We were all disappointed in Showtime’s ending for the Dexter series, starring Michael C. Hall. Years ago, John King (The Drunken Odyssey Podcast) held a fan fiction night in downtown Orlando. This is the piece I read that night. And given the latest announcement of the Dexter reboot (see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hA-oCTUrNfE ), we’d like to share The Lumberjack Years in our Ghost Parachute blog. Enjoy.
—Assistant Editor Genevieve
Dexter, The Lumberjack Years
Tonight’s the night. And it’s going to happen again and again. Has to happen.
Beyond the adult toy store, there’s an Ostrich and Emu farm. Beyond that, route 85 winds back by Limber Jill’s Mancakes Bar and Grill, and eventually swerves into a gravel road leading up to a secluded modest cabin in the woods.
Limber Jill’s place is the main hang out for about an hour in any direction and it’s a salvation for truckers, lumberjacks, and coal miners. Jill loves to serve her specialty—buttermilk whey protein pancakes—or mancakes, though I suspect it’s just an excuse to call all the guys the nickname “Mancakes” and smack them on the ass. She’s 65 and seen better days, but you gotta respect someone loving what they do.
“I wanted to be an astronaut long ago,” I heard her say. “But working this gig is the next best thing.”
I don’t normally partake in the activities of “One small step for man, One giant free lap dance for mankind Wednesdays” at the bar and grill, but sometimes I drink there after a rough shift. During the week, from 8pm to midnight, the place turns on the lights and disco ball to the back bar, home to about eight or nine regular strippers. The real treat is when Daring Dottie makes her appearance, a three-foot-eleven little person stripper who rides in wearing nipple tassels, a school girl skirt and thigh highs, pigtail braids, smoking a cigar, all on the back of an Emu named Geraldine.
I gotta hand it to Dottie. She’s reinvented herself quite nicely as a beloved local celebrity. Little do they know, she lured five children to their deaths in Georgia under the name Rebecca Shay. She fooled investigators and took up a new life as Dorothy Madden aka Daring Dottie here in Washington state.
I haven’t killed in so long, I know I’m rusty. But the Dark Passenger is there. It’s always there. And Dottie fits the code of Harry.
Tonight’s the night. Daring Dottie—all three-foot-eleven of her—puts on her usual show at Limber Jill’s, swinging from Emu Geraldine’s saddle to the stripper poll and back to Geraldine again, each time discarding an item of clothing from her body. When the music changes to Britney Spear’s Oops I Did It Again, she drops down to the stage, gyrates her hips and swings her small breasts around to rotate the nipple tassels. The crowd goes wild. She jumps back on Geraldine (who somehow manages to remain a composed, regal bird through all of this), hangs upside down off the saddle, and whips off her thong to the delight of truckers.
This will be her last dance.
Dottie’s small cabin home is the perfect location. It’s in the middle of nowhere, not a neighbor for miles. She gets off work, makes the journey home with Geraldine, and I stay back until it’s safe, rolling into her dirt driveway, lights off. As usual, she’s blaring Britney Spears songs and drinking to unwind from a night of stripping. Geraldine is locked in a small barn adjacent to the cabin. So it’s just me and Dottie tonight.
I slip in through the cabin’s back door and quietly tread through the home with needle in hand, Dottie’s off tune rendition of Baby Hit Me One More Time echoing through the halls. When I turn the corner to plunge the needle in Dottie’s neck, I’m surprised by Geraldine in a pink tutu charging me.
The bird shrieks as I just barely dodge it.
Dottie tries to find something to defend herself with and this is getting way out of hand way too fast. Geraldine charges me again, I punch the bird in the face, knocking it out, Dottie rushes to her aid, and I plunge the needle in.
Wow. I am rusty. What a mess.
I get to work.
Dottie wakes to find herself naked and saran wrapped to a table. Looking up, she sees five pictures of her victims above her. She smirks.
“Oh the children. Bless their little brat cunt hearts,” she laughs.
“Such honesty, Dottie.”
“Want to ask me why I did it?”
“So you can brag? Oh I know why you did it. It’s why I do what I do.”
“But I do have one question.”
“Go for it.”
“How did you do it? How did you just change your whole normal life and go to stripping on an Emu? You’ve assimilated so well. You even seem–”
“Well how do you feel so guilty?”
“I don’t feel anything—and definitely not guilt.”
“And yet I’m livin’ it up and here you are sulkin’ out in the middle of bumfukt Egypt, with your sad eyes, and your sad sighs, and your sad—”
“SHUT UP. You don’t know me.”
“Only a human being with a conscience could feel what you feel. Here. Right now. And having a conscience is not a problem that I—”
I plunge the knife into her heart before she can utter another word, but as soon as I do, I’m knocked unconscious.
I awake to a dead stripper, daylight, a kill room still shrouded in plastic, and a knock at Dottie’s door. Confused, I piece together what must have happened:
Geraldine the Emu got loose, kicked into a bookshelf, knocking over a heavy ceramic statue of a moose, right over my head.
The knock at the door grows louder. My SUV is in Dottie’s driveway.
“Fuck. Fuck. Fuck, fuck, fuck.”
How could I let this happen? It’s sloppy work. Fuck. Fuck.
Well, there’s only one way to deal with this even if it is a risk. Open the door like everything is totally normal.
I frantically rip off my rubber apron and gloves, fix my hair in a waist high mirror by the door, and take a deep breath. Just act like everything is fine.
I open the door to reveal—wait—what? It’s my sister, Deb, standing there with a bionic leg and a brown paper bag in her hand.
“Jesus fucking Christ, Dexter. A lumberjack? Really? You’re a mutherfuckin’ cliché, Bro.”
“Damn straight. I got bagels, Brother. And you got a dead fuckin’ midget you need my help with. Let me in. It’s fuckin’ cold out here.”