Emigraine - Chapter Three
Words and Photography by Michele Maria Serrapica
THE LANDING, THE SLEEPING, THE EPIPHANY. DIRTY SOULS IN A DIRTY CITY
Phonzo has never been finicky.
He might have been a fussy kid for a very short period of time, with the usual whims about seafood and tomato's peel, but that was all. Luckily, he was already quite close to be a ready-to-life kind of young adult by the time he moved to Londinium. And you need to in order to face some of the hard truths.
One of them being, for example, that Londinium is no city for clean men, no matter what they think or say or earn. The roots of this metropolitan city are nasty, the soul of this capitalist stronghold is filthy, rotten veins pulse putrefied blood in its garbage-based organism. All the full starred refreshment centres for haleness and sanctuary reasons would be potentially closed in countries which are actually “civilised”.
Phonzo didn't know that though. Not yet. Not when he landed in the middle of the night and got the Cylinder towards the southern dam of the waterway. There, he was welcomed by Fritz and his lady friend, who were potentially shagging between the same sheets in which Phonzo was going to have his first sleep in Londinium (because people tend to do very weird shit when they're twenty and far from their procreators’ home). Fritz, in fact, was a friend of Luchino, who was a friend of Phonzo, who was going to spend a couple of nights in Luchino's room, who was not in the city and left his keys to Fritz.
So, here he was, inside the first Londinium-style room he's ever seen. There wasn't much to see anyway. There was just enough space for him to stand up. The luggage had to go on top of the wardrobe. At least, being a thing, it wasn't consuming the little breathable air left in the room. In spite of it all, Phonzo tried to make himself comfortable in the bed and have a look around which didn’t take long.
At first glance, all he could see was entropy. The wardrobe was vomiting clothes, very fashionable clothes, even though most of the (dirty?) undergarments were framing the huge television stuck between the bed and the wall, decorating the floor and topping up all the mishmash ruling on the chest of drawers. A better glance would reveal the treasures hidden in that mayhem. An originally Superman-patterned teddy bear was now patched and bootlegged with other bears whose remains where decorating the summit of that piece of furniture. Next to it, a couple of credit cards were supposedly whitened by one of the most famous powder in the globe. Phonzo was experiencing all of that while talking at the phone with his procreators, who were eager to hear his voice, as they've always been since 1992. Once the phone call had ended, he put his indispensable portable gadget on the bedside table. Doing so, he couldn't help himself not to open those two drawers that were hiding underneath it. Curiosity killed the cat, but the cat has always had nine lives. The first drawer contained just random emotionless tools, but the tools stored in the second one, mate, were quite something. A collection of dildos. Different colours, different shapes. He has never seen so many of them all in once, probable he's never seen one at all, and now he had the chance to even touch them. So, cool, one more tick on the list, or maybe two. That and the realisation that Londinium has definitely changed Luchino.
Having a shower was the only thing he was able to think about the next morning. The room looked nicer with the daylight as the rest of the flat did too. The one in which he could've accessed at least, which was the stairs, the tiny kitchen and the bathroom. The latter had something special Phonzo couldn't yet understand, it was touching his guts someway, but how? He rinsed his face to wake fully up, brushed his teeth and jumped in the bath. The uncanny cold water froze his body, his eyes were scanning the brownish surroundings, his soul elevated above the current living plane. Phonzo had an epiphany. From that moment on, in order to live a better life, he should've lowered his sanitary expectations. And so he did.
Once ready, he went out to meet Luchino. His soul a little dirtier and ripened.