#197 A Man Swimming Underwater

by Eric Newcombe

Fractured. Brilliant; the mind which eggs itself on to transgress the limit.

The urgency to breathe was excruciating, yet he pushed. He was gonna pop.

“Psssshaw!” he came up gasping. He climbed out to realize his shirt and towel had been stolen, again. His eyes shot to the front desk; she had a crowd of girls around her, other swim instructors. He approached dripping, under their scrutiny.

“Give me a towel, will ya?”

“And I suppose you would like two towels?”

“Why don’t you just give me the whole stack so I can throw them.”

“Why don’t I punch you in the face?”

He leaned in. “Why don’t you?”

“Really?”

“Really. C’mon.”

She struck. Their coworkers laughed and gawked.

“Is that all you got,” he said.

She began belting him. His jaw was being knocked out of alignment; the cheeks were growing puffy and bloated. It grew quite unfunny.

“Masochist” was the word being thrown around. “He’s a masochist.”

Finally he grabbed her wrists and held as she shook and shuddered, until the thing subsided. He turned to them, all huddled close, and said, “I’m not a masochist. I just like to feel; even if it’s bad.”

In that comment she glimpsed the proud and pompous poppinjay that presided over his beautiful spirit like the misshapen layer of playdough she’d just spread over his face, and she could not stop her fist as it shot out to knock him unconscious. He did not feel it as he hit the ground.

1 comment:

Lamia Raisa said...


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