Excited Delirium Book: Chapter 56 (Eddie Confronts Kite)
Author’s Note: The following is Chapter 56 of the my online book "Excited Delirium". Please post comments. Please tell your friends about this story. If you’ve missed a chapter, please click here for Chapter 1 (Prelude) or here for the full index
As a regular, practical and protective measure, Kite kept the makers of cell phones well employed because every call that he made was from a new phone. He’d buy them hot on the market and buy them at 10 or 20 at a time, activate them using different plans and then toss them out as soon as he used them. It was tedious, costly and an administrative nightmare, but it insured that no-one would ever be able to trace a second call because he never made one.
After seeing Kite’s – or Carl Parkfield’s – name and picture on anything that was related to Sasha’s death, Eddie wanted to have a little chat with his long lost friend from university. However, after reviewing all of the security documents, and collecting any contact info he could find, none of lead him to Carl.
The reality ws this was a good thing because Eddie – someone who acts on his rage without thinking things through – would likely have killed Carl/Kite had he walked into his office at that moment.
It was Kite that finally contacted Eddie, unaware of Eddie’s state of malignancy. Kite wanted to follow up on Diana’s suggestion that he enlist Eddie to get more info on Garamond’s plans, but he was unprepared for Eddie’s willingness to go along when he called.
They had agreed to meet at Eddie’s apartment, which was located close to Central Park. He lived in the penthouse suite of an art deco building that was built for young successful men like him. It was a large house in the middle of the sky, supported by steel and mortar, like a great Imperial abode. It had all the amenities a young prince or “Master of the Universe” could want, including 24-hour cleaning and food services, technical support staff (the entire building was re-wired just four years ago to account for a number of different communications tools), and intense security so that the world’s decision makers can sleep like babies while the rest of New York borders on chaos.
It didn’t take Kite long to get to Eddie’s apartment and when he arrived, Eddie opened the door and seemed to be very polite with his reception. However, immediately after entering the apartment, Eddie closed the door, turned to face Kite, grabbed his shoulders and tossed him up against the wall. The move caught Kite off guard and the force of Eddie’s blow knocked the wind out of him.
“What the …?” was all he could say.
“Who the fuck are you?” Eddie hollered, seeming like an animated caricature, his face shaking as he yelled.
“What are you … wha,” Kite uttered as a response.
Eddie’s rage boiled to a peak. Kite had a chance to process quickly what was happening. He realized that he had two options: (1) Say anything: die because it’ll antagonize Eddie or (2) don’t say anything and die trying to keep your mouth shut. Kite saw this kind of rage when they were roomies at Western, but he didn’t realize that Eddie had kept his strength training up.
The ‘don’t say anything’ approach was what Kite opted for. As expected, it enraged Eddie. He picked him up, held him over his head and tossed him onto a wood and glass coffee table in the living-room as easily as he might chuck a pair of used underwear into a clothes hamper.
Before Eddie could approach and do more damage, Kite grabbed a chunk o glass, held it up and shouted “For fuck sake, Eddie – STOP!”
Eddie approached, eyeballs bulging like his heart was squeezing his cornea, cheeks boiling red with rage and mouth trembling.
“You killed Sasha … and you’re gonna have to pay!” he yelled as he grabbed Kite again.
“Eddie – I’m not Carl Parkfield! I’m a fraud,” Kite shouted back, trying to fend off Eddie’s approach. Exposing himself seemed a little extreme, but it was the only option at this stage. Trying to deny or back out while Eddie was like this would only stoke Eddie’s fire and push him to more violence.
Kite got lucky. Eddie’s mood changed instantly, like a Formula 1 car running out of gas, but even more abruptly than that. Eddie backed off, looked piercingly into Kite’s eyes and asked “What the hell are you talking about?”
“Eddie,” Kite said calmly, realizing that he could now rationalize with Eddie, putting down the chunk of glass. “I’ve been a fraud ever since you’ve known me. I’ve been a fraud longer than I can remember,” Kite said with a sullen and genuine tone.
“I don’t understand. Who are you then?”
“I don’t even know any more. I’ve used so many names since I was a teenager that even if I told you my real name, I wouldn’t know that person. It’d be like calling a garbage can a tree. For the last 20 years, I’ve been known as ‘Mr. Kite’. It’s a formality I use so that no one will ever know who I am and track me down.”
“I just don’t get it. I just don’t understand,” Eddie stammered as he tilted his head to examine the mess he had made.
“Eddie,” Kite started to explain, “can we just sit down and talk about this?”
Eddie looked confused, but had fully returned to a sane mood. “Sure, but I need a drink,” he said as he started to turn to the kitchen and bar area. “This had better be good,” he finished with a mildly threatening voice.
“Oh … it’ll be good. I can guarantee it. Um. Can I have a drink too?”
