"I'll have a pack of beer." No please or consideration to the fact that the clerk was steadily placing a heavy box of soda bottles on the top shelf. The clerk glanced down at him and grunted. He shoved the soda bottles onto the top shelf in one last attempt and sighed in relief.
"Sure, kid. Gimme a second." But Nathan wasn't exactly the most patient being in the world to wait for him to make his way down the ladder. The anger burning up inside him actually caused him to fantasize about shoving the ladder and amusedly watching the man fall and crack his head open. He reminded himself the alcohol would make him feel better soon and rounded the desk, snatched the six-pack, and tossed it carelessly onto the counter. A few moments later, the clerk rung him up but before handing him the bag, he stopped and took a good look at Nathan's face.
"What the fuck, dude? Give it to me," Nathan growled, reaching for the bag. The man pulled it a few inches away and Nathan considered the option of snapping his neck.
"Do you have some ID I can see?" Oh, how he hoped the worker wouldn't ask that. Everytime he gave someone his fake ID, he had to hold his breath that the person who held it was not an expert on indentifying a person's true identity.
Truth be told, Nathan was only twenty - twenty and alone. The age to drink in South Park was twenty-one. Christy had gone off to college two years ago whereas Nathan dropped out out of the process of education in high school. He started drinking, smoking, acting up. The third time he was arrested, Isabelle Morejon had put with enough and kicked him out of the house.
But Nathan didn't cry.
He ended up sharing a crappy apartment with Kenny but when Nathan held a party while Kenny was in one of his college classes, he tossed his ass out onto the stree, as well.
But Nathan didn't cry.
It was a miracle he was able to find that run down, abandoned shack by the edge of town. But now, he didn't even have that. Things went wrong and, to say the least, someone he lost a bet with burnt it down.
Needless to say, Nathan's eyes were still as dry as his heart.
Nathan huffed and reached into his pocket. He handed the indentity card to the clerk. It was nervewrecking at how long he gandered at the information but he ended up smiling in the end and handing him the bag and his ID. "Merry Christmas, sir."
Nathan rolled his eyes.
Walking down the street, the snow became more intense. And the more intense Nathan realized it became, the faster he drank. It just seemed like a steady pace he wanted to hold on to. After all, at this point, he was too drunk to even remember his age. His vision was getting blurier but he wasn't sure if it was from the beer or the snowstorm approaching. Even his dark blue jacket was up to it's point where it could no longer incubate his warmth so Nathan scoured the area.
When you're drunk, you do stupid things. Like breaking into a mall when it's closed just to yell at a girl who isn't even there. Many people would have believed that Nathan would have done that even when sober but there were doubts. Nathan was stupid, after all, but when stuck in a situation such as this, he tended to take things beyond serious. The six pack was digested by the time he reached the front doors. They were locked. Sometimes the janitor would forget to lock it but it appeared he focused his mind of remembering tonight. Nathan held his breath. The alarms went off when Nathan shoved himself through the glass and wearily smirked at his accomplishment. The noise made him flinch so in an act of fury, he took an empty beer botle and chucked it at the alarm.
"Shut the fuck up," Nathan slurred, as if it were a real human being. The bell did as he commanded and the lost sound waves lingered in the dark stores. He stumbled and tripped and dragged himself halfheartedly to the middle of the entire mall, right next to the twenty foot fall Christmas tree. The lights were off but Nathan somehow imagined them flickering and taunting his vision. "You think I'm fucked up, Wendy?" he yelled at the tree. No one answered his exclaim. "You think I'm a mess? You don't know shit! I am perfectly fine. See?" He gestured to his unstable body. "I'm more of a piece than your bitch ass will ever fucking be!"
Nathan had been angry before. He had even taken kids to the hospital just for puncturing his football. But mix in some Jagermeister and you've got a being who gives me chills just to write about. His bluky fists clenched, ready to blooden those who even so much as looked at him. There were tears stampeding behind his carlessness. They pounded and screamed and yelled, waiting to be released but, just like before, they weren't.
He still would not cry.
"Hey, guys, wake up! The retard's here!" someone called. That voice. It was so clear and distinct. Who else would have been here with him? Silence followed. Nathan lifted his head and waited for his eyes to adjust to the background. Sober, Nathan would have called himself crazy when he watched the Foot Locker logo tear itself from the large sign. But as completely wasted as he was now, it seemed like the most normal thing in the world. So he pushed it aside and scanned the area for a human.
"Wh-Who said that?" Nathan stuttered. The Foot Locker logo glared down at him.
"Me, dumbass. Wake up, numbnuts!" Nathan gasped when he heard a yawn break through the stricken air. He followed the noise. It he wasn't mistaken, it came directly from the Victoria's Secret dress on display. The strings, posing as arms, stretched over the head hole.
