Sayeth the lord

mSayeth the lord
by Dianne Lindsay

GIL entered the store with the confidence of Santa sliding down the chimney. There was an energy, a spirit to his step.

Gil’s life was back on track and he was more than confident the future would continue accordingly. The full moon shone bright, on his back as it reflected against the windows of the store. Windows covered with “sale” signs, drawn with the haphazard sweep of a utility paint brush in vivid neon oranges and red, cheap butcher paper it’s medium. Gil noted his personal favorite, JW, was available at his asking price.

This store still had the old-fashioned bells attached to the doorframe. Not the Doo?Doo! Of those “newfangled” contraptions. This town stood on the edge of forever, ignoring the world around it. The bells rang that truth. Clear and welcoming in a still atmosphere. This life in a Northern Town.

Gil pulled open the door, stepping in, scanning the store at once. Like customers do in anticipation of finding that one special object of desire. But his heart raced and his eyes quickened to an image in the periphery.

A man, facing the wall, his hands raised as one would with a gun poised to his back. Another man slowly turned his face showing his irritation and disappointment at his ineptitude, leaving the door unattended..

The robber slowly raised his hands, but Gil was faster. .

Gil ducked down, pulling up the hem of his pants revealing, only to himself, a 38 special standard issue gun. He engaged the device and slowly rose, gun cocked and raised.

The attempted robber raised his hand and Gil shot hitting the poor innocent fellow defending his store instead, square in the back of the head.

The robber winced quickly turning to watch the man sink to the floor. And just as quickly as he absorbed his good fortune, he realized his certain death, he could almost watch the second bullet, everything around it a blur, just that small silver missile heading straight for his face.


It was 1963 and we felt the world would freeze with John F Kennedy and the Beatles

Linda was a 13 year-old girl, not blessed with anything fantastic or even pretty in features. She had a big nose, big ears, and big butt. She was certain of this, as her brothers let her know whenever possible.

Linda had a crush, her first, on a friend of her brother’s Gil. The boys name was Tom, Tom Mahoney. She swooned when she saw him. Her 13 year-old heart felt this was what love felt like. She could not breath when Tom came over to their house to listen to Gil and his band play rock-n-roll n the basement.

Linda’s insecurities were far reaching.

Her family had moved from one end of town to the other when she was 12. She went from being a relatively popular girl, to an outcast. She did everything and anything to fit in. Things that at times were unacceptable, but she was desperate. Desperately lonely, desperately scared. And she was turning into a woman, and that was the most difficult of all. She had no one to talk to about this. She had a couple of friends at school, but they were in the same league as her and equally oblivious to human nature.

Her brothers made great sport of her. Brothers did this Why should her life be any different.

But it was …different.

She knew something was not quite right. Her friends had siblings, and they let up once in a while. They touched, hugged, laughed after they fought.

One night, Tom came over when no one was home. She invited him in, flustered, smoothing her hair back, brushing off invisible crumbs from her shirt.

“I need to get something from the basement,” He said as he came in.

And Linda was all too ready to oblige, leading the way to the back stairs, down to the echoing cement walls where the band equipment lay at rest.

She stood back to the side. “Ummm, do you want something to drink” she shot upstairs before he could answer, grabbing a glass out of the cabinet, rushing to the fridge pouring lemonade into the glass spilling someone the floor, She rushed back down the stairs. Tom was fooling with some of the equipment, studying the real to reel tape recorder.

It was eight at night, unusually quiet. Mother had taken the two smaller children with her to a friend’s house, the boys were conspicuously gone, and her father, well, those days he was never home.

She handed Tom the glass, he took it, put it down on the side table and pulled her close to him. She shuddered with fear and titillation. She could not believe her fortune. Tonite of all nites. They were alone. And finally, he recognized her. He was attracted to her. She went into his embrace.

“Dear God, thank you, thank you, he feels the same about me, as I feel about him” she thought “I have a boyfriend.“

She had no idea about sex. People thought she did. She acted as if she was a well-versed sexual being, but she was a virgin, and really, had no concept of sex, love, birth or the like. But she knew she “loved” Tom, and no one was going to ruin it for her.

And there it was her first kiss, too quickly followed by her first petting and then onto the bed in the backroom where Gil slept. Tom was touching her in ways that frightened her more than excited, but she was afraid to do or say anything. She was afraid he would not want to be around her again. And in her feeble 13 year-old head, she thought she would be with him always. So she let him do as he pleased, stopping short of actual intercourse.

He left her in a state of disrepair. She was scared. What just happened to her? She went to sleep that night both invigorated and frightened.

The following day, she went to school with this secret. The day stretched to eternity. She wanted to be home. She was certain, Tom would be there, waiting for her. She practically ran the eight blocks home and the house was filled when she arrived.

