Climate Of Change

Entry by: Jim bob

4th December 2015

Mac moved rapidly from the bedroom, showered, changed, and threw a coffee down him, so quickly he burnt his mouth, creating a small blister over his bottom lip. As he sped down third avenue, across the steep inclines- the Chevrolets suspension over reacting to the periodic bumps in the road- the swelling on his lip grew. He rubbed at it, conscious of the throb their while sitting at the fourth set of lights. Smoke rose from street-food vendors stoves, and modern, fast food pungency flew around Macs convertible, steering his non existent appetite to nausea. He wish now he’d had time to close its roof now, and take advantage of the clean, odourless air conditioning.
‘ Kalyn’s going to have a fit’ he said aloud, looking at his Rolex. He swept his blonde locks back while glancing in the rear-view, noticing beads of sweat, a days stubble. He also looked at the swell on his lip, an enlarging redness ready to pop, he thought. Mac increased his speed as much as possible, intermittent lights the only restriction preventing a speed limit violation. However, the rear wheels of the Chevrolet span excitedly as he sped away each time. He reached in the glove compartment, removed a bottle of water then tossed it to the floor after realising how warm it felt. Mac cursed loudly. The August morning sweltered against the congestion, and fog-less but stinking emissions stuck to the air like glue. Mac looked at his watch again, considered calling it a day and heading back. Kalyn can put this off till Monday, he thought. On that his mobile rang. Kalyn’s voice.
‘Where the hell are you, Mac’ she squealed through the hands free.
‘ Slept in, Kalyn, sorry and the traffics mad’ he replied calmly, to support his mood that didn’t need any encouragement.
‘ Another late night, Mac. You know how important this is’. This response aroused thoughts of vodka, candlelight and lust. He smiled. Just a little.
‘ I’ll be there in ten’ he said ignoring her remarks, and hung up. Fucking bitch, he thought as he turned on to 15th street. Then he dismissed this anger. A bitch she might be, he decided, but a fucking bitch, no. He drove around the divisions of one-ways, and side streets- a well known short cut he’d figured out on google during afternoons when a brief period of quiet had interrupted his busy schedule. The dismissed water bottle rolled around the passenger floor, as Mac negotiated sharp bends, the maze of side streets, roadworks, and heat that intensified over the city. He was conscious of the blister, that had popped, and warm pus trickling from it towards his chin. He stretched his tongue over the wetness to catch it, feeling ridiculous, as an old lady carrying a grey poodle stared at him through the windscreen. She hobbled as if in apparent strain against her huge mass, that spilled from her orange T-shirt. Mac stared back, conscious of his actions. Then she was gone, into a side street. He approached the huge building next to the Montserrat restaurant, a place Mac discussed all manner of plans over cocktails and late lunches that dwelled in to evenings, further cocktails, fewer plans. He parked his chevy, remembering to close its roof and stick on the air conditioning to comfort his return. It was Saturday morning, and Mac didn’t want this to take very long. But it did.

