Monday, 06 May 2019 14:37

Heroine by James Harris

Heroine by James Harris

I’ve always wanted to be a hero.

Or, I guess since I’m a girl, I’d be considered a heroine? Fitting.

I could tell you about my whole life story. Explain all of the events that brought me here, to this moment in time, in this particular place, but let’s be real. No one wants to hear another sob story.

I’ll tell you what does make me feel like I’m a heroine, with super powers, able to go back in time, save my own life, along with countless others.

Black tar.

Nothing in the world like it, let me tell you.

Since I was fourteen, I’ve been-

Shit, see, no one cares. You’ve heard it all before.

Sweet, defenseless girl tries Smack for the first time, tells herself, that it’s only once, or I’m just trying to have fun. Remember those stupid videos they made you watch in middle school? Just say no?

Yeah, well, now I understand them better. Now they aren’t so cheesy.

Despite all of that, I still crave the shit. I still feel as if it’s the best experience in the world. Nothing like it.

But the down that comes after the high? Like I got beat by Dwayne The Rock Johnson.

So, I always have to find a way to get more. I don’t want to get into the things I do, or did, in order to get high. Again, you’ve heard it all before.

What I do want to do, what I want you all to know, is what I go through on the best of days. My sanctuary from homelessness and despair. The only good parts of my life.

When I get high. When the black tar heats up to a sticky germ, ready to fly into my veins, when it reacts with whatever chemicals it needs to, my little girl wish of becoming a superhero comes true.

Nothing can stop me when I’m high. Villains come and try and start shit, but nope. I’m there, slapping them across the face, or stomping their balls on the pavement. I don’t take shit from nobody. I don’t care who it is. If you come up to me in my prime, I’m taking you down.

Everything looks better. The sky turns to the most beautiful shade of blue I’ve ever seen. My muscles swell to the size of melons, the veins unaltered from the needle piercing into them countless times, day after day. My hair returns to its natural blonde, the soot and shit washing off as easily as oil to water. Teeth white as shit. Feet smooth as fuck. Finger nails still attached. Mom and dad still on my side. Brother not dead. Respect still intact. Body unabused. Heart still warm. Life still worth it.

Heroin plentiful and… and…

The high comes down.

But I’m tired of it going down. I want to stay in the land where I’m a hero and the people collect in the streets to shout my name. And I save people from the unfair harshness of life. And I get to hold power.

But no one knows my name.

And I don’t have the ability to save people, I can’t even save myself.

And I will never hold power. Not without Crank.

One more time. I want to go back. And I don’t ever want to come back.

The land is beautiful. The dirty city streets are transformed to hilly mountain terrain. The cars appear as goats and the exhaust from their mufflers thick, yet beautiful fog from a nearby waterfall. It’s all too beautiful. I wish you could see it.

I’m going to go climb that mountain, and drink from that waterfall, and-

#

Louise Williams passed by a woman, slumped on the side of the theater.

Gazing into the alley that separated the theater from the Hobby Lobby next door, Louise called out, “hello, are you alright?”

She walked up to the girl, careful to leave herself plenty of room away from the child, you could never tell how a druggie on the street was going to act. She approached, a hand in her purse, firmly on her pepper spray. “Are you okay?”

She swore she heard the girl moan and maybe even saw her eyes flutter.

The girl, a small thing with long strands of black hair plastered to her skin, lay with a needle in her arm. Louise, a doctor at Mercy Memorial, threw her purse down and checked for a pulse.

She found none.

Additional Info

AUTHOR BIO: James Harris is an English professor who has taught at numerous colleges in both Maryland and Kansas. He currently resides in Lawrence where he and his fiancé fend off two demon cats named Todd and Ladybird. He is an aspiring author who hopes to break the mold of what horror means and is to the mainstream.