Monday, May 11, 2009

The Fugitive Generation (xxii)


Joey and Jim meet in hall.

JOEY: What’s happening, brother?

JIM: I still have spring fever.

JOEY: Yeah, I know what you mean. You might like to do some of this with a friend.

Joey hands Jim four tabs of mescaline.

JIM: What is it?

JOEY: Just some extra mescaline I’m giving away for free.

JIM: You sure you don’t want me to pay you something?

JOEY: (smiles) I made a lot of bread this spring. Especially at that big anti-war demo. I don’t need any of your money. Catch you later!

Joey heads downstairs. Jim returns to his room.


Jim puts three of the tabs in his guitar case. He swallows the fourth tab and leaves his room.


Jim retraces his first walk of the winter around the campus with a big smile on his face. Every twenty yards some freak student says “hi” to him and smiles. Jim walks through the campus, past the Diag political rallying space in front of the graduate library, smiling and saying “hi” to numerous smiling freak students.


Marlene is walking towards Downtown Ann Arbor. Jim is walking in opposite direction. They notice each other.

JIM: Marlene! You’re just the person I was hoping to bump into. I tried calling you a few times. But nobody answered.

MARLENE: I’ve been staying over at Roger’s a lot.

JIM: Oh…Are you staying around Ann Arbor this summer?

MARLENE: No. I got a job as a camp counselor in Vermont. I need to earn money this summer.

JIM: When are you leaving town?

MARLENE: Next week. First I’ll stay with my parents for a few weeks. Then I go off to Vermont the third week in June.

JIM: I’ll really miss you. How about going out together Saturday night, since we won’t be seeing each other for awhile?

MARLENE: Aren’t you seeing Rachel anymore?

JIM: She’s down in Columbus with her parents for the summer. So we’re not really involved with each other anymore.

MARLENE: Oh. I didn’t know she was away for the summer already.

JIM: Can I meet you at your house? Maybe at about seven? We can drop some mescaline I just got. And go out for dinner. And hang out in my room a little. (smiles) A little going away party for you.

MARLENE: (smiles) That sounds like it might be fun. I’ll see you Saturday night at seven, then.


Jim rings bell. Door slowly opens. Jim looks surprised for an instant. Then he smiles. Marlene is standing in front of him in low-cut dress, looking very glamorous in a more traditional way. Marlene smiles, while Jim quickly glances at her.


JIM: Wow! You look as beautiful in a dress as you do in khaki pants.

MARLENE: Yeah. That’s why they elected me Queen of the Prom in high school. Come on in.

Jim walks into the apartment. Marlene follows him, closing the door behind her.


Marlene’s studio apartment is sparsely furnished. A lot of books are on shelves. A dinette table is in center of apartment and a single bed is in corner. On the wall are a lot of anti-war posters with pictures of Indochinese people.

Jim takes two tabs from his pocket.

JIM: Here’s the mescaline I said I’d bring. I’ve been wanting to trip with you ever since we met, Marlene.

Jim hands a tab to Marlene, as she smiles.

MARLENE: I figured you did.

Marlene goes to the kitchenette sink and fills up a glass of water. She puts the mescaline tab in her mouth and takes a sip from the glass. Marlene then hands the glass to Jim, who sips from it as he swallows his tab.

MARLENE (CONT’D): I’m glad I’m seeing you before I leave Ann Arbor.

JIM: Are you ready for dinner yet?

MARLENE: I’m ready if you are.

Marlene opens the door and turns off the lights, as she and Jim leave her apartment.


Marlene and Jim walk side by side, talking to each other in an animated way and laughing a lot. Every ten yards, some student who knows Marlene waves to her and smiles, and Marlene waves and smiles back. Eventually, Marlene and Jim reach a restaurant next to a movie theatre. They enter the restaurant.


The mescaline is beginning to have some effect. Marlene and Jim’s eyes look more stoned, as they each giggle more while finishing desert.

JIM: I’m really starting to feel it now, Marlene. How about going back to my room and I’ll play you some of my songs on my guitar? You might like the one I wrote for you.

MARLENE: A song for me?

JIM: (laughs) Yeah. A love song.

Marlene laughs.

MARLENE: I’m starting to really feel it now, too. I suppose we should go back to your room.

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