“Those Magic Muffins” – Final Part

* sorry about the delay in releasing / finishing the rest of the story, but I have been pretty busy lately. So at long last here is the last part of the ‘short’ story…..

Jimmy suddenly woke up with a start on his living room couch. He had no idea how long he had been sleeping. And he had no idea why he had slept on the couch so early in the morning. It was afternoon now and Jimmy was a little off still. He soon regained some of his senses and started to slowly remember what had happened earlier. He remembered the rats had eaten his magic muffin, or at least the most of it. What they had left Jimmy himself had finished off, and that was when he passed out on the couch. He still felt a little sickly and his stomach was jumping in cartwheels inside of him. He sat up and soon after this he felt just a little better. And then he started to remember all of his fears about the rats growing to gigantic proportions. And then he suddenly felt sick again. He knew that he needed a game plan to deal with this situation. He was getting ready to put on his shoes when he remembered that his left foot had grown larger than his right foot. His left foot was the only thing that had grown so far. He thought about it for a while and then decided to try again to put on his shoes. But it was not no use, because he could not fit the shoe onto his overgrown left foot. So instead he put on flip flops, which still fit.

While in the middle of thinking about what to do about the giant rat problem, he suddenly saw a rat run across the kitchen. It was still normal sized, but looked aggressive somehow. Jimmy Footballs was still concentrating on this when his phone rang. It was his landlord. He was late with the rent and he had completely forgotten about it. He made some excuse to the landlord and hung up. But then he realized that he did not have enough money to cover the rent for this month. Mainly because he had spent so much money on the magic muffin. Suddenly a new plan formulated in his mind. Why not just move out and leave the apartment to the rats? He considered this strategy and realised that he did have other places he could move into, even on short notice. So he began to box up as much of his stuff as he could. He only packed his most important stuff. He would leave the food and other crap that he really didn’t need behind, he decided. He made a phone call to a friend who owed him a favor and asked for help in moving. And it was agreed. Then he called another friend in another town who had room for a roommate and asked if he could move in. The answer was yes, much to Jimmy’s relief. Jimmy sat back in the couch and was well satisfied that his game plan was a good one and that it would be successful. But then he remembered that he still had not considered his uneven sized feet problem.

After a short period of thinking about it, Jimmy realized that his only alternative was to buy a pair of shoes of the larger size. So he headed to the local shoe store and soon found a suitable pair of shoes that were the larger size of his left foot. And he bought the shoes. A little while later his friend helped him pack up his stuff and after moving most of his things, drove him to his new apartment. For the next few weeks Jimmys life slowly returned back to normal. The only thing that still wasn’t right was his left foot was still longer than his right foot, but this did not bother Jimmy as he had gotten used to it by now. A little more time went by. And Jimmy’s life was by now back to what he would call normal. Then one night Jimmy was watching a news program and was a little intrigued when he saw a teaser for a story about giant rats that were taking over buildings in a nearby city. Jimmy wondered if this had anything to do with his apartment. So he waited for the story and was surprised to see that the very building that he used to live in was in the story. He was even more surprised to learn that the rats had grown to about the size of large dogs. The one photographed by this news channel was about the size of a German Sheaperd. And Jimmy knew that he was ultimately responsible for this infestation of giant rats.

Chapter 1 Preview by Shane Zentz

So here it is,

Free Preview of Chapter 1 of ‘Looking for Area 420’ by Shane Zentz

Enjoy the free read


And if interested in publishing this or reading the whole book, then contact me @
shane AT shanezentz.com

The book is around 450 pages or so and took me about a month to write. I think that the book is pretty good but I don’t know if it is good enough to be published or not. So I’ll throw the first chapter out there and see if I get any good feedback.

So, here is most of the first chapter……..

enjoy…

 
‘Looking for Area 420’
Chapter 1:”Waking from a dream”…..

The sound of the siren of a fire truck rudely roused Kurt Larsen from a deep, relaxing sleep. His eyes were very unfocused and itchy as he began to peel them open, only to be greeted by the intense burning sun of mid afternoon. Taking a few more moments to gather himself he tried in vein to remember what had transpired the night before. But his memory was off on a break or something because he couldn’t remember anything, at least not yet. He wasn’t worried because he knew that eventually he would remember what had happened the night before. This was just the way that his memory worked; it just took a little while to warm up, like an old worn-out car. Kurt Larsen is a skinny white dude with dark curly hair in his late twenties who lived in Brooklyn and had lived there his whole life. The day slowly began to come into focus. He began to remember some of the events that occurred the night before. Mainly he remembered sitting on the couch with his best friend Jamie Glossman, doing what they usually do every day, smoking pot and watching TV. The way he felt this afternoon, Kurt believed that he and Jamie must have smoked about a quarter of an ounce of weed last night, but he wasn’t sure. Then he remembered that Jamie had said that he didn’t feel like going home, so he crashed on his couch. So Kurt rolled over and slowly got out of bed, headed out of his room down the hall, rubbing the sleepiness from his eyes the whole way. When he arrived in the living room, he saw Jamie on the couch still fast asleep.

