The Breadcrumbs widget will appear here on the published site.
By Julian Drury
Dane had a good reason to begrudge his roommate. Brian, Dane’s roommate, was a medical student at LSU for about three years, then he dropped out in his final year because he developed a drinking problem. This drinking problem never went away. Every morning Dane woke up to beer cans and bottles laced all over the living room. Every table, every chair, and every windowsill held Coors Lite aluminum cans and green Rolling Rock bottles. Dane never liked Brian. Brian also never liked Dane’s dog, and Dane knew he was the one who killed him.
Brian poisoned Dane’s dog, and Dane resolved to get revenge on him somehow. Of course Brian never admitted to it, yet Dane knew that he was the only one who would have (or could have) poisoned his dog. It was confirmed by the vet that the dog ingested rat poison, mostly likely put in his food, or a treat. The dog was like a son to Dane, the dog’s name being Beagle. The dog was a beautiful black Labrador. Dane named him Beagle as a personal joke that only he understood. Dane was sure that Brian killed Beagle. The only question that lingered was how Dane was going to get revenge.
Brian was sloppy in the house, listened to his TV too loudly, and he usually complained if Dane had company over. He once threatened Dane with bowie knife, drunk from vodka, because he brought a friend over for an evening without a forewarning. Other times Brian would threaten Dane with his forty-four magnum, over complaints related to hygiene; doing the dishes, keeping the living room clean, turning off the air conditioning when its fifty-eight degrees outside, or the constant measure of flies and gnats gathering in the apartment. These incidents spurred Dane to secretly get a gun himself. Despite this, Brian killed the dog because Dane owed him forty dollars for some cocaine that they were supposed to split the price of. He started to harass Dane for the money, even though Brian knew he was out of work at the time. Dane decided to get back at him somehow.
Dane couldn’t kill Brian. That would be too much. Yet, he had to shatter Brian somehow. One day Dane decided the best way to hurt Brian was to have an affair with his girlfriend, Michelle. Brian met Michelle on Tinder, and Dane decided that was the best way to strike back at his roommate. Brian certainly had great affection for Michelle, and Michelle was also a drinker (like Brian) and lived in the apartment with him. Dane certainly gave her the eye a couple of times, but in no way was his intention pre-existing. Brian later got a job as an Uber driver, giving Dane the opportunity he wanted.
Dane seduced Michelle, after much whiskey and beer, which ended in less than poetic sex in Dane’s room, beneath a large portrait of Van Gogh’s Starry Night hanging above the bed. Apart of Dane felt bad, because he had no intention of having a relationship with Michelle. Dane knew Brian would find out eventually, and he wasn’t really sure what he would do when Brian did find out. Dane kept a gun in his room, a legally licensed one, a thirty-eight, but he had to be careful. Dane started looking for another apartment, so he figured it didn’t matter.
One day, Dane came to work a little early, which was unusual for his character. He soon came to me, and I could tell he was in a strange mood. Dane explained that he was out of ideas, that his plan for revenge against Brian failed. I was curious to know how his plan did not succeed, which he elaborated that Brian was unaffected by the affair. Brian found out easily about Dane’s affair with Michelle, but Brian didn’t care. According to Dane, Brian gave little to no personal reaction at all to the revelation.
Brian admitted to learning about the affair, yet quickly changed subject onto a topic related to bass fishing. Brian popped open a can of beer, and eagerly discussed how fun it is to watch someone’s hand get caught in the bass’ mouth, and watch the struggle that certainly follows. Dane did not reply to Brian, only nodding his head, perhaps frantically wondering whether Brian was planning something nefarious. Yet, Brian did nothing other than talk about bass fishing. Dane decided to ask Brian whether it would be appropriate to get a new dog, so soon after the death of Beagle. Brian told Dane that he should get another dog, yet the new dog should be a German shepherd, and that it should be named Sauerkraut. Dane neither agreed nor disagreed, but nodded his head and said that he needed to think things over.
Dane and I had been lovers for a time. It was an informal relationship, even though I tried to make things more serious between us. I asked Dane what his plan was, which he gave no reply. I recommended that he move in with me, yet Dane disagreed and said that everything would work out for the best. Dane then asked me if he could have a couple days off in order to make preparations. I was curious as to what he needed to prepare for, yet I did not ask him. I cared for Dane, yet knew Dane had to make his own decisions. I agreed and told Dane to take some time off and come back in on Monday. Dane seemed grateful, and then asked me if I thought it was a good idea for him to get a new dog. I told him that as his manager, I advised him to move before he got a new dog. Dane neither agreed nor disagreed, thanking me for my generosity with a gentle kiss, walking out of the building hanging his head low. That was the last time I saw or heard of Dane.