Madhere: Part Two

1 Jun

“Seriously, who the hell does their clandestine operations on street corners?” Todd muttered to himself. “I thought darkened parking garages were the new thing.”

He glanced up at the moon. Must be near midnight, he thought to himself. And my mysterious blackmailer still hasn’t shown up. Maybe this is all some kind of elaborate joke and Darren is going to jump out of the sewer grate and whip a banana cream pie in my face. Again.

Todd had no idea who had emailed him, what “WHAT YOU NEED” was, and why he was bothering to meet them, but he had learned long ago to pay attention when people started bandying corpses around. It’s what got him through many a family reunion-

“Wait a second.” blurted Todd. “I could have just, oh, I don’t know, called the police. What the hell am I doing-”

“Oh no, are you leaving already?” came a dry voice from behind. “Shame. I was just about to break out the tumbler of vodka and the nubile servant boys so we could get the real horrible decisions on the road.”

Todd whirled around, prepared for all kinds of unpleasant figures. He was prepared for a hulking behemoth who smells faintly of cheese. He was prepared for a tiny greasy man in a trench coat with conspicuously absent pants. He was prepared for a particularly verbose alligator.

What he got was a little white haired girl.

One of these days, something will happen that I will expect. ONCE. I’d like it ONCE.

Her white hair was clearly something that came out of a bottle, and she had a nose piercing to go along with her ear piercings. She was wearing a vest, with seemingly nothing under it (Todd tried ever so hard not to examine that fact) and a black skirt.

Oh, and she was in a wheelchair.

“Yes, it figures my blackmailer would be a tiny girl in a wheelchair.” Todd sighed.

“Why? Was there foreshadowing I’m not aware of?”

“No, I’m just not allowed to deck girls. And every time I hurt somebody in a wheelchair, Jesus cries.”

She laughed. “Come along, while I tell you why you’ll be hiring me.”

“I- guh- what?!” sputtered Todd. “Who said I was hiring you?! And, just as a side note, WHO ARE YOU?!”

She had already starting rolling along, and Todd had to catch up. “My name’s Nina O’Brian. You’re going to hire me.”


“Because I’m cute.”

That’s not even a– look, are you even a writer?”


“I think we’ve hit our first snag in the ’employer, employee’ relationship.”

Nina reached in to her bag, and procured a folder. “I’m an artist, twit. We’re like writers, except people actually LIKE us.”

Todd flipped through the folder. “This is… actually pretty good.”

“Oh really? Because, see, I was going to all the trouble of threatening murder and meeting you in the middle of the night and I only thought my work was so/so.

“Nobody likes a smart-ass, Miss O’Brian.”

“Yeah, but people love me.”

The duo turned a corner, as Todd pondered exactly how illegal it was to strangle someone in a wheelchair.

“So… what, you wanna draw for us?”

“Pretty much. On commission, mostly.” Nina grunted as she rolled over a particularly obtuse piece of sidewalk. “You need something drawn, you call me up, I draw it, you pay me, I give the money to my army of scantily clad ninjas.”

“Tell me you’re joking.”

“Of course. My army of ninjas are remarkably chaste.”

Before Todd could think of a suitably scathing remark, he spied a familiar face in the dark, heading down the street towards them.

“Huh.” muttered Todd. “I think I know that woman.”

“Who is she? Your fuckbuddy?” Nina yawned.

“No, new employee. A writer, just hired her today. Name’s Lilah.”

“Ah, fuckbuddy in training.”

“She’s also gay.”

“A lot of training.”

As Lilah got closer, Todd noticed more details. Namely, the streams of tears running down her face. (This is what some people might call “a sign that she’s crying”. Todd calls it “a damn good reason to run away”.)

“Um. Hi, Lilah! How’s it going?” Todd said lamely.

Nina shot Todd a look that translated in to “what the fuck are you thinking” rather nicely.

“Hi, sweetie.” cooed Nina delicately. “Are you okay? What’s the matter?”

“Well,” Lilah managed through the tears. “Except for discovering my girlfriend is a cheating hoe-bag and getting kicked out of my own apartment, I’m fucking peachy.”

Todd quickly inhaled through his teeth, making an odd whistling sound. He’s been on her end of the cheating train before, and it never ended well. Unless you count “Todd breaking in to his ex’s house and painting insults on the ceiling with molasses”, in which case it went fabulously.

“Oooooooh,” said Todd, stretching the vowel as though it would somehow show his sympathy. “Lilah, I’m so sorry. I know exactly how you feel. Do you have a place to stay? Do you need a shoulder to cry on? Can you still have a post written for tomorrow?”

