Issue 20 Fiction
The Something in a Colored Man
by Chester Himes
when mac turned from 42nd onto Central Avenue, a gang of cats in front of the Down Beat had it and gone—“…cut that chump a coffin caper—a duster-buster … bust his heart-string two-way side and flat … two to one it was a broad; it was a broad what cut him, now I say it was a broad what shot him…”
Everywhere he’d been that day, they’d been talking about it—all up and down the Avenue, at the Dunbar Grill and the Chicken Shack, at Pogue’s Bar-b-coo and Sonny’s Billiard Parlor “…old slick got it at last….” Somebody had lowered the boom on one Harold Rivers, a slim dark boy with a mellow voice, L.A.’s gift to the juke boxers, idol of the tall tan blondes. Fifteen minutes after he’d done his final number at the Cotton Club, he was opening the door of his Kitty parked around the corner of 43rd Street, when somebody walked up behind him and played I’ll Walk Alone in his back with a .32. Now they were all gabbing, some crowing, some weeping—the slicks and the squares, the janes and the jills.
by Suzanne Richardson
after we broke up there wasn’t anything left of him except his Netflix account. He packed his belongings into a moving truck, and sold a bunch of stuff on Craigslist before I could say, but I love you, you Bastard. The couch was the last thing to sell. It sat up there on the “For Sale” link under “furniture” for what seemed like forever and the price kept going down. Antique Toile Couch for $100—I would check on it every so often, thinking of all the times we fucked on that couch, all the times we made love, all the times I went down on him, digging his thighs with my nails. Then it was, Antique Toile Couch good shape $75. Then it was fifty bucks and then it was gone. That’s the kind of thing I could really dwell on, the idea of some other people sitting on our couch having a more functional relationship than us, having better sex than us. So, I went home after work and sat at my computer, and thought to zone out with some random movie. That’s when I realized he hadn’t logged out of his Netflix account the last time we’d streamed a movie in bed.