Novacaine

By Elessar

Rating: PG-13

Genres: angst

Keywords:

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Author: John O./Elessar
Rating: PG-13
Disclaimer: Star Trek, Star Trek: Enterprise, and all affiliated characters, titles and names are registered trademarks of Paramount Pictures, CBS Television and VIACOM International. This work is not intended for distribution for profit or publication. Even if I am better at it than them.

Notes: What was playing when I wrote this:

Green Day – Novacaine
Brooks & Dunn – Cowgirls Don’t Cry
Spiderbait – Black Betty
Miranda Lambert – More Like Her


The bitter brown liquid fell to the back of his throat with the slickness of liquid fire. What pain it dulled inside it took in payment from his palette as he winced and balled his fist into white knuckles. Ear-throbbing house speakers blasted an old head-banger tune too loud for anyone to hear each other. But people didn’t come here to hear each other.

Trip raised a hand in the air and screamed towards the bartender at the far end of the room at the top of his lungs. The sound barely pierced the guitar riffs enough to tickle the barkeep’s ear as he half-listened to another drunken patron’s sob story. Trip had plenty of story, but no wish to debase himself to the level of a slobbering sad sack of desperation to spill his guts to a bartender. He’d tell his story to Jack D, he thought with a smirk as he lifted his hand in the air again. The bartender appeared in front of him and removed his empty glass. Over the soaring vocals of the next song, he nodded for another Jack & Coke and pulled his stool up all the way to the bar.

A woman appeared next to him with beer and other men on her breath, grinning at him. Tucker tried to suppress the disgusted curl of his lip as she leaned in and tried to whisper something to him. He silently thanked the bar for its obscenely loud house band. He just shook his head as if not understanding her and turned back to his drink. She got the hint, and ran off down the bar with another beer back to her friends.

His eyes wandered up to the television in the corner as another drink landed in front of him. He wasn’t sure what number it was – by himself there was no point in counting. As Trip downed a thick swallow of the stuff, his throat bit back in vengeance and he nearly choked as the poisonous liquid fell down his throat. He marveled at the quickness of its effect, his mind already clouded enough to really wonder if the drink he just took was already taking its toll, when in fact the buzzing cloud behind every nerve in his body was proffered by the drinks he took twenty minutes earlier. Soon enough, the only sensory input registering with his brain at all was the music. He listened carefully as his eyes glazed over and settled on the far wall. No one song nailed down his feelings, or his situation… but as track after track played, enough words fit into the right puzzle pieces to start painting a pretty depressing picture.

A few moments later, the sting in the back of his mouth refused to abate. It reminded him that his pain would even more resilient… stubborn, like her. But unlike her, it reared an ugly head, bred in weakness and clothed in self-doubt. It swirled like the whiskey in the glass between his cold fingers, darkening the world around him with ever deadening nerve, every drowned care, every forgotten pain. In that moment, when he became as separated from his pain as his body felt from its limbs, he realized he was nothing.

He stood from his bar stool, feeling new mobility wobbling between his legs as he dropped a twenty and headed for the door. He intended to go home, feel sorry for himself, pass out, and then wake up the next morning with new plans. At forty-one, maybe it was too late for new plans. Then again, she was seventy-four, so old rules seemed already forfeit. He hoped his situation warranted new rules, but doubted it.


Comments:

Aquarius
[b]WOW!![/b] There is a dark beauty that radiates from Rock Bottom, and you show it here so well. I was [b]IN[/b] that bar! Very powerful writing, Boss. I was hoping for more from the "Wrecked" piece--thank you! Tell me, will we see resolution?
anaM
Wow, what is this woman doing this time to bring Trip so low? I love the noir and depressed feeling I get from this story,but I must confess I love angst more than anything.;) And, is there in the last paragraph a very small hint of hope for the future?
Elessar
Thank you!!! Linda, I appreciate that... I know what you mean. I'm glad I conjured those feelings, because it's a pretty dreary place. The name "Cafe of Broken Dreams" comes to mind ;)
Linda
I dislike crowded bars where people get sloppy drunk. Your bar scene was well written enough to make me relive the lothing and disgust I have for such places, LOL. :@ Well done. ;)
justTripn
Oh dear! Wow. Hmmm . . .
Alelou
If he wasn't depressed enough before, that bar and booze should have really brought him down. Gotta love the woman with other men on her breath. Vivid and depressing and bleak as hell. :(:(:(

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