It was a normal day at Walmart in Normaltown, USA. I had gotten a great evening of rest and I was ready to restock the infant section. I had just finished tagging all the new Infamil when I felt hot breath on the back of my neck. Turning, I was face to face with a large, Chestnut horse. He looked curiously at me and cocked his huge head to one side.
“Hi, how can I…help you?” I asked. The horse blinked.
“Where Do I Find Ghosts,” He queried. He cocked his head a bit to the other side.
“I’m sorry—what are you looking for?” The horse couldn’t have just said ‘ghosts’…?
“82. Pluto Coffee 83. Praline Coffee 84. Turkish Coffee…” Grabbing a piece of paper from his large, horsey fanny pack, he let out a great big shudder as he mumbled and read.
“Oh, coffee. That’d be aisle 4 with the tea, coffee, and other beverages. Right over near the front of the store.” I smiled and turned back towards stocking.
“You are smiling.” The horse said. Weirded out, I stepped a bit away from the be-speckled stallion. He stepped towards me. I stepped to the left. The horse mirrored my movements. “Is the dance floor calling? No.” Did he just sass me?
I took a deep breath. “Is there something else I can help you find?”
“CHOCOLATE SYRUP REFRESHING DRINK FOR SUMMER.” Horse_ebooks yelled as he read off his list. A woman pushing a child in her shopping cart sped away with widened eyes.
“That would be in the same aisle as the various coffees, sir,” I stage whispered, hoping to draw attention away from us. I saw my manager watching us with curiosity. The horse leaned close to me and his mane brushed against my cheek, falling over my shoulder and his flapping horse lips grabbed at the ends of my coif.
“our hair…” The horse whispered, staring with large, black, emotionless eyes.
“Excuse me, who do you think you are and what do you think you’re doing?!” I stepped back and knocked over the row of Infamil I had just stacked. The horse looked nonplussed.
“Freudian analyst, paint pictures, dance, do bio-energetic exercises and yoga, meditate, levitate, pray, and commune with nature on peyote—” With that, the horse threw back his head and laughed. “I Laughed Out Loud…Now I Know What I Have To Do.” Horse_ebooks spat out ominously and dropped his shopping list. He turned tail and galloped, swerving, through the front entrance, kicking displays and knocking over Faded Glory clothing racks as he went.
My manager came over to me at a good clip. “Damn meth heads. I have kicked that idiot horse out of here three times this week. He came in here yesterday screaming for PUMPKIN PIE and DELICIOUS MUD. He’s cranked out. You ok?” I nodded and picked up the shopping list he had so unceremoniously let flutter to the ground.
It wasn’t a shopping list at all. It read simply, “I AM THE UNDISPUTED KING OF CASH AND I AM UTTERLY FREE” written in oxidized blood. In tiny lettering that looked fecal, I made out the words, “To have my throat cut across… My tongue torn out by the roots… And my body buried in the rough sands of the sea.” That night I lost the use of my legs. To this day, hair grows on my tongue.