“Interloping” by Brian Castleberry

04 April 2014 on Fiction   Tags:

To begin with, things were fine. The director's assistant showed Joan and me to our private room, second from the end of the hall on the left side, and handed us each a copy of our contracts. We were given about an hour to chill, poke around the room and its oversized bath, unpack our things, stretch out on the king size memory foam that stood like an altar smack in the center of a thick-carpeted expanse. The whole place was a little too beige for my taste. I told Joan as much and she laughed. “Since when do you know anything about interior decorating?” It wasn't a question worth answering. She didn't like the look of it either. “At least it's only a couple of months,” she said, and kissed me. About that time, the director's assistant returned to inform us that we had five minutes. He didn't explain what we had five minutes to do, or what would occur at the end of that measure of time, only that we were in possession of these ephemeral minutes, five of them total. Three hundred seconds. Thinking back, we should have counted them down one by one like NASA engineers. At least in that way, we would have found a method for holding each of them down, naming them, feeling as if they truly were ours.

Instead we threw clothing in a wide chest of drawers with a round mirror mounted to the wall above it. We hung our jackets in the closet. Joan checked her hair. I stood behind her in the mirror's reflection easing out my gut and then sucking it in, easing out and sucking in, until she turned to rain down playful slaps on my shoulder.

Moments later we were ushered out into the living room, where five or six other couples were already gathered. These others were a careful mix of ethnicities. A demographic representation of what we are told is the outside world. Men and women in shiny jackets skittered about them, measuring the light reflected on their faces, shouting numbers to assistants holding clipboards. Joan and I waited behind a tan sectional as a few more of us trickled in. “Don't cross your arms,” Joan told me. “You look angry.”

I let my arms hang for a while before stuffing my hands into pockets. Looking around at the others, measuring them up, I couldn't help but think that I myself was being measured up. That Joan too was being measured up. The whole scenario always felt a great deal more sexual than I remembered it being, as if we'd all been unpacked—surprise!—at a free love camp and that soon someone would be around to divvy up the contraceptives, jelly, and gadgets. The women were, as usual, attractive. And their husbands glared about as I did, alternately checking out women and then squinting violently at men, checking out and squinting, check and squint, the group of us surrendered to an unavoidable pre-civilized schizophrenia connected, perhaps, to survival. After a series of these humdrum observations, my mind wandered. A little later, the people with the light measuring devices came up to us and Joan nudged me with an elbow. “I said don't cross your arms.”

Soon one of the assistant directors asked everyone to clear the center of the room, a sunken area where two sectionals and a rectangular glass coffee table were situated, and spread out along the walls. Then we were told the director had arrived.

Yerdi Walczak was a diminutive man, almost completely bald, with snake-like tattoos that helixed up from his wrists, disappeared momentarily into the sleeves of a pastel rugby, and resurfaced on the flesh of his neck. He wore wire-framed John Lennon glasses. A thin brown moustache trailed along the border of his upper lip. His face seemed altogether squashed, with a beakish, birdlike quality to the nose and retreating chin. He, too, carried a clipboard. This he kept behind his back in both hands as he strolled between the sectionals and the coffee table, gazing with deep interest at each of us, moving his head up and down as he took in our full shapes. He seemed to be reading beyond our physical appearance, however, as if he could measure the inner qualities and histories that make us individuals. It was a very long, tedious process. After all, there were about twenty of us displayed before him and he must have made half a dozen passes around the room. And aside from when he gazed at myself or Joan, the experience felt altogether devoid of magic and rather dreary.

I wondered several times if it would be okay for me to excuse myself to the restroom. My bladder was desperate to be relieved. We had been served coffee in the studio vehicle before arriving here, and I hadn't thought to go earlier. But I held it, occasionally rocking back and forth, sure that any minute now the whole ordeal would be finished, an inference I should never have trusted.

Finally, the director spoke. “Good morning to you all,” he said with a slight accent. “I trust the lodgings have met with your approval?”

Vague nods and grunts served as our collective answer.

“Then let us get immediately to business. I would like to begin within the hour.” He proceeded to give an overview of what was expected from each of us, how we were selected due to our previous behavior, the fact that he didn't expect any surprises. “Just be yourselves. I will do the rest.” He then made another slow trip around the coffee table, meeting eyes with each of us. “Do we understand one another?”