"Oh, I see," said the Victoria's Secret dress. Her accent was thick and French. "We have been waiting for you, Nathan."
Nathan blinked. "W-Waiting for me?"
This time, the two toys nutcrackers from the nearest toy store appeared by his feet. "Indeed," they said. "We heard what happened at the skating rink today."
"You didn't hear anything." Denial forming.
"Then how do we know something happened?" asked the Foot Locker logo. Nathan tried to think of a reasonable answer but to no avail. He decided to stay quiet. "Wendy didn't mean to make you mad. She just wanted to help with your fathe-"
"Stop right the fuck there!" he interrupted, inching closer to him. "What happened to my father is my business and not hers! She doesn't know anything I've been through and I sure as hell don't need her pity. Not now, not ever."
The two nutcrackers shared a glance.
The first one hopped closer to Nathan on it's flat base. He looked up Nathan with forlorn written in his wooden eyes. Nathan resisted the urge to stomp on him.
He sang, "We all heard what happened at the skating rink today.
When Wendy brought up your sad past, you snapped and walked away."
Nathan glowered down at him. "This is ridiculous," he hissed. "I'm leaving." It seemed like a relief to get away from these figments of his imagination but when the panda from the Panda Express grabbed a tight hold on him and threw him roughly into the massage chair, all hopes of that happening left. Straps came out of the back cusion and embraced Nathan. He flexed his muscles in an attempt to free himself but nothing seemed to break the straps - who's material's accuracy intrigued him. And it appeared from the eyes and parted lips of the massage chair, it was alive, as well.
And it sung, "Well, maybe they're onto something that you should give a try.
Go ahead and let it out and have yourself a cry."
The two nutcrackers interceded. "Let it out, Nathan."
Nathan continued to squirm in the chair, though he knew he wasn't going to get out anytime soon. So, with his narrowed eyes, he spat at the nutcrackers, "Oh, shut your wooden mugs!"
The Victoria's Secret dress bowed with the rhythm and sang, "Let it out, Nathan."
Nathan stopped struggling for a second when the Panda Express panda leaned over and deliciously whispered in his ear, "Would you check out her bezugs? Hmm."
Nathan glared. He was not in the mood for pervertedness, not when his life was being threatend by a bunch of labels and logos.
Nathan sung, "You want me to deal with pain? Well, cheers it when I say." He pulled out one of his empty beer bottles and held it up, ready for a toast. The Foot Locker snatched it out of his hands and held it close to Nathan's face. It was slow-motion in his eyes.
"This is stuff just numbs the pain. It don't make it go away."
The nutcrackers. "You've tried to act so tough."
Panda Express. "But you just live a lie."
Victoria's Secret. "Why don't you show your feminine side and have yourself a cry?" The Panda Express panda let out a happy howl at the dress' line. Nathan felt like he wanted to smile but held it back. As a matter of fact, he held back lots of emotions at the moment. And when one doesn't own any emotions, their face is shown to be as blank as Nathan's was right now.
"Let it out, Nathan."
"I'll pour you down the sink!" Another grunt escaped from his lips.
The massage chair rumbled from beneath him, "You gotta do it, Nathan."
Nathan added while trying to kick the chair's face, "Ya'll can bite my dink!" This aggitated the figments. They floated above Nathan's figure and glowered down at him, arms crossed, contemplating what to cause him to finally leak out his salty tears. They weren't getting the point, Nathan thought.
To hopefully get it across their language, he sung, "You labels and logos are wasting your time making me sit here. Cause nothing you can say or do will make me shed a tear."
Panda Express. "He possess a strong spirit and won't let down his guard."
Foot Locker. "So now we'll bring in the big gun! His beautiful holiday card!"
From the eminating light pouring out from the ceiling of the mall, a small card floated down. It had gold sparkles to form the design of a Christmas present. His eyes widened. Of course he would recognize the sight. He could pick out that card anytime, anywhere, even when he's drunk enough to make up musical store logos. The floated down to eye level with him. He was so focused on the card that he didn't even notice the store logos and labels fade away, probably to leave him to his own misery.
The card opened. It showed a familiar male. Nathan's face did not change so he tried to avert his eyes. It was Charles Morejon in the photo and judging from his blinking and smile, Nathan could see he was apparently alive, as well.
And Charles, in the photo, sung, "Merry Christmas to my wonderful kids.
You fill my life with glee.
Don't ever change the way you are.
Or whoever you wish to be. "
The card faded away. Nathan suspected the alcohol was wearing off. He was alone and the average darkness his eyes feasted on before was evident.
A suspected warmness slid down his cheeks.