“Sure. I’ll be back in a second. Can I get you a masseuse as well?” Eddie asked sarcastically, both knowing that Kite didn’t have a lot of latitude.
Kite used the few moments to compose himself and mentally rehearse his story while Eddie got some drinks. He returned momentarily with a couple of Brick beers.
“Still buying the local craft stuff, eg?”
“You bet. And getting real Canuck brewskies is getting to be more of a challenge now that there’s so few of the indies left.”
Eddie sat down and went to place his beer on the coffee table almost dropping it to the floor because of the hole Kite’s body had made. The response of both men lightened the mood instantly.
“I’ve got a piece here if you want to start rebuilding it,” Kite joked, pointing to the shard he placed beside him.
“Don’t you want to keep that for gouging my eyes out?” Eddie asked, tone rich with sarcasm.
“Man … I haven’t seen Poppa Bear for ages,” Kite said, changing the topic. ‘Poppa Bear’ was a nick name that Kite used for Eddie in their drinking days at Western. When Eddie got in a rage, it was usually because he was being big and protective. “It’s probably a good thing, isn’t it?”
“Dude, you have no idea. I saw a therapist for years, took lots of drugs – the ‘legal’ ones – to modify my behaviour, but I still snap once in a while. The church helped a little, but I don’t know … I just can’t escape it.”
“That ‘cause you’re still a fag,” Kite said matter of factly, like he was sharing sports scores.
“Jesus man! You for the jugular, don’t you?”
Kite didn’t answer. He waited for Eddie to add to the thought that Kite dared to voice.
“You’re right. Suppression almost ruined me then, a lot like it’s taking a toll now. I was pretty damn happy when I was with Sash … wait a sec. We haven to talk about you for a bit,” Eddie said abruptly, alert to the fact that Kite was distracting him.
“This time it’s you who’s right. It’s time I started providing some context,” Kite said humbly.
Kite started to tell him everything. The spying. Their history at Western. His history before that. The companies he’d worked for and against. The dirtier things he’d done. The vendetta he had against big companies. Everything. It was an uplifting experience because for the first time in his life, he’d lifted this load off his shoulders. The web of lies didn’t seem to be holding him down any longer. The process proved to be cathartic and as Kite spoke, he felt better and better about himself, rather than more ashamed at the things he had done.
“So … what you’re telling me is that you’re a Godless commie?” Eddie said as he went for his fifth beer. Kite was still nursing his second.
“Godless, yes. Commie, no. I’m what someone would call ‘Progressive’, if you feel compelled to assign a label.”
“I like Godless Commie better,” Eddie said resolutely, with at least a small part of the 6-pack starting to affect his speech.
“I just want to know why and when we as a species felt that it was vital to our survival – which it’s not – to surrender everything we have to the almighty corporation, especially when we all know that a lot of companies are just sheer fucking evil,” Kite pronounced without apology.
“It’s the way it is,” Eddie said matter-of-factly. “Call it a trend. Humans need something to fill their lives so they put a lot of currency in things like religion and consumerism. If they didn’t exist, there’d be something else corralling most people. Look at me. You do it to survive. You do it to feed yourself and human emotions like greed and envy and pride. If we didn’t do things the way we are, we’d still be running behind horses plowing fields and starving over the winter, only surviving because we’ve eaten our kin.”
“So we ship that stuff of to some country in the armpit of the world and get someone to do it for us for fifty cents an hour, while we sit at the top of the food chian,” Kite added, finishing Eddie’s comments.
“It’s wrong and you know it. People should not be economic slaves to our commercial desires. It was despicable two-hundred years ago and it should be despicable now.” Kite was getting a little emotional and was trying not to let Eddie goad him into a debate about something he probably couldn’t win. He decided that he would have to steer the topic in a slightly different direction.
“I have news for you Eddie. Someone didn’t hire me to hurt Sasha, but they sure as hell have something in for the OMNINet and guess what: You’re a prime target for just about everyone who is within or outside this God-awful monster.”
“What the hell are you talking about?” Eddie answered, showing a modest amount of concern. A little too modest considering the accusation being made.
“You remember this don’t you?” Kite said as he started to play his digital voice recorder to Eddie. Once again, Garamond’s voice came through loud and clear, along with Wardencliff’s, Hadlocks’ and Eddie’s voices.
… All of you will be responsible for specific actions following the implementation of our plans, but you will not reveal anything about the potential origins of what will happen.”
“And what will happen?”
“We will destroy China,”
Kite paused the tape for effect and sat and looked at Eddie. His friend from years ago was going through hell on earth and Kite was starting to feel a modest degree of guilt about it. Of course, as his emotions started to make him feel bad about Eddie, his intellect reminded him that Eddie was going along for the ride, he cut off his one and only lover and he almost killed him just an hour ago. With those few little doses of reality, he didn’t have much trouble playing the last bit.