I scurried down the hall to the bathroom located inside our room. Perhaps in haste, the production designers had forgotten to place any type of towel on the brass-toned rack near the sink. Checking in the cupboard next to the shower, I found the shelves empty. For this reason, I was wiping my damp hands on my jeans, over the pockets, when I stepped back into what I'd considered our private area and found a pair of apparent strangers—a couple—chatting with Joan near the bed. In the doorway, a camera and light crew busily tracked their every movement. In the far corner, out of view of the camera, lurched a tall mike grip, his boom held aloft over their three heads. Dismayed, I began walking sideways, trying to get out of the shot. But I was too late.

“Charles,” Joan said, flashing an awful, play-acting smile in my direction. “Do you remember the Curtises? Devlin and Sara?”

I focused my eyes in the sidelong light and approached. Yes. I did remember the Curtises. From another show some time back. But they looked different somehow. Darkly tanned. Sara had bleached her hair and Devlin looked as if he wore a party mask of wrinkles over his eyes. “Of course,” I said, putting on the full genial charm. “Devlin! Sara! How long's it been?”

Devlin chuckled. He deferred to his wife. “Three years,” she sang. “You two look just marv. I was only telling Dev here in the hall, ”˜Can you believe those two? Looking so good?'”

“Oh, quit,” Joan told her. “It's you two who look so great. Where have you been?”

Now it was Devlin's turn to speak. Almost instantly, I recalled how much I despised the man. He was a lush and a show-off, the worn-out nub of a long line of elite Curtises from up north somewhere, and he blabbed to us about having won a show last year where the prize was a nine-month island stay. They'd only returned stateside a week before the casting call and walked right into this gig. “I'm still nursing the hangover,” he added. “All those fucking daiquiris. Jesus, Charles. If only you would have been there.”

I didn't have a clue what that was supposed to mean. If I had been there, I would have likely plodded away from whatever drinking hole or beach towel the Curtises were calling home. And Devlin here probably wouldn't have remembered one way or the other. “Sounds great,” I told him. “You'll have to fill us in on everything soon.” Then I turned to Joan. “Did you still want to go out and meet everyone?”

She caught my drift without the use of any husband-wife body language. “Absolutely.” The camera crew, evidently bored by this reunion, had vacated the doorway. The mike grip walked dejectedly ahead of us as we all turned toward the hall. Then Sara Curtis said, “May we come with?”

You could say that's when things began to sour. Not even an hour and a half after arriving. I could feel a dull melancholy weighing down my brain, as if someone had poured a very heavy liquid in there and inebriated the whole system. Following close behind Joan, I still held out hope that we would shake the Curtises off, that they'd make friends with some other couple. But this hope fizzled out over the course of the following hour. They were attached to us as we made the rounds. Eventually, an assistant director brought us a cooler full of beer on ice and a couple bags of potato chips. We were set in a corner of the dining room and a crew trained their machines on us. Something, I was sure, would happen soon.

I drank fast, trying to keep up with Devlin, who really did seem to be nursing a hangover, and trying to keep up with his wife as well, who was talking a blue streak on the subject of their recent paradise getaway. Joan may have finished a single can of beer in the time Devlin and I downed a six-pack each. I was eating fistfuls of barbecue chips and the sun was rapidly going orange out the window behind me. Devlin kept saying, “Listen, man. Just listen to this,” and then pointing over to his wife as if she needed a master of ceremonies just to get through all the dull adventures they'd shared on the island. At some point in all this repetition and over-production, an assistant director walked in front of the camera and said, “Joan?”

Joan looked up with alarm. She hadn't spoken in a while, and I imagine she thought she was about to be asked to engage more with the others—something you hear a lot of in the first days of shooting. “Yes?”

“Yerdi would like to speak with you, Joan.”

And so my wife disappeared behind the cameras, leaving me to brave the onslaught of the Curtises' boring, sunburned escapades alone. When she returned, nearly an hour later, I had already gone from worry to freaking out and finally to a disinterested state of drunkenness that could barely register a nod in her direction. Between drinks, I leaned over and mumbled something partially romantic in her ear. Then I said, suddenly enlivened by her presence, “Where the hell you been, sweetie?”

Her eyes gazed at the floor. She shrugged. “Nowhere, really.”

