Dead like US
Our lives had changed so much since Rube left. The whole Cameron Kane fiasco is over and done with and it's been a full week since Roxy, Mason, Daisy, and I have reaped anyone. I guess we are all waiting to see who takes the reins and becomes the next Rube. But so far… no Rube, no post-it's, so no reaping. The only thing that's stayed constant is the morning breakfast we share with each other at the brand new Waffle House. It's amazing to think about which things can be rebuilt and what can't in one's life. Kiffany's presence was appreciated as she filled our coffee cups in this time of uncertainty and aided in the normalcy that we all were seeking.
"Georgia will you please pass me the sugar?" Daisy asked sitting beside me. She was staring at me from the outside of the booth with her cute face and pale, smooth skin.
I shot her an annoyed glance and asked her a mental question of "Are your fucking arms broken?" Instead of grabbing just a few packets of sugar I snatched up the white ceramic tub filled with an array of different colored sugar packets and placed it to the left of me where the prim and proper blonde sat. If I cared to acknowledge at this moment I think she said thank you. Daisy Adair THE actress. She died on the set of Gone With the Wind and will always have a handful of stories about encounters with the famous people she's known and fucked. Across from me with his dirty head resting on the table was Mason. Mason, Mason, Mason….A drill to the head chasing a high I'm certain he has yet find.
"Please Roxy! I just need a little shock; something to give the 'ol bones a jolt," Mason said in his slurring British accent. Lifting his head he looked to Roxy as he pleaded for what she had on her police women's belt.
Roxy put down the coffee she was sipping quietly and looked at Mason. "Mason, it is too damn early for you to be working on my nerves. Now, I'm trying real hard to keep this fine brown body of mine to stay calm, but if you keep pushing this I will not only show you the wattage of this police issued taser, but you will also get an up close and personal tour of my boot up your ass." Roxy said with a shushed of voice, picking up her coffee once again and sipping it silently.
Mason put his head back down, my guess not from defeat but to come back in a few moments from another angle.
"Well this has been fun, but I have to get to work," I said ushering Daisy to move from the booth to let me out. "If I'm not going to be reaping anyone today I best be getting to something that pays the bills." I dropped a few bucks for the toast I didn't eat, grabbed my bag and went on my way. That has been the gist of our breakfasts and they got more and more pathetic as the days went on. I'm not sure what's going to happen to the four of us but if something doesn't happen soon, we are going to all lose it.
Happy Time has been anything but this last week. Delores has been on my ass nonstop about stepping up and being the employee she knows I can be. Not that I am anything but the ideal employee but when Delores left a few months ago to do her now dead cat's bucket list I had gone a little off the deep end with power. I held the lives of other weak employees in my hands and could crush them at any moment. Not like this was different than anything else I did in my daily life. Regardless Delores has had me on a short leash ever since, and it's been hell on earth.
"Good morning Millie, it's good to see you arrive a little early this morning," Delores said to me as I entered my cubical. "It's this kind of initiative that I love seeing from you!" she said, moving into my space with a giant smile. I cringed that she was invading my personal bubble so early in the morning. I normally didn't mind her around. In fact in some weird and seriously twisted way I loved Delores. She was the quirky mom I always needed, never failing to help me with some helpful fact or perverted anecdote from her past. But this morning I had just about had it with all the major horse shit that had been going on in my life.
"Delores," I said with a polite smile. "Do you think it's at all possible I could leave early today?" I said in my sad voice. "I know its Friday and my home life has been pretty sucky lately and I just really need some time to…" If I was going to lie I could at least think of one faster than this. Delores cut me off and moved her face close to mine. Inches away from Delores's face I had a second to think one thought: Who was the last person to be this close to Delores's face?
"Millie, I wasn't going to say anything but...I've noticed a change in you these last few weeks. Ever since I got back from Murray's funeral you have had this…" She gestured her arms in a circle around me. "Aura that has been somewhat of a downer... a real party pooper," she said with a saddened frown.
All I could do was smile. What do you say to someone that has just called you a downer, in spite of the fact that I was in fact being a major downer? "You know what, Millie? You take this day off. Think of it as the start of a weekend of change. You can come in here fresh Monday morning with a new attitude and a new outlook on life." Death. This was one of the reasons I loved Delores, she knows what I need even when I don't. And even if I don't know what I need yet, I am sure as hell going to mess around until I figure it out.I flashed Delores an appreciative smile and said my thanks and left. The day was mine and nothing could have been nicer than to just relax and take a personal day. But like anything else in this life of mine, death had other plans.
