October Writing Prompt
Bonni Rambatan


When I got home that night, I noticed the smiling jack-o-lantern in my front yard was crushed. That alone was strange because I don’t do Halloween. Mah Nina raised me not to believe in such frivolity and I never ignored Mah Nina. I acknowledged King Day, Black Love Day, Memorial Day, Juneteenth and New Year’s Eve. But even those in my own style. The first three with community service in the mornings befitting the occasion and afternoon festivaling anonymously in a crowd of my folks. For the 2 that represent renewal, I have highly memorable food, drink and sex with forgettable people. So I said all of that to say this: There should be no jack-o-lantern in my yard, crushed or otherwise. Nonetheless, there it was. But why?

I looked left to my neighbor with the children. Their yard was amusement park level decorated. Demons everywhere. Orange and crème and brown and all those other awful tones of autumn strewn about in what appeared haphazardly and random to me, but to their uptight asses was probably in a set and divine pattern. These people annoyed me to no end. The only thing I loved about autumn was football and for a man who thrives in the darkness, I also must live in the now so I’m outside one day on the front porch listening to the game blasting from my system while I smoke a cigar. 2 of the neighbor’s half a dozen are outside throwin’ the old pigskin around so I get up and offer to quarterback for both of them like my big brother used to do for me and my friend. Their dad had already spoken kind of crazy to me one day but I wasn’t taking it out on the kids, but both these little motherfuckers looked at me like I had shit on myself and ignored me like I was an ugly girl in a group of Beyonces. I was incredulous but I just said fuck it. Fuck them. And fuck they family.

But I couldn’t leave it there. I’m not usually easily insulted but these were children and children love me. When they don’t it has to be because someone taught them otherwise. And in this case that someone had to be that Cleveland Browns helmeted motherfucker they called father. No, they literally called him “Father” like in the movies. Shit was a bit weird to me for a Black family but I live by a coded discipline myself, it keeps me alive in my line of work, so I understood it. But still. I still needed a way to get some get back for the bullshit their “Father” pulled on me, and for him poisoning his sons against me. I knew what to do instantly but I held reservations…for about 5 minutes. I would fuck Mrs. Browns Helmet (I though opposites attract but this freckled faced fuck had found another freckled face to fuck. Go figure.) for revenge though her big tits were superseded only by her big ass mouth, figuratively and literally had lips that looked like stacked mattresses, and ego.

But my ego is Jupiter sized and it had been tarnished and nothing would clean it better than her personal juices. Now I’m an attractive man and I say that with no modesty. I don’t get told no based on my appearance. You’ve got to get to know me first to hate me but I am a lady killer; sometimes even literally. I was between jobs so I was home way more than normal so I started going outside with my shirt off every morning when she took them to school and every afternoon when she dropped them off. It was my twice daily run so it wasn’t like I was being obnoxious even though I definitely was. Long story short, I noticed a fairly hot but out of place mother covered in garrish peach lace staring at me between sips and laughs with her friends one night down in the Marina at one of my hotel bar hangouts. Orange Dream Martinis. She tasted just like Orange Dream Martinis. Probably because I poured one down her body from her neck to her netherworld the same way I had poured her, back arched pumps stretching but unable to touch the floor, over the back of the chocolate leather couch in the room I’d rented for the night. She’d maybe once said my name as her neighbor. She made up for it that night.

That happened one more night except this time it was the balcony with the ocean being the only thing wetter than her. Then radio silence. One week. 2 weeks. 4. No more morning and afternoon runs. No more hotel rendezvous. Ahhhh. Now I remember. She’d told me to call her Pumpkin. That explains things.

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