Hot Liquid / 18 November 1997

[A car is parked somewhere. APRIL is behind the wheel. JUNE is crawling into the passenger seat with two cups of coffee.]

JUNE: Triple sugar, triple cream.

APRIL: [firing up the engine] That’s me. Hand it over.

JUNE: Don’t hold it with your crotch. It’s seriously hot.

APRIL: I used to have a little cup-holder in here but it got stolen.

JUNE: Those bastards.

APRIL: [driving] My tapes, my Club, my maps. The spare change. The cup-holder. And they left a tuna sandwich in the glove compartment.

JUNE: Was that like a present or like—

APRIL: Like a final slap in the face, is what. Total disdain for my property. The maps were for Iowa, too. What the hell would they want those for?

JUNE: There’s quite a bustling black market—

APRIL: Jesus Christ this coffee’s hot.

JUNE: Drink it. You’re spilling.

APRIL: This stuff is like molten lava.

JUNE: I’ve heard scalding liquid is good for your intestines.

[they both snicker a little at this]

JUNE: Can you drop me off at the bank?

APRIL: We’ve got that meeting thing, June.

JUNE: Good Christ. You know you’ve got it all wrapped up.

APRIL: Shut up.

JUNE: April. The fellowship’s yours. I have it on good authority.

APRIL: Says who.

JUNE: Well remember that cocktail party thingie at Simon’s?

APRIL: Was that the one with the ice sculpture or the one with the like ten million losers?

JUNE: Yes. So Simon’s in the hedges with basically the whole Sociology Department—

APRIL: That should make for some interesting papers.

JUNE: …and Betsy’s massaging her martini into Dylan’s chest hair, et cetera, right.

APRIL: And if I remember right I’m drinking pickle juice straight out of the jar.

JUNE: One of those crazy ole nights.

APRIL: And Michelle’s got pocketwatches hanging from her pierced nipples.

[more mild laughter]

JUNE: Please stop. So anyway with the heads out of commission that leaves Mark P. to blab and pretend like he’s in charge.

APRIL: I am not hearing that Mark P. is your good authority on this, Junie.

JUNE: Mark P.’s on the inside track.

APRIL: Mark P.’s a total toadie. He’s a subhuman life form and the heads throw him misinformation to keep him happy.

JUNE: April, this is all one-hundred percent—

APRIL: He has a prehensile tongue. He has translucent skin. He only recently evolved into a multicellular organism.

JUNE: He saw the papers. With his beady, bulging, gross, nasty, buggy eyes. He saw your name up top. You’re the one.

APRIL: Junie, that’s crazy. God this coffee tastes like piss. Besides, you’re the one who’s in like flynn with the Professor. He’s in love with you.

JUNE: That may be.

APRIL: And your presentation got like a serious standing O.

JUNE: That may be, too. But the fact remains that you’re getting the fellowship.

APRIL: Did Mark P. really say that?

JUNE: That’s what he said and I believe him.

APRIL: Wow. Wow. I wonder… What if he’s serious? What if I really got it?

JUNE: Then you’re set baby.

APRIL: I am. I’d be set.

JUNE: Don’t you want to say something like, Well, June, it was really tough competing against my best friend … something-something…

APRIL: June, we went over that. We had our little agreement.

JUNE: I know it. Never mind.

APRIL: God. I feel all twisted up. God. I thought for sure they’d go with that horrible woman whose name we won’t say aloud.

JUNE: She’s a clumsy plagiarist. It was down between you and me, you know that. You look sweaty.

APRIL: I’m all shaky.

JUNE: It’s an exciting time.

APRIL: I’m having trouble … focusing.

JUNE: April? Maybe you should pull over.

APRIL: God. God.

JUNE: Don’t wreck us, baby. Pull over.

APRIL: I really don’t want to puke right now.

[she pulls the car over, moaning]

JUNE: April?

APRIL: [slumping against window, laughing feebly] That’s the last time I let you get the coffee.

[she shudders and dies]

JUNE: You got that right.

Joshua Green Allen

Fireland is a rickety old website by Joshua Allen.

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