Love Letter To David Lynch by Christopher Grant

The cigarette burns down to the knuckles on his right hand. He holds it between the ring and middle fingers. The pointer is fucking gone. Just fucking gone. All the way up to where fingers normally start. Nothing there.
He sees her looking at him from across the bar, more precisely his hand, and smiles at her. His teeth aren’t what you’d expect with all the smoking he does. They’re perfectly white. Like movie star white and not one of them missing.
It’s not that he doesn’t like sweets. And he doesn’t brush his teeth at the drop of a hat.
It’s just one of those things.
His eyes are hidden by black sunglasses but he’s looking right at the woman that was staring at his hand and he likes what he sees.
And who could blame him?
She’s a beauty. Red hair, shoulder length, blue eyes. The lipstick she wears is pink and the strapless dress she wears is the same color. Not hot pink but just pink.
He imagines what that dress would look like on his motel room floor.
And then suddenly, literally suddenly, they are there and the dress is on his motel room floor. She doesn’t wear underwear, doesn’t believe in it. She’s in his arms and her silky smooth skin is pressed up against his.
He doesn’t know where to start.
In the morning, she’s there, asleep on the pillow next to him. He touches her forehead with his right hand, the one with the missing finger. He brushes her red hair back with his middle and ring fingers. He kisses the nape of her neck and she stirs, she sighs, she turns towards him and she screams.
The man that she sees is something completely different than what she saw last night.
She jumps up, taking the sheet with her, covering her nakedness.
“Get away from me,” she pleads.
He understands she sees him for what he really is and falls back into the bed.
She grabs her clothes, rushes to the bathroom, gets dressed and gets the hell out of the motel room, without looking at him again.
Somehow, he thought it might be different on this morning.
He should have known that it doesn’t work that way.
Tonight, he’ll do like he always does. He’ll get dressed, take another look in the mirror before he leaves the motel room and he’ll stare at himself. The only give away will be his eyes. Other than those eyes, he looks the same as any other man out there. He’ll grab his sunglasses, covering the telltale, and go out into the world, in search of a woman that will accept him for what he truly is.
It’s the morning, as always, that he fears.
BIO: Christopher Grant is a crime writer and the editor of A Twist Of Noir.


10 thoughts on “Love Letter To David Lynch by Christopher Grant”

  1. This starts with the narrative voice of crime and moves into something altogether different. It is a fanastic piece of unsettling prose that broadens into an area which is timeless, I also love the title Christopher.

  2. Two things I wake up thankful for these days are damn fine coffee and the fact that Christopher Grant is writing more frequently. The title is exactly appropriate. Ain’t nobody who can bend reality, yet allow it to — almost — keep its shape, as good as Christopher does . . . well maybe Mr. Lynch . . . but isn’t that just the point? Reality pure as light but shaded to the dark side a bit more than a bit. Cool.

  3. Oooh, that is searing. So many cracking lines in there — suddenly, literally suddenly and the not hot pink thing. Somehow this is crime fiction to me even though there are no crimes… Guess it’s just that don’t-fuck-around voice.

  4. “It’s just one of those things” wow. I want to know more about this character! This was a great snapshot into one night/morning in the life of the “misunderstood” or the “psycho” We are left to wonder. Nice work!

  5. Paul, I think we all do or have known that feeling.

    Melanie, I’m glad you liked it and glad that you think it’s scary. The whole vibe that I was going for was for the reader to make up their mind what it was that the woman saw the next morning. Obviously, there’s something up with the man’s eyes but is that all that’s wrong with him? The reader’s mind can create something much more hideous than I ever could hope to, if that’s what they see in the piece. Then again, perhaps there’s nothing wrong with him beyond his eyes. I’ll leave that determination up to the reader.

    Richard, I didn’t quite know where this story was going to go and, about half way through, it just kind of resolved itself. I knew that I didn’t want this guy to be responsible for the woman’s death but that there had to be a reason that he didn’t wind up with her.

    AJ, I thank you for the kind words. I’m having a lot of fun creating these new stories that I am and I’m glad to be writing as frequently as I’m able to.

    Chris, I like the fact that you see this as crime fiction even though nothing criminal happens. This is what I was talking about further up the response about the story being in the eye of the beholder. I think I probably initially set out to make this hew a little closer to crime but, as I said, I didn’t know where it was going except that I didn’t want him to kill the woman.

    Thanks to all of you and I’m glad you enjoyed it and thanks, of course, to Jason Michel for accepting the story in the first place.

  6. A fantastic piece Christopher which says so much by saying so little. Love the way you wandered from crime to somewher much darker.

    1. Graham,

      Saying so much by saying so little was the challenge of the story. As I said above, I wanted to leave whatever it was that the woman saw up to the reader. I also knew that I didn’t want the guy killing the woman (or vice versa). The horror of the piece was what I was saying and what I wasn’t and whatever the audience could conjure up for themselves all smashing together.

      Glad you enjoyed it.

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