The Stallion

Written By: Mitch Winston

The pills were red. And I had long since promised to never go higher than the trees. But the vibe had been awkward and nervous since Edna got to Amagansett. It didn’t feel like it had when we first met, when we took a walk after the club and shared french fries, when I was Eddie Wilson and she was Joann. When she cried and told me about her family. And when we made love. We took them at midnight. Then I smoked marijuana and obligatorily pulled out my guitar to play my new song, Shy Away.

And you couldn’t even begin, to relate to my passions within.
But you remember that I seldomly tried to explain.

She left the room—Was she crying?—Edna once told me that my music made her cry.  But then the front door slammed. I looked through the window and she was sprinting away, down my driveway like an escaped stallion, “Where the fuck is she going?” I thought as I started the chase, and then, “Holy shit, this girl is fast!  She streaked onto Montauk Highway and up someone’s driveway, and right through the front door of the unlocked house. I followed inside, praying it was empty.

When Edna saw me, fear filled her eyes. She slipped by me and darted out the front door (again)—down Cranberry Hole (again)—and onto Montauk Highway toward my house. This is a positive development, I thought. She was coming down to reality. But then she started flagging down cars on Montauk Highway. One pulled over, and a bearded year-rounder in a flannel got out. Edna pleaded with him, pointing at me, “Please help me! This guy is evil! He’s gonna kill me! I beg you not to leave!” The bearded man looked at me with hate in his eyes.

I tried to convince him that everything was fine; we had taken drugs; Edna was hallucinating; I don’t even kill bugs; I’m a nice (somewhat) normal guy; and I live right there–I was also a year rounder! But court was in session on the shoulder of 27 East, the bearded man the judge and jury—(And I hoped not a misinformed executioner.) His verdict was to call the cops and wait with us until they arrived. When they did, Edna really was coming down and calming down, and she recanted her statement about me to the cops and the bearded fellow. We were both ready to go back into my house. But the investigation had begun. The cops wanted to know why Edna would say such things about me.  I had no idea either, but admitted that we might have given to me by a friend, and after taking it realized it might have been Ecstasy. The cops were not upset! They said they believed me. They thanked me for my honesty and said it was no problem. Then they casually presented me with a search warrant for my house. It was for my own good to let them in, they said, to protect my name from false accusations Edna might make. But I knew they would find weed and the other two red pills on my kitchen table. I was still hallucinating but smart enough not to sign.  Two senior officers pulled me aside and tried harder to convince me–to protect my name. I almost yielded, pen in hand, but then refused.

Edna was (almost) back to normal and asked the cops to please let us go home. But we were under their control; the investigation was not done. They decided they would call paramedics and take Edna to Southampton Hospital for further observation. She begged not to go. I begged them not to take her. But the ambulance arrived and they forced the crying and protesting Edna in. Lights on, sirens on, the ambulance sped off toward Southampton Hospital. Through the window, I could see Edna looking at me and crying, growing smaller and further away, and could only wonder what her volatile drug-fueled mind was telling her at that moment, when paranoia meets reality, when they really are after you, a la Joseph Heller.

They would not let me ride with her, and I had to get to the hospital to protect her. But the cops were still waiting in their cars a yards from my driveway. If I drove out, they would pull me over and issue a sobriety test—of which the results would be catastrophic. It was 5:45 a.m., ten minutes before The Old 5:55 left Amagansett toward Southampton!  The station was 1.2 miles away. I sprinted down my driveway (again), onto Montauk highway (again), past the two cop cars still perched there, and toward the train station. The cops followed behind me in slow motion. On the train with minutes to spare I didn’t know if I had just run the mythical four-minute mile, but I knew what it felt like after.

I got to the hospital, soaked with sweat and strung out. Edna had already been discharged and was sitting in the waiting room, shivering and embarrassed. I gave her my sweater but no compassion or empathy. We said nothing in the ($80) cab ride home. I glanced at her once or twice, countenance forlorn and embarrassed, eye makeup smeared everywhere from crying. She was cute and vulnerable.

We got to my house and lay on my bed. I was too shocked to be angry, too wired to sleep. But I wanted her, and I had her. We came together, passion mixed with fear, creeping anger, maybe even some hate. We slept until the afternoon, and I woke up angry.  If I had let the cops inside my house I would have gone to jail!

I asked her if she was ready to go to Marta’s. She said yes. Driving on 27 West toward Manhattan, Shy Away came on WEHM, the second time they had ever played it. I was Eddie again. Was she Joann? I wasn’t sure who she was. But I didn’t want her to jump out of the moving car. I didn’t even want her to go to Marta’s. So I married her.

And you couldn’t even begin, to relate to my passions within.
But you remember that I seldomly tried to explain.