Without turning around, Nina casually drove a fist in to Todd’s dangly-bits. The ensuing scream was audible only to dogs and certain species of bats.

Lilah blinked. “Um. Yeah, I have some friends who’ve offered me a place, but it’s not permanent. If… if you knew of some where I could stay…?”

“I think my landlord’s got an apartment or two!” squeaked Todd as he attempted to rub feeling back in to his crotch. “I’ll ask her in the morning, just try to get some rest!”

Lilah’s eyes finally gleamed with relief rather than tears. “Thank you, sir!” Then, she eyed Nina. “Who is she? She’s… not going to replace me, is she?”

Yes, it’s all part of my brilliant plan to hire writers just to crush them emotionally at their fragile moments, thought Todd sarcastically. Next, I’m going to release pit-bulls at your grandmother’s funeral. 

Nina laughed. “No, I’m going to be the artist. I don’t plan on stealing your job unless I get really, really bored. I’m Nina!”

Lilah breathed a sigh of relief. “Okay, thank you. Well… goodnight, sir, and Miss Nina!” With a significantly less sad look on her face than before, Lilah started tromping back the way she came.

“Well, that was exciting.” murmured Nina as she and Todd turned back the way they came. “Are all your employees like that?”

“What, emotionally fragmented and mildly paranoid?”


“Well, here’s your chance to find out.” Todd pointed ahead, to the very Darren shaped blur heading towards them.

“Oh. Joy.” Nina suddenly shouted. “HEY! I WORK WITH YOU NOW! I’M AN ARTIST, NAME’S NINA.”

Darren sprinted up to the two of them. “I’m Darren, and you have some truly magnificent hooters.”

Darren!” snapped Todd.

“No, it’s okay. They really are pretty magnificent. Look!” Nina held them up. Todd gritted his teeth. It’s a good thing I love my job, or these two would be in six dumpsters. Each.

“Um, Todd? You gotta help me.” Darren whispered, completely unaware that he has the loudest whisper recorded by man.

“No, I am NOT helping you deliver another baby again.”  Todd snarled. “Last time that happened, I couldn’t sleep for a week.”

“Naw, Miss Haversham moved towns months ago. It’s nothing like that, my apartment building just burnt down.”


Nina whistled. “Oh wow, this is a real red letter day for the municipality department. Two people lost their places to live in one night! Maybe I’ll crash a bus through my front room and make it an even three!”

“Quiet, you.” Todd growled. “Darren, how the hell did your apartment building burn down?!”

“Well,” Darren began. “You know that elevator that’s always out of order?”


“Apparently ‘out of order’ is code word for ‘meth lab’.”

“Oh, goddammit.”

“Yeah, and the bugger didn’t even share!”

Todd closed his eyes and wondered briefly how easy it would be to feed Darren to the garbage disposal.

It was a blissful thought.

“Darren, I’ll try and get you an apartment in my building, but until then, find some kind of fetid hole to crawl in-”

“A normal Tuesday night, then.”

“- and I’ll try to get you an apartment in my building, got that?”

Darren nodded happily. “Gotcha, boss! See you then. Nina, it was a pleasure to soon be masturbating to you.”

“Um… thanks?” Nina frowned.

The two watched as he skipped happily in to the distance.

“So… still wanna work with Madhere?” Todd asked. “I’m pretty sure most reasonable people would be sprinting in the opposite direction at this point, screaming for holy water.”

“Oh, absolutely. I haven’t had this much fun since I built a trebuchet in my backyard for launching squirrels.” Nina flashed a grin and gestured to her chair. “Plus, I was never any good at running.”

Todd frowned. “Touché.”


6 Responses to “Madhere: Part Two”


  1. Madhere: Part Five | A VERY STRANGE PLACE - June 9, 2013

    […] Parts One, Two, Three or Four, click […]

  2. Madhere: Part Six | A VERY STRANGE PLACE - June 20, 2013

    […] parts One, Two, Three, Four or Five, click […]

  3. Madhere: Part Seven | A VERY STRANGE PLACE - June 30, 2013

    […] parts One, Two, Three, Four, Five or Six, check […]

  4. Madhere: Part Eight | A VERY STRANGE PLACE - June 30, 2013

    […] parts One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, or Seven, click […]

  5. Madhere: Part Nine | A VERY STRANGE PLACE - July 10, 2013

    […] parts One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, Seven, Eight, click […]

  6. Madhere: Part Ten | A VERY STRANGE PLACE - July 12, 2013

    […] parts One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, Seven, Eight, or Nine, click […]

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