The band members, the external group that just “hung” and a couple of girls. They headed downstairs, Linda following. Gil was being rather kind hearted tonight. He usually ran her off, but not this time. Linda felt uncomfortable, the girls whispered too each other and giggled, the boys, Linda would catch them laughing as they glanced her way. The bell rung up stairs and Linda welcomed the reprieve.

“Uh,, Linda, can you get that?” Gil laughed

She ignored her sixth sense that perhaps something was a miss and she was the object of certain cruelty. She went upstairs to get the door. All concerns melted. There was her love, her one true love. Tom. She opened the door and immediately reached her hand up to run through his hair as she expected him to kiss her. He pushed her hand away, brushed past her and took to the cellar. Her heart sank. Yet she did not have the dignity to disappear. No, she followed him down to the prophetic hell downstairs. Everyone clapped as he descended the stairs, and he beckoned back with an “aw shucks”

Linda followed, in complete denial. Soon the air was thick with mockery, and she went back up the stairs to find sanctuary. She cried in her pillow, and made a vow to never ever let a man that close to her again. But the damage was done. All she could do is move forward.

The years went by, she had boyfriends, but this one incident, really one of many involving her brother, stuck with her, became a compulsion to suspect harm in everything she did.

Gil had made her the butt of many jokes, and he had brought certain terror on her. Yet he always came out smelling like a rose.

She wanted to tell her mother, but she did not dare. And Gil counted on this.

As the years went by, she became a difficult child, and within reason. Her parents fought, were divorcing and both wanted her to testify in court against the other. They did not ask “the boys” her brothers, they wouldn’t do it and they were old enough to make that stand. Her younger brother and sister, too immature.

She was all they had.

Soon social services got involved and she was sent – at once- to a foster home in the countryside of Kenosha.

She saw little of her family, and that was ok. She was happy, though it was another kind of life. She met a boy, a country boy. His name was Lance. He was handsome and he certainly loved her. But she did not feel as strongly. But, still, she was grateful to have him at any cost.

Gil decided to visit her one day. She was not an idiot, she knew he had something up his sleeve. She sat on the huge spans of lawn, a country home with several acres could afford a lush green pasture such as this. As she laid back in the soft grass, clouds full and downy peeking through the branches of the crab apple tree.

She heard a vehicle approaching, a sports car with the roaring engines of the day. The white Camero with orange cam, an “Indy Pace Car” car tore past her, but not fast enough. She recognized the car, it was Gil. She jumped up to get his attention, but it was too late. He’ll be back. And he was , about an hour later.

“Hi sis” what? She thought, hi sis? She geared up for the bullshit to follow.

“Where did you go?” she asked, “ I saw you speed by here an hour ago”

“Oh, I went to see a friend” he smiled, “of yours”

“Who” she whispered, but felt she knew

“Lance” he smiled as he swung his 6’’3” frame her shoulders in a hug. She didn’t reciprocate.

“Why…WHY GIL!” was he ever going to just let her be? Every day of every week of every year…there he was. Why couldn’t Gil just leave her alone? She left him alone, she didn’t try to ruin his life, she didn’t care to. What makes Gil keep on pushing, hurting ruining, even when the she has kept a safe distance and respected Gil? What obsesses a person to this, to actually surrender everything moral, just to make a point?

“Oh, I just think he needs to know certain things about you” he answered, you know, a safety blanket. Now with me entering the police department, I need to make certain past privacy issues are not brought up. It could ruin my chances you know” he took a deep breath in and smiled , his arm reaching out ,sweeping.

“This is truly beautiful, sis, truly” Linda took his arm and shoved it as heard as she could away from her.

“What did you tell him?”

“Nothing, honest I didn’t tell him nothing” he folded his arm, one arm up to his face, finger tapping his chin. “I just had a little recording, something I whipped up 2 years ago.”

“You wanna hear it?” Gil reached into the back seat, pulled out the Sony Reel to Reel. “Uh…where can we plug this in? And better make it secret, wouldn’t want the new mom and dad to hear.

She led him to the barn, but not without stopping to let him say hello to Mrs. Girl, her new mum.

“Mom” that is how Linda addressed her “You remember my brother Gil” Mrs. Girl acknowledged him.

Linda explained that Gil had a recording she wanted to hear and that it was that LOUD rock roll that she wouldn’t like. Mrs. Girl gave her okay, and they headed to the building.

He strung up the tape, making his way through the wondrous contraption till finally…laughter Linda jumped back and froze at the recognition of Tom Mahoney’s voice, Gil and Tom were discussing her.

“And all I want you to do is see how far you can go with her” Gil was saying, and Tom laughing agreeing. Then another voice, her brother Glen.

“What are you doing?” he asked.