The next morning I felt awful. I paced around our room wracked with unnamed guilt and apologized in a vague sort of way, over and over again, convinced I'd said or done something to deserve the pounding headache and full-body shittiness that possessed me. “Stop that,” Joan said, finally, with the hair dryer pointed at her long blond locks. “You didn't do anything but drink too much.”

I plopped down on the floor. Crossed my legs. I think part of me wanted the camera crew to come in and tape us. “I'm a terrible husband. Admit it. I'm the worst fucking husband of all time.”

She shook her head and then flicked on the hair dryer.

Later that afternoon I was in the kitchen watching a few of the other couples debate something political. I don't remember the topic, but it was clear by their regional accents on which side of the topic they were going to come down. Some of them misquoted the Bible or made shoddy references to the Constitution. The others tried to keep cool heads until finally someone said, “You're just a bigot. That's the truth of the matter.”

I left before the cameras could record the climax I knew was coming. After all, I'd assembled a sandwich and poured a glass of orange juice. My job was done. But down the hall a cameraman approached me outside our bedroom. “Tell us about what happened in the kitchen. Is Bruce an asshole? Tell us Bruce is an asshole.”

“Who's Bruce?” I said, and then angled past.

That night, a house-wide party was held in the living room. Loud music. Hard booze. Cameras everywhere. You couldn't take a step back without getting a camera to the head. I was struck by mike booms five or six times just trying to get over to the kitchen and find a snack. It was there I ran into Sara Curtis, alone, holding her face in her hands. She was standing in front of the sink, and the blue evening light fell over her like a painting. I reached for the light switch but then heard a sniffle. She was crying. Not a good time. Before I could turn back to the noise and crowd of the living room, however, I was caught. Roped in. Made a part of whatever sordid business dwelled here in the dark. “Charles,” she said. “Don't go.”

Of course I wanted desperately to leave, to return to the party, to feel the hard ding of a camera or mike boom on the back of my head. Anything aside from getting tied up further with the Curtises and whatever turned out to be their problems. But I knew we all had to live under one roof, that Joan and I and Devlin and she would have to spend time with each other as if we really were close friends, that likely that's what the director, Yerdi, wanted of all four of us, to offset all the rancor and disagreement which would soon bubble up in the house. So I decided to go along with it. No reason to seem like a cold bastard. “I'm going to turn on the light, okay?”

She swiveled. “No don't. Please.” I could see in the blue window light that tears streamed down her cheeks. She seemed to be shaking just a little, as if she were miserably cold.

I crossed the room and tore a piece of paper towel from a countertop roller. “Here,” I said. “Blow your nose. Have a seat.” Once this was done, once she was dabbing at her eyes and staring vacantly into the dark, once I was seated respectfully out of reach across the table, I said, “Tell me what's wrong, Sara. I'm a good listener.”

She sniffled and dabbed. Behind me, someone from the party walked in and then thought better of it. He or she was gone by the time I looked over my shoulder. That's when Sara began, when I wasn't even looking in her direction: “It's all of this. The shows, Charles.” She was whispering. Not only whispering, but making a point of keeping her mouth covered with the dampened paper towel I'd handed her. “Devlin and I,” she began. “When we were on the island—” The sound of footsteps nearby made her pause, and I turned to look over my shoulder, hoping this time that whoever approached would give me a viable reason to escape her confession. But no one appeared. “We saw something,” she said. “Past the crew. Past the security. Past the studio and everything.”

“Something spiritual,” I said. “Something religious?”

“Nothing like that. Oh, god.” And she fell into another bout of tears. I tried changing the subject. “What show were you on out there?"

“'Island Wife Exchange,'” she said, sniffling. “That was the prize. Nine months on ”˜Island Wife Exchange.' And it felt great. Most of it. A really slow production.” She seemed calmer now, back in her comfort zone. “I've never felt so good in my life as during those nine months. And then it's back to this.” She blew her nose in a decisive way that I knew from marriage to signal the end of the crying. “I can't tell you how happy we both were to find you and Joan here. I don't think we'd make it without you.”

Being a civilized human being, I said, “Joanie and I feel exactly the same.”

We sat there a while in the dark. In the other room, the music stopped. Someone swore at someone else. The show was about to witness its first real fight. “Charles,” Sara whispered.. “Please don't tell anyone—”

“It's our secret.”

