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Hollow and Hallowed

A short story that I have started but have been unable to finish.

The man’s punch could make an ox fall to its chest, flat on the stone, head black in and out. Wouldn’t put him above it neither. His feet moved side to side, creating his bounce that he carried with every step, with every day. When his feet went forward sparks surrounded the ground and his ankles were in a daze of stars, staring up at the tripped ceiling with awe and magnificence. Soon the other man would be put in a similar way. The red on his hands was in two layers; one on the leather and one on his flesh. The fleshy layer smelled of musk and damp, sweaty rope, while the leather layer was a lethal, lemon-shaped, seemingly hundred pound weapon. With a swing came an arm and with an arm came a fall, ring ring and that’s it, that’s all. When he swung those bars of steel around his eyes seemed to turn to that good-ole red; dark, filled with hate. Perhaps with the other man, perhaps not. Perhaps unfocused, lackadaisical, spewing hate like a broken fountain.

There are fuckers out there spouting the likes of the ox-killer’s childhood being ended with the murder of his parents done by none other than red-eyes himself. This is only partly true. Leather-fist got in a fight with his old man at the age of fourteen. Old man was slurrin’ and spittin’ and cussin’ at the lady laid out like an old engine. Well she got up to cryin’ and hollerin’ for little lightning legs from around the house with a whimpering moan of desperation and fear, total fear. Fear so large the devil shit himself I bet you.

And the old man hit and punched and smacked and dragged and screamed and yelled and eventually knocked the lady out with a more rusty version of rebar arm’s swing. And the boy finally showed up in the front door with a bag fulla’ groceries, half fallin’ over. His mouth stayed open like the door and you could hear the sprinkler outside, it was finishing up it’s afternoon shift. Old man barked at him to close the door and he just stood there, staring like a dumb mule, lookin’ at his momma to make sure her chest was givin’ way up and down. It was, at least a little, last light going dimmer and dimmer, soon to sputter and take leave.

The boy threw the bag at his old man and ran out the door fast as a rocket, with water streamin’ down the sides of his cheeks, dropping behind him a metallic lead, but none never followed it.

When he’s in his home during late, lonely nights he starts wonderin’ would he coulda did about it. You can see in his eyes the thought of breaking that old fucker down to his knees with a few throws, but he jerks his head back up in remembering his age back then; he was a puny little squirt, and he would only grow into his final frame by twenty three. But with every fight he remembers that night, but not just that night. No, there were more cuts on his body, and more on his mind. Only a few scabbed and yellow. Every fight opened them cuts one more time, and they still haven’t healed.

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