Seeing

Shay Sheridan

Written for Remix Redux 2005. A reimagining of Lasha's Hooked.


I see stuff. I ain't dumb.

Some people think I am dumb, just another lazy motherfucker who don't pay attention. They see me chillin', catching the cool breeze, hangin' out with my ladies, and they draw some wrong conclusions. Those people don't know shit about dick, and they sure as hell don't know me.

Truth is, I always got one eye open; I see what's going on. Always have. Smart enough to know when to tell what I see and when to keep business private. Whole lot safer that way, with some of the people I do business with.

Like I said, I ain't dumb. Sometimes you gotta do what's best, and by that I mean what's best for Huggy Bear.

--No, no, Lakeisha, baby, Huggy'll be with you in a minute. That's my baby.

So like I said, I keep my eyes open, I watch things, and if I let a few things slip about what I've seen, to my boys, my very own tame white boys, well, then they do me a few favors back. Guess I should think of them as The Man, but they're just Hutchinson and Starsky, Starsky and Hutch. They do me a favor, I do them one. Keeps on keepin' on, one hand washin' the other; black hand, white hand, don't make no difference to me.

Hutchinson and Starsky. Starsky and Hutch.

Big favor, this time.

Shame what they did to Hutch. Saw what he was like when Starsky brought him in. Blond hair all stringy dirty he smelled bad, man, like he'd been living in his clothes and his clothes had been living in shit. Starsky dragged him into my place yeah, I must be soft in the head, to let him do that, let them come to my crib. Bad move, Hug, not smart for sure.

But I saw that look in Starsky's eye. No way I couldn't let them in.

--What's that, Lakeisha? Nah, you go on, change into something sexy, baby. Mmm-hmm, I love you too, baby.

Hutch was strung out, all right. They turn him into a junkie, all right. Damn shame. He was flying high on H -- when you're that high, that's a long way to fall, man. Don't think he'll make it, you ask me. But nobody asked, and I wouldn't tell Starsky that, anyway. The boy believes he can save his partner, and it ain't good to get in the way of all that believing.

He got Hutch upstairs and stripped him down to his shorts. Hutch sure wasn't looking good. Shivering, eyes wild, babbling some kinda bullshit. Damn. Needle marks in his pale white arm, skin all gray. Mumblin' something about how he's cold, and Starsky took that ratty blanket off the couch and wrapped him up all gentle-like.

Funny thing, watching them, watching Starsky be so gentle, moving Hutch to lie down, covering him, touching him so careful. . . guess I got embarrassed or somethin'. I seen it all, you know, but that look in Starsky's eye -- hurt to look at. Don't ask me why. Just knew I had to step out.

"I'll go get another blanket, okay?" I said, but Starsky acted like he don't hear me. He lay down next to Hutch, pulled him close to stop the shakes. I closed the door and left them there.

--I'm coming, Lakeisha, you hear me? Huggy's busy for a minute, so shut up and I'll be there. Shit, woman!

Guess Starsky trusts me to be the watchdog or something, and I owe him, owe them, enough to do that for 'em. Hell, they got my back; I might as well have theirs. Only fair. Sometimes I think they're more my brothers than the brothers, know what I mean?

I see the way things are. I ain't dumb.

And when I went back up to the apartment, with the blanket, with some coffee for Starsky, I seen things for sure.

Didn't mean to.

Didn't mean to open the door to see Starsky's mouth on Hutch's dick.

Didn't mean to hear Hutch moaning, to hear those words he was groaning, words like love you and beautiful and babe.

Didn't mean to watch him come, or Starsky swallow.

Didn't mean to stand there, frozen, the door open a crack, watching Starsky hold his partner in his arms 'til Hutch began to drift off.

Most of all, didn't mean to see the tears on Starsky's face, or watch how his eyes changed, how they got empty and full of pain, when Hutch whispered a name just before he fell asleep. Not "Starsky," but another name. A woman's name.

I watched, and then I closed the door for good, and came down here to the bar. Needed a drink -- was all hot and bothered by what I saw, which I'm trying to understand.

Gonna go in the back room with Lakeisha and I ain't coming out until both of us is all fucked out and I'm not thinking about Starsky and Hutch doing. . . what they was doing.

Damn. I ain't that way myself. Never wanted to touch another man. Don't hate gays, but got no use for 'em, neither. But . . .

. . .this wasn't like that. This was Starsky, and this was Hutch, and this was something else.

--Okay, Lakeisha, here I come, baby. I need you, Lakeisha. For sure.

I know when to tell what I see, and when to keep business private.

Keep thinking about that look on Starsky's face.

I see stuff. I ain't dumb.

I know love when I see it.


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