Guilt/Pleasure
Bleuzette La Feir

Depravity

The noise from ops was annoying as hell. I got up from my desk and opened my door to look: seven people crowded around the monitor at the desk of someone I respected. Pushing in, my breast touched a carpenter's arm. He didn't seem to notice. One of the ops officers turned and left, her face distorted with disgust. I saw the screen. A kneeling man. A black sack on his head. Another man stood by him, face concealed under a checkered headdress. With a saw, he dug in, with great exertion, through the kneeling man's neck. I'm still sick.

Deception

We met on a forward operating base in Iraq. She was what I thought I needed. I was a year divorced, but I'd dated women before. I thought she was remarkable. An out lesbian, Department of Defense Fire Chief. After four months we committed to each other. During her R&R she went back to the States. She called to tell me she was broke. I wired money. People talked. She hooked up with her ex. When back in-country she told me of her infidelity, the week of partying. I forgave her. But after the next six years, I'd had enough.

Departure

I left feeling guilty. I'd made more than two hundred grand, half of it tax-free, at the hand of war. The site leader had been abusing his power. I'd had enough. I'd done what I came to do. I'd paid my bills. I would miss the Marine who approached me for help, describing outposts around town that had generators but no refrigerators. Using my connections, I "drug-dealed" seven uprights and four floor units. I've no clue how many Marines the coolers helped, but they no longer had to drink hot water in 140-degree heat.

Bleuzette La Feir has a BFA in theater from the University of New Mexico in her hometown of Albuquerque. She has written and performed for the stage in experimental one-woman shows. Her work is published in Blood Lotus, Blue Lake Review, decomPdescant, Diverse Voices QuarterlyForge and Lindenwood Review. Her flash fiction piece, "Bangs," was nominated for the Sundress Best of the Net 2012 Anthology.