Read Everything That Dunks Must Converge

Read Everything That Dunks Must Converge
by Bryan Harvey

Truth & lies in Pixar's 'The Good Dinosaur'

Truth & lies in Pixar's 'The Good Dinosaur'
by Bryan Harvey

A world of child soldiers & cowboys

A world of child soldiers & cowboys
by Bryan Harvey

To their own devices: Pablo Larrain's 'The Club'

To their own devices: Pablo Larrain's 'The Club'
by Bryan Harvey

"Dawn in Pennsylvania": Milwaukee Bucks lead Atlanta Hawks

April 30, 2010

Without their best player Andrew Bogut, most people thought the Bucks were done, especially when the Hawks went out onto a 2-0 lead, to start the series.  Since then, the Bucks have won three in a row and the art of predictions look like a foolish endeavor.  
Walking through the warehouse, it feels like a hollowed out egg, even the outside walls are painted Easter with ads for car parts and local butcher shops.  Darkness fills the rooms like a black yolk.  Brandon Jennings walks through shadows and slits of gray light, following whispers, drawn to them like a moon to gravity.

His brother's death brought him here.  They delivered the arm--broken, twisted, and bloodied--but no body.  Brandon has come for the body, all seven feet and two hundred and fifty pounds of it.  Andrew was a mountain of a man, in life, with his blood pumping through him, but in the depths of Brandon's imagination the sight of his brother's mangled arm reduced him to Ayers Rock, the blood breaking the skin and staining its surface into a sunset, or a red dawn.  These thoughts bring a chill to Brandon's spine, but he braces himself against the shivers, not wanting to appear timid, as he takes measured steps on the thick concrete floor of the warehouse.  He comes to a door, cracked slightly open, and nudges it forward.  The gray of this room, stinking of cigarettes and ashtrays, feels warm and airy compared to the dark hallway, with its air like black ink, and Brandon feels strangely calm.

"Welcome, Mr. Jennings, we didn't think you'd show," Josh Smith fires the line like a stray bullet.  "We thought you'd faint at the sight of your brother's blood.  You've got bigger testicles than we guessed.  I like that word: testicles.  It shows that bravery takes some effort, some test if you will that I don't think a word as simple as balls can convey.  Say it with me. . . testes. . . testicles. . . yeah, there it is."  Brandon stands still as the light in the room, unwavering, not uttering a syllable, not even a breath, wondering if this rambling idiot before him can truly be the diabolical genius plotting his demise.  Brandon doubts it.  He takes a step forward, placing himself in a circle of men, who carry themselves like massive birds of prey, like hawks, as if they owned the sky itself.  To Brandon, they are merely buzzards, or scavengers of old men's bones.  Brandon can smell the stale tobacco and decrepit whiskey on their clothes and on their breaths, and he begins to smile at the illusion these petty thugs desperately cling to, trying to appear as mafiosos, when nothing else could be further from the truth.  Brandon feels young.  He knows who he is, and he's proud of his youth.

Brandon looks to his left, and eyes a man not much older than himself with a posture like a weasel and a white flower popping out of his pocket.  Brandon recognizes him as the one they call Marvin.  He looks to his right, and observes a with wide shoulders, even wider ears, and a young man's goatee.  His name is Al.  Brandon also takes the time to notice two other men in the room: one sitting in a chair by the window and the other leaning in a corner full of shadows.

Khhhuuuuuhhhhh!  The sound resonates from Marvin's throat, as Brandon grabs it with his right hand.  If Marvin has more to say, no one knows because Brandon's grip holds all other syllables in the collapsed Adam's apple of Marvin's neck.  With the butt of his left palm, Brandon breaks his victim's nose, shoving the weasel's body into big Al with enough force to put both men on the ground.  Marvin's blood creeps along the concrete like an oil spill  and in the middle of this puddle sits either Al or Marvin's gun.  Brandon swoops for it and fires it in one motion, shooting Josh Smith in his cajones--excuse me--testicles.  The other two men in the room have not moved.  Brandon points the gun slowly from one to the other.

"Well, Mr. Crawford, it looks like the boy knows what he's doing," the man in the corner steps into the light from the window, puffing his cig so that the end of it glows red.  "Yeah, it appears he definitely knows what he's doing, Mr. Crawford."

"That he does," comes a patient voice from the folding chair.

Brandon decides not to let the two men talk, settling the gun on the man standing in the gray sliver of light, "I came for my brother's body."

"Well. . . it. . .  ain't . . . here."  The man speaks as if he's evaporating, as if all he can do is threaten, like thunder from a passing storm; his lack of action embracing the anonymity his voice struggles to defeat.

Mr. Jennings begins to squeeze the trigger.

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