“Dude, get up”, Kurt yelled as loud as he could! “It’s almost 1:30 in the afternoon”, he said while checking the time on the VCR. Slowly Jamie opened his eyes which looked bloodshot and tired. He looked as if he was having one of those moments when you first wake up and you don’t know where you are. Kurt could almost hear the gears of his mind grinding, just struggling to piece together the clues that would yield the answer to the perplexing question “Where am I, How did I get here, and Why”? Then Kurt could also almost see a light going off in Jamie’s eyes, so he knew that he must have found the answer. Jamie was trying to figure out why he was waking up on Kurt’s couch and not in his own bed, when he remembered that he was a little too “baked” to make his way home after smoking pot and watching TV until about four in the mourning. Jamie was also a skinny white dude, and like Kurt he was also in his late twenties, but he had long and straight blond hair. He pondered what Kurt had said, was it really 1:30 in the afternoon, and if so, why did Kurt let him sleep so late? So he decided to ask Kurt, “Dude, why did you let me sleep so late”? “Relax, man I just got up a few minutes ago myself”, Kurt said with a grin. “Damn dude, it’s already hot in here, it’s going to be a roaster today”, Jamie said while looking at the afternoon rays of sun flowing through the window. “What is the master plan for today”, Jamie asked? “What do you think, we are going to get stoned and hang out at the mall as usual”, Kurt said. “Then later on tonight we are going to get stoned again and watch some more TV, only this time we should invite our girlfriends over too”, he continued. “That sounds like a plan man”, Jamie agreed. “But we smoked all of our weed last night dude”, Jamie stated. That seemed to take a while to sink in for Kurt because he seemed to be in deep contemplation, or at least he was trying to think if what Jamie was saying was true or not.

“No dude, I know I have to have some weed somewhere around here, or at least some roaches to at least tide us over until I can score some more”, Kurt said while just thinking out loud. “I don’t like the thought of thinking about not getting stoned today, at least a little bit”, Jamie pondered while also thinking out loud. “Yea man I agree with you, and even more”, Kurt said while heading back to his bedroom. Jamie followed and when they arrived at Kurt’s bedroom both of them began searching through Kurt’s well-known hiding places to see if they could find any pot. But after an intense and long and thorough search, they found nothing. Not even any roaches. Not even any stems and seeds. Nothing. Just rolling papers and lighters but no filler. “Man this sucks”, Kurt stated emphatically! “Yea, what are we going to do”, Jamie wondered? “Well we will just have to see if “Twaif” has any of that killer weed left to sell us”, Kurt said while gazing out the window of his bedroom. He was referring to Gordon Twaifigto who was a small time pot dealer in Brooklyn, and he lived in the building opposite to the building that Kurt lived in. “Man I am not even going to waste my time trying to call that paranoid nut, he never answers his phone”, Kurt said while shaking his head at the thought of having to deal with Twaif. But then he remembered the great pot that Twaif had sold he and Jamie the other day, it was so much better than his usual lo-grade crap that he knew it would be worth dealing with that nut just to score some more of that outrageous weed. “Let’s get cleaned up and grab a quick breakfast and then we will pay Twaif a little visit”, Kurt said. “I hope that he still has some of the same weed left that he sold us the other day”, Jamie said to Kurt. “Yea, me too”, Kurt agreed.”What about bread man, I only have ten dollars left for the week”, Jamie wondered aloud. “Yea,that could be a problem dude, because I only have about five dollars on me”, Kurt added. “Maybe Twaif will let us put some weed on our tab like he did that one time man”, Jamie said while looking like he had just solved the world’s most serious problem. “I doubt that one, because that was when he was just trying to get rid of some rank weed that nobody else wanted”, Kurt said. “Remember that shit man, all it did was give us headaches, but we still smoked all of it”, Kurt continued. “Yea dude that was all too crazy man”, Jamie stated. “Twaif will only take cash for the good stuff and I think that our tab is full anyway man”, Kurt said. “Well let’s just get cleaned up and eat breakfast and get ready for the day and then we will try to think of how we can score some dough in order to get some more pot dude”, Kurt said and Jamie seemed to agree. So they both went about getting cleaned up and then met up in the kitchen where they were going to have breakfast and later a meeting of the minds to come up with a solution to their lack of cash flow problem.

