by Ben Hargrave
Daniel. Wow man, we’ve known each other what, a decade? Crazy to think we met in Mrs. Dargis’s Language Arts class that long ago. Seems like yesterday. Anywho, you’re my best bud and I’m thankful to be by your side, especially during moments like this. I’m going to remember today for the rest of my life. Now that the deed is done, I’ll take care of the rest. I’m tellin’ ya, you don’t need to help me bury this corpse – it’s your birthday!
Today is your day, which means it’s all about you. So you get to have 100% fun and 0% stress. The fun was us butchering that vagrant for the sheer thrill. Well, you only watched– I get it, it’s your first kill, that’s fine. But there’s joy in spectating, too. And if you think I’m going to stand idly by and let you pick up one of these Steel Knives Special Forces shovels to aid me in digging a six foot hole in a ground, on this, the 27th anniversary of the day of your birth– you’re dead wrong! Hah, dead. Like this tramp.
Look, I found some money after I pilfered through his trench coat, which means you get another present! Dude, don’t throw it on the floor– you were a great lookout, you earned it! They say cash is an impersonal gift, but I’d like to think I’m just giving you the means to get yourself what you really want. And when you said you didn’t want to make a big deal out of today, I knew this activity would be just the thing. Besides, how many people can say they got to snuff out a life while they celebrated their own?
Whew, the hole’s all done. Now it’s time to play Operation, but in real life. Although, this transient does look a lot like the guy from the game– a bowl cut, a jolly ol’ red nose like a clown, and filled with lots of holes! At least his don’t make a buzzing noise if you touch the edge, though that would be a helpful aid. Now, Daniel– before you say anything– there is no way you’re joining me in this skin-dive. You know Jenna would kill me if I got entrails on your brand new Canada Goose jacket she gave you as a present! So this blood’s on me!
No need to look so depressed, man. I know I look like I’m having a blast while I remove his kidneys and his liver– and I’d be lying to you if I said I wasn’t. But the fact is, what I’m doing is risky. If I mess this up, my buyer will likely kidnap and torture everyone I hold dear until I give him replacement organs. And I don’t want you thinking about family stuff when we’re supposed to be reminiscing about the past and thinking about your future. Who knows? Maybe a year from now you’ll be able to pull the trigger. Or swing the machete. Or at least touch the person we set out to murder, like, at all.
Hey, put that cellphone away! This is a secret party, remember? There’s no need to invite more guests. It’s just me and you, pal. Oh, yeah, there’s the body, too, I guess. Wait, what do you mean his name is Bernard and he fought in Korea and lost his wife to lymphoma and became addicted to drugs as a coping mechanism for the grief of losing his one true love? Ugh, I told you not to look through his diary! What did I say? I said, “If you look through his personal effects it will humanize him.” Now your birthday hat just makes you look like a real dunce.
I’m sorry. That was uncalled for. Let’s hug it out. Hey, are you sick or something? You’re ice cold and you got the shakes something fierce. Just let it out. It’s okay, you don’t need to be embarrassed. Puking after something like this is completely normal. It’s a natural reaction after you experience the adrenaline spurred by taking the life of an innocent. After a few more hunts you’ll start to feel nothing at all– trust me. And once that happens, we won’t even have to wait for February 14th to go and kill someone again. We could celebrate every weekend!
I don’t know about you, but I could use a drink. The thirst for blood always makes me thirsty for a cold one. That’s why I brought a sixer of your favorite beers. I did a mix and match of ones I know you like– they’ve been on ice this whole time. Aw crap! One of ‘em exploded onto Bernard’s–- I mean, the bum’s heart. Could you pass me a rag? Daniel?
Daniel! Daniel! Where are you running off to? Did you see another drifter?! Hell yeah! I know you’d come around! Don’t wait up for me, I’m right behind ya buddy!
This is the best birthday ever!
Ben Hargrave is a comedian, writer, and videographer living in New York who makes his own peanut butter (it is so good). Check out his tweets @HarHarHargrave – it would mean a lot to him.