“Hey stranger!” Dina exclaimed as Victory entered her apartment.
She flipped closed the book she had been studying and threw it casually off onto the coffee table. It was the Communist Manifesto. Before Victory had met Dina, he would have been stunned to see her reading that. But she was, after all, a psychological historian. Right next to Marx’s masterpiece was a copy of the American Constitution, Plato’s The Republic, the Magna Carta, and The Koran. None of it was translated either; she was fluent in German, Ancient Greek, and Arabic.
“Preparing to defeat the petty bourgeoisie and raise the awareness of all peace-loving workers to Bolshevism?” he asked playfully.
“Da, tovarishch,” she replied, in the same spirit.
Then she noticed that he was bothered. It wouldn’t have been easy for anyone else to notice but she’d known him for long enough that she could almost always read what was going on in his soul.
“What’s wrong?” she asked.
He made a poor attempt to smile nonchalantly.
"Nothing," he said remotely.
"Come on. I know you better than that," she chastised him.
Sighing, he flung himself down on the couch.
"For months now I've been working to build this Fellowship. Under my leadership we've prospered and grown. It's been slow and mild, but it's happened. Now I feel like it's slipping from my fingers."
"Well, I can't pretend to know how you feel," she said, "You made something and now you're losing it. It's like having a baby, and that's something I've never done."
Victory caught the little "suggestion" and rebuke.
"Hey, you want to get married, Dina?" he asked.
"Eh," she said nonchalantly, "It doesn't matter to me."
"Do you love me?"
"I'm ambivalent towards you," she continued the vicious charade.
"Most marriages don't even have that," he said, "By jingo, let's do it tomorrow!"
"Sure, whatever," she said apathetically.
Victory sighed in dejectedly. He laid down and put his head in Dina's lap. She began rubbing his temples.
"I'm scared that I may have lost everything," he said quietly.
"I know," she replied.
"I've really been ignoring you these past few months, haven't I?"
"And it may all be for nothing now."
"What am I going to do, Dina?" he asked pathetically.
"Just don't let it slip from your grip. Strengthen your grip. Crush it, if that's what it takes to hold it. But don't let a madman take it from you. You made a deal with the devil, Vic. Now you're just going to have to make sure the devil doesn't stick his pitchfork in your ass when you're not looking."
"Manuscripts don't burn"
- Mikhail Bulgakov
Hi, I'm horror and science fiction author Steve Kozeniewski (pronounced: "causin' ooze key.") Welcome to my blog! You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Amazon. You can e-mail me here, join my mailing list here, or request an e-autograph here. Free on this site you can listen to me recite one of my own short works, "The Thing Under the Bed."
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