The Mosquitoes Are Back

I came home from work the other day and one of them was in my bed. He was wearing my pajamas and reading my book. It was actually less a book and more a magazine, one of those newsatainment magazines. Time. It still pissed me off, because I hate it when people read my magazines before I do.

“What the hell are you doing?”

“I’m only alive for ten days, twenty tops. I’m making the most of it.”

“Fuck you, get out of my bed. Insects don’t belong in houses.”

“My name is Steve, actually, and I’m not going anywhere.”

I don’t keep weapons in my house, although in retrospect I could have just swung a shoe at him. I’m kind of a pacifist and pleasant weather makes me indecisive, so I just shrugged my shoulders and left the room. In that way, I guess I decided to let him stay. We compromised on the living arrangements and I blew up an air mattress for him, set him up real nice in the extra room. He asked if he could have a hobby corner in his room to work on some little projects that he enjoys. Whatever Steve, it’s your room now. You signed a lease.

We have the weirdest conversations. He’s all action and go-man-go in the mornings and early evenings but you can’t get that lazy motherfucker to say “boo” when the earth’s sun is shining strong. He just sort of stumbles around the house and jokes about what he bit that morning or what he’s going to try and bite later that night. He doesn’t actually need blood because he’s a male mosquito, but that doesn’t stop him from talking about it constantly.

“I don’t feel like I can fully appreciate what you’re telling me, Steve.”

“Doesn’t it make sense to you that your blood would taste differently than, say, a squirrel’s?”

“Have you been tasting my blood?”

“What? No, no, I told you. I don’t swing that way man.”

He met a female mosquito named Celia last week and brought her home to meet me. He never has anyone over, especially not girls, so I made dinner for the three of us. Celia was very sweet but a little homely so when she left, I told Steve he could probably do better. I didn’t mean it in a bad way, but he got pretty mad at me. I guess he really loves her.

“Hey, I’m sorry man. She seemed really sweet, I think you two are going to be great together.”

“I’ll probably be dead in a few days, you know.”

“I know Steve. I know.”

In fact he looked pretty bad this morning. He’s usually up before me, bouncing off the walls, already covered in flower nectar or some kind of decaying organic matter. Steve loves that stuff. Anyway he wasn’t up this morning so I opened the door to his bedroom and yelled at him to get out of bed. He rolled over and pulled the blanket over his tiny head parts and huge compound eyes. I turned the light on and yelled at him again, told him he was making a mistake. It’s a beautiful day outside, you need to get out there, I said, but I didn’t say why because we both knew. I stood still in the doorway and focused on Steve until I could see the blanket move up and down under the draw of each small breath. I turned the light off and gently pulled the door closed, feeling a little better about these recent predictions of a dry summer.

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