A Brief History of Seven Killings

Free A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James

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Authors: Marlon James
forty feet? Run, run right now, don’t blow your damn horn at me, son of a bitch, deaf like you damn mother I’m in the median too many damn cars driving down the other side of the road and me in the middle marooned like Ben Gunn and I just want you to seeme, it’s you, it must be you, remember me, “Midnight Ravers” is about me even though it was after midnight and you might not know what I look like in the day, and I just want a favour, I just need a little help, they robbed my father and raped my mother. No they didn’t rape her, no I don’t know, but the story sounds more urgent when an old woman’s pum-pum get messed with and I know it’s you, and the policeman is waiting, good, good wonderful-good he’s going to come outside—it’s not you. Another guard runs outside to tell him something and the fucking fat policeman laughs again and deposits himself in the car. I’m stuck in the median, traffic blurring past me and lifting up my skirt.
    —Hello, I’m here to see—
    —No visitor. On-site tours start back next week.
    —No, you don’t understand. I’m not here for the tour, I’m here to see . . . He’s expecting me.
    —Ma’am, nobody coming through except immediate family and the band. You him wife?
    —What? Of course not. What kind of question—
    —You play no instrument?
    —I don’t see what that have to do with anything, just tell him Nina Burgess is here to see him and it’s urgent.
    —Lady, you could’a name Scooby Doo, nobody coming inna yah.
    —But, but . . . I . . .
    —Lady, step ’way from the gate.
    —Me pregnant. And is fi him. Him need fi mind him pickney.
    The guard look at me for the first time today. I thought he was going to recognize me until I realize that he really was seeing me for the first time. He looked me up and down too, maybe wanting to see what type of woman it takes to breed for a star like him.
    —You know how much woman come here since Monday saying the same damn thing you just say? Some of them even have belly to show me. Me say no visitors but family and the band. Come back next week, me sure the baby not running ’way to Miami by then. If there is a—
    —Eddie, shut you r’asscloth mouth and guard di gate.
    —Then after the woman don’t want move.
    —Then move her.
    I step back quick. I don’t want none of these men touching me. They always grab on to ass or crotch first. Behind me a car pulls up and a white man comes out. For just a split second I nearly shout Danny, but this man is only white. His hair brown and long, and a little beard on his chin, the way I used to like it but Danny didn’t. A yellow plain t-shirt and tight, bell-bottom blue jeans. Maybe it’s the hot weather why you can tell that (1) he’s American and (2) American men hate underwear more than American women hate bras.
    —Bombocloth. Look here, Taffie, Jesus is risen.
    —What? But me no repent yet.
    The white man didn’t seem to get the joke. I stepped out of the way, maybe making too much of a show of it.
    —Hey buddy, Alex Pierce from Rolling Stone .
    —Wait deh now, tight jeans Jesus, Jehovah know say you lie? Two man from Rolling Stone come here already, one name Keith and one named Mick and none of them look like you.
    —But them all resemble still, Eddie.
    —True that. True that.
    —I’m from Rolling Stone magazine. We spoke on the phone.
    —You never talk to me on no phone.
    —I mean, someone from in the office. His secretary or something I don’t know. I’m from the magazine? From the U.S.? We cover everybody from Led Zeppelin to Elton John. I don’t understand, the secretary said come December 3 at six p.m. when he’s on rehearsal break and here I am.
    —Bossman, me don’t name sexetary.
    —Look, we get strict orders. Nobody in or out except family and band.
    —Oh. Why does everybody have an automatic weapon? You guys police? You don’t look like the security guard from last time I was here.
    —None of your damn business,

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