Chuck stared at the meth pipe now lying by the gas pedal of his 1990 IROC. He wasn’t entirely sure he had smoked it correctly, or if it was actually called a “meth pipe.” For starters, he wasn’t sure meth was supposed to be smoked. He remembered seeing Jesse Pinkman smoke it a few times during Breaking Bad, but he couldn’t entirely recall whether or not those were just regular cigarettes. Regardless, Chuck had a terrible phobia of needles, and figured placing the meth inside of a pipe some junkie gave him and then smoking it seemed safer. Whatever the case, Chuck would know whether or not he had done it right in due time. The only thing he was currently sure of was the fact that he was completely and utterly invincible.
Chuck had been excited to try meth for quite some time. It just seemed like the right thing to do. His mother had urged him against it, said it wasn’t exactly “safe,” and that there were other activities for 37-year-old husbands and fathers-of-three to be partaking in. She suggested learning to knit, or perhaps studying a second language. He agreed, but secretly knew that meth was absolutely something he wanted to experience. He just needed to be sure he did it right – after all, he’d only do it once.
In order to prepare for his inaugural toke—as the junkie that handed him the pipe told him it was called—Chuck stole a 1990 Camaro IROC. It felt like something a meth addict would do, steal a car and then get high in it. He had initially considered taking his own car and then reporting it stolen, but it felt like a cop out. He wanted to go all-in. Instead, he followed his neighbor—Howard—home, waited for him to get out of the car, and then “jumped him.”
The idea of “jumping someone” had initially eluded Chuck. The first time he’d heard it, he imagined a man jumping over another, which made very little sense—how could Chuck jump over another man, unless he was knelt down? However, after voicing his concerns to his dealer, Chuck discovered that it was actually “slang” for beating up another human. He was opposed to the idea at first, but slowly become more comfortable with it. If he were to truly take on the lifestyle of a meth head, “jumping someone” seemed pretty mundane. He was sure he could do it.
Chuck jumped Howard as soon as he stepped out of his car, slapping him across his cheek with all of his might. The man stumbled slightly.
“What the hell was that for, Chuck!” Howard had shouted.
“I’m jumping you,” Chuck said, brushing his hand down his suit jacket to ensure his tie was still tucked inside.
“Why?” Howard said.
“I need your car.”
“Can’t you just ask for it?”
“No, I’m going to smoke drugs in it. I need to steal it.”
“No more questions,” Chuck said, again smacking Howard across his cheek.
“Fuck! Just take the god damn keys,” Howard said, handing the keys over.
“Can you report it stolen?”
“Why would I do that, Chuck? I’m giving you the keys. I always let you take the IROC out for a drive. I don’t care what you do in it, as long as you bring it back safe.”
Chuck smacked Howard across the cheek again.
“Stop it!” Howard said, raising his palm to his cheek and holding it there.
“Report it as stolen, please. I would really appreciate it.”
“Fine, for fuck’s sake. You’re really fucking weird, Chuck.”
“Thanks, buddy. I promise to keep her safe,” he said, rubbing his hand on the roof of the car. It was a beautiful piece of machinery.
Chuck glanced into his rear view mirror. Red and blue lights flashed in the distance, growing larger each passing second. His meth adventure, or meth-venture as he’d been calling it, had been pretty satisfying so far, or at least as satisfying as he had hoped it would be. The only issue was the actual meth: it had been almost ten minutes since he’d held the lighter to the pipe and tried his best to mimic Jesse Pinkman, yet still was not even remotely high. He was sure it was meth that he had smoked, the dealer had specifically said not to worry, that “it’s definitely meth and not PCP—it just looks weird.” Even so, Chuck didn’t feel anything—save for an incredible rush of strength and an undoubtable knowledge that he was invincible to anything and everything. He’d clearly done the meth wrong.
Chuck unlocked the driver’s side door to the IROC and pushed it open, then pulled himself out onto the side of the highway. It was a beautiful night, the sky a wonderful mixture of reds, blues, oranges, silvers, and a few other colors he had never seen before. A man stood on the other side of the road who he recognized as God. Chuck waved. God waved back.
“Hey,” Chuck said.
“Hey,” God replied.
“How’s it going?”
“Pretty good,” God said. “You?”
“Great,” Chuck said. “Well, okay. I tried to smoke meth tonight, but I don’t think I did it right.”
“That’s a shame,” God said, turning into a dragon.
“Yeah,” Chuck said. “Oh well. At least I stole a car.”
“You stole a car?” said Dragon-God.
“Yeah,” Chuck said.
“Bad-ass,” Dragon-God said, transforming into a fish. He flopped about on the ground with a wet smack for a few seconds, and then disappeared.
Chuck turned back toward the flashing lights, which were now stopped only a few yards away. They were clearly here for the stolen car. Chuck sighed. He had really hoped to be high for this part, to see what it was like to be apprehended by the police for both grand theft auto and drug-related charges. It just wasn’t as special to only be taken in under the carjacking. Still, he did have meth in his car—perhaps he could at least experience what it was like to be caught before smoking the meth. Chuck took a step toward the officers.
“Hello,” he said. “I have meth in my vehicle, which is stolen. The vehicle, that is, not the meth. I purchased the meth.”
“Get down on the ground and put your hands behind your head,” said a man through a megaphone. He looked a lot like the alien from the movie Independence Day, except with significantly fewer limbs and way more police uniform. Chuck would’ve loved to be high on meth while meeting someone like that.
“Do you know Will Smith?” Chuck shouted. It was a long shot, but it would be great to meet Mr. Smith before being carted off to jail.
“Down on the ground,” shouted the alien. Chuck searched the ground for Will Smith. The officer had lied, he was not there, although it did seem weirdly moist. “Get your ass down on the ground!”
“It’s wet down there,” Chuck said, studying the floor. A puddle of purple liquid was pooling around his feet, slowly forming into the shape of a squid. “I don’t want to sit in this purple squid.” He took a step forward.
“On the ground, now!”
The squid on the ground immediately turned into a gigantic lobster, its claws twice the width of Chuck’s body. Although Chuck was sure he was invincible, an inhuman strength flowing through his veins, he had a terrible phobia of crustaceans. He had once fallen into a lobster tank at Red Lobster, and had several painfully nip at his arms. Not even his definite invincibility would convince him to face a 70-foot-tall one.
“Get away!” Chuck shouted, swatting at the lobster’s over-sized antenna. He pulled his keys out of his pocket and unfolded the pocket knife, slashing it wildly in the direction of both the lobster and the Independence Day alien-cops.
“We will open fire,” said the aliens.
“Good! Kill this thing,” Chuck said, slashing his knife at the lobster’s hardened shell, but failing to make contact. He needed to get closer.
“On the god damn ground!” shouted the aliens, drawing their pistols and pointing them at the lobster, which incidentally included Chuck. He so dearly wished he had “toked” the meths correctly, as this was surely an experience that would only be improved by drugs.
“Fire!” Chuck shouted, running and slashing his knife wildly toward the lobster, and inadvertently the officers. He lunged forward to try to land atop the lobster, to plunge his 3-inch-long knife deep into its several-inch-thick armor. He just needed to distract the over-sized crustacean long enough for the officers to swoop in and take it down.
The aliens opened fire, their pistols echoing a hallow thud in the otherwise quiet night. Each bullet smacked into Chuck’s chest, as if someone were beating him—or jumping him, as he now knew it was called—with a baseball bat. He tumbled to the ground, his hand pressed firmly against his torso. The officers had missed every single shot at the lobster, instead hitting him with each one, and god damn did it hurt.
Chuck threw his suit jacket off and glanced down at his dress shirt. Several bullet holes had ripped through it, but all had failed to enter into his skin. However, it did seem he had somehow spilled quite a bit of red paint, or perhaps marinara sauce, on himself at some point. For the first time all night, he was glad he hadn’t used the meth correctly—he most certainly would’ve freaked out at being shot. Thankfully, though, he was definitely invincible and not in any way actually high on meth that happened to look a lot like PCP. He exhaled a sigh of relief, smiled, and closed his eyes, listening to the sound of uniformed boots running toward him.
Writing Prompt: A man strung out on meth goes on a rampage believing he is invincible. It turns out he actually is.