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Remembrances of Vincent Chase’s Penis Past (Part One)
Vincent Chase, sixty years old, stood on the cratered asphalt of Franklin Avenue, looking thirty years into the past. It was him.
The guy standing one hundred feet away from Vince was… Vince. “Queens Boulevard” Vince, to be exact. Old Vince would know that look anywhere. Looking back, he had always secretly considered that his peak- he had been young, beautiful, a huge success, every girl wanted him, but there was something else too- he had been doing good work. Billy Walsh had brought out the best in him the way no one else ever had before, or would again.
And this guy had it- the walk, the look in his eye, the unshakable knowledge that he was in exactly the right place, at the right time, doing what he was born to do. There had been a few impersonators on Hollyood Boulevard right after “Aquaman” – but those guys looked like sex offenders, and Drama and Turtle had thrown eggs at them while Vince laughed behind tinted glass in the back of the Bentley.
But this guy was good. Looking at him, it suddenly broke like a rogue wave over Vince- his golden youth, all of it, the enormity of what he had had, and lost. And he knew now that he had lost it a long time ago- long before he locked himself away in his penthouse. He wanted to cry.
He wanted to cry. But instead, Vincent Chase shit his pants in the middle of Franklin Avenue.
He wished he hadn’t, but the truth was it had been happening more and more. He wanted to ask the girl to bring him diapers, tell her it was for some kinky sex thing, but no. He couldn’t do it. He was sure she would know the truth.
Then something happened. As Vince stood there, silently enduring the worst moment of his life (so far), as he stood there in the middle of Franklin Avenue with his own excrement dripping slowly down the inside of his robe and into his four-hundred dollar designer sandal, the guy, the thing, the other Vince, whatever it was- it looked at him.
It was just a look, just one second of eye contact. But in that moment, old, pants-shitted Vince achieved enlightenment. Well, maybe not enlightenment exactly, but something like it. This guy, this younger self, saw straight into the gnarled depths of his tortured soul. Vince had spent his adult life trying not to be understood: Always he strove for mystery, to leave ’em wanting more, to get the girl out by morning with nothing but a story to tell her friends and a ride home in the Bentley from Turtle.
While the moment lasted – it was probably less than a second, but Vince found himself high on a hill, looking out at a 360 degree view. There was nothing but a sea of impossibly soft, white clouds anywhere as far as he could see, and he was at peace.
Then the earth shattered. Vince never heard the rocket coming until after it had impacted in the street, sending asphalt into the air like a fountain. The next thing he knew he was laying flat on his back, in a cloud of black smoke and dust, trying to breathe. Something deep down in his brain stem was telling him to move, to get up now, he had to find his double, talk to him, find out what it all meant. He might never get this chance again. Vince tried to will his legs to move, but they were emphatically not taking requests.
“It’s perfectly normal,” said a voice in the dark. It was a female voice, so that was something. Vince wondered if he was in Heaven. He flashed back to the scene that had filled his mind just before the rocket strike- that hilltop, those clouds. Maybe he had already been dead. If people were firing rockets, he could have been hit by something else just as easily.
“You must have crapped your pants when the rocket hit. It’s completely involuntary- happens to everybody.” Now Vince was fairly certain he was not, in fact, in Heaven, because even if it was possible to shit your pants in Heaven, he remembered a little bit from that church on Atlantic Avenue his mom used to drag him to, and he was pretty sure in Heaven they wouldn’t call attention to stuff like that, if there was a way to avoid it.
Experimentally, he opened an eye. It hurt, but eventually shapes started to form out of the white blurs. His focus pulled until he saw a room, and a girl. She was hot.
Her name was Mary, she told him later, after he felt good enough to sit up on the military-surplus green cot. He hadn’t looked under the blanket, but Vince was pretty sure he wasn’t wearing his crapped pants anymore. She must have helped him out of them. The room had no windows at all- were they underground? It felt like they were underground.
Vince checked Mary out from behind as she stood in the little kitchenette, boiling water. Her hair was black and short, Vince would usually have said too short, but there was something about the white skin of her neck. Moving downwards, he paused to take in her shoulders, feminine but rippling with muscles under her white tank top.
And then- she still had her back to him – making tea or something, so why not – down to her ass. It was toned and frankly spectacular.. She turned with the finished tea and brought him a cup. “Drink up, baby.” So it was “baby” already? Vince was starting to like her, dykey camouflage pants and all. She put her hand on his shoulder, just a touch, but he was shocked by how strong she was.
But then something else came into his mind, eclipsing even the urgings of his ageless libido.
Vince tried to talk, but found himself hoarse. His first attempt came out as a pathetic little croak that hurt him somewhere deep down in his chest. But he had to know. He tried again:
“That guy back there in the street…”
Mary smiled an innocent little half-smile. Or maybe not so innocent.
“Right before the rocket hit. He looked… it was me. But young.”
“And who are you?”
Vince just cocked an eyebrow at her. He wasn’t hurt that bad.
“You really want to know, baby?”
Vince caught a different inflection in the word “baby” this time that hadn’t been there before. Or maybe he hadn’t been paying attention. It was a little harsh, a little condescending even. It cut into him. All at once he was acutely aware that he was thirty years older than this girl. At least.
“You want to see him again? You sure?”
Vince nodded. He was sure. He thought.
Mary stood up from where she’d been sitting by the cot. She went to a mirror that hung over a bare sink, right there in the open, and fixed her face a bit. When she was satisfied, she produced what looked like a tiny remote control, and pressed a button.
A hidden door in the wall slid open, revealing a cunningly concealed secret chamber. And there he was. For the second time that day, Vincent Chase looked into the eyes of his younger self. But this time, they were as black and lifeless as a dead sun.