Obese middle-aged trucker Rod
Drake is watching
his wife Yavette sleep. Light from the liquor store on the corner is poking
through the threadbare curtains of their rundown rancher. It’s illuminating her
firm tits and smooth ass. She’s mumbling softly like she’s dreaming, but the pattering
rain is obscuring her words. Rod’s tugging his dead dick and crying.
He can’t remember the last
time he had an
erection. The last time they touched intimately. In the beginning Yavette was
insatiable, the sex hot and frequent.
Rod weighed 162 pounds on their
wedding day. Now
12 years later he’s 308. Yavette never gained an ounce or lost her girlish
glow. Still has skin like a teenager. Sexy too, and she knows it. Things would
be so much better if she was fat like him.
Rod waddles into the bathroom,
on his face. He’s out of breath so he sits and pisses. Tries to shit but can’t.
Back in bed dozes off. Two hours
Yavette’s shaking him.
“You’re gonna be
late for your load.”
Every Wednesday for the last
four years Rod’s had
a dedicated round-trip run from Peoria to Kansas City. Frozen chicken out,
fresh beef back. He rolls out at 10 AM and is always home the following day
just after lunch. But this week he won’t be heading to KC because he gave the
load to his trucker pal Danny who needs the extra cash. He doesn’t tell
That evening at 5:00 Rod’s
in Danny’s Lumina
parked down the street from the office of Block & Hughes Certified Public
Accountants where Yavette is the receptionist. Rod knows the slick bean
counters spend half their time fantasizing about fucking her. Maybe one of them
is. Maybe they all are.
At 5:22 Yavette walks outside,
lights a cig and
retrieves the phone from her coat pocket. Then she’s talking to someone, flicking
her hair, and smiling like only she can. Rod knows.
Twenty minutes later she pulls
into the parking
lot of the Chili’s, seven exits up the interstate. Rod’s 50 yards behind. It’s
nearly dark and the rain is turning to snow.
When she steps from the car,
she’s wearing a stylish
trench coat that’s cinched in the middle and stops just above her knees. The
collar’s raised and it’s buttoned all the way up to her chin. Maybe there’s
nothing underneath. She clip-clops her way to the front door and disappears
inside. Rod lights a Winston and waits. A dark BMW 5-Series pulls in moments
later and he instinctively knows it’s the guy. Her lover. When the driver gets
out he’s tall, dark, and young. Wealthy. Successful. Dressed to kill.
Everything Rod’s not.
They’re inside for nearly
two hours. When they
emerge Yavette pulls out a Virginia Slim and model guy lights it. He’s a foot
taller and probably ten years younger than she is. He bends, kisses her neck. Yavette
grins, slides her arm through his and they walk toward her car. She makes sure
the doors are locked before they slip into The Ultimate Driving Machine. When
they pull out Rod notices the vanity plates. ACE CPA. He considers following
but just sits and smokes another Winston imagining the things they’ll do later.
Suave Beamer guy goes down on her. She comes like a porn star, inhales his
Inside Rod takes a table by the
bar, orders a
Smokehouse Burger with extra mayo, a Dr. Pepper, double order of spicy fries
with a tub of gravy on the side.
Later, on the way to the Mid-State
he stops at Burger King for a super-sized Whopper value meal. When he crawls into
the sleeper the old Peterbuilt’s suspension chirps and creaks. He fires up the trusty
Cummins. Not so much for heat but because its methodical thumping helps him
fall asleep. He pops four Tylenol PMs, washes them down with Sprite.
The next morning he’s waiting
in the liquor
store parking lot for Yavette to leave for work, but she never does. Then it
hits him. She never came home. He waits another half hour to be safe. Calls their
home phone three times and lets it ring and ring but nobody answers.
When he walks in, she isn’t
there. He’s got 12
hours to do what he needs to do. Spends the morning hitting hardware and
grocery stores until he has everything he needs.
That night Yavette gets home
When they pass in the hall she
He nods, disappears down the
basement stairs. Three
hours later he’s finished. Sits at the workbench chain smoking Winstons and
finishing off the last of the Bud Light longnecks. Before heading upstairs, he
makes sure the food’s stacked properly and that the labels are all facing the
same direction. Spam, cocktail wieners, deviled ham. Kraft Mac ‘n Cheese and
Oreos. Bags of store brand kettle chips and knock-off Fritos. Krispy Kreme Donuts,
generic pudding. Cases of soft drinks stacked as high as a man.
In the kitchen he pours two fingers
Turkey into a glass, adds a few splashes of Pepsi and two ground-up sleeping
pills. Sloshes it around to mix everything together.
Upstairs in the bedroom Yavette’s
in old sweats
and a Corona tank top reading a Sidney Sheldon novel.
“Made you a nightcap,”
He hands her the glass, disappears
bathroom for a shower.
When Yavette wakes six hours
later she’s sitting
in an armchair in the basement. It’s freezing and her hands and feet are bound.
