Things don’t appear. Nothing comes from nothing. In other words: something must come from something. Forget the Honey Bucket for a minute, the whole scene hadn’t been there. All of it. You understand? The street, the water on the street, the metal barriers, the tipped over trash, the bike with stolen front wheel and handlebars. There’d been a dozen cargo containers a moment ago, now they were gone.
“You seen it?” Bilke rubbed his eyes. “Tell me you seen it, Mel, please. I know I’m half gone crazy already,” he stared at his brown bagged bottle, “but God almighty, please tell me I’m not the only one—”
“You ain’t.” He put a hand on Bilke’s shoulder. “I seen it too. Didn’t, then I did.”
“It’s a loo, ain’t it? Some kind of Johnny-on-the-spot?”
“Well, sure, but I ain’t ever seen one that glowed. Or smoked, or whatever it’s doing.”
Smoking, no, that wasn’t quite right. More—what’s it called when fog rolls off dry-ice? It was doing that. Fogging. Of course it would, because that fit. Except nothing about this fit. Things don’t come from nowhere. They come from somewhere. So where’d it come from?
“Think we should call someone? The police or, uhn…Lord, who’re you supposed to call about something like this? Makes you wonder if there really is some kind of agency that handles this sort of weird shit. X-Files or Men in Black.”
“Hey, flash me in the face with a red thing. Please and thank you. I’d rather not remember tonight.”
“Hey, Mel, you wanna touch it? Go up and see what it feels like?”
“Hell and no. You’re mad. Why’n fuck would I want to do a thing like that? I’m fine layin’ here with this bottle. Matter of fact I’m thinking of packing up and moving to that bridge I was at last night. This is the kind of crap I don’t need in my life.”
“I’m gon’ touch it,” Bilke snickered.
“No…Bilke, c'mon. Buddy, why? Let’s just…Ah for cryin’ out loud, Bilke, please don’t. C’mon, sit back down. H-hey, Bilke, pal, tell you what…Hey, I’ll…For fuck sake. Bilke. Oh, oh, God, no…N-n-no. Nononono. Wh-what is that?! Oh fu-u-u…A-a-ah!”