A couple of days later I returned from the living room, where I'd been watching clips from the weekend's football games with a few of the other guys, and discovered Yerdi seated on my side of the bed. He wore his headset around his neck and his legs were crossed at the ankle. Beside him, Joan sat cross-legged in pajamas, momentarily laughing, looking as if she were in a picture from a childhood slumber party. No cameras lurked in the room. “Joan,” I said, looking as I spoke not at Joan but at the director, who returned my glare with a despicable smile. “What are you guys up to?”

Joan whipped her head around, also self-conscious. “Just talking about the show,” she said. “Come and sit down.”

On any other set, the cameras and mikes would have rushed in by now. An assistant director would have goaded everyone on, whispering small lies to both parties. But no one appeared. “I was watching the sports thing,” I said. Feeling distinctly purposeless, I asked her if she was hungry. She wasn't. “Well,” I said, backed into a corner. “I'm going to fix something to eat.”

I stalked down to the other end of the house. In the kitchen, three couples were in the process of playing some sort of card game. Cameras and crew swamped the place. One of the men at the table wore a new black eye. His wife stood behind him, occasionally consulting a note card from which she read insulting phrases directed at the other women present. A fat man in the corner of the room, blocking my way to the refrigerator, stood alone, occasionally taunting the group with an approving “Oooh!” I excused my way past him just as he cupped his hands around his mouth. “Oooh,” he said. “That fucking stings, bitches!”

From the fridge I selected a couple slices of provolone cheese and a can of beer. I slapped the cheese between two slices of 9-grain bread and then exited just as chairs honked across the linoleum floor and another fight broke out. Down the hall, I could feel my heart speed up as I neared the bedroom. But inside neither Yerdi nor my wife were present. I checked the bathroom. The closet. I sat on the bed and ate.

“What was that all about?” I asked that night, after bedtime had been called and all the cameras had been shuffled away. “You and Yerdi. I looked all over.”

Joan was reading a self-improvement book by the lamplight. She placed her finger between the pages and closed the book over it. She rolled onto her side and gave me a coy look. “You sound jealous.”

“I am. I want to know what that director was doing in our room and where you two went off to. Didn't he call you away before? On the first night?”

“Ugh,” she sighed. “As if everyone in the house doesn't know about you and Sara in the kitchen.”

I remained silent.

“Don't think I don't notice how you look at her. Christ, Charles. She's an attractive woman. A little leathery. But attractive. And ”˜that director' just happens to be one of the top men in his field. He's taken an interest in me. In us. He says he has plans. To make us an integral part of the season's story arc. Stars, in other words. Meaning better shows later.”

I had listened to this calmly, taking it all in word by word. It was a comforting explanation, the latter part. And although I couldn't agree less about my being attracted to Sara Curtis, I could see where she was coming from. “Are you fucking him? That's all I want to know, Joan. Are you fucking this pathetic weasel of a director?”

She looked sternly at her book, opened to the page she'd held. “No. I'm not fucking him.”

The next morning, Yerdi himself knocked on our bedroom door. I answered in my robe. “Joan's in the shower,” I told him.

“That is natural,” he said. “I'm here to speak with you, Charles.” He looked me up and down. “In the kitchen? I'll give you a couple of minutes to dress yourself, of course.”

I watched him scuttle down the hall. Wherever he went, it seemed, there were no cameras. I wondered for a while, standing in the hall, if this no-cameras business was his policy, some part of his artsy philosophy, the unfounded sort of superstition that haunted these “genius” types and eventually, through the inevitable irony of poetic justice, brought about their downfall. Then I pulled the cloth belt of my robe tight and followed him.

The kitchen also lacked camera and crew. Yerdi motioned to a chair near his own, but I chose one further away. Once I was seated, he produced from beneath the table a small but heavy-looking device with a handle on its top and a screen at one end. From the device, he stretched a thick black cable over to the counter and plugged it into a round data socket near the light switch. The screen came to green life. “If you will please observe,” Yerdi said, and then pressed a button on the device's top before returning to his seat.

On the screen, Sara and Devlin Curtis were exiting their bedroom. Their movements seemed cartoonishly paranoid: hugging the hallway wall, they hesitated at every few steps, two or three times holding fingers up to lips as if to silence one another. It appeared to be late at night. No one was around. They made their uneasy way to the living room, and for a split second the screen showed only the empty, shadowed hallway. Then the video cut to a wide angle shot of the living room's shadow expanse, with the Curtises, looking ridiculous, crawling slowly along the floor, poor Sara occasionally ramming her head against Devlin's ass, gumming up the works for a second or two. I watched this proceed in a cyclical fashion. Eventually, the video jostled again and the pair stood in the kitchen, right behind where Yerdi sat now.

