The Baker, The Butcher and The Brewer – Part Four – The Brewer 27
The Brewer was grateful to God or the Devil (whoever was in charge of that bullet) that Meko didn’t shoot him in the face. Because wounds stay with you. He had seen a few unlucky hell members without most of their faces. Not the best way to spend eternity.
He fell dead.
He went straight to hell.
He made a deal with the Devil. (At the time the one-hour deals had become exceedingly popular. The bureaucratic circles of heaven and hell had adopted them for the sake of their own entertainment.)
By the time he navigated out of the bureaucratic pipes of hell and was a stroll away from his final destination, his plan had succeeded. He did not know he wanted to know what was the outcome for the parties involved. He received an offer for one hour of retrospective and whiskey in exchange for one hundred years of hangover. Which he took, to the delight of the demons that bet their money on that particular outcome.
‘After that we will discus your future in our company.’ Said the Devil. He was a master of the uninformative reference.
He handed the Brewer the remote control to his giant fireplace. (Sort of his crystal ball.) The Brewer could rewind or fast forward to see the past or the future while sipping on his favorite whiskey. One hour. He thought he made a good deal.
He was on the clock once again.
He learned that Meko was a long retired employee of the organization that helped the Baker. Meko owned them an outstanding blank check so they brought him back for one last task, to handle the Butcher. Who in his turn was giving them hell in the most anticipated art opening.
Well, what they didn’t know was that Meko had turn from a serious man to a puppy-loving schizophrenic-junky, a loose canon. He ruined a perfectly viable investment for the organization by killing the Brewer. They were directly connected so they pulled out and discontinued active communication. Went dormant.
He got disposed of in his turn, he must be somewhere down in hell. The Brewer made a note to visit him in hundred years for his own entertainment.
The Baker was always a decent guy, he didn’t want any of that. He let them have his old works and withdrew from the world to paint intensively again. Started drinking again and spend more time with his wife.
This whiskey is delicious, thought the Brewer. The devil had the best stuff.
The main order of business, the Butcher. He had an unanticipated change of heart and reestablished the order of his core principles. Aligning his believes to signify the change, he thought, the Brewer wanted to see in the world. He wanted to honor the artist. He believed he was God-sent to reestablish order and sanity to the mixed up world.
The Devil laughed uninvited from behind the Brewer at that bit, unimpressed.
The Brewer ignored him. He was on the clock.
As it must be clear by now the Brewer fell victim of his metabolism. He never built up enough adrenalin no matter how strict a diet he adopted. His will power was subtly subdued to the speed with which his infrastructure transformed carbs into energy. Which in turn made him sloppy.
He had the creativity and even just about enough wit but he lacked mathematical precision. He could not escape the dogma of accident of birth.
Smelled like shit in hell.
After the initial shock of the Brewer’s sudden demise things were bound to gravitate back to normal for everyone but the Butcher. The opening was postponed. As you already know he suspected that the Brewer was more than a janitor. The Brewer was flattered. He should not have been because that meant that his imperfections as a criminal were surfacing enough for the careful observer to notice. The Butcher was glad that attention had permanently shifted away from him. Naturally he thought the Brewer was assassinated because of his intentions to ruin the opening. Not because of a spontaneous flicker of a sociopath. Hence, he kept to himself.
It didn’t take him long, however, to realize that to the world, the Brewer was just a janitor fallen victim to a lunatic.
The Butcher went into the Brewer’s ex-closet, sat in the chair and contemplated on his speculations.
Like most great discoveries happen by accident, this one was no different.
Stay tune for next week’s installment of The Baker, The Butcher and The Brewer – Tuesday, July 26th
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more by PETER ODEON
photograph by Joseph Young