He embraced the chill of the building, the cold air easing against his clammy stickiness. The huge tinted glass panes looked out on to the silent chaos- green verges of a meadow in the distance awoke sedateness, a comforting reminder of tranquility. Mac went in to the mens, snorted a line, freshened himself up- his lip looking surprisingly less red, and went to meet his counterpart. She awaited him in the vast office, more glass, less wood these days, and the air conditioning even cooler in this room. Something Kalyn liked.
‘We’ve lost it’ she said, almost quietly, as Mac was still closing the door behind him.
‘What?’ he replied approaching her, now less aware of her distressed appearance.
Kalyn looked at him, his presence alarmed her. She may have been looking at his lip, but wasn’t about to comment.
‘Oh yes, Mac we’ve lost it. All of it.’
‘What do you mean all of it Kalyn? What are you talking about?’ He went over to the fridge and pulled out the vodka. He removed two tumblers from the glass cabinet, and poured two generous measures.
‘Oh come on Kalyn, that’s impossible,’ he said, handing her the drink, and knowing that, in fact, it was very likely.
‘He called this morning’ she said, taking the glass. ‘ Said that time was up, and that the deal was off. He said its all off.’
Mac swallowed his drink and re filled. The cocaine refined his thinking, especially in these circumstances. He was grateful for it, particularly when a big deal was about to be lost. In this case he feared it already was, which meant the hit he’d taken moments ago in the mens was essential for his management of the ensuing crisis. At least, that’s what he thought.
‘We promised him, this’d be sown up this morning, Mac. Where the fuck were you?’ She also swallowed her drink- red lipstick remained on the lip of the glass. Mac thought it looked like blood.
‘How on earth can he have folded’ he said ignoring the question. ‘ He shook on this last night. I spoke to him yesterday afternoon. We settled.’ Mac thought he sounded quite convincing. The phone rang. Kalyn ignored it. She poured herself another drink, then filled Macs.
‘He said he wouldn’t be screwed around. Said he’d wait ten more minutes. Right here, Mac right here. This very morning. He said unless you were here he wasn’t going to hand over a penny.’
Mac swept back his hair. The coke may have been working, but the real sense of truth began to sway the urgency to disaster. They both knew the monumental importance of success here not to mention their win. Something that’s once in a lifetime. Something that comes along if you’re just a bit lucky. But Mac knew different.
‘But we shook on it, last night, Kalyn. He’s changed his mind by the look of it.’
‘Mac,’ she said. ‘ You shook on it after lots of bubbly, and lots of this’ she concluded, pointing at her glass. ‘You were having a jolly old time. But he was just whoring you. Rossi is a big player, Mac. You seem to forget that. He doesn’t mess about.’
Mac walked to the windows, the noise of congestion barely audible from this height. The office felt safe up here away from all that heat, he thought and he wished for another hit. He knew an awful lot of money had been lost here. Friendships too. He took the bottle from the table and shared the rest of the contents.
‘ Whoring me’ he said, mostly to himself, musing over this word, unable not to be amused by it, while the dope blended sufficiently with the vodka to subdue his thinking. The previous evenings events also contributed to this. Mac knew he was just 32, but good looks, fast living, and a searing heat wave was a dangerous cocktail for successful business. He didn’t care though.
‘Yes whoring you, Mac, meaning soften you up, trying to get a knock-off. Do you understand?
Mac was stunned she’d heard him mutter loud enough to hear.
‘Bye the way, Mac, his wife was on the phone.’
Mac silenced. What the hell does she want, he thought.
‘What does she want?’ he replied, attempting to sound puzzled.
‘How the fuck should I know, I don’t know the woman.’ She yelled, spilling her drink from sudden reactive movements associated with temper. ‘ What the hell is going on, Mac?’
He looked at her, perversely admiring her anger, aware that this was not the time or place for such thoughts. But so what, he thought.
‘What have you done, Mac,’ she asked. ‘What have you been up to?’ Kalyn walked towards him, her heels clicking and echoing against the cold marble floor. She put her glass down on the glass desk. Mac caressed the vial in his jeans pocket, rubbing his fingers around the small metal container agitatedly.
‘Nothing is going on, Kalyn. Nothing,’ he replied, observing her make-up, and a small amount of mascara that had smeared against the flesh next to her left eye. The phone rang. Kalyn walked back to the desk and snatched up the receiver.
‘Who’s this,’ she asked, knowing that it’d probably be Rossi’s wife.
‘Hold on.’ Kalyn handed the receiver to him.
‘Hello. Who’s this,’asked Mac. Kalyn’s eyes didn’t leave him, hands on her hips.
‘I’ll be there soon.’ he said and replaced the hand set.
‘ I want some answers, Mac. I want some answers now. What the fuck is going here. What have you done?’
Mac knew this was it now. No more cards to play- not that he’d had many to start with. He pulled the small container from his pocket, along with his car keys that fell to the floor. This, he never noticed. He started to prepare a line on the marble surface of the small coffee table set to the side of the main desk.
‘What the hell are you doing,’ she screamed, going for him. Mac pushed her away. She lost her balance, fell against a small statue of Abraham Lincoln, and to the ground.
‘Mac’ she stifled, a trickle of blood ran from a nostril.
Mac sniffed up the white powder then turned to her. He knew this was it but couldn’t have cared a damn for all its worth now. Instead, he admired the way Kalyn lay against the Statue of Abraham Lincoln. Her power diminished. Her big deal smashed. Their big deal smashed. But now it didn’t matter. At all.
‘I’ve been fucking his wife for months,’ he said ‘Many months. I’m glad he’s fucked off. He tried to get greedy, Kalyn. Kept asking for this and that. I was the whore here, Kalyn. Not him. He thought he had one over on us. He didn’t. I’m the whore to his wife as well. Maybe I should tell him that.’ He laughed.
‘You asshole’ she said. ‘You’ve no idea what you’ve done.’
‘I don’t know why I rushed down here this morning. For what?’ he said, ignoring her. ‘ I could have stayed in bed with her, had a lie in, romance, a late lunch, you know, Kalyn.’
He stared at her and smiled. The smile was cold, almost ruthless, without emotion. Kalyn managed to get herself off the floor, and went back behind the desk.
‘But you know all about that, don’t you Kalyn? Course you do.’ He prepared another line, and snorted greedily, not that cocaine is snorted in any other way.
She flung the empty vodka bottle off the desk, but Mac, despite his unsteadiness, batted it away, where it landed and shattered across the marble.
‘Get out of here, now,’ she yelled, mascara melting down her face.
He did, after throwing his empty glass towards her. It missed. A few moments later, Kalyn noticed the keys. She picked them up and quickly headed towards another exit.