Category Archives: Karl MacDermott

Fate Wears A Blindfold

I’m six foot four. I have a glass eye. I look like Steve Buscemi’s taller brother. By day I write film screenplays. By night I collect money for the mob. I am Manbag Bagman.
+++++And right now I’m going to be killed.
+++++All because of a dame.
+++++Marja.
+++++Polish for Maria. I call her Mire. As in quagmire. As in the Battle of the Somme. I wish she’d been a no – man’s land.
+++++I first met her a week ago. My boss, Ivor the Terrible sends me to Mountville Crescent, over on the Southside, to pick up a debt from Smalltime Limey. Smalltime Limey is a smalltime limey. Nicknames ain’t what they used to be.
+++++I blame the internet and social media myself.
+++++When I get there, there’s no sign of Smalltime- but she’s there. A goddess behind a plume of smoke. Well not that much smoke. Those e-cigarettes don’t cut it as far as I’m concerned. She tells me Smalltime has taken a powder. Blown town. But something about it doesn’t ring true. Like Smalltime’s hairpiece sticking out from that half-closed wardrobe door.
+++++“I don’t care what’s going on sister, Smalltime owes Terrible. Now hand over the dough.”
+++++Suddenly she lunges forward. E-cigarettes on human flesh? Child’s play. I push her back but with her left hand she’s already navigating towards my genital quarter. Major Tom is aroused. Before I know it we’re lost in a vortex of animal passion. I hoist her on my cement bag thighs, up against that half-closed wardrobe door. I thrust. She shrieks. Major Tom to Ground Control. Commencing countdown engines on.
+++++I withdraw after climax. She offers me an e-cigarette and Small time’s hairpiece falls on my still erect member.
+++++I start thinking. A man could do a lot with that dough. Like give him the time and space to develop as an artist. I’m tired of being an ‘emerging’ screenwriter. I want to exist in a post-emerged landscape.

***

We divvy up the 20G and go on the run. Not very far. Neither of us can drive. What are the chances?
+++++We decide to hitch.
+++++An hour later we are dropped off outside Tyrelldale. We find a small place where we hole up for a day or two. This is what happiness is. I’m writing. She’s smoking. And there is non-stop commencement of countdown engines.

***

One night in bed she thinks she hears something.
+++++“Maybe we should get out of here.”
+++++“No need.”
+++++“But what about Ivor the Terrible? Surely his men will be after us.”
+++++“No. He’s called Ivor the Terrible, because he is a terrible crime boss. He can’t organize anything. He probably doesn’t even know the money’s gone. You let me do all the worrying, baby.”
+++++I’m in love. And love does strange things to guys. Sometimes it hits you like a tornado. Other times it sneaks up on you like a tarantula. Marja is like a cross between a tornado and a tarantula. She is a force of nature with a rather small chest size.
+++++She looks over at me one evening.
+++++“What are you writing?”
+++++“A screenplay.”
+++++“What’s it called?”
+++++“Fate Wears a Blindfold.”
+++++“Oh. Let me guess. About some guy’s inability to control his destiny. That whole determinism versus free will stuff. Like some film noir. Sounds like old hat to me.”
+++++This doll surprises me. A philosopher, huh? And she knows about film noir. Not many people do anymore. A guy I know, once told me his favourite film noir was ‘Shaft’. There is so much idiocy in the world, nowadays.
+++++I blame the internet and social media myself.
+++++“So what’s the film about?” she wonders.
+++++I don’t answer. I suddenly feel inferior in her company. I don’t want her to think I lack depth as a writer. The screenplay is actually about a young girl called Fate who works in a circus and wears a blindfold during the knife-throwing act of her legendary father. The Great Daggero! Gee, maybe I’m wasting my time with this writing lark.
+++++I re-examine my approach to my work. Maybe I should take something from my real life. Write what you know they say. Maybe about looking like Steve Buscemi’s taller brother. With a glass eye.
+++++Next morning I’m on a roll. In my cocoon of creativity. That happens when you write. Don’t notice anything going on around you. Like when someone has a mauser 7.65 in your face. I look up. It’s Ivor the Terrible.
+++++“Your vaping vamp was in touch. She got bored with you. Did a runner. Took the dough with her. We’re going to have to kill you.”
+++++I look over at Ivor’s brother. Terry. The Terrible.
+++++“Wait a minute!” I say.
+++++But it’s too late. A shot rings out.
+++++I still think of Marja. She’s the reason I quit writing. Dumped my manbag the day after I left hospital. Ivor didn’t really shoot me in the face. More like the corner of the ear. Like I said, terrible at everything. I lead a normal life now. Well, sort of normal. I’m working for some lookalike agency.
+++++Why would anybody be interested in hiring somebody who looks like a tall Steve Buscemi with a glass eye?
+++++The world’s gone nuts.
+++++I blame the internet and social media myself.