The story of a man and his love for the lizard who is his downfall due to social inhibitions. (The lizards friends gossiped.)
They meet in the library, in the reptile section where the lizard walks out of a picture in the book the man has opened, thus releasing it from it’s two dimensional imprisonment. The lizard smiles at the man and passes carelessly by. Later, they see each other in the lizard lounge; their eyes meet and are interlocked in a transfixed gaze between brown almond and lizard slit. They sit together, talk. He buys it a drink and they make a date.
That night they go together to an unidentified sushi restaurant where they eat uncooked fish and avacado and drink saki. The man’s eyes are now slits like the lizard’s due to overindulgence. They go back to his place for a nightcap.
His apartment is the exotic home of a habitual horticulturist. Rare plastics of faux tiger and leopard skins hang on the walls. The furniture is sweetmeat arborite and the floor is finest astroturf in black. The music of Martin Denny flows soothingly in the background, whisking them along on a semi dream of jungle delights. The man pours the lizard a swamp soother, made of over-proof vodka and creme de menthe, the lizard’s favorite potion. As the alcohol works on their cool liquid minds they become freer and drink a toast to all that slithers. They talk of their pasts, their dreams and themselves. His favorite color is green while the lizards is blue. They respect their differences.
“I’ve never felt comfortable with a man as I do with you.” The lizard rasps in a hot but gentle whisper.
“I feel the same way.” He confides.
As the sharp point of a lizard tail begins to massage his now sweating calf, the man reaches a clammy hand down to caress the scaly, translucent white belly. His hand falls further to find it’s sticky warm lizardhood. A six inch tongue playfully tickles his inner ear. He reaches over and shuts out the amazon light.
Within two weeks of the consummation of the affair tensions set upon the relationship and they weigh heavily on the lizards tail, which rests now upon the plastic padded, button-back footstool, jerking awkwardly in apprehension. It is thinking now of the man’s peculiar tendency toward meglomania and his desire to rule all things. It thinks this may be obsessive. The lizard picks at a toe claw. It’s friends have created a great fiction concerning it’s relationship with the man. The man is not well looked upon by the lizard’s friends, who feel he is disreputable and unfavorably mammalian. At lunch they told the lizard that he is opportunistic, selfish and carries disease. The lizard breaks the toe claw and lets out a low hiss in pain.
In every leaf of every tree is encased the souls of all lizards, as yet to come and those already gone. The lizard stares longingly at a ficus which it had always fancied might be it’s mother, looking for an answer in this swirl of confusion. The lizard had never known it’s mother, who had left it as only an egg to fend for itself. But it had forgiven this transgression and yearned now for maternal advice.
The lizard feels strongly for the man who is mostly kind and unusually good under the vinyl. Yet it knows that it’s real home is amongst the reptile world. It’s confusion mounts. Two ants pull in opposite directions on a piece of food that’s fallen into the ficus planter, vying for control of this morsel of sustenance. An unusual breeze blows through the room, dislodging a dead leaf which falls through the hot stale air and lands at the lizards claw. With a barely perceptible tick lands a small sad lizard tear upon the dry leaf, turned yellow with age and a hard life in a cruel world. The lizard knows now what it must do.
After the lizard had informed the man of it’s decision the man became very depressed. He didn’t understand what it had been saying about the family and being where it belongs. To the human such concepts strike as being archaic.. The last kiss they had shared had seemed the cruelest to him for being the most tender. It was to him a statement of the extremity of all life and how horrible that was.
He thus took to extreme drinking. This was accompanied by some empty shapeless affairs he embarked upon with other unhappy bipeds, each of which seemed to further his decline. He discarded the objects of his passion for horticulture and became a neophyte necrophysiologist, devoting his time to looking at bones, decorating his apartment with skulls and conducting interviews with people who had died and come back to life. All of these things filled him with revulsion, but wanting to remain true to the only emotion with which he felt compassion, he explored them feverishly. He alternately hated the lizard for its loathsome betrayal of him and then he would break down and cry of his loss, selfishly spilling his sperm on the vinyl leopard skin sheets, the last remnants of his happier life.
It was in one of these fits of extreme hate and regret, countered by the immense happiness of nostalgic revelry, that the man in turn made his decision.. Fumbling frantically through his new collection of objects of perversity, he withdrew his latest and most odious acquisition, a telescopic stun gun with amplified output. He intended to kill the lizard and then turn the weapon on himself in a psycopathic orgy of electrified blood. As he walked the long blocks of barren parking lots to the home of the lizard he slipped on a puddle of mucus slime spilled in a trivial parking accident. He fell upon his weapon, which turned on him, ending his life in a brilliant fluorescing glow.