Who Is The Woman In The Bathtub?

 

Written by Bogdan Dragos

 

fasting for muses

 

well it’s been about four days of

fasting

Four days of eating nothing

but smoke from

his cigarettes

so it was difficult to tell whether

the woman

who sat in his bathtub

and smoked some of his cigarettes and

watched him writing on his desk

was real or not

 

“Of course I’m real, you

dumbass!” she said, exhaling smoke. “I’m

just hiding. This seems

like an okay place.”

 

“Hiding from whom?” he asked

 

“Well,” she said, “since you don’t know,

it means they hadn’t looked

for me here yet. That’s good. Anyway,

you got something to

eat in here?”

 

“Um… no, sorry. I’m fasting.”

 

“Fasting? What the fuck for? So that God

might forgive your sins

or some shit like that?”

 

“No. I’m… a writer. I get my inspiration

like that.”

 

“Oh? A writer? And how’s it going so far?”

 

“Pretty good,” he said. “I wrote this

story about

a woman who disguised herself

as a prostitute to infiltrate

a corrupt officer’s home and killed him

to fulfill a revenge pact.”

 

“No shit,” she said. “And what did the

officer do to her?”

 

“I haven’t gotten to that part. The

story doesn’t unfold like

that. It starts with her

running away from the authorities and breaking

into the house of a lone writer

who suffers from

schizophrenia and can’t tell whether she’s

real or not. So he

begins to regard her as a muse

and their relationship develops from this.”

 

She lit another cigarette. “No shit.

Well, I bet it’s gonna

be a hit, this story of yours.”

 

“You think so?”

 

“Sure, sure. Say, you won’t mind if I

go through your kitchen a bit, right?

Maybe you’ve some leftovers or

something that I can help

myself to?”

 

He shrugged. “I probably don’t. But, okay,

have a look.”

 

She got out of the

bathtub and now he could see that all

she wore was a gray tank top. No

pants, no shoes. A bright green snake

with stars for eyes shone

tattooed around her crotch. “I will,” she said,

“thanks.”

And she disappeared into the kitchen

 

Text © Bogdan Dragos

*

 

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