Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Microstory 828: Spitting Image

It’s not uncommon for people in here to claim that they’re innocent, and don’t belong. I’ll be the first to tell you that I’m guilty...mostly. I wasn’t holding them for a friend, and I didn’t just find them on the street. They were mine, and I planned to take every single one of them eventually. It’s not like they go bad, or anything, so yeah, I bought in bulk. But the Divided States of Bullshit arbitrarily decided that carrying some threshold of product meant there was intent to sell. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Needless to say, I think I’ve overstayed my welcome in this joint, and I’m ready to get out. I was supposed to be paroled, but the committee didn’t think I showed enough remorse for what I had done, so they rejected me. These people, who had no idea who I was, what I’ve been through, or what I’m gonna do next; they chose my fate for me. So I resolved to leave on my own accord. Luckily, my cellmate feels the exact same way. Long ago, we agreed that there was no point in letting the rest of the prison know how close we were. We have so much in common, I almost feel like I met my husband the day I walked in here, and we were put together. Unfortunately, our races don’t mix well in this particular facility, so we have to pretend to hate each other. He’s in here for life, because of a total misunderstanding, and I don’t really have anything to lose anymore, so the plan is on. Or at least, it will be on, as soon as we figure out what it is.

He’s a master strategist, so I know he can come up with something brilliant, but that ends up being the least of our worries. Not long after my parole falls through, the system moves us both to different cells, in different wings. This place is real strict with the schedule, so now the only time I ever see him is when I’m leaving the yard, and his line is walking towards it. The guards watch us like hawks, so there’s no way to pass any notes either. They’ll just get read in front of the whole class. I don’t know what we’re gonna do, and frankly I’m losing hope, but every time we pass, he gives me the stinkeye, but with his left eye, which is our code for everything is going according to plan. I have to believe that he’s telling me the truth, and that he still has something up his sleeves. I just wish I knew what it was. Then one day, he picks a fight with me, which we’ve done on occasion to cement other people’s belief that we can’t stand each other. We don’t do it too often, though, because I still needed to be on my best behavior. Now that that no longer matters, we can go all out. We just start hitting and kicking each other relentlessly. Normally, the guards would pull us off right away, but it’s magically not inciting a riot, so they let it go on for a long time. He wipes his middle finger across his forehead, which tells me this is supposed to end with him in the infirmary. Then he growls in my right ear, which tells me I’m supposed to go to solitary for this. I start winning the fight, and he starts letting me on purpose. Then he does something that’s never been part of a code. He spits in my face, and I swear it burns a little. In a fake rage, I sweep the leg, and jam my foot against his neck; not hard enough to kill him, but hard enough for him to need medical treatment. I can’t get the spit off my face, and then I realize I shouldn’t even try. I start getting a vision of blueprints, guard shift schedules, and other relevant images. I have no idea how it’s possible, but he’s somehow provided me with the prison break plan, which now also includes his new cellmate. Now it really is on. Tonight.

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