“Once in a Lifetime” by Talking Heads from Remain in Light
You wake with a start. Where are you?
This is not…you don’t sleep here. Where is your wife? Where are you?!
Lofted ceilings? Exposed brick? Not a hotel…you’ve NEVER been here before.
There’s talking outside your door. Laughing. Intruders? Abductors?
Spring from the bed, lock the door. Inspect the space. Inspect yourself. What’s going on here?
Pajamas. They fit. Just normal pajamas. Maybe you remember them?
No wedding ring. No impression even. How long were you unconscious?
Someone has worked hard. Lots of pictures of you in the room. With other people. None of your wife though. Don’t recognize the others. Photoshop?
Empty the drawers. Not your clothes. Close but not yours. Right size but…a little too flashy? A little too stylish, maybe?
Unlock the door. Ease into the hall. All the lights on. Bright. But the window in the kitchen you can see. Dark. Still night?
Three people in the living room. Laughing. Drinking. Playing video games.
Run to bathroom. Lock self in. Check medicine cabinet.
No sedatives. Just ibuprofen. Bandages. Toothpaste. Nail clippers. No sign of what they used. Nothing to help you either.
Kitchen. Knives maybe? Go there.
Cross the living room. The guys greet you. “Thought you were turning in early?” one shout. “Yeah, aren’t you going on that sunrise hike with Sandy?” Another says.
No idea who Sandy is. Hate their pretending. How dare they do...this to you and act so casual.
Swallow your anger. Play it cool. Smile. Don’t let it seem frozen. Act like you don’t know they’re liars. Act like you think they’re the friends they’re pretending to be. Give a little laugh even.
Someone calls after you. Tells you to have some bourbon. Everyone laughs as someone else says that usually puts you to sleep. Is that what they did? Made you drink? Drugged your drink at a bar? Bastards.
Yank out a drawer to your right. Find those knives. Try to take it slow. Calm your nerve. Making too much damn noise. Focus. Focus.
Next drawer. Just regular silverware. A fork, maybe. If desperate.
Voice behind you calls your name. Asks what you are doing? Suggests you relax. Laughs and calls you dude.
Wheel on him. Have him alone. Take him out? Improves the odds?
He continues to the fridge. So confident. Unbelievable, these monsters.
Your eyes see it. Baseball bat against the wall. Move quick. This will do. Has to do.
Swing hard as he opens his beer. Crumbles quick. Groans. Another swing. Blood. Wet slap. Silence.
Another voice asking if we are ok. Meet him halfway to the kitchen. Strike in the gut. Then the head. Quick flash. His hands move too slow. Strike his temple. Down he goes.
Last man. Terrified. Asking what you are doing.
Bellow at him. Accuse him of the crimes. Tell him you know what he and his conspirators have done. Demand to know where you are. How far home is.
He tells lies. Best friends forever he insists. Met in college. Claims you never have been married. Just started dating Sandy. So many lies. Demand answers again.
Now he’s begging. Says he’s worried. Scared. Tells you to put down the bat.
Strike his hand. He shrieks. Clutches it. Reiterate the information you need. You feel calmer now. You are in control.
He doubles down. Still claims his lies. Punish him. Other hand. This one you hit harder. Broken now, you are sure.
Guy outside of kitchen stirs. Leave man in living room, finish other guy. No more stirring.
Catch the last man as he tries to open the door with his brutalized hand. Toss him back to the couch. He’s crying and begging. Clear he will not tell the truth.
Choke up on the bat. You’ll figure this out when he’s gone.