The guy had to be dealing some kind of drug, not sure what, but he stood there under the awning of the small liquor store, just barely out of the steady rain that had started in the morning and continued all afternoon.
All day long numerous people had stopped by his little nesting place, and even a moderately trained eye could see that there was some kind of exchange being made. What fascinated Roger most was that people from all races, cultures, and walks of life came by to buy his wares, and he seemed almost like a chameleon, blending in to fit each new person who approached him, joking and laughing or being tough and ‘all business,’ it was almost like watching a master painter at work, each new person was a sale, a way to earn a living and possibly more, he was well trained in the game he had chose to play.
Most would not see the small trickles of fear with every instance where he had to act tough or hard as nails, most would not see the impatience and annoyance with each joke or round of small talk he made. That, of course, was due to the pain behind the whole show being played out on this sad little corner of an impoverished area of the city.
Roger could free him from this pain, but what then, could he face what always came next?
Standing up from where he was crouching behind a dumpster across the street from the dealer’s spot, Roger could feel tears welling up from inside him. It was always like this, this gift, this intelligence, it hurt.
Once on the other side of the street, Roger began to walk faster, he was starting to have doubts. Each time he did this he was right there with his most horrible demons as well as the other persons, most of the time the knowledge he imparted to them he felt impotent or incompetent to use. It was the mysterious irony of the whole thing, once he gave them the key to the door, he was liable to make his own prison more secure later on.
Roger was there now next to him, past the point where he could appear like he was just walking past, maybe even pass off that approach as a way to use the awning the dealer was under to dodge the relentless drops of rain. The dealer was sizing him up, getting ready to use his own ‘gift.’
“What’s good?” The dealer said in a dead tone, all the better to adjust his camouflage once he could hear my reply and know which mode to go into.
“I don’t know, you tell me,” Roger said, or thought he said, at any rate, once the process got to this point, it became surreal, like a psychedelic drug. You could be sure what you were seeing and hearing was based on true external stimuli, but you could never be sure of what you were actually seeing at all, a confounding experience.
Roger reached out and touched the dealer’s chest. His mind was filled with flowing images and sounds, mixing at merging at times, but then there were very clear pictures, ones that showed Roger what he was after. The dealer’s name was Michael but he went by ‘Rock,’ and his history passed in a slightly jumbled puzzle.
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