Tagged: spanish

The Skull and the Heart

Dear Planet Earth,

We’re packed up in Jeeps, ready to act as a diversion for murderous mole men, I’m using a cane surprisingly well considering it’s my first time, and I think I was offered a sponge bath by Dr. Brooke, but by far, the most interesting part of my day was the conversation I just had with a seven year old boy.

An older woman here, I think Nancy or Ashley is her name, warned me ahead of time that I’d get a visit from my mysterious skull thief. He came up to me just as I was about to take a much needed seat in the back of one of the trucks (I never realized how hard it is just to stand sometimes).

“Hello,” I said, shocked and a little frightened of the scowl across the boy’s face. “Or ‘hola.'”

He thrust the contentious skull towards me. I could see layers of ash caking his small fingers.

“I’m sorry,” he said.

The soldiers around us lifted crates onto the vehicles, the civilians cried goodbyes to the friends and relatives they were leaving at the hospital. Somewhere, maybe only a few miles away, an army of subterranean invaders were on their way to kill us all.

“Who are you?” I asked.


I searched the boy’s face, his unkempt hair, his faded Superman shirt, for something, anything that said more than “Marco.”

“Why’d you take it?”

He shrugged his shoulders, and his scowl began to fade as he blinked a few times rapidly. He hung his head, but the arm and skull remained outstretched.

“You can hold on to it for now. You’re coming with us, right?”

Marco nodded, spun around, and made a beeline for the truck with Nancy or Ashley.

“Happy Valentine’s Day,” I said.


Arriba, Arriba

Dear Planet Earth,

If I didn’t feel like enough of a baby-like invalid before, learning how to walk definitely sealed the deal.

I started my physical therapy today with Dr. Brooke, who as it turns out, isn’t even a doctor. No joke, he dropped out of medical school halfway through to start a chain of Mexican restaurants with his brother. But that’s a rant for another day.

He’s had me walking up and down the hallway for the past five hours. I’d tell you that I’m moving at a snail’s pace, but that would be offensive to decent snails everywhere. However, my unfathomably slow gait still makes me feel like I’m running a marathon. With pins in my leg. With Tabasco sauce marinating those pins.

To make matters worse, they’re cutting back on my painkillers now, too. If only I could summon some of that adrenaline from yesterday, I know I’d be the unholy love child of Usain Bolt and Speedy Gonzales.

The Skillful Skull-Swiper

Dear Planet Earth,

It seems my painkiller bender is over. The swelling’s gone down considerably and now only hurts as much as listening to Justin Bieber sing a duet with a pack of geriatric cats in heat. My insightful wit also seems to have restored.

But drugs or no, a little boy did actually steal my burnt mole man skull. There’s at least a dozen kids running around the hospital at any given time, but Roberts is pretty sure my suspect is the little Hispanic boy they picked up at a looted gas station near a highway off-ramp.

They found him huddled underneath a cash register, covered in spider webs and Cheetoh dust. He’s only said the words “yes” and “no,” which first led everyone to believe he only spoke Spanish; he spoke even less to a translator.

Whoever he is, he stole one of the few material things I have left, and that cannot stand. Unfortunately, I cannot stand yet either.