I guess I started this thread because I wanted to post this:
Psst. story is set in 1960
Is Charlie bleeding again? she asked.
I nodded and we both tromped upstairs to watch mom fix up Charlie. His knee was still really bloody and I could see the scrape was the size of his whole kneecap. Mom was patiently picking out tiny pebbles and other debris from the wound with tweezers. She had quite a time washing the torn up skin.
Its really dirty, I whispered to Sally.
Her eyes opened wide because she knew the torture that now awaited our brother.
Mom then stood on tip toe to get something from the top shelf of the medicine cabinet. It was the brown bottle with the yellowed hand written label with a red boarder. Im pretty sure it had been in a doctor bag from a field hospital during the Civil War.
A mournful sound began deep down in Charlies chest. It gained in pitch and decibels until it was akin to an ambulance siren.
Noooooooooooooo! he wailed, Not mercurochrome.
A lot of mothers stocked their medicine chests with clear Bactine and plastic bandaids, a much less feared treatment. Mothers like ours were not about to purchase something new until the seemingly bottomless bottle of suffering was empty.
That iridescent fuchsia liquid put fear in the heart of the toughest bully. I dont think even a big kid like Tank could survive a session with mercurochrome without sniffling. We always got a lot of sympathy from out playmates because they could always tell when our mom used it on us. She bandaged our cuts with gauze and white bandage tape. The pink stain of that horror of horrors was all we needed to be encouraged to tell war stories to our friends.
She leaned forward more, Look at it from my perspective. I get word that someones dropping my name left and right around town. Turns out that someone is not only from Mictlan, but shes a Reaper. So I think to myself, What would a Reaper want from me? and Im left with a big, unanswered question looming over my head. As you can imagine, I dont exactly have a lot of friends up there. Do you understand, Emi?
I let that all sink in. It made sense, yet, You got me drunk.