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"I wish it had gone down different, Leo," Will said. "I really do." The nausea in his belly started to ease. "And they're all assholes," Will said, nodding over to next door.
"Assholes," said Leo.
"Nothing but assholes."
Leo leaned in, his eyes wide, and pressed his finger to Will's chest. "Yes," Leo said and he grabbed Will, nearly crushing him with his weight. Leo's smell surrounded him, of unwashed clothes and body odor. Leo squeezed him hard, and he said, "They're all assholes, Will. I know it that they are."
"I know," Will said.
"Even Charlene, too."
They cleaned up the room of cans and candy wrappers. Will was afraid of causing another scene, so they waited for the party to die. Leo slept with a pillow on his head. Will smoked all his cigarettes, watching his brother's chest move up and down.
In the early morning, on the way back, Will saw smoke and a crew of workers in hardhats in front of a house. There was a cherry picker. He pulled over and stepped out, making sure to close the car door quietly so to not wake his sleeping brother. He walked across the lawn. The grass had a thin pearly frost. No man spoke, every one of them focused on the cherry picker and the two figures in it. They were beekeepers he realized, and they stood with small metal canisters that leaked a steady stream of smoke. One wielded a vacuum and sucked strays midflight. Where the attic wall should have been, there was a gaping hole. A beekeeper yelled to look out and a huge thing fell — at first, Will thought it was a body — and it landed with a wet thump. Many seconds passed before he realized it was the honeycomb. It looked like a sick organ from a monster, thick and oozing. Will craned his neck upward, shielding his eyes from the newly risen sun. Pink tufts of insulation fell like snow around him. A few bees, the ones still loose, flew stoned from the smoke in search of something to do. Will watched the slow cascade of honey as gallons of it slid down the house, covering everything in sticky gold, and he envied how it would muffle all the noises from outside. A drone landed on his hand, and he let it crawl the mountains of his knuckles.
Lucas Church is a technical writer and editor in Atlanta, and, in addition to Creative Loafing, his work has appeared in Hobart, the Carolina Quarterly, and dislocate. He writes because he's not good at math. He also drinks too much coffee.
Little harsh, in'it?
Oh that's right...I DID say enjoy yourself.
Go to hell Kombo!
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