Now, they say that most suicides take place Wednesday contrary to what most people think about the Monday blues. The reasoning behind it is that by the middle of the week the job has been so stressful, traffic is too much, and co-workers are so annoying that they can't think about getting to the end of the week. Now, I can't really imagine why this guy had to be part of the 11 percent that would jump on a Friday from a twenty-three story office building and land on a hotdog stand that I had been standing in line for. But beyond all the screams and hollers I felt…awkward. Like I should be doing something, like my job. But I didn't have this guy's post-it. I felt the need to touch him and help him find his lights, but something held me back.
"I got it! I got it!" I looked around for the owner of the statement, and found her running toward me. She was a small and slender woman with long, flowing black hair that when she stopped running settled to the length of her elbows. She was young like me, all fresh faced and happy looking. "Damn it!" she exclaimed. She looked at the body then back at me with her hands on her hips. "I could hardly tag him before his mistress slash secretary pushed him out the window," she said, smiling at me and touching the man on the head.
The man's soul exited his now dead body and took the girl's hand. He looked dazed as he turned back at his body and then up the building; It was an all too familiar scene that I had experienced firsthand.
"Follow me sir," she said to the man. She walked past me and smiled. "You're Georgia Lass right?"
I was a little shocked, but I nodded a yes.
"Great! Wait right here for me please, I'll be right back," she said.
I nodded another yes and sat down on the pavement next to a fire hydrant that had a black French bull dog or puppy tied to it. The dog had a red chest harness around it and I asked myself whether it had been there the whole time, watching all the carnage. Out of boredom I looked for the dog's name tag and saw that his name was Rigor.
"Hi," said a familiar voice. "I'm Lilith, and you are Georgia Lass." I looked up and found the mysterious girl standing beside me. She extended her hand and pulled me up and off the curb. "And I see that you have already meet Rigor." She untied the knot that bound him to the hydrant and scooped him up into her arms. She started walking ahead and I followed.
"So I don't mean to be rude but, who you are you?" I stopped, as she stopped and looked at me. "I get your name and that you're a reaper, but how do you know my name and what do you want?" I did it in the nicest tone I could manage at the moment, but I think I came across a little hard and forceful. But to my surprise she smiled and began walking again.
"Well, yes I'm a reaper. And I'm here to help you and the other three reapers that are a part of your little band of merry reapers. I'm here to give you the list. For a little while that is… Do you know where I could find one of your comrades, Mason?" she said, looking at me.
"Um," I blinked and shook my head to get my mind moving again. "Yeah, I know where he is, um…." I looked around a bit and pointed in another direction. "This way, he would be at the waffle house still."
I noticed just now that outside this waffle house it smells like waffles. The old one never did that. I think it's odd when restaurants smell like but are nothing like anything that they make. Like the outside of a steak house that smells like steaks is nice, like a suggestive sale. But from what I've noticed, most fast food places don't smell like what they serve there. It's some weird mix of the chemicals out of the vents and burnt grease. It was refreshing to walk into a place that allowed its consumers the aroma of the food they were about to eat…it also cuts down on the ordering time. After all you smell waffles you order waffles, you smell burnt grease you order a double double with extra cheese. Mason was sprawled across the booth we had all been in hours before, with the side of his face lying on the table with the look of dread and worst of all boredom. I think this nonreaping business hurt him the most. Everyone had their own lives to some degree, except Mason. I don't even think he was partaking in drugs or alcohol, which in the past had been his key to passing time. With Lilith, Rigor, and myself in tow, we walked up to the closed-eyed Mason. I felt the need to sit down and shove him across the booth violently but I paused with the new boss standing next to me thinking it might not be the best way to come across. I slapped the back of Mason's head...lightly, awaking Mason from the grizzly slumber I'm sure he was faking.
"Mason! Wake up. You have a visitor." It was rough at first and sweet by the time I said 'visitor'. His head shot up quickly, looked to me and then to the women beside me. He smoothed his unruly head of hair to one side. "This is Lilith."
"Hello young lady," he said in the nicest voice he could manage.
