts were hardly happy as she watched the Lords of Xibalba reducing Winston’s floating idyll to ruin.
The Lords were frustrated that there was nobody in residence at the moment. They had verified this by the simple, if uncouth stratagem of leaping their craft out of the water, skidding them across the deck and painstakingly created “garden”, and barging through the house itself, plunging back into the water in a chorus of catcalls and a shower of flindered belongings and building material. A couple of entrance/exit wounds of that nature and it was pretty obvious nobody was around to enjoy the spectacle. Pissed off that the hippy and uppity peliroja weren’t available to accept complaints, the Lords redoubled the deployment of their considerable talent for vandalism.
The demolition of Winston’s Isle became a competition in excessive reductionism. Lords circled the island, skipping sideways in tight turns that generated wakes that provided liftoff for their comrades to get a little sky. JetSkis soared up off these wavelets then pounded down onto the funky, flimsy beauty of Winston’s soverign nation of homegrown, smashing anything that presented under their plunging hulls.
Corcho rocked forward as he spun around his prow, the aft jet blasting the shattered remnants like a firehose. Chimi took three tries before he managed to leave the water sideways, cutting a broadside swath of wreckage through the rapidly disintegrating superstructure. Chango got the highest jump of the night by caroming of the slanted front end of Ojo’s Yamaha, actually topping the entire palapa roof, then falling through it like a cartoon anvil. The yahoos snatched up flotsam from the water, flaunting pieces of furniture and female garments as they circled like ampthetamine sharks, muching big bites out of the hated hipilandia.
Bobbing in their wakes, her head now tucked protectively inside the innertube, Copper watched horrified at the elimination of her haven. The K puppeted the waterbikes into jittering, frenetic motion freighted with limbic evil. She shuddered at the piston-powered hiphop and manic warwhoops of what she was perceiving as a troop of flying android monkeys, perhaps with a touch of armored pterodactyl. She would get around to lamenting the damage later, her present was now overdosing on a screaming, smoking, wrenching clamor of terminal velocity and ill-will. Somewhere deep inside her absent mind there was a whispered hope that sooner of later the Ketamine would wear off and the monsters would morph back to something normal. Hanging naked in the water, trembling with fear and revulsion, her heels moved unconsciously, driven by a memory from her disturbed childhood: click those red shoes together and get the hell back to Kansas.