Title: The Downward Spiral (pt. 3)
Featuring: Jake Donovan
Date: April 27, 2015
Location: Ranch Porch, middle of nowhere

“You decided yet?”

That whiskey rough voice drifts from the shadows still, this time from off to the left of a wooden porch. An old hound dog waddles up the steps, scratching black and brown ears with a low whine and a huff before falling over on his side.  Jake ignores him, ignores them both in favor of staring off into the distance, so it’s a larger hand with a railroad map of scars that reaches out to pet the dog.

“Time’s tickin’”

Jake turns, eyes flashing wariness and annoyance, hands clenching into fists at his side. “You think I don’t know that?”

“Can’t be sure of nuthin’ with you these days.”

Eyes narrowing more, his face, devoid of paint takes on a reddish tinge. The flush of fury rising.  “And what’s that suppose ta mean?”

“What I said, noting more, nothing less. You’re indecisive. Can’t stay on the fencepost forever.”

“I know that to.”

A chuckle. Those scarred hands rub the old dog’s belly and the dog writhes, scratching its back on the flaking porch. “Then make a choice.”

“Fine, I choose to let you chose YOU decide what I should do. You take your fifteen years in the business and put ‘em to good use.”

Laughter, mocking and filled with scorn; fingers that never still on the dog’s fur. The hound rolls, tail thumping out a melody on the old wood, his eyes closed as he enjoys the attention. “Nope. Too easy. Your choice, you gotta make it. Gotta live with it too. That’s the way it works.”

“What the fuck do you know?!”

“Lots. But you ain’t ready to hear it.”

Jake huffed out a long sigh, shoulders slumping. “I don’t get you man. If you’re not gonna help me what the hell are you here for?”

“A sounding board. Someone for ya ta get pissed at and cuss out, but I’m warnin’ ya know, you throw shit at me and I’m throwin’ it back, unless it’s booze, then I’m drinkin’ it and you can go buy more.”

“Go figure. That’s all you are these days anyway, a drunk.”

“The politically correct turn would be alcohol infused muthafucker, if you don’t mind.”

“And what if I do mind?” Jake snarled, coming to his feet so fast he startled the dog who let out a woof as he rolled, shook himself and bounded off the porch in search of a rabbit or a squirrel to chase. “What if I want back the guy I used to train with? The guy who used to teach me shit? The guy who’d push me to my limits before I ever got in the ring?”

“Sorry kid that guy is dead.”

“Then maybe I need ta be buyin’ you a coffin instead of a beer.

“Long as it’s got Budweiser on the side of it, I don’t give a shit.”

“Maybe you should,” Jake hissed, stalking towards the shadow and all we can see is Jake’s face, part fury, part pleading and part that hopeful kid that came into DEFIANCE like fireworks on the Fourth of July. “Maybe you should lead by example, ya fuckin’ hypocrite.”

“And maybe I’ll lead somewhere you’d never dare follow, kid. Word to the wise, don’t keep askin’ for something you can’t handle. Yer gonna tempt me one of these times, and it won’t just be you who pays.”



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