Though I intended to write a more humorous story when I set out to write May Day, this one's ended up being my most angst-filled story. Not sure where this one even came from, but it will take you through a gamut of emotions, that's for sure. Here's a little teaser and excerpt to tide you over until July when May Day will be published:
May Day by Bryl R. Tyne
His forty-ninth birthday approaching, Ed is expecting nothing more than his usual stiff drink and an anonymous fuck in the back room of Yancy's Crossings. What he never expected was to be picked up by two college students and taken for a ride that would change his life forever.
"You ain't old, Ed. You just need to get laid."
May. For me, was the worst month of the year.
"I'm taking the rest of the week off, Sue. And no—no emergency calls." I couldn't help but notice the look she threw over the rim of her glasses. Of course, every tenant and his or her neighbor would be calling in for AC maintenance before Friday; today was only Wednesday . . . like I said, it was May. "It's my birthday tomorrow, for Pete's sake."
As the file she'd been skimming was slapped shut, I hesitated at the door. "Cut an old man some slack, would you?"
"You ain't old, Ed. You just need to get laid."
A hundred needles pierced the back of my neck and I was sure from the heat, the sudden change in color finding its way to my ears was more than noticeable. But that was Sue for you. Great boss, don't get me wrong. She just never outgrew her tomboy years. From the warmth now, filling my face, the flush was nowhere near receding. Damn my Irish complexion. With my back still toward her desk, I asked, "May I have the rest of the week off, Boss?"
Hand on the doorknob, I waited. Her silent deliberations had always irked me, but I'd paid attention enough over the years to know she needed those certain moments to think she was still in control. After all, she was my boss. If she needed something that simple to make her happy, I was more than happy to accommodate.
After clearing her throat, she voiced her decision. "I can hold down the fort until the weekend. Randy'll take it from there, but you make sure you're in ship-shape come Monday morning. You hear me?"
"Yes, ma'am," I said, opening the office door, after a pause to wonder just what she thought I did on my free time. Lord knows, forty-eight—make that forty-nine, come tomorrow—and still eligible meant only one thing. I may as well start shopping for retirement living—with a single bed. I reached over and snagged a couple brochures from the table under the curtained window on my way out. Reading material for later, of course.
"And, Ed—Edwin . . . !"
Body halfway out the door, I popped my head back inside the office. "Make sure you leave your keys at the bar." Her wink told me, either I was a fool for thinking I'd pulled the perfect ruse all these years or she was a psychic. "And, happy birthday. Now, go on. Get out of here."
* * * * *
I liked my life. I liked living alone. And I liked driving the five miles east of town to Yancy's Crossings every Friday after work. I'd grown up with old Mick, the bartender. With promise of good conversation and Yancy's mature crowd, I didn't have to worry about making myself perfectly presentable either. Once in a blue moon, though, someone would catch my eye and I'd get lucky, getting my rocks off in the back room inside some willing ass or hungry throat . . . normally, it didn't matter to me if it happened or if it didn't, as long as when it did, they were willing. With this in mind, I brushed my teeth and reapplied some fresh deodorant that I'd pulled from the whore bag stashed behind the seat of my truck.
Of course, this wasn't Friday night, but I'd had this ominous shadow niggling me for the past two weeks reminding me, I wasn't getting any younger. I wasn't concerned with what special Yancy may be throwing or who the crowd may be; I'd had a hard week, I consoled myself, as I pulled into the lot, killed my Ford pickup's engine, threw my gear behind the seat, exited and locked my truck. I needed to unwind and in the worst way.
From the looks of the parking lot, the place was busier than a hornet's nest too. Real quick, I ran my fingers through my normally unkempt hair then replaced my hat adjusting it as I kicked the dust from my boots on my way inside.
Hadn't had a chance to get used to the lack of daylight when Mick hollered at me from over the bar. "Ed, my man!" Shoving his dishtowel inside a glass, he grinned as I sidled up and took a seat. "Don't tell me, is it Friday already?"
I shook my head and asked for the usual. He got busy getting my Jack and Coke—hold the ice. Highball glasses were for pussies. The place felt odd, with so many empty seats lining the bar, but I paid it no mind. Tonight, two things were all I wanted—a stiff drink in one hand and, if I got lucky, a stiff dick in the other. Either order would do too . . . Hank Williams blared from the speakers as I glanced around the place noting a much younger crowd than I was used to seeing . . . about now, I could really use that drink.
"Rough week, eh?" Instead of sliding the glass onto the bar, Mick handed me my whiskey. Good man. He knew me well enough to know I was more than a bit uncomfortable amongst tonight's patrons.
I no sooner downed it when a kid no older than one of my nephews wearing all black and with an earring through the corner of his upper lip squeezed up to the bar beside me. "Dude." His gaze meeting mine, he offered a hesitant smile, then motioned for Mick's attention. "Where's the can?"
Mick pointed behind the bar and to his right, and the kid was gone.
Harder than intended, I slammed my glass on the counter. "Pour me another."
After removing my hat, I pulled out my hanky and dabbed the sweat from my forehead. Mick's turn to shake his head. He handed me a refill, still wearing that shit-eating grin of his. "Ain't nothing funny with this old man, Mick." I downed the glass he'd just handed me in two gulps. I hadn't caught sight of anyone close to my age yet. Looked like, whether I wanted to admit it or not, if I happened to get lucky tonight, I'd be robbing somebody's cradle. I set the empty on the bar and motioned for yet another refill.
Link to May Day at Changeling Press coming soon page