Parole Office Pete
I’m just wired different. Never fails to get me in trouble. One time my parole officer summed me up perfect. “You think you can get away with anything, huh?” he said.
Walking down the street, I waited for myself to pick up a rock and throw it at the windshield of a passing car. That would have been my answer, “Yes sir, I do.” But no cars passed and they must have recently cleaned the sidewalk because there weren’t any rocks to throw.
My parole officer is my best friend Pete. And my name is Pete. We’re just two guys named Pete.
Pete has a brand new wife and she takes him to church twice a week. It’s some very kinky sort of foreplay as far as he’s concerned. He likes the idea that God can watch over his most private thoughts and actions.
That’s what it’s like to be wired right. When you think you can’t get away with anything.
I figured I’d go ahead and kill Pete so there’d be one less guy for God to spy on. But I didn’t know where he lived—only where he went to church.
Standing outside his church, I looked at all the young girls walking by in their dresses and skirts. It started to make sense that I was just like God—just watching and waiting.
Then Pete came along. He held his wife in one hand and his Bible in the other. Totally weighed down on both sides.
He walked right by. If he noticed me, he didn’t show it.
I waited for myself to burn down the church. But it was my last day on parole and I didn’t have any matches.
Peter Clarke is a writer and musician with a BA in psychology and a JD in intellectual property law. His short fiction has appeared in 3AM Magazine, Pif Magazine, Curbside Splendor, Hobart, Heavy Feather Review, and elsewhere. Native to Port Angeles, Washington, he currently lives in San Francisco. (website)
W. Jack Savage is a retired broadcaster and educator. He is the author of seven books including Imagination: The Art of W. Jack Savage. To date, more than fifty of Jack’s short stories and over four-hundred of his paintings and drawings have been published worldwide. Jack and his wife Kathy live in Monrovia, California. (website)