The first time I’d dropped acid, I was nineteen and living in Seattle.
A guy I worked with at a coffee shop in the basement of the Elliot Bay bookstore said he had a connection.
After work we drove out of the city, into the hills, where his guy lived.
The exchange was quick but eventful. The old hippie lived atop a hill on a small farm. He seemed preoccupied with something other than the transaction at hand. It could have had something to do with the large number of nude elderly hippies that were standing in the field next to a brightly painted barn.
We got the goods and were back at his place in no time. We dropped the acid and waited.
Before we took the mind altering drug I had asked him if it was cool to do it at his place. I knew he lived with his girlfriend and I didn’t want to cause a fuss, but he said that it was cool and not to worry.
I took him at his word.
Needless to say, his girlfriend arrived and was not happy by what she found. I was jettisoned into the rainy autumn night with little explanation, a halfhearted apology and no offer of a ride home. I wish the ordeal had killed my high, but it didn’t. Instead it had left my mind shaky. That control I felt just before getting shoved out slipped away and the rain wasn’t helping any.
I decided to walk back to work and see if a coworker would take me home. I wasn’t sure if she was closing, work wasn’t far, but I had to hurry.
I had a small crush on our co-worker. She was French and she was beautiful and she dyed her hair a rich red, which made her even more beautiful, in a delectable kind of way. I used to call her my Parisian Strawberry.
The city had an eerie feeling and with the fog coming off the Sound, Seattle seemed especially menacing. The streets were empty, except for the cars parked along the curbs. There was a hair rising silence as if, every one decided to stop breathing at once.
And that’s when I saw him.
Peeking at me from behind the trunk of a beat up old sedan.
“Well fuck me…” I said, stopping in my tracks. “Is that a fucking pigmy?”
The creature was unnaturally short. His rotund belly, beard, horns and devilish little eyes poked out from behind the car, he was grinning at me. It was a mischievous, antagonizing grin. He then winked, mockingly, and took off, behind the row of cars. I could hear the knocking of his little hoofs on the sidewalk.
I didn’t know what to do, reason was no longer in possession of my motor skills. I was running on panic and lunacy. I felt a civic duty to chase the beast down, to save the city from his Mediterranean trickery, but soon I heard the patter of his horse feet coming across the street.
In my nervous, manic state I shouted, “Stay back you demon! I don’t want any trouble!! It’s been a rough day already and I’m afraid to take you on!!”
I waited for a response, but there was nothing. No sound of his galloping charge or a raspy comeback, just the soft sound of a light rain.
Then, I heard the hoofs approaching from behind. I whipped around.
“You sneaky fucking Grecian, you!”
I saw his shadow slip through an alley. I chased after him.
We came out onto a much more bustling street. The people around stopped in surprise to seeing a fiend come barreling out of a dark, seemingly empty alleyway.
I stood there and surveyed the crowd for the stumpy beast.
My mind was racing. Cut your ties and run, man! This isn’t your department. There must be someone you can call about renegade mythical creatures?
I saw him hiding amongst the groups of people. I pushed my way through in pursuit, but no matter how stubby his legs, or how hard I pushed, I could not catch up.
He ducked down another alley. I stood at the edge, looking in. It was dark and ominous and seemed to go on for far too long.
I couldn’t see or hear him at the other end.
I knew he wanted me to chase him. It was all part of his plan. Instead I stood there and screamed in a bluff.
“You better run! You show yourself again, I’ll sling your sorry little ass back to hades forever, you—”
“Is everything alright?” A woman’s voice asked.
I turned. The old lady had a comforting smile. There was something kind, sensible and motherly about her, but sensible was something I was not. I was shaking with an unnerving fear.
“I asked if—”
“Good God, woman! What do want? Get the hell out of here! Do you have any idea what we’re dealing with here? That asshole will kill us all!” the panic in the old woman’s face from my violent passionate outburst still haunts me to this day.
I turned back and saw the pigmy standing at the end of the alley. Smiling, he liked watching me squirm and make a fool of myself. I’d had enough of his depraved game of cat and mouse.
“You win this one, you hairy little midget,” I said to myself. “You win this one.”
I had to get out of there. I was drawing way too much attention to myself.
I made for the Bookstore and found my French friend. Once in her car, in my panic stricken state, I told her everything in a wave of nonsensical and hysterical babbling.
She listened patiently with a grin then with an amused curiosity, asked, “What the hell are you on?”
“Oh yeah, I didn’t get to that did I? Yeah, acid, and man, it’s really fucking me up. Can I go home with you?”