The memory played in Alain’s mind. Over and over again. First like a silent movie. Then it took on sepia tones — I want to do something for you, he murmured with a glint of lust in his honey-hued eyes. But she blushed, and he knew that she knew what he really wanted to do was something to her.
What ensued was a pleasant afternoon of lovemaking, yellow and golden in its luxury just like the bourbon that the China teacup spilled into his mouth now. But that ended quite quickly, didn’t it? Wonderful that, he thought, as a salty tear took its time to plot a route down the end of his eye and towards his strong chin that was decorated with golden grizzle. It dropped into his teacup of bourbon liquid.
So he spent his days walking in his estate. He loved the green of his garden. Quite like absinthe. He called out a few words of love to his meadow flowers; parma violets; pink and white geraniums; purple Pyrenean lilies; and juniper bushes. He caressed the bark of the fir and holm oak. He adored the Mediterranean chestnut and beech. Closer to his little cottage, he grew pink hibiscus, bougainvillea, syringas, lavender, and an assortment of poppies.
And now he went to bed. Just a wee sip of rosemary-flavored tea, and he hoped that the bedbugs wouldn’t bite. No one but the bedbugs for company, he whispered bitterly into his pillow and drifted far away where worries were just unknown and alien.
As the crickets chirped, and the crescent moon hid behind a gossamer cloud, Bernard bumbled over a hedge and onto the absinthe grass. Whipping his tongue over his nicotine-stained teeth, and liver-colored lips, he walked stealthily towards the cottage that house a lone flickering candle on the dining table.
But he didn’t get far. His ears prickled as he heard a rustling behind him; the skin on his arms popped up with goosebumps; and his tongue lost its capacity to whimper. Instinct told him something was up, and indeed, something was — the pink bougainvillea flowers fell like rain as the thorn-riddled branches grabbed Bernard by the ankles and hauled him up.
What did he get himself into this time, thought poor Bernard. As the bougainvillea tree pierced his eyes, nose, lips and tongue, the lilies, poppies, geraniums and hibiscus turned their faces towards the dangling corpse. They lapped up the rivulets of blood with greed and thanks.
It was only when the sun shone brightly the next morning did Alain venture outside to yawn luxuriously. As he went about his business watering his beloved plants, he just simply failed to see how the pink bougainvillea flowers have now turned a beautiful yet insidious red.