“Good Lawd!” I stood outside what could only be described as the thirteenth level of hell. No really. Living in the borough of Bed Stuy, I’ve seen a lot. Streets where you’ve got to avoid squishy used condoms like so many cracks in the sidewalk. Funky trash cans only to discover later someone’s sister or son had been discarded in them like last night’s leftovers. Brooklyn is a beautiful cacophony of urbanic renaissance culture and poverty stricken violence laid out on the table, a delicious casserole. This was far worse. The building before me sagged to the left, too tired to sit upright. Bricks had been haphazardly pulled out of its rotted pimple red side. The few sad windows all had gross green sewage? Trash? Dangit, some sort of putrid stains running down them. The front security door hung precariously off its hinges. By far, the BEST supernatural cover I’d seen to date. I had recently discovered upon inserting myself into the “supe” community that most of the rundown buildings throughout the five burroughs were trans-dimensional portals or spells to camouflage varying bars, clubs and eateries that humans weren’t welcome in. This here though took the cake. And a bit of my lunch. Gross.
Seedy places don’t really bother me. I’m usually the scariest thing lurking even though physically I’m no bigger than a postage stamp compared to most supernatural creatures. At 5’4″, 110 lbs I could probably intimidate a smurf only if I wore steel toed boots . I prefer it this way. When creepy crawlies find out a petite black girl is the mixed breed mutant witch thingy stomping around; giving the Gods and the Unseelie Fairy Queen a run for their money, they tend to want to test boundaries. And jewel that I am, I have no qualms about enforcing my borders with dismemberment.
I picked my way around a bum laying in his vomit on the curb and walked up to the building; straining see the tiny ripple near the entry to signal where to push my power through. Hmmmm. I tentatively stretched out my hands to see if I could just crash through the spell and apologize later for ruining someone’s handy work. Curiouser and curiouser. Ten infuriating minutes later I had to admit that there was no spell. That yes I, Lee, supernatural bad ass, had been invited to a shit hole for a blind date. Fml.
Normally this would be the part when I say I turned around and stalked my insulted ass home, muttering the entire way. So wrong. I owed a fire demon that felt I needed to quit the single life and settle down. No, I mean as in if someone had snitched on Darth and helped you save Alderon type owed. When someone helps you save a planet inhabited by millions of aliens you sit up and nod attentively. When a fire demon uses his ancient clout to refer you to a God to train you because literally every dang creature in the NYC area is gunning for you and your nerdy ass had never been in a fight before……not even with a human? Well you pretty much say sure I’ll meet his cousin’s half demon son for a blind date. At a crack spot…..sigh, fml.
So knowing that I didn’t have a choice, I scooted around the front door and did my best to avoid the biggest puddles of urine on the steps. I wasn’t quiet sure which door to knock on until I saw a name written in Sharpie on one door on the fourth floor: Pepper. I had originally thought it was the name of the bar we were supposed to meet at. I used a tissue I had to knock on the door. There was kelp and seaweed all around it, and some weird fungus that I wasn’t willing to touch wiggling on the door knob. I knocked as gently as I could hoping no one would hear but lucky ole me, the door swung right open. Sprinkling a healthy dose of saltwater into my face. Yum.
Okay, I’m not really one for words right but I’m going to try my best to get this correct so listen closely. The best way I can describe this dude is to say what the basis of him was. Stay with me people. I’m going to say Cyclops. He was about 6’7″. He had to stoop down to open the door or look at me for that matter. The eye was that startling bright blue with thick lashes. The kind girls shell out cash for. And there ends anything nice I could say. His black hair was in the stringy emo style where it fell into his gray, mottled face, uh eye…whatever. It had shellfish crawling around in it. But that wasn’t as bad as the freakishly large gills he had protruding from the sides of his neck, leaking saltwater all over his dirty Ledd Zepplin tee and rotting jeans. Yes ladies and gentlemen, my blind date was a Cyclops fish hybrid. While you ponder on the implications of that tasty tidbit, I’m going to fast forward a bit because frankly some memories deserved to stay buried deep. Let’s skip to the part where I’ve accepted my fate and gingerly sat at the roach yet somehow simultaneously dead catfish infested dinner table in the room-that-shall-not-be named where a candlelight dinner sat. Sat mere moments mind you because the water sloshing out his gills kept putting the candles out.
