I Punched a Girl: Part III
This is the part where I got a concussion. If Shelby didn’t think I was a total freak already, this definitely sealed the deal.
I looked up to see a janitor standing above me. He looked Hispanic but had a southern twang.
“You alright?” He asked. I couldn’t see his lips move because of his mustache. I kept feeling like I was sinking further into the puke pile.
“Of course I’m not alright!” I wailed. “I’m covered in puke!” And I was sinking in it! Puke quicksand… pukesand?
The janitor shook his head, sighed, and grabbed my puke-encrusted hand—without wearing gloves, I might add, which either makes him a really nice guy, which I’d later find out he is not, or a dirty, dirty… janitor. A dirty janitor. Janitors are supposed to be clean, and also wise. Like, the kind of wise old janitors you see in movies or janitors who are actually geniuses like in Good Will Hunting, and they talk about apples and have sex with girls. This janitor didn’t look like he’d had sex with anybody since the Cold War, which is kind of a random thing to reference, so never mind.
Point being, he was a dirty janitor.
So Dirty Janitor grabbed my hand and pulled me up. “I was callin’ at ya, ya know. I kept sayin’ ‘slow down, son’ and ‘watch out for that vomit!’, but ya wouldn’t listen.”
“Man, you gotta get that stuff checked out,” I said to him. “A few more minutes in that sand and I would have fallen right through the floor.”
He raised his eyebrows and said, “How hard did ya hit yer head?”
“What are you talking about?” I said. “I landed face first.”
“Yeah…” he said. “Ya know ya were unconscious for a minute?”
“Yeah right,” I said.
“Where’s yer family, son? Who’d ya come here with?”
“I… I can’t remember,” I said, and raised my hand to touch my mouth. It felt weird, like a mouth. I felt something wet… drool? It had to be drool. Drool on the side of my mouth.
“Eww!” I cried. “I drool! Oh no! Shelby will never kiss me now.”
“Son, that’s not drool, that’s vomit,” said the janitor.
“Wait—Shelby! That’s who I came with,” I continued to myself. But why was I there with Shelby? More importantly, where was I? “I’m in a hospital, right?” I asked Dirty Janitor.
“I think ya’d better come with me,” he said.
“No!” I yelled. “I need to find Shelby!” My ears started ringing.
I didn’t know where I was, but my feet seemed to know which way the lobby was, and they’d never failed me before, except for all those times they’d made me fall or taken me in the wrong direction. And there was Shelby. Shelby was so pretty. I liked Shelby. But oh my God—her nose! It was so bloody!
“Shelby!” I screamed over the ringing in my ears. “Ouch.” My head was throbbing.
“Cavan?” her bloodied nose said.
“No, noses can’t talk. That’s her mouth,” I thought aloud. “Why does she have a mouth where she should have a nose? No. Her nose is just bloody and red so it looks like a mouth. But mouths aren’t bloody… or are they?!”
“Cavan? What’s wrong with you?” Shelby stepped closer to me. “Oh!” She held her nose. “What happened to you? I don’t want to hurt your feelings, but you stink. You smell like vomit. Did you throw up on yourself?”
Who was that? Was that Shelby? “Shelby? Shelby!” I cried. “What happened to your nose?!”
“Cavan, why are you yelling?” I barely heard her say. My ears were ringing so loudly.
“Do you hear that?” I asked.
I saw her mouth the word “what” but couldn’t hear anything.
“The ringing! It’s so loud! Don’t you hear it?”
Shelby gave me the same confused look she’d been giving me all day. Her lips started moving but all the sound that came out was really slow like in the slow-mo sequence of a bad action movie. Was I in an action movie?
“I want it to be called ‘Action Cavan.’ If it’s not called by that title, I refuse to work on this script any further!”
“Cavan, are you high?” Shelby asked.
“Shelby!” I cried. “Your voice is back to normal.” Then I got really dizzy. I started slumping onto the floor. “Shelby! I’m so dizzy! Save me!”