During a hearty breakfast of pop tarts and cheerios Kurt and Jamie began to think about the problem that they had, mainly the lack of dough that they needed to buy some more pot. “Can’t you borrow some bread from your dad”, Jamie asked Kurt? “Well I doubt it because he knows that I would just use the money to buy pot with”, Kurt said and then he thought how odd it was that he was a stoner and his father was a cop. “What about your brother man”, Kurt asked? “Yea, he was telling everyone in our family how he made a bunch of rich bastards even richer with some shady stock trades and then he supposedly received some giant bonus which some family members began rumoring that it was at least seven figures, so maybe he would loan me some quick cash, or maybe even just give me some cash”, Jamie stated. “Well what are you waiting for, give him a call”,Kurt ordered. With that, Jamie went to the phone and dialed the number of his older brother.He stood there listening to the phone ring just waiting for his brother to answer. “What’s up brother”, Jamie almost yelled emphatically when his brother finally answered the phone! Jamie rolled his eyes and Kurt could tell that he was getting a lecture of one kind or another from his brother, and then. “Yes, I know Rick, I’ll try to call more often, but you know how it is,when you keep as busy as I do, then you lose track of time and before you know it a month has gone by”, Jamie said while shaking his head. “Look, I hate to ask, and you know that I hate to ask, but I am in kind of a pickle money-wise and I know that the one person that I can count onto help me out when I am in some kind of jam or something is you bro, and man am I in a tight spot now”, Jamie asked his brother in a kind of low tone of voice. “It’s just that rent is due and a bunch of other bills are coming due and with me being laid off and everything, money is extremely tight right now and I know that you are a big shot on wall street and you probably have money to burn, so I just need to ask if you can help a brother out right now”, Jamie asked? The tension was thick like gravy in the air as Jamie and Kurt both waited for the reply from Jamie’s brother. Kurt looked at Jamie and tried to guess the response of Jamie’s brother by Jamie’s reaction to it, but he had a good poker face and Kurt could not tell if the response was good or bad, positive or negative. He continued waiting and the tension just grew.

“I was thinking maybe a couple thousand dollars would be a huge help”, Jamie said with a pleased look on his face. Then he continued, “That would be great”. Just then Kurt knew that the answer was yes and that they would probably get enough money to buy enough pot to last at least a month. A couple thousand dollars can go a long way in a economy like this, Kurt thought. “Yea dude that would be great man”, Jamie said happily. “Alright I’ll see you then”,he continued and then hung up the phone. Jamie then turned to Kurt who was waiting for the word and he said, “He said he would give me two thousand dollars to help me get through the month”. “Wwwwwoooooooooooooooooooooo, hell yea”, Kurt yelled! “Oh yeah”, Jamie added!”But I’ll have to go to his office today before five to pick it up”, Jamie explained. “No problemo bro, well just take the subway to the city and well be back in time to buy a butt-load of pot and get well good and baked man”, Kurt said. “Sounds like a plan dude”, Jamie added. And with that the problem seemed to be solved and the two set out on foot to the subway to pay Jamie’s brother a visit and collect some greenage in order to buy some other greenage later on.

While Kurt and Jamie were on the train Kurt looked at his watch for an unusual amount of time. “We only have about two hours before five, I hope we have enough time to get there man”, Kurt said. “Don’t worry we have plenty of time”, Jamie stated. “Wow your brother really is coming through for you dude”, Kurt said. “Yea, I know, that is how it is in my family”,Jamie said and continued, “Do you remember that episode of The Brady Bunch where Greg though the was all that and then some more and he wouldn’t listen to his parents or anyone else who gave him advice, he just went out and bought a car on his own. Then later on he finds out that it is a real lemon, just a real piece of crap, and at first his parents and his brothers and sisters laugh at him and his piece of crap car and just give him a hard time in general, but eventually they help him out and they all pitch in and fix up the car so that it looks like a total classic, but the car is still really a piece of crap, so he gets rid of it, but in the end he learns a really valuable lesson and he starts acting like less of a jerk”, Jamie asked while judging the reaction of Kurt to see if he was following where he was going with all of this? “Yea, I remember that”, Kurt said while nodding his head. “Well, that is how it is in my family, not that we are all goody-two-shoes like the Brady Bunch or anything,but we might rip on each other once in a while but we also help each other out when it is necessary”, Jamie explained. “Yea man that is real cool, I wish it was like that in my family”, Kurt said.