“Sooooo you and Kevin close,” I ask. Kevin being the fire demon I planned on researching how to kill when I got home. No response. “Umm have you lived here long?” No response. “You originally from NY?” More slow blinking. “Okaaay. Well I’m Lee by the way, and you are..” Dude just sits in the chair and stares at me, cheesing like a Cheshire cat. At least his teeth were nice, which was unnerving in its own right. I rolled my eyes heavenward and send up a prayer for strength and looked at the plates before us. Man I honestly don’t know what it was. It was orange and it pulsated. There you go. At one point it moved and shot a tentacle at me and off instinct I shot it with a burst of power from my hand and exploded my plate. Orange crap on my new jacket. Winning!
“Do it again.” I look up from wiping goo off my sleeves. Did he speak finally? “Excuse me,” I asked. Cyclops was smiling lurridly at me. “That was so hot, do it again.” “Do what?” He smiles and wiggles his eyebrows. “Use your powers. Be naughty. I like a girl with spunk.” This idiot even licked his lips suggestively.
Ok, so this dude could talk? After not saying a word this entire time, now dude was chatty inappropriate ass Kathy.
“How about I don’t, and instead you do something besides be creepy. That sounds more appealing to me.” I flick the last orange goo near him and give him enough eyebrow for him to see I’m no longer amused. One-eye groans and flicks his hair out of his eye, flinging more salt water at me.
” Dude can you not be disgusting for one moment? What the hell.” It’s been all of maybe 30 mins since this ride had started and I was ready to get off. Favors or not, Alderon was about to die. Screw them people. One-eye frowned and tried to touch my hand.
“Don’t be like that baby. I’m just trying to have fun. You don’t like fun? Come sit over here by me.”
It took all the home training my mother gave me not to assassinate him there on the spot.
“Please don’t touch me,” I managed to say between clenched teeth. “I don’t know you.”
One-eye flicked his tongue in and out at me, trying to look sexy with a sea urchin clinging to his nose. “Get to know me. It’s what hotels are made for.”
No way. “This is a hotel? Are you shitting me? You brought me to a hotel for a first date,” I yelled. “A rank one at that!”
One-eye looked confused. “Yeah, I’m not bringing you to my place. Pretty certain my girl wouldn’t dig that.”
“You’ve got a girl friend?!” I smack my forehead,inadvertently poking myself in the damn eye with the hermit crab that had somehow attached itself to my sleeve. Now I probably had eye rot. “Shit,” I muttered, holding my eye with one hand and rummaging around for some sanitizer in my purse with the other. But listen, now THIS is where the date goes from terrible to horrific on all accounts. Because while I’m trying to save my eye, One-eye starts gyrating at the table. Nope. You read that right. GYRATING.
“What the hell is your problem,” I asked as I scampered back from the table, wanting no parts of whatever was going down.
“That is so hot!” You are so sexy,” he squealed, leaning over the table. “Poke your eye again!”
Was I done you ask? Yup I was done. I got up, still holding my disease-ridden eye and grabbed my purse. “You are so lucky I can’t kill you. Because I have never wanted to kill a living thing more than I do right now, at this very moment.” I turned to storm out the hotel room haughtily when I felt soggy meat on my arm. Ugh, I glanced back to have the immeasurable pleasure of seeing One-eye giving me a pained expression as he pointed to the massive boner in his jeans. Impressive, if he hadn’t been sooooo utterly repulsive.
“Baby, you’re just going to leave me like this,” he whined, pouting. Alderon? Meet fate. My weapon of choice is a machete. People tend to fear being cut more than shot, and the deity that served as my trainer had a thing for feeling the blood splash on him when he eviscerated his enemies. What can I say, he rubbed off on me some. I too prefer close quarters with my foes so Gretchen stays strapped to my back even with my powers. Mind you it’s hard to carry a 32 inch machete around Manhattan so mine is spelled to shrink and appear when I call her name. I’d like to think he saw Gretchen coming when I severed his stupid head from his moronic body. He didn’t bother to mention it because the entire time I carried his head to Kevin’s pizza shop in Brooklyn, all he could sputter was how much of a dumb bitch I was. Fortunately demons can’t be killed by physical weapons unless they’re holy so I didn’t have to break my “no killing my dates promise.” Me? I felt awesome about how the date ended! Totally satisfied and seeing Kevin’s face when I tossed One-eye’s head into the industrial pizza oven where he was imprisoned? Priceless. Let’s hope next Friday night packs as much excitement. Next time, I’ll even get his name.