What happened next was completely unexpected. The Curtises turned to their right and faced the door leading out into the garage, where I had been told the camera equipment was stored overnight. Their bodies blocked the door, but I could tell Devlin was up to something. After a little over a minute of this near inaction, the door opened. He'd picked the lock. The next shot skipped the garage altogether. Instead, I saw the outside of a white corrugated-metal building of uncertain size or shape. The camera kept its focus on a corner. At this corner, a bed of unhealthy-looking flowers girded the base of the wall. On the left half of the screen, the reflective glare of the white wall shone like green glass. To the right, a rocky field disappeared into shadow and finally darkness. As they neared the camera, their faces came into better focus. They appeared elated, joyous, but somehow terrified. The feral dishonesty of their wide smiles reminded me of childhood fears, of the way you laugh the first time you're in a funhouse or when cornered by a cheek-pinching aunt. They moved in a swift diagonal, past the camera, their heads a close-up blip that suddenly disappeared from view. After an almost interminable wait, the Curtises disappeared into of this darkness, hand in hand, running wildly, their bodies aglow in the green light. I waited for the next camera to pick them up. It didn't. Or there wasn't a camera. Nothing happened.

“Where did they go?” I asked. The shot remained fixed on that corner. The flowers and the darkness unsettled me and I tried not to look. Finally, Yerdi pressed another button and the screen cut off. I repeated my question, adding, “Where are they?”

Yerdi pressed the wire-frame glasses up his nose. “I believe you know the answer to that, Charles.”

Here I was, sitting across from maybe the most important director I'd ever met, this tattooed Pole who could decide my wife's and my future before his morning coffee, and he was telling me I knew where the over-tanned Curtises had run off to in the night. “I'm not sure I understand,” I said.

“You were seen speaking privately with Mrs. Curtis prior to this unfortunate behavior. Did she not share her plans with you then?”

I pushed my chair back, crossed my arms, and then uncrossed them. The last thing I wanted to do now was to seem angry. “She and the hubby just returned from nine months on Island Wife Exchange,” I told him. “She was depressed. Felt cooped-up, you know. That's all I got out of her.”

Yerdi gave me a long, blank look I couldn't read. Then, with a curling smile at the corners of his lips, said, “Thank you for your time.”

He unplugged the thick black cord and spun it around his arm a couple of times, then gathered up the device. I stood with a jerk and asked if he thought the Curtises were safe, but he ignored this and left by the garage door. I couldn't help but stare in after him. The assistant directors, the cameramen, the grips—the entire crew—stood together on the cement floor. The door closed and a moment later opened again. The day had begun. Filming started with me, seated again, alone at the kitchen table. Someone slid a bowl of Frosted Flakes in front of me. An assistant director said, “Action.”

That evening, we were all gathered in the living room to witness a slap fight between two of the wives. It had something to do with jealousy and territoriality and the whole thing put me in a terribly melancholy mood. I stood in the far corner, flipping the pages of an old book and pretending to read. Joan slipped off to the kitchen after complaining about my “lack of participation,” leaving me alone to contemplate the motives and whereabouts of the missing Curtises. A woman across the room was pulling another woman's hair when I resolved, finally, to tell Joan everything that had happened: the strange, halted chat with Sara as well as the morning confrontation with Yerdi. I squeezed past the fat man, who was yelling, “Show that bitch,” on my way to the kitchen.

I was only partially surprised to find Joan no longer there. I stood next to the table in a stupor anyway, looking back and forth as if she may suddenly appear, hidden on the counter behind the tall jar of rigid spaghetti noodles or the white retro-themed automated mixer. It is a wonder how even the smallest moments take on dramatic power when you know you're on camera. I pictured myself caught on Yerdi's little green monitor like the sneaking Curtises. So I played it up, opened all the cupboard doors, pulled out all the drawers, dug around in the refrigerator.

Then I went to the garage door. It wasn't locked. Aside from a few pieces of camera equipment and a well picked over spread of snacks and beverages set out for the crew on a wide folding table, the garage was completely empty.

