He was a week away from getting his next monthly check and he was out of booze and smokes. To top that off, his roommate was being a pain in the ass. He had showed up last night covered in blood. He wouldn’t say who’s it was or how it had happened, nor how he had come to be covered in blood in the first place. Either way, he had to go.
Rex was watching television when he heard his apartment door open and close. “Hey Bro. You and I have to have a talk.”
Oliver came into the living room…followed by a boy who looked a lot like him. “Of course Rex. We can have a chat. Shall I pour us a couple of drinks?”
Rex made a loud farting noise. “There’s only water. So unless that’s good for you.”
“Oh, Rex, we can’t have that. I need my host happy and care free. You were kind enough to invite me into the building and into your home. I’ve been a terrible guest and I’m afraid I need to impose on your kindness even further.”
“What the fuck are you talking about?”
“Why, this is my son. His name is Frederick but I always call him by his middle name of Edgar. Say hello Edgar.”
The voice sent shivers down Rex’s spine. There was something wrong with the kid, he could see that right away. Edgar’s skin was pale and his eyes were all pupil. Rex looked a bit more closely at him and saw blue veins under his skin and the shape or a wing tattooed along his neck.
“Look man, he can’t stay here. I don’t have the room. Matter of fucking fact, I need you to leave. You can’t stay here.”
“Oh, you wound me Rex. I need to be here while I complete my work as do my son and daughter.”
“You have a daughter, too?”
“Yes, a beautiful girl named Lenore. She’ll be joining us shortly. You wouldn’t kick all three of us on to the street would you? How will we complete our work then? What will we do without you hospitality?”
“I don’t fucking care. What kind of father are you anyway? To have no home for you and you’re fucking kids? You stay here and eat my food, drink my drink…”
“Oh, I think I can help with that. Start yourself off with this.”
Oliver handed him a shot glass already filled with amber liquid. Where he got it, Rex didn’t know and didn’t care. He reached out for it, Edgar staring at him all the while.
“Little on the small side, isn’t it?”
“Oh, you won’t need more. Trust me.”
“Well fuck you, you fucking cheap skate. Down the hatch in any case.”
He threw the small glass back and swallowed the contents in one go; and immediately felt as if he had drunk twelve beers all at once. “Holy shit! What the fuck was that?”
“A beverage of my own making. And look-” He moved to the side and Rex saw his kitchen counter filled with cases and cases of beer. “I have brought you something else as well.”
Rex was stating to feel the old fuzziness coming back, the old haze that he had viewed the world through. He welcomed it back with open arms and embraced it. “Sure man,” Shit, was he already slurring his words? “That’s nice of you. You didn’t have to do that.”
“It was my pleasure. So it is all right if my son and daughter stay here as well? There may be a problem with my daughter, but I don’t anticipate much trouble.”
“Sure man, whatever. You got a smoke?”
“I got you some of those as well. Look on the counter.”
“Thanks man.” Then he slept
Edgar turned to his father. “You gave him one of the souls from the others.”
“I did, yes. In the form he likes the most.”
“That will kill him.”
“That’s the general idea. It will eat away at his insides until he melts from the inside out. It will be entertaining to watch him die. He is so needy and his whining is so bothersome. But come, we have work to do.”
And taking his son by the arm, he left Rex to his slumbers, unaware that a ticking time bomb was alive and eating him from the inside out.