The Priest, They Called Him - Nirvana

Like tuberculosis folks, Christmas eve an old junky selling Christmas seals
on North Park street. The Priest, they called him. Like tuberculosis, folks.
People hurried by, gray shadows on a distant wall. It was getting late and no
money to score. He turned into a side street and the lake wind hit him like a
knife. Cab stopped just ahead under a street light. Boy got out with a
suitcase, then Ken in prep school clothes. Familiar face, the Priest told
himself, watching from the doorway. Reminds me of something a long time ago,
the boy there with his overcoat unb_ttoned, reaching into his pants pocket
for the cab fare. The cab drove away and turned the corner. The boy went
inside a building. Hmmm yes maybe, the suitcase was there in the doorway, the
boy nowhere in site. Gone to get the keys most likely, have to move fast. He
picked up the suitcase and started for the corner. Made it, glanced down at
the case. Didn't look like the case the boy had or any boy would have. Priest
couldn't put his finger on what was so old about the case. Old and dirty,
poor quality leather. And heavy. Better see what's inside. He turned into
Lincoln Park, found an empty place and opened the case. Two severed human
legs that belonged to a young man with dark skin. Shiny black leg hairs
glittered in the dim street light. The legs had been forced into the case and
he had to use his knee on the back of the case to shove them out. Legs yet,
he said, and walked quickly away with the case. Might bring a few dollars to
score. The buyer sniffed suspiciously, kind of a funny smell about it. Is
this Mexican leather? He shrugged. Well some joker didn't cure it. The buyer
looks at the case with cold Disraeli. Not even right sure he killed it,
whatever it is. Three is the best I can do, and it hurts. But since this is
Christmas and you're the Priest, he stripped three notes under the table into
the Priest's dirty hand. Priest faded into the street shadows, seedy and
furdy. Three cents didn't buy a bag nothing lasted a nickel. So you remember
that old attic croaker told me not to come back unless I paid him the three
cents I owe him. Isn't that a fruit for you? Blow your
stack about three lousy cents. The doctor was not pleased to see him. Now,
look at you. What? I told you! The Priest laid three bills on the table. The
doctor put the money in his pocket and started to scream. I've had trouble!
People have been around. I may lose my license! Priest just sat there, eyes
old and heavy with years of junk on the doctor's face. I can't write you a
prescription! The doctor jerked open the drawer and slid an ampoule across
the table. That's all I have in the office! The doctor stood up. Take it and
get out! he screamed. Hysterical. But east expression did not change. The
doctor added in quieter towns. After all I'm a professional man and I
shouldn't be bothered by people like you. Is that all you have for me? One
lousy quarter Gene? Couldn't you lend me a nickel? Get out get out I'll call
the police. I'll tell you all right doctor I'm going. Christ it was cold and
far to walk. Rooming house, a shabby street room on the top floor. These
stairs (ahem) off, the Priest there pulling himself up along the banister. He
went into the bathroom, yellow wall panels, toilet dripping, gutters works
from under the wash basin. Wrapped in brown paper back to his room get every
drop in the dropper. He rolled up his sleeve. Then he heard a groan from next
door, room eighteen. The Mexican kid lived there. The Priest had passed him
on the stairs and saw the kid was hooked. But he never spoke because he
didn't want any juvenile connections, bad news in any language. The Priest
had had enough bad news in his life. Heard the groan again, a groan he could
feel. No mistaking that groan and what it meant. Then he had an accident or
something. Any case I can't enjoy my Priestly medications with that sound
coming through the wall. Thin walls ya understand. Priest put down his
dropper. Cold hall, and knocked on the door, room eighteen. Quienes? It's the
Priest, kid. I live next door. Could hear someone hobbling across the floor.
A bolt slid. The boy stood there in his underwear shorts, eyes black with
pain. He started to fall. The Priest helped him over to the bed. What's wrong
son? It's my legs se?or, cramps and now I am without medicine. The Priest
could see the cramps like knots of wood there in the young lean legs, dark
shiny black leg hairs. Few years ago I damaged myself in a bicycle race and
it was then that the cramps start and, and then he has the leg cramp back
with compound junk interest. The old Priest stood there feeling the boy
groan. He inclined his head as if in prayer, went back and got his dropper.
With just a quarter G kid. I do not require much se?or. The boy was sleeping
when the Priest left room eighteen. He went back to his room and sat down on
the bed. Then it hit him like heavy silent snow. All the gray junk
yesterdays. He sat there and received the Immaculate fix. And since he was
himself a Priest, there was no need to call one

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