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Dumpster RabbittZ part two - Fiction Serial by Bryan Higby and Ricky D. Snyder

He found the cable remote right where he left it in the side satchel. Everything in its place. That way it didn’t matter how drunk a man got he always knew where his shit was. Be prepared, that was his credo. Rob switched on the Zenith. There was a report on one of the twenty-four hour news stations about a vicious animal attack in CarLowDen. Pictures of the old CarLowDen Golf Course grounds keeper, Kenneth Kennedy, flashed across the television screen then.

“Damn if old Ken don’t look just like that actor, McCarthy...something,” Rob said as he saw a reflection in the glass television screen.

“What the fuck?”

Rob spun around surprised. He grinned when he saw the striped feline standing on the coffee table.

“Tabby, God damned girl you almost gave old Rob here a heart attack. Come here girl. Let me rub that pussy,” Rob said, laughing at his own dirty joke.

The cat didn’t move. It just stood there on the table.

“What’s wrong sweetie?”

Now Rob’s brow narrowed. He didn’t like Tabby’s posture. The hairs along the cat’s back were standing on end. Rob leaned forward feeling something weird that he hadn’t felt since the desert.

“Fear,” Rob said pushing his beers to the rug as he swung his legs around.

The cat hissed.

“It’s okay honey, everything’s just fine. It’s old Rob, your man of the hour.”

Rob slid out of the Barcalounger and approached the cat. Tabby hissed again but Rob noticed, as he got closer to the cat, that Tabby was not hissing at him but something over his shoulder. He swirled around and saw something that he wasn’t quite sure what the fuck he was looking at. Rob saw it for a split second and then it was gone sprinting off into the shadows of one of the other rooms.

“What the hell?”

Rob thought he saw big bulging teeth, kind of like a cartoon rabbit’s teeth. The eyes glowed pinkish red in the dim apartment lights. The fluorescents in the kitchen and the Zenith’s television tube were the only two sources of light in Rob’s apartment. He was reminded of the news report of the animal attack, the vicious animal attack again, and Ken Kennedy’s death. Whatever that thing was it was fast. It knew how to hide too. Probably just some overgrown rat that somehow found itself stuck inside the janitor’s abode. Or, man maybe that trailer trash redneck blonde chick with all them tattoos on the second floor let one of her illegal pets loose, a beaver, or muskrat maybe. Shit yeah. That chick loved the carny life, brought home all sorta of exotic shit from the road. Big mistake for this thing. This janitor had killed varmints bigger and badder than an overgrown rat. Rob wasn’t taking no chances though. That’s what got you killed in the desert, man.

The former soldier for the United States Armed Forces, now janitor for this piece of shit flop house called The Bateman, moved to his rifle cabinet. Rob reached into his pocket for the keys, but...

“God damned, left them in the kitchen,” Rob cursed as he walked back toward the kitchen, but there it was again. It was a big mother too. Tall and skinny like a damned starved animal. Those bulging dagger teeth were so prominent that the only other thing Rob could make out in the thing’s face were its eyes. Red glowing crazy eyes.

Silhouetted in the kitchen door now Rob saw that the thing had back legs like a rabbit. He saw this a split second before it pounced on him.

“Oh shit!”

* * *

I was on the couch with a half bottle of Wild Turkey between my legs. Randy was sitting across the living room in a low seated high-backed chair. The chair and couch were my only furniture, castoffs from a church fundraiser two years ago. I’d used the couch as a bed more times than I wanted to admit. Too drunk to make it to the bedroom. The couch folded out but most nights I’d be too drunk to open the springy uncomfortable mattress anyway. The television was off and we had switched on just one table lamp.

“Well here’s to old Ken. May he rest in pieces,” I chuckled in a mingling of shocked lunacy and drunken stupor.

“Hey, John man don’t torture yourself. When it’s a man’s time, it’s a man’s time. You had nothing to do with Ken’s death,” Randy said.

“Coulda been out there watching the ballgame with him...Could have been there...”

“Yeah, and then maybe you’d be dead too. Massey’s Funeral Home would be fitting two coffins tonight instead of one. They’d be planting you right next to Ken in Chesterton’s boneyard. No man, shit just happens sometimes,” Randy said.

“Shit like old Ken Kennedy getting chewed almost to pieces? Insane shit like that just happens, because if you’re gonna tell me shit like that just happens in a small town like CarLowDen I’d think maybe you oughta check into the DenMark Asylum out on DenMark Lane bud.”

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