He approached the machine. The machine sat on its black side, strangely seeming aware of his approach. He reached the machine and put his hand on the “rinse” knob. This was it. He had suspected throughout about the machine that there was some quality about it, something sinister that separated it from anything else that he had come across in his life.
He had been a loner throughout, so much so that he wouldn’t even find his name if a story was written on him. All his past stared at him like dirty laundry. He remembered every beating, every scrape, and every stigma that his brother had given him. And strangely enough, they were negatives. All of them. Not one drop of goodness in the sea of sickness.
This would be very nasty.
(what are you thinking no no no no stop)
(everyone would ohmygod ohmygod ohmygod)
He turned the knob.
Ronnie’s smile suddenly froze. He stood rooted at the spot where he was for a second. A kid from across the road stared at him.
That was the last thing he saw.
His body spun like a lolling top and fell into an alley, away from eyesight. The kid across the kid came running hoping to draw out a few stray coins that may have rolled out of his wallet. The wind had stopped blowing now. Everything seemed to be stuck for a moment. And then it began to blow again. The kid came in and stared into the alley where Ronnie had fallen.
He was greeted by bare earth.
The younger brother walked into what had been Ronnie’s office yesterday.
‘ You ought to be ashamed for coming in perpetually late, Ronnie’, the boss said.
The younger brother, who had ceased to be the younger brother just, gave a polite smile.
‘It won’t happen again sir’; he said and closed the cabin door behind him.
At this moment, the people at Mc Donald’s had been going around doing their chores. There had been no Ronnie’s younger brother working there. Ever.
A smile had been playing on Ronnie's lips for a while. He now knew what the machine did.He always wanted to get rid of the bad things in his life….his misery, his pain, his grief, his memories…his existence. The machine had helped him get rid of all this and much more. He never would be a loser in life again. Ever. The machine washed.
Almost a year later.
He walked into a chemist shop. The guy at the counter, who had known Ronnie for a long time, greeted him. He laid his hands on the table, and bent towards the shopkeeper, a style that had been Ronnie's; something he had grown up seeing. He finally opened his mouth,
" I want a...um...give me a.."
"Yes?",the shopkeeper said patiently.
He nodded his head sideways. Not good. He looked up and said,
" I...I cant remember..."