MAGNOLIA STREET by Sonny Culebras

Steve was driving down Magnolia Street late that night. He’d been out all night at the bar, throwing back longnecks and tossing ones at big tittied strippers. Seeing all that flesh up on the stage made him powerful horny and he was ready to split his wife in two with what he had going on down between his legs. He was rockin’ out to some John Cougar Melloncamp tune on the stereo, had the windows down and singing along. Feeling good, man. Feeling good.

Magnolia Street was lined with pay-by-the-hour motels, abandoned houses and flickering streetlamps. He didn’t really need to travel through these streets, could’ve just taken the main roads, but this was a shortcut to get from downtown to his pretty little gated community and his pretty little wife across town.

As he scrambled down the trash littered street in his slick ass Lexus, he saw some kind of commotion up ahead. An older model van was stalled in the middle of the road, blocking both lanes. There was someone standing in the road, holding his hands up telling him to stop. There was another man on the ground next to the front tires, moaning loud and ugly.

Steve slowed to a stop and before he could bitch about how his dick had places to be, the man ran over to his window. The man was had on a grease-stained pair of blue mechanic’s coveralls with a nametag stitched on the breast that read ‘Goose’. Goose had long greasy black hair on the sides, but was bald as a stripper’s cooch on top. His teeth looked like a burnt down fence and he couldn’t keep them behind his lips. Goose smelled bad. Real bad.

Steve turned down the stereo. “What happened?”

“Mister, you gotta come help me! I ran over that guy over there!” He pointed at the man on the ground by the van. “He just came outta nowhere. Hit him hard.”

Steve looked over to the man on the ground, then back at Goose. “I’ll call him an ambulance.”

“No, you can’t do that!”


“You can’t. You just can’t.”

“You just said he needed help.”

Goose rubbed the back of his neck and looked over at the man on the ground. The guy was howling out in pain. “Okay, it’s like this. I got warrants out on me, man. The pigs come, they’ll take me away. You don’t gotta do anything, just help me get him in the van and I’ll drop him off at the hospital. Just help me get him in the van. That’s it.”

Steve’s dick was going limp. He didn’t want to be there. He wanted to be at home, doing the horizontal mambo with Jane. And as ugly as Jane was, it would be a long time before he was gonna be horny enough to build up the nerve to get at her again. As he got out and started walking towards the scene of the accident, he began to think he wouldn’t be getting any from Jane tonight. Fuck it.

The van was old, the kind with the bubbled window on the side in the shape of a heart and a ladder in the back, and painted an ugly babyshit green. The man on the ground was crying like a bitch and Steve could see why – the man’s legs were broken, twisted in sick angles right below the knees. One leg looked like it had turned all the way around. There were dark stains on his jeans.

“Thanks, man,” Goose said, opening the van’s side doors, scooting boxes and shit to the side to make room for the guy he just ran over. “You’re a big help, you know that?”

Steve didn’t like looking at the guy on the ground. Made him sick. Still, he bent down and put his arms in the broken man’s armpits to lift him up.

“Hey, mac,” the guy said. “Come closer. I need to tell you something.”

Steve bent down lower. He could smell the man’s sweat. “What?”

The man’s faced faded into a wide gap-toothed smile and said, “You’re fucked.”

Something hard was pressed to the back of Steve’s head and he heard Goose laugh. The man on the ground was laughing, too.

“Gimme the keys to your ride, rich boy,” Goose said, cocking the hammer back on his revolver.

“And gimme what you got in your pockets.

Goose waited until the other guy –his name ended up being Herb– put on his prosthetic legs and hopped in the driver’s seat of the van before he got in Steve’s Lexus. Steve stood on the curb with his hands above his head, watching them drive down Magnolia Street until all he could see were two pairs of angry red eyes.