That night, Joan returned to our room drunk, her hair and clothes in disarray. She talked endlessly about Yerdi, his genius, his sense of humor, his vague plans for our impending stardom. I listened to all of this and didn't listen to it. She was another woman. A rambling stranger in a busy street. I didn't know her. Eventually she sunk into a deep bout of hiccups and did a shoddy job of changing into her pajamas. She passed out cold on top of the bed sheets not fifteen minutes after she walked in the door.

We'd met on one of the dating shows. “Million-Dollar Mate” or something like that. We'd been married on “Vegas or Bust.” Until a few days ago, until we walked back into that living room to meet Yerdi Walczik, our life together had seemed perfect, or what we call perfect, what we agree in these circumstances to label with the word perfect. Sitting next to her snoring, twitching form, I felt emptied, hollowed out. The darkness of the field, that horrible darkness on the right side of the screen, seemed altogether real. I could understand what Sara had been telling me now. The Curtises had seen something outside, past the cameras and crew and studio. A place outside of the shows which made everything somehow different, made her cry alone in the kitchen, made her crawl from this house with her husband and run giddily into the green-black night.

A cricket in the garage chirped. I could hear it through the door, even before I tested the knob. Inside, I made a wobbly stepstool of two cameras and pressed the button to retract the folding door. Expecting a flood of light, the shouts and footsteps of security, or a laughing assistant director brandishing a hand-held, I fled to the corner and hid behind a pyramid of sound equipment as the door rolled up. There I waited in dark quiet. Not even the cricket spoke up. So I made a run for it.

I reached the road connecting the house to another house where Joan and I had lived earlier in the year, to a series of studio buildings, to the central tower where we'd shot “Couples Pastry Cook-Off” in the penthouse and, a few years ago, “Don't Tell Me You're Married.” I ran down the middle of this road until some flash of light up ahead sent me barreling across a well-cropped lawn away from the pale halo of the streetlamp. Catching my breath in the dark between two studio homes, wherein I could hear the crew and cast of another show filming an argument scene, I saw a dark empty field that appeared to stretch on into the night. I ran, cutting off in a wavering diagonal through the clumpy grass, progressively losing sight of anything, at some point realizing I didn't know if I was running forward or backward. It was so dark even a camera couldn't have seen anything.

But then I found it. The relatively small white corrugated metal building, shaped like a machine shop or storage shed used in one of the outdoor competition shows. I rounded its far corner and came into a faint light. I was on camera. Running from the darkness. I wondered if I looked as happy and fearful as the Curtises. As soon as I'd left the halo of the building's light, the darkness returned. Wilderness sounds surrounded me. I stopped running and gathered my breath, walking in tight circles like I'd just hopped off a machine at the gym. I could see nothing. I forgot which direction I was facing.

At dawn, I made out the same white building far in the distance and started walking in the opposite direction. As the light grew in intensity, I became more aware of my surroundings. This place seemed uninhabitable and broken. Nothing grew from the earth but clumps of yellow weeds and distorted, dried-up twigs. Rocks appeared strewn along the ground to the flat horizon. Now and again I came across the abandoned evidence of campfires. Others had been here, or, as I began to worry, were still here, hiding in the foothills along the horizon. Soon enough, I could think of nothing but my own thirst and hunger.

It was past nightfall on the third day when I saw the lights ahead. By morning, I slid down the sandy hillside and found myself at the edge of two rows of houses. I ambled down the middle of the street. The inhabitants of these houses walked free of their homes. They entered vehicles and drove away. I turned a corner and found that there were more houses, more rows, more inhabitants moving about. I sat in a heap in the middle of a soft green lawn. A woman came out to me with water. Others carried me inside. A teenager called for a doctor over the phone. They fed me candy bars and some sort of microwaved dinner. My temperature was taken. I was given pain medication. Everyone seemed to know my name. A doe-eyed girl asked me to sign a photograph in a magazine. It was of Joan and I sitting up in bed, perhaps the night I confronted her about Yerdi. They asked me how I'd come to this place and I shook my head. I wanted to know if they'd ever heard of Devlin and Sara Curtis.

An assistant director appeared then, arms akimbo next to a cameraman.

“They've gone to a different show,” he said. “You will stay on this one.”

Brian Castleberry is co-editor of the anthology Richmond Noir. His work has been featured by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Euphony, and other literary journals. He currently teaches English and Film Studies at the College of William & Mary. 

 

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