Alegro

Alegro finds himself in a hallway. It isn’t well lit. It feels confined and red. He doesn’t see it. He doesn’t see red at all, but he feels it. The floor is bare wood, hard and old. It has felt the touch of feet before.

Alegro is wearing a white tracksuit, and he wishes he had chosen something else. He doesn’t know where he is, but he can feel that this moment is important to him. Perhaps not to you or to any one else, but this is an important moment for him.

His soul carries him down the hall. Zippers chafe his skin as he realizes he isn’t wearing any undergarments under the tracksuit. Now he really wishes he was wearing something else. Shadows stick to the walls of this hallway like wet sickly flies to the side of a Southern barn. Alegro’s shadow has left him.

To the left there is a door. It is painted with a strange insignia: almost an orange fireball with an excruciatingly thick black border. Alegro gets a feeling in his gut that it was a failed design from some shity design firm in a place far from here where there is a giant bookstore and where a man 10 times smarter than another man who wears a hat and yells things makes 10 times less money. His hand hovers over the doorknob. The doorknob itself looks old. This…house? Hotel? Wherever he is it looks like it was built in the 50’s or something. The shiny coating, that had once made this handle something for wives to boast about to their less fortunate friends, has all but peeled off revealing a dirty underbelly. The knob twists with a sick slur of profanity and then the door swings wide. Something shoves Alegro from behind and he falls face forwards.

Alegro finds himself on the grass. His hands caught his fall. The world is painted a sickly orange.

“Honey, you tripped,” says a strong male voice.

The presence besides Alegro grabs his arm and yanks him up harder than he would have liked.

“You’ll get your dress all grassy,” says the man.

Before him, there are five rows of folding chairs forming an isle. Even through the orange coating that has seemed to envelope this new world Alegro can see that the chairs are set up in a pattern: orange, black, orange, black… Alegro, finding that his feet have begun to move in order to keep up with the older man at his side, peers down the aisle in which he is quickly progressing.

It is just then that he notices that a band is playing. Trumpets and loud drums are banging some formless song made, no doubt, in a sixth grade class competition to create the best song in which the prize was a free ice cream bar of dubious quality. An invisible choral body chants, “Raw raw raw! Fight fight fight!” Alegro wonders what he has done to deserve such a fate.

At the end of the aisle awaiting him is a woman in a business suit holding an allen wrench which Alegro can’t help but notice is sporting Tim Allen’s face on its face and which she is tossing restlessly up and down in her hands. Around her neck she is wearing a tie furnished with images of little power tools and even calculators with tiny glow in the dark screens. Alegro shakes his head and tries to dig in his heels. The man’s grip tightens

“Don’t get cold feet now,” he whispers into Alegro’s ear.

Standing behind his wife…groom? to be is the most frightening figure. A dark, looming figure. A mass of a beast so formidable no one has ever heard it speak. The giant beaver in a football jersey is holding a bible and wearing a priestly pellegrina. He stands solemnly under an out of place white arch with formless eyes.

Alegro is pushed into place and is forced to face his future companion. Her face is foreign to him. In all manners is it foreign to him. Her eyes don’t seem as eyes but rather a screen through which a bevvy of numbers spew and refract.

The beaver produces the rings and hands them to Alegro. His heart beating out of its chest, Alegro accepts. Perhaps marriage won’t be such a bad thing. And no one would care if he got divorced, right? Everyone does it… Once, twice. Six times even is ok, right?

The beaver gestures to Alegro’s future bride’s outstretched hand. Alegro passively slips the ring on to the woman’s hand. Then with a second gesture the beaver invites the ring to be placed on Alegro’s own hand. Wowooweeezzaaa. Nails shoot through Alegro’s feet and he screams, but it was as if no one can hear him. He knew they could hear him. But he also knew they didn’t care. He was rooted. The beaver gleefully slips the ring over Alegro’s trembling finger, and for a minute the beaver is close enough to smell. Like an electric tractor.

This woman steps closer and lifts the orange veil from Alegro’s face. And though the world is no longer masked in orange, it appears just as terrible. Alegro bites his lip, and a touch of blood seeps out of his flushed skin.

Just then a trumpet sounds and a dozen cheerleaders in their short black, orange trimmed skirts parade out into the audience and start to make out with each other while the beaver reads from an Israeli postmodern novel.

Huh. Well that wasn’t so bad.

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