“Now, was recorded from the meeting. All of your voices are recognizable and all of you would go to prison for planning or even considering something like this. However, shortly after you left, Garamond and Hadlock stepped aside to have a little chat,” at which point Kite pressed the ‘Play’ button again:
“Simon, I wanted to thank you for making sure that Mr. Manchester was here. With his history and ‘associations’, I think we should be well poised to position him as the planner of this event, correct?”
“Absolutely. He’s already signed off on most of the drilling and exploration activity, not really knowing what the documentation attests to. We were going to have him in China when things happened, but we had to pull him in for some immediate activities that still tie him to the events. Basically, when everything takes place, it’ll become public knowledge that he was the mastermind behind the destruction. He’ll be our Fastow.
Kite stopped the tape and looked up to see the horrified look on Eddie’s face. Eddie knew that Fastow was one of the original fall guys for the Enron disaster.
“Look, buddy, I wish I could say something,” Kite offered as genuinely as he could.
“You don’t … not … please … leave … me … alone,” was all Eddie could muster as he stared at the recorder, expecting it to leap at him any moment and tear out his eyes.
“Eddie: you have a couple of choices to make. These people want you to play the patsie, much like they got Oswald to be the only shooter at the library. There’s something bigger at work here, but I haven’t been able to figure who’s connected. I know Garamond’s the one driving the bus with the OMNINet and the Univists, but there seems to be a lot more organizations and people involved. I wish I had more to offer, but I only have one suggestion: hit them back before they hit you.”
“I will. I’ll do anything. These guys are evil incarnate. How do you battle that kind of horror?”
“I have some ideas, but I need your help. Before we get into that, can you tell me more about Garamond and why he wants to destroy China or at last a good chunk of it?”
“Sure man, he talks about it all the time. They represent the things that he hates most: they Godless and they are Communists. He hates any and all businesses that do business with China and that’s caused a big rift between him and Hadlock and a bunch of other businessmen that run the planet. He maintains that most companies – like Wal-Mart – that buy their goods from China and then sell them in North America for outrageous profits are doing well by the Chinese but aren’t providing any real value for Americans because they’re helping to fund Chinese communism, their markets, their government, their military and so on.
“They hate the Chinese because they are competition to their own religion, but also because they stand in the way of their great expansionist plans. Without the Chinese, the world would pretty much be Christian right now because it wouldn’t be 1.3 billion socialists getting pissed off if the US attacked Iran or Pakistan or India.”
“Garamond also always bitches about how much the Chinese are bidding up the prices for copper and gold and oil and a bunch of other commodities and that, horror on horror, they are buying their own resource supplies across the globe using the vast surpluses that we’ve created for them by buying shitty little plastic cars and paper fans and a million other plastic and paper items.”
Kite wasn’t going to interrupt this for the world. He’d opened the oyster and Eddie was shooting pearls rapid-fire. It was a good thing he pressed the ‘Record’ button before he got going.
“They constantly go on about the fact that white, Christian believers don’t have a lot of time before China decides to flex its military or economic muscles and we face Armageddon, or something pretty damn close to it.”
“They also go on about how the Chinese are taking all of the jobs away from North Americans. I don’t they really care about the idea that Americans should have high-paying jobs, but we’re getting to a point where’s there are only so many ways we can sell coffee back to each other without our entire economy collapsing. I’ve heard them talk about using ‘God’s Army’ to defeat the Chinese labour forces, but I’ve never really understood what that means.”
“Anyways, it didn’t surprise me much when I heard his announcement at the meeting last week, but I didn’t realize that I was going to get pulled into it so far. I’m ruined,” Eddie said with determination. He really felt more cornered than ever and was at a true loss for what to do.”
“No, you’re not. You’re still an insider,” Kite suggested, trying to point the conversation in the right direction.
“What are you saying?” Eddie asked.
“I’m blocked out. I’m sure I would have only been able to use Sasha’s info once before drawing flags from security –“
“Yeah, no kidding. You’re a stone’s throw from getting slapped on the FBI’s ‘Most Wanted’ list.”
“I know. So I need you. I need you to go in, access some files and then tell me where and when this is supposed to happen. With any luck, we can either make it public or we can bring it to the authorities or shut them down somehow. What do you think? Please don’t tell me that you’re OK with having these murders be on your hands,” Kite pleaded passionately.
“I think I’m your man. I only have one condition: I need a better nickname than yours.”
(Note: "Excited Delirium" is a work of fiction. Any person, place or thing depicted in this work of fiction is also a work of fiction. Any relation of these subjects or characters to real locations, people or things are an unintentional coincidence.)
Excited Delirium by Liam Young is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Canada License .
Based on a work at www.exciteddelirium.ca .