Adventure Guy


The night Farrell brought me to the old lady’s house on Monroe Avenue and Sixth, I wasn’t sure I could do it.  We stood there on the crumbling, fucked up curb and smoked a joint.  He was piss-drunk and nursing a broken arm from the rebellious dick with the baton from the lick last Tuesday.  No doctors, he had said.  No doctors and no goddamn words about it, yep?  So we stood there on that curb and kicked at the concrete drain next to her sidewalk.  Farrell picked at the duct tape and cardboard on his limb and let me know that he wanted to kill someone.  Not just someone, though, but this old bitch, yep?  How do you know she’s an old bitch, F? I asked.  I had thought it a decent question.  He grabbed a silver roll from his bag and tore another few laps of tape over his arm.  The sound of the tape reminded me of skinning my knees in the gravel when I still gave a shit about something, before this, before everyone in my house was burn-the-house-down mad and I was the kid with Choose Your Own Adventure Books and a ninja action-figure and the best backpack in the neighborhood to hold this stuff and more, much more, before the ice and the rest of the shit I can’t do without.  It was an Adventure Guy backpack.  You know that guy back when we were all kids twenty-some (?) years ago?  He had this cartoon show.  It was called Adventure Guy’s Time.  He let guys know that the edge of adventure was there for you if you wanted it, and every episode he would find a different adventure to go on, and he always learned something new.  That night, Farrell was the old kind of mad I understood years before I ever ran across him.  Nothing new to me.  He cut her phone line and lit the old bitch’s carport with his Zippo.  When she came out and ran toward the street he bashed her with his fucked up arm next to the fucked up curb.  We ran in and found her black plastic purse and some rings and left her in her green moo-moo by the street.  Farrell laughed and handed me a few bills.  It was Adventure Guy’s Time again.  Thank you old lady in green.

~ fin ~

Craig M. Workman attended The University of Kansas and graduated in 2003 with a Bachelor of General Studies in Literature, Language and Writing.  He later was admitted to graduate studies at The University of Missouri-Kansas City, and graduated in 2010 with a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and Media Arts. In 2009, he was one of three hundred fiction writers nominated in that year for The AWP Intro Journals Award, a literary competition for the discovery and publication of best works by new and emerging writers.  He is the 2012 recipient of the McKinney Prize for Short Fiction. He is an adjunct professor/lecturer of composition, American fiction and creative writing and an I-Ph.D. student at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Midwestern Gothic, The Legendary, Zombies Gone Wild Anthology, Stanley the Whale, Linguistic Erosion, The Eunoia Review, Midwest Literary Magazine, Kerouac’s Dog, Shotgun Honey and Literary Juice. He currently lives in Prairie Village, Kansas.