“We are making a tape of your sis…”

Gil interrupted.
“You know Glen, what we talked about? Linda and Tom doing the …you know”

“No Gill, I don’t know, and whatever you do, don’t include me” Sounds of Glen ascending stairs.

“One day I’ll be a cop and I swear, I will bust him for anything and everything” Gil sneered “He will want to leave town and for once I won’t have to put up with his shit.

The moments she had treasured turned to smut. She knew Tom didn’t feel anything for her, but this was her first moments at what she had lamely interpreted to be love. Not only were they in ruin once and for all, but a man she loved and respected, now knew the dirty truth.

“And don’t fool yourself sis (already with the sis, she wanted to shove those words down his throat)” Gil went on, “should you decide to do anything I don’t like, including wearing a red shirt when I want you to wear a yellow one, this tape will be brought out for entertainment.”

“Do you REALLY think the K.P.D. will keep lowlife like you?” Linda asked

“I am not going to play it for anyone that can affect me,” He squealed with excitement, “only people that can affect you>“

“Are you staying for dinner?” Mrs. Girl peered around the corner.

“Sure!: Gil said as he once again made his way around his sister hugging her. I’ll be right back, need to put this up”

Gil went to the car and quickly shoved the contraption in the backseat.

The house is set back a good 120 feet from the rode, but from the dining table, guest scould somewhat see if people were entering or leaving on the logging road. From the road it looked like a Norman Rockwell setting, everyone with their heads bowed in prayer, when a light glanced across the room and died. The windows were opened and for a moment, Mr. Girl thought he heard a car. It was dusk. Dark early those days. But Mr. Girl had that sense about it and rose to go out and investigate. Gil, donning his “police Officer Demeanor” Linda was unimpressed and continued to enjoy her meal, as sour as it set in her stomach.

Soon the back door opened. “Nothing, I don’t know what it was, but it’s gone.” Mr. Girl and Gill made their way back to their hald eaten plates.

The meal continued in relative silence, Linda rose to help with the dishes, Gil made way to the front room to say his goodbyes, he left Linda relieved. But sad. When will it stop. God, this certainly must stop she prayed.

“I am sorry, I know he is your brother but I just don’t like that boy” Mr. Girl said.
“I feel like I need to wipe my hand off after he shakes it.”

Gil headed down 75th street back to the Kenosha proper, looking for a liquor store on the way when he happened across a new business in a small strip center before French drive.

He entered the store finding himself face to face with a “robbery in session”

A man, facing the wall, his hands raised as one would with a gun poised to his back. Another man slowly turned his face showing his irritation and disappointment at his ineptitude, leaving the door unattended..

The robber slowly raised his hands, but Gil was faster, using his skills, “shoot before he shoots you” .Gil thought.

Gil ducked down, pulling up the hem of his pants revealing, only to himself, a 22 standard issue gun. He engaged the device and slowly rose, gun cocked and raised.. Gil shot hitting the poor innocent fellow defending his store, square in the back of the head. The man crumpled to the ground. The robber winced quickly turning to look at the man sink to the floor. And just as quickly as he absorbed his good fortune, he realized his certain death,

The attempted robber raised his hand. This was his first attempt at being on this side of the law. It wasn’t worth dying over. He thought about his wife at home. He just had a new baby, this was their first Christmas, he wanted it to be special. He wasn’t thinking logically. He thought he could get a few dollars and that would be it.

Gil fired, shooting the young man in the chest.

Sirens came squealing around the corner, it seemed like there were 100’s of police officers, there were only a half dozen.

Gil stood there bewildered, a sort of pageantry over taking his mind. he envisioned the pomp and circumstance that would be his in this small town. Hhe realized he brought a criminal down in his tracks.

He had not yet absorbed that he killed an innocent person as well.

In slow motion, a police officer took Gil’s gun from his hand,. At the same time the officer pulled out handcuffs snapping them on Gil’s wrist

“Just a second” Gil objected

“Don’t say anything Gil, just don’t say anything”

Another Officer was kneeling at the side of the robber turned victim. He was taking a statement from him while the paramedics took the body of the storeowner away.

“He told us to not move” the Robber said “He said he would shoot and that we were to give him everything we had. He said he would shoot the store owner and blame me if I didn’t do what he said.” the man continued, “ I tried to stop him, but he said he was a cop and if I didn’t do as he said he was going to shoot the owner and blame it on me.”

“He’s lying” Gil yelled “he’s lying, I didn’t do anything“.

“Why are you arresting me?”

“Gil, we got the tape. A young man, Lance brought it to our attention. You were trying to extort him.”

Gil did nothing as his rights were being read.

“That poor guy, just in here minding his own business, baby, new wife. I pray he survives so he can give testimony.” The officer continued.

“Gil better hope he survives, otherwise he will be looking at the death penalty…times two.

Leave a Reply