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You you you snuffed yourself by David Rice


Einzelfahrausweis came in trailing that bad threepeat. She got rat English off a rat primer at seven and a Master’s at nine.
     Then moved from Outer Düsseldorf to Akron Ohio with her father, an exsomething-or-other, and her mother, a NAVY SEAL, in the Fall of ‘93.
     Their barge ticket said “Riverboat Refuggee.”
     Came over with all their baggage but only a select brood. Debts, frenzies, Devo records stayed back. Russo-pissants, transfer fags, O’Desperadoes, bagged ladies, rack doctors, Eagle Scouters rode that barge in tandem. One toted a volume on the whole history and huffed a nozzle.
     Into the new house, a furnished rental, the parents receded.
     Einzelfahrausweis went to a school and they said get ready to learn. They were doing some Wyatt Earp and Emmett Till so she did some too. Sat at her desk the way a girl might. She just might. “I just just just,” she whispered, spitting the three mights into her shoulder pad.
     “What what what?”
     So it was foregone.
     The teacher was Mrs. Dryling but they called her Mrs. Wimp. It was a rumor she was a Dryling. Before she went pro she’d been a private eye and a suspect’s wife.
     Einzelfahrausweis called her Mrs. Dryling Dryling Dryling in exchange for all-around howls. Mrs. Dryling read the new-girl name off an index card.
     “Hey Nonsense Word, good job getting doom on day one!”
     The shouter was Stew, a natural man in his estimation. Others joined in. “You gonna fry Twinkie!” added the one they called The Expert.
     Yeah it went fast. There wasn’t like a long middle.
     The Expert bashed his teeth into an eraser and placed it on Einzelfahrausweis’s desk. “Hey Nonsense Word, ever read it and wept?”
     They all wore those ideal neckties for the job like it had been writ, potentially in Middle Age by Sir or Saint Th. Aquinas.
     Now it was just pushing play.
     “You ain’t even gonna hold out even Junior-length,” spewed Mebag, getting a shunt up deep to show it.
     They got out the scraper.
     Up popped another. They hoisted her and got her tie nice around a pipe, a ripe double-knot, then let ‘er rip.
     Those on the ground forced Einzelfahrausweis to look way up the dead skirt. “Real effing brave, Nonsense Word,” came the whisper.
     “So you like love death?” asked another, popping TOTAL DEATH RUB onto lips and T-zone.
     They got out the scraper.
     “What, hanging ain’t enough now?” asked a chub-boy removing his Adam’s apple with an Anti-apple while the others chanted, “Nonsense Word cut cut cut her throat! She cut her throat throat throat!”
     Mrs. Wimp was back. “Settle down you all.” She was back on the Robotox. “Why don’t we all take ten to scan the New Releases then go home.”
     It persisted like a one-track. Mornings Einzelfahrausweis found the ceiling higher and higher. And more hung way up there like bats, so close and tight. She thought there must be someone on the other side, the principal, leaning through a hole in the next floor to pull the hang-knots.
     Sometimes the principal pulled too hard and separated the heads. Then it was just Gap-bodies falling all quiet; heads sucked up and away into a Head Room locked with old Janitor Keys.
     “What do we have to be eternally thankful for now?” Poor Mrs. Wimp. “My brothers nixed me, my son won’t go, Coldplay walks off when I get there.”
     Dabbing her eyes with gauze and sipping her Robotox sample cup, practicing not shirking like they’d told her.
     “It’s just so sad and sorry is all. Such a sweet little thang.”
     Einzelfahrausweis brushed past the principal, next in line for it. “Nothing to see,” he told her there amidst the lingering material evidence of her desperate last stand. “Get to class.”
     When said principal ran into Mrs. Wimp at the Felt Room that night he slammed her into the dartboard. “Plug it with a Michelob. Don’t get all whatever over what couldn’t be helped. She’s alone with what she done.”
     “But, Sir, she’s – “
     Yep.
     Most were hung, gored, or creamed away. Einzelfahrausweis surveyed the damage. “Slice Me” turned up written in veins on her desk, a two-person job.
     The ceiling was rough and weary, dripping tallow and suet. A skin and clothe fest, a couple shoes.
     The last day featured solely Einzelfahrausweis and Mrs. Dryling. “I just wish I’d.” It was obvious what she would say unless she’d lost it.
     “I I I” replied Einzelfahrausweis, snagging the Robotox for the road.
     Conor Oberst or whatever the principal was calling himself these days was nowhere and lucky for him. She crossed the football field, where the grass had been chemical-burned to spell out “Fuck you, you you you snuffed yourself.” The same hung like a Homecoming banner across the school hull for the delectation of bus drivers and bystanding types.
     For a while she still wasn’t in Germany. She drank her Robotox and ate Twix and seashells. Tried to toggle the scale of years into the billions for fun but the crank seemed not attached.
     What she got to was nice. Grassy and hilly and the air new and with enough birds. You got your deer, your river trout. Trees lashed down. The nights cooler than the days but not all that cold until the avalanche.
     After the avalanche it stayed cold a while and then it warmed back up.
     
     
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David Rice is a writer and animator from Northampton, MA. He has new stories in Black Clock 16 and Identity Theory, and is at work on his first novel. He can be found online at www.raviddice.com and reached at raviddice@gmail.com.