 

"Those Magic Muffins" Part 2 ….. by Shane Zentz

Jimmy Footballs recruited the help of a few friends to help get the giant muffin back to his apartment. It was a strain and a struggle but with a great effort the stinky muffin was home. Jimmy also needed the aid of a gas mask every time he opened the box that contained the muffin. He had convinced his friends that he had purchased a used washing machine because he did not want them to know that he was going to eat this smelly muffin in order to grow taller. And they seemed to believe him, although they did comment on the funky smell eminating from the large box. Jimmy later went to the liquor store to buy some strong spirits that he knew he would need in order to eat the foul smelling muffin.

After returning from the liquor store, Jimmy quickly took a few drinks. He drank enough to start to get a nice and mellow buzz on, not flat out drunk, just a numbing high. Enough of a high to be able to stomach the stinking muffin. So then he took out a plate and a fork and a knife and made his way over to the big box. He opened it and the pungent smell slapped him square in the face causing him to back up and almost causing him to fall over backwards. He regained his composure and told himself that it was only a muffin so how bad could it be? He then cut a good portion from the giant muffin, about the size of a large steak. He noticed how it was large and heavy but it was also spongy and pretty easy to cut. Although when he cut into it it seemed to stink even worse. Jimmy walked over to his small dinner table and sat down with plate in hand and a very unsure look on his face.

Jimmy steadied his nerves with another drink. He then built up his courage enough to be able to cut into the muffin that lay before him. He cut off a reasonably sized bite, not too large and not too small. He examined the piece of muffin that was nailed to his fork carefully. Then he smelled it and when he did he noticed that it did not really smell that bad if he smelled it close up, but as soon as he pulled it away from his nose the horrible smell returned with a vengance. He closed his eyes and opened his mouth and as steadily as he could he raised the fork to his mouth. Then he inserted the fork with the piece of muffin on it into his mouth, being careful not to touch his lips to the muffin itself. Then he suddenly bit down onto the fork and just as quickly pulled the fork out of his mouth, leaving only the muffin in his mouth. He chewed quickly and almost out of control, as if that would somehow make it better. When he was through with the wild chewing, he commanded his throat to quickly and powerfully suck the food down into his stomach.

Jimmy waited to see if he was still alive. And sure enough he was! He waited still a few more minutes to see if he would have any kind of reaction to eating the bite of the stinky muffin, but he still felt fine and above all he was still breathing. He considered the taste of it and realized that it really wasn’t half bad, or at least not as bad as he had expected. Once he realized that it was not killing him and that it did not taste half-bad, he devoured the rest of the muffin on his plate as quickly as he could. Then he finished his whiskey as well. He walked confidently to his sofa and sat down and turned on the TV. Minutes later he still felt fine, but did realize that he was getting very tired very quickly. So he turned off the TV and walked to his bedroom, where he practically collapsed onto his bed and fell immediately into a deep sleep.

Bad Benz

Bad Benz

by Shane Zentz
It started to shake. Only just a little at first, but then, more and more. The air wistled through the cracks in the windows and windsheild. The lights of the others passing lit up the interior. The whole body shook with a dip in the road. The suspension was suspended up and then suspended down, and on so down the road. The smell of burning oil and rotten old metal filled the air inside the car. More shaking and more shaking, and I keep saying, “Just a few more miles, just get me home”! A strange noise eminated from the rear of the car. Somewhere from the rear. An odd noise. A noise never before heard, from this car or from any other. Was it a sign? Was the car finally dying? Would the car make it home? There was that noise again. Only a little louder this time. More threatening. Another light on the dashboard. A new warning light this time. One that has not come on before. One whose meaning was completely unknown. Was it a serious issue or something minor? Did it have something to do with the new noise coming from the backseat? More cars pass by as if the Benz was standing still. Still more cars go by. The Benz is still going, very slowly and very, very unsurely, but still going. Somehow still going. Only a few miles to home now. “Only a little more to go now, just keep going”, I say to the Bad Benz. More smoke coming from the rear of the car and the engine seems even more sluggish now. Sputtering every so often as if trying to take it’s last exhausted breath. How much further could it go? Would it make it home?