Lilith smiled back, gave a wave and sat across from Mason. She put the tiny puppy the size of a large mayo jar in her lap. Not wanting to stand out I sat next to him and looked at both of them as not to miss something. Lilith tilted her head at Mason and with a sympathetic grin she reached into her pocket and pulled out a little yellow post-it. It was at this point I looked at Mason, to see his reaction to what she was offering him. The look was nothing at first, but changed into so many different emotions that lit up Mason's face. First was intrigue, and then came shock, and then surprise, and then a weird one that was rare for Mason: gratitude. He had known this person all of two seconds but with the smile that he had shown her he would have given her the world. He played dumb by asking a dumb question. "What is that?"
Lilith laid the post-it on the table in between her and Mason. We all could see what it was…It was a name, place, and E.T.D. What we all have been secretly craving for the last week. To Reap.
"This, Mason, is what you've been praying for. It's what you've been hoping will happen. Your normal life of taking souls will return." She pushed the post-it toward Mason's side of the table. "Take it Mason."
Mason looked at the post-it, wary of taking it.
"It won't be the last. I promise, there will be another one tomorrow, and another one after that." Lilith smiled a toothy grin and Mason returned the smile. He took the post-it in his hand and nudged me so he could leave the booth.
"This is for today! This is in a half an hour!" His voice trembled with pure enjoyment. I sat back down where I was before and smiled with the group. Mason gripped the edge of the table looking at both me and Lilith. "Some poor soul is going to die and I'm going to be there it reap it! Me! The fuck-up!" Mason slicked his hair back into the mess it was before, brushed off his black Styx's logo t-shirt, gave a formal bow and almost ran out the door before he turned back kissed me on the cheek. He turned to Lilith to do the same just before she stopped him. She put her puppy in front of her face to shield herself from the impending lips of Mason.
"Mason, you are very welcome, but if you wish to kiss me I will be forced to sic my dog on you." It was at that moment the quiet and well mannered Rigor - held in mid air over the table - let out, not a bark or howl, but more of an expulsion of air with a noise.
Mason smiled. "Alright", he turned and headed out the door. "I'm back!" He yelled once outside. After a moment he disappeared around the corner, leaving just Lilith and me. Rigor was back in her lap and being praised for his heroic snarl with baby talk from mommy.
"Sorry, normally I don't sound so stupid, but he's just so cute at this age," she said with a smile. "Well I do have to get going; I have to settle into this nice town." She placed Rigor on the floor with his harness and leash leading up to her hand and exited the booth in one swoop. I got up too and did the only thing I could do…be nice.
"I'll walk you out, if you like," I said with a smile. She nodded and we walked to the door.
"Thanks for your help Georgia. Some reapers don't make this a smooth transition; do you like being called George or Georgia better?" The change in conversation rattled me.
"I prefer George. My mom used to call me Georgia when she would be pissed at me. Daisy calls me Georgia. It adds to the slight annoyance I feel towards her…So you're going to do the post-it thing?" We were outside by now and we had moved to a nearby tree that that Rigor was sniffing.
"Oh, yea Rube had a good little system. The post-it's, the waffle house, and you all there every morning; it's nice. Some head reapers don't even talk to the other reapers they give names to. So I'll be here tomorrow morning dishing out the death and passing the creamer." She laughed to herself with the joke she made. "Well I'll see you later George, have a good one." She waved me a goodbye and headed down the sidewalk with heads turning as she walked a waddling Rigor. I watched as she picked up the puppy and turned the corner. I guess it's time for me to head home and relax for the days ahead.
I guess the lesson of the day here is being glad for the good wishes that get granted. Sure I don't know who the hell this girl is and what else she's going to be bringing to the table but in some small way she is going to bring peace to four lost undead souls.
Author's note: Well thanks a bunch for reading and another "episode" will be along shortly. More will be said about Lilith in the following episodes. These stories are just a continuance of the storyline that the show kind of took. There will be no strange romance that was never there in the story (i.e. Roxy and Mason, Rube and George) although I do believe that Daisy and Mason did have something but what they had was forbidden love. (Weak as it was) It was cute and added personality to bother characters, in the end. If you will notice throughout my writings I will hardly ever mention the "movie" Life after Death because I hated it. For many many reasons. If you wish to discuss those views or any others I'm happy to chat up with Fans of this under rated show that could have been more. I'm taking the title, "Dead like Us" because the other titles that have it are just 1 chapter stories and not been updated since 04 and 06 and 08. Also I'm sure there are plenty of mistakes and grammar errors. Please take this for the art and release of creativity that it is and know that I kind of don't care about the mistakes as much as the story. Lol Well I hope I haven't lost any readers. TY