The light is dim but she’s staring at mounds of junk food. Enough to stock a
From the shadow to her left a
says, “You’re going to eat it all.”
She struggles against the restraints,
At 8:00 Rod calls Block &
Public Accountants. The phone rings forever before it’s finally picked up. It’s
the owner Rick Block. Rod’s met him a few times, mostly at company Christmas
parties. He tells Rick that Yavette’s mother in Oregon is on her death bed and
that she took the first flight out to be with her. That it’ll probably be at
least a week before she’s back. Maybe longer. Rick’s not happy. Says they’ll
need to hire a temp.
Before hanging up Rod asks, “Where’s
Christmas party this year?”
The first day Yavette refuses
to eat anything.
Tells Rod she’d rather
die of starvation, and
that he can go fuck his fat self. After that things change. Hunger’s a
motherfucker. Even for vain health freaks like Yavette Spam and chips aren’t so
bad when the old gut’s empty. Rod keeps meticulous record of everything she
consumes. It’s nearly 30,000 calories the first week, and she’s expending almost
no energy. She alternates between raucous episodes of diarrhea and constipation
that lasts for days. Rod figured there’d be digestive issues, so along with the
food he bought wet wipes, rubber gloves, and rolls of plastic shopping bags. There’s
a hole in the seat of the old Adirondack chair, and underneath is a double-lined
waste basket. Yavette’s naked so whenever she needs to shit, she just lets
loose, and cleanup is easy.
The first week she gains seven
pounds. The next
11. She was only 100 to start with so they’re big jumps. Now to kick things up
a notch Rod’s making her shakes packed with protein powder from GNC and black-market
sedatives from his buddy at the truck dealership in the city.
It’s Monday evening the
following week and the
doorbell rings. Rod considers ignoring it, but decides it’d be unwise. Yavette’s
asleep, but he stuffs a rag into her mouth just in case.
Upstairs it’s BMW guy.
His eyes are puffy and there’s
a white strip on his finger where a wedding band used to be.
Rod says, “Help you?”
He says his name’s Brian
Hughes and that he
works with Yavette. They shake hands. Rod says it’s a pleasure to meet him, imagines
his young cock in Yavette’s gaping mouth. Brian says everyone at the office is
worried about her. They want to know when she’ll be back.
“Maybe a few days. Maybe
longer,” he says.
There’s a muffled bang
from inside that
startles them both. Brian looks past him into the hallway.
“What was that?”
“The dog in the basement,”
he answers, but he’s
not sure Brian buys it.
As Brian’s walking back
to his car Rod asks,
“When’s the Christmas party?”
Back in the basement the chair’s
backwards and Yavette’s unconscious.
5:30 PM, December 23rd.
Rod descends the stairs into
the basement. Yavette’s
asleep. Two fat rolls bulge from her abdomen, she’s got more than one chin, and
the shit can’s stinking something awful. Rod nudges her shoulder until she stirs.
He’s wearing khaki Dockers and a navy blazer from Sears.
“How do I look?”
He gets strange looks when he
walks into the karaoke
bar an hour later. Yavette’s friends and coworkers ask if she’s okay and when
she’ll be back. He tells them he just talked to her, and that her mother’s
still hanging on. They’re not sure how long she’ll last, but Yavette’s an only
child and there's no one else who can care for her. She’ll need to stay to the
bitter end. He says Yavette asked him to stop by the Christmas party so he
could tell them she was thinking about them.
He heads to the bar, slugs a
few shots of Wild
Turkey followed by a boatload of draft beer. Then there’s dancing, but that’s
where things get hazy. He vaguely remembers being out on the dance floor. The
room is spinning and people are wearing Santa hats and reindeer antlers. The
music is loud. Springsteen’s Merry Christmas Baby. Fucking awful. There’s
an attractive young blond. He squeezes her ass. Then Brian Hughes and another
young buck fling him through the front door. He lands on his hip and rolls into
an oily puddle.
When he wakes, he’s parked
on a side street
next to an old phone booth. The car’s still running and he’s covered in vomit. On
the way home he nearly shits himself. Before showering and spending the day in
bed he loosens Yavette’s wrist restraints just enough to give her limited use
of her arms. On the old coffee table in front of the chair he spreads out the
day’s ration of processed slop. Tells Yavette he had a rough night and that
she’s on her own. He lights a smoke and turns to go.
“Why?” she mumbles.
“You’re killing our
Rod’s head is throbbing
when he wakes at dinnertime.
His mouth’s dry and nasty and his bladder is about to burst. After he relieves
himself and freshens up he goes downstairs. Yavette’s comatose and he can’t
rouse her. He unties her, hoists her over his shoulder, makes his way to the
digital scale in the corner and climbs on. He’s worried that together they’ll
exceed its maximum capacity, but after a tense moment it flashes a red 449.
Then he takes Yavette back to her chair and ties her back up. When he weighs
himself he’s 309, which means Yavette’s 140. Obese by her standards.
In