Everyone Loves Peanut Butter | Audio*Read By Janice Herbal
By Erica L. Davis
I could feel a sunburn soaking into my skin halfway between the gas station and my house. I was sticky, dehydrated, and cranky, so the sunburn was just the cherry on top. I knew I should have checked the gas before shoving Edgar in the trunk, but it wasn't on my list of priorities right then. I was too ticked at him to think about anything else.
What kind of person had a problem with peanut butter? He refused to buy any when he went out, and always threw it away when I bought a jar myself. I'm actually kind of disappointed that I picked today of all days to off him over it. He was going to fix the pipes under the sink.
He reminded me of my first husband who had the same arrogant attitude, but unlike Edgar, loved video games. He never paid attention to anything else, and I spent six months trying to pry him away from the computer before I shoved his head into the screen.
I made sure to marry someone with more flare the second time. Robert was as outgoing as they came. I met him at a festival on a hot day similar to this one. He was tall, Hispanic, smelled great, and had beautiful eyes, but I ended him after he charmed other girls into our bed. It disappointed me more than my first husband.
I walked with the empty gas can as I wondered why I picked such crappy men. Not just crappy men, but men who could fall off of the earth and no one would notice. I guess it worked well for me, or I would've been in a lot of trouble by now.
Andy greeted me at the door when I walked into the gas station. He was still in high school, his hair was a dirty blonde, his face was sharp and harsh-looking, but he was still a sweet kid. Maybe I should've aimed for those guys.
"Hey, Mrs. Jasper. How's life?"
I walked over to the drink machine and made an Icee. My third husband loved cheap, icy drinks like these along with gambling our rent money away.
"Not too bad. Just trying to deal with the heat. Looking forward to my bonfire tonight," I responded as I walked toward the pumps.
Andy rang up my gas and Icee, and then I headed back for the car. Having something cold in my hand made the walk back to the car less miserable, but I also had a gallon of gas now.
It was Sunday, so there weren't any cars on the road. This town seemed to die on Sundays due to everyone cooking at home and visiting family. Both my fourth and fifth husband loved their families way too much. I still don't know how they figured out I was married to both of them at once, but they're gone, too, and also wouldn't be coming back.
I wondered how Edgar was doing in my trunk. It probably wasn't the best idea to stuff him in there, but I wasn't entirely sure he was dead, and I didn't want him getting away just in case he wasn't.
I finally reached my car, and started pouring the gas. "Hey, what in the hell do you think you're doing?" It came from behind me.
I whipped my head around to see that it was Doug talking to me from his doorstep. He dragged his drunken, fat self onto his front lawn, and he tried not to fall as he yelled.
"You can't just park this car on my property and leave it here!"
"So do something about it." I challenged him with a nasty tone. "It's not your property, and you're too drunk to stand."
"I sure as hell can call the cops. God knows they'll believe me. Everyone knows you're crazy," he spat.
He was the most repulsive person on the street, and everyone knew it just as much as they knew I was crazy, or at least they thought I was crazy. I could never figure out why people thought that.
He turned around and went inside as I got done pouring. There was a chance he was just bluffing, but I couldn't take that risk. I didn't want anyone searching my car. I took a hammer out of my backseat and followed him inside quietly.
His house was disgusting. It was small, cluttered, hot, and the room smelled like tacos and beer.
He was at the counter dialing the sheriff's office when I crept up behind him and slammed the hammer down on his old, bald head. I heard a crack that sounded efficient enough, but I did it again for good measure. The second hit drew blood that spewed onto the ugly tile floor.
I checked to make sure no one was outside and then dragged his fat body to the trunk (good thing I had muscle). There was barely enough room to fit both him and Edgar, but I managed to make it work.
Then I found where he kept the vacuum in his house and sucked up the dirt from the carpet. I rearranged the books on his shelf to alphabetical order, sniffed all the food in his fridge, threw away all the pencils I could find, then grabbed a beer and left, shutting the door behind me.
The drive home was pleasant. I had a cold beer in hand and an Icee in the cup holder, the radio was playing good music, and I didn't have to deal with Edgar or Doug anymore. I would have to have a bigger bonfire than usual tonight, and I would get to watch it while eating peanut butter straight from the jar.