The Mayonnaise Murders, Chapter 7, Scene 1

TMM1 Single Cover

Even as a little kid, Johnny Beardy was quite the stud. Or at least that’s the way he tells it. If I was telling my own story, that’s probably the way I’d tell it too, so who really knows, right? Then again, who cares? It’s a good story.

Anyway, as Beardy tells it, he always had an eye for the female figure, even back at that age when females don’t have any figure to speak of. But just the promise of a figure was good enough for him. While all the other little tykes were jumpin around inside the sandbox building castles and playing war games, l’il Beardy was gamin on the females. Got his first good feel when he was about eight. By the time he was 12 he’d already talked some young substitute teacher into letting him play with her tits one day after school was out. A few months later that same substitute teacher was back at school teaching that same slow-learner English class, and this time Beardy talked his way in a little further, if you catch my meaning. Yeah, right, that’s what I said. How you figure a slow learner can find a way to talk that fast? Must not be so slow if he can put his sentences together good enough to pull that off – if he pulled it off.

Movin  right along, by the time Beardy was 15 was when he found out he had the kind of  singin voice that could make him some money – and get him  laid anytime of day or night. Actually, to tell the truth, Beardy didn’t have so much of a  voice for singin as he did a perfect scream, the kind that summons all the pain and all the joy you’ve ever felt to come rushing through your bloodstream like a tidal wave. It really was a pretty amazing sound, and I never was one to like the rock stuff. But even I had to admit that scream of his was some kinda gift from above, or below, or somewhere. But it was definitely a gift, and it was definitely unlike anything you had ever heard before.

As Beardy got older and started to learn how to really use that thing, and after he’d started to get the hang of  how to wear that Rock Star status like a broken-in suit, he started to get the big time recognition – and the big time money.  With those chiseled angles and hard curves that defined his face and torso, teeth sparkling like some kinda toothpaste commercial every time he grinned, the kid was made to be on magazine covers. He was golden. His shows would sell out even the biggest auditoriums within an hour of any announcement that he was going to be there. He had the limos, the planes, the glitz, the glamour, the whole thing. He was a wanna be rock star’s wettest wet dream.

And that’s right around the time when he met Cluck. Wasn’t long after that when his life became about as stable as a penguin on roller skates. No one who thought they knew Beardy even had the slightest clue what the hell was goin on with him. No one who had been part of his entourage for all those years or who thought they had been one of his best friends just because he told them they were and let them ride his tour bus occasionally, ever saw anything like this coming.  True enough, they all had to know that the gravy train was gonna have to roll to a stop one of these days because even the best parties have to shut down eventually, but absolutely nobody thought the party would be the victim of ‘death by geek,’ which is pretty much what happened. One week, Beardy’s taking town after town by storm, getting rave reviews in the press after each performance and gearing up for his first overseas tour that was scheduled to kick off several months later. Then, one night after the final show of a three-night mercy gig in some small outta- the-way town out west  (Beardy called it a “mercy gig” because it was in one of those places where everything was too far away where the kids almost never got a chance to see a decent live gig), Beardy had just finished waving goodnight to a gymnasium packed full with several thousand sweating, desperately screaming small-town kids. He had left the stage, grabbed a towel one of his assistants had left hanging for him at a nearby railing on the way to his dressing room, and was wiping his face as he cursed and swore at the top of his lungs about how fucking hot it was in there and how much it stank and how this was the last fucking time he was ever fucking going to do one of these fucking mercy shows ever again…

Look, I better let him tell it.

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Writer and musician.

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