Book of Ferdinand 4
“What’d you do?” Asks a hoarse voice.
“huh?” Ferdinand grunts.
“What’d you do?”
Ferdinand opens his eyes and is surprised to find himself on the floor at the foot of his suite’s bed. His head hurts so bad. It’s as if a red hot bullet had ripped through the skin and bone at his left temple and traveled at a high rate of speed tearing through brain tissue, and then exiting through his right temple, and then it all healed up just as fast.
He blinks his eyes repeatedly. His hands instinctively shoot to his head to feel for holes and blood and brain and whatnot. He can’t find a single thing wrong.
“What happened here, doctor?”
Ferdinand’s attention goes from the hole in the wall to the rotting hulk standing over him. “What?… what are you doing here?… How did you find me?”
A proud smile spreads across his blistered and dirty face.
“I asked you how in the hell did you get in here.”
“The crow told me I’d lose you and find you again in the desert sand without sand! The hotel is called the Sands. It wasn’t hard to find. Everyone trips over themselves to help you when they think you have leprosy. The doorman let me in. I told him that I was your patient,” Bertram explains, very pleased with himself. “So, uh, why did you shoot the wall?”
Ferdinand looks back at the hole in the wall. Then he looks below it. On the floor was a print of Monet’s “Water Lilies.” The original was 87.6 x 92.7 cm (34 1/2 x 36 1/2 in) but the print was 24 inches by 26 inches so it would fit the cheap frame. The glass was shattered and scattered over the carpet. The sun from the window reflected off the shards. “That putrid fucker. No, I do not believe it. My cowardice must have caused me to jerk my hand at the last instance… making me miss… I shot the painting… it won’t happen again.”
Ferdinand puts the gun in his mouth and pulls the trigger.