Ooh, had his sex, unh, had his body,
Had him beggin’ for my honey,
Had him chained and screamin’ mercy,
Quench my hunger, suck my thirsty…
The ooh and the unh got him, as always. He didn’t give a damn if he was on the freeway, he was unzipping. Alice helped him get it out, but when she bent down to do more, he pulled her away by the hair.
He didn’t answer. He had seized his nobility in his hands and was stroking, hard.
Ooh, shared his lust, unh, shared his naughty,
We were bathin’ in the honey…
He was swollen to bursting already, and the song was still in its opening verse; the blood part hadn’t even come yet.
"Save some for me, won’t you?" Alice said.
"Shut up!" he panted.
Fucking Alice. She would never be the woman Amy was. Never.
"You’re gonna get us killed, Ricky. Here, let me have the wheel."
He did, finding leverage with his free hand, giving it all he had with the other.
When he went, he went with a bang. Just like Amy, who had left him chained to the door of the Mercury.
Untwisting the wire that held the flaps of the torn fence together, they made their way among the wrecks to the same heap of mangled metal they always did. Alice was more eager than him today, maybe because of what she had witnessed on their way here. He remembered a time when he literally had to pin her down. An erstwhile stripper, having worked in one of the seediest spots in the city, she had encountered all sorts. But she had never played what he and Amy had always referred to as blood games until he introduced her. He didn’t know where one went to find such sport; he and Amy had discovered it on their own, with a little unintended help from Amy’s dad.
The rear door on the driver’s side hung askew, open enough to slip a heavy chain around each side of the window frame, but little more. Bits of safety glass clung to rotting rubber, and in place of the vehicle’s one shattered window was a thick piece of plywood, bolted in place, ragged from the claws of hounds, particularly around the holes the chains fed through. Dried blood still stained the area where the door had once molded with the car’s body. The place where the damage had occurred, where the impact of the truck had been absorbed, was rusted almost through. Buck, Amy’s dad, said the driver and two passengers were killed. Having been hired on at the junkyard long after the Mercury was dragged onto the lot, Ricky took the old man’s word for it.
The appeal of the Merc went beyond its history, though. The car was back in the corner of the yard, about as far from the office as could be got. It had a huge back seat, everything two starry-eyed bloodlovers could ask for in an afternoon escape. But most attractive was the element of danger, pungent like old oil, shrill like stripped metal on the tongue.
Each day at closing time, the old man took a ride around the lot in the forklift, satisfying himself that everyone was gone before he let loose the dogs. He couldn’t see back in the niche where the Merc had been laid to rest, but they could hear him as he drove past. They knew they had minutes to attain the peak they had been teasing at for the last half hour or so, unlock the chains that bound whichever one was slab that day, and slip back through the rip in the fence. They had cut it close so many times, the old man thought nothing of his hounds racing off in that direction, howling their heads off. He assumed it was to do with the punks who lived on the next block, always pitching back tall boys and flipping people off.
The stupid old man probably never realized those were the very boys his daughter had formed her pop band with, went to fame and fortune with, leaving junkyard games to Daddy and Ricky and whomever else might want to experiment.
The visible links of chain worked at Ricky’s nerves and appetites as he approached in the company of his inferior replacement partner. He hated Alice and supposed eventually the game would go too far and he would kill her, leave her body for the hounds. The old man didn’t come back any more, no need to worry about him finding what was left. And if he did, he wouldn’t be able to tell her from the bones of the woman who started the whole cycle.
It was all cyclic. Ricky had watched the afternoon shows enough to know it was all fucking cyclic. TV was all he had to do before he found Alice at the strip bar; he had quit the junkyard when Amy left.
He looked at Alice and wondered why he hadn’t told her everything--not through the casual remark, but in credible detail. In theory it would only enhance the experience. Maybe it was impatience. He'd virtually had to force her the first few times, before she finally admitted she had begun to crave their afternoons. He didn’t have the wait power to let her come to terms with the fact that Amy, as a teen, had witnessed the old man in the Merc with his secretary. Amy had not just gotten her eyes' fill of their kinky backseat amusements--the plywood had no doubt been installed to keep out the gnashing, maniacal dogs, which the old man clearly liked to have about when he drilled the woman--she had watched the old man kill her.
From the lot's chain-link perimeter, Amy had looked on. It was night, no less than the fourth in a row that her father had made her let out the dogs. Terrified of them and their insanely possessive loyalty to their owner, she carried out his wishes from outside the fence, using a long rod to shove aside the beam that held the double doors of the ramshackle structure which contained the beasts. The fourth night she had dared to see what the hell was going on in the back of the lot.
The way the old man did it was an image that screwed itself in permanently; he had pushed his secretary’s head into the crack of the askew door, where the dogs could get at it.
Ricky saw it in his mind’s eye as he led Alice around to the passenger side rear, opening the door on screechy hinges and shoving her inside.
The tools were on the floor, scattered among the safety glass, screaming at him as always to be picked up and used in one fell, double-fisted stroke. He didn’t. He wouldn’t. Dead blood was no good to anybody. Besides, it was his turn slab. Alice got to work the instruments this afternoon.
"God, I loved watching you in the car," she breathed on his neck as she closed the locks.
Per routine, he tried the locks, remembering how he had tried them then, that last day with Amy. As always they were secure; he was bound; he was slab.
Alice removed her shirt, revealing the scarred mounds of her once beautiful breasts. She placed one nipple against the mutilated tissue at the top of his scalp, where the hair no longer grew. She thought the area a product of the game from the past, which indeed it was, only in a different way. That particular experience he would never share, in detail or otherwise. It wouldn't shrug off like Alice's electing not to believe him about his former blood partner being the same Amy who was known in the world of pop music as Honeygirl. Funny, if she only bothered to look outside the blood-tainted windows of her little dollhouse occasionally, she would eventually come across the former-junkyard-girl-rises-to-the-top-of-the-charts story. He’d seen it himself on a couple talk shows.
Yeah, he understood how an old man could grow sick of his dull, unimaginative partner. He could understand how one person might want to feed another to the dogs. This was why he did not hate Amy. He had forgiven her even before the unleashed beasts came howling and slinging their bloodthirst. He had loved her even as their snarling, salivating muzzles squeezed through the crack of the door, tearing at his head, which, thanks to her enviable, textbook expertise with the chain, she had rendered virtually immobile. He had delighted in her even as his fingers madly worked to get around the key, which she had left in the lock for him, like a last demented amusement. God did he love her.
"Come on," he said through his teeth. "Come on, Amy."
Alice was used to being Amy. She didn’t care. She liked the song too. She wouldn’t have cared if she had been presented proof that the Top Ten hit, The Games We Played, was silently dedicated to Ricky. Bloodlust just didn’t fucking care.
Ricky had long since fixed it so the old cassette player could be turned on via a direct link to the battery. The recorded tape came on now, somewhere between The Games We Played, The Games We Played and The Games We Played, the constantly recycled song of songs stolen from her debut CD.
"What do you want from Amy, huh?" said Alice. "A little of the cut love?"
"Yeah, Honeygirl. Come on with the cut love. Bleed me, you twisted bitch."
She held a fillet knife with a flimsy blade. It had come from a tool or tackle box in the trunk of one of the wrecks. Ricky used to go around with Amy looking through the cars, hoping not to run into any customers lest the compulsion to contribute to the bones in the back of the lot come over them. Alice didn’t know that, and didn’t care. Her addiction had sucked all the superfluousness that plagues the unseasoned right out of her. Not that she wanted any blood but his. Ricky was the dealer. Ricky’s was the best. No one detested her like Ricky.
Ooh, had his sex, unh, had his body,
Had him beggin’ for my honey…
"Open your mouth, Ricky, stick out your tongue." She liked the tongue because it healed so well, so fast. He had always thought it weak of her, but admittedly enjoyed it himself.
Had him chained and screamin’ mercy,
Quench my hunger, "SUCK MY THIRSTY…"
"What the hell?" It was Alice who spoke, reacting to Ricky’s start as well as to the voice that had intruded on their game. He watched her eyes dart from window to window, back down at his amazed, inspired face.
"Yeah the taste buds, mmm the tickle
Yeah the taste buds, mmm the trickle
Of the blood
Our married blood
Ooh, the blood
That is the honey…"
"Hello, Amy!" he announced, rising against the chains.
"You’ve taken a whore," she said, still invisible to them.
"Tired of waiting for the old one," he said, laughing. "Get in here, you. Where are you?"
He was looking at Alice as he spoke, pasting her with it…this confused child, sorry excuse for a lover.
Still Amy did not show. She was a voice. That voice that had titillated the world…
Quench my hunger, suck my thirsty…
"If I was the whore, I’d run," the voice said, "‘cause my dad’s coming and he’s mean."
Sufficiently frightened, Alice grabbed her shirt, backing off him. "Save some for me," she spat. "For me, you fucker." Then she was shoving open the door, and dodging wreckage as she ran away.
"Get in here, you!" repeated Ricky. "I’ve missed--"
Then he heard the barking. Her face flashed in the window, made-up like MTV, and the ooh and the unh and a tire tool in her hand.
As it came crashing through the window, the noise of the dogs rose to a not altogether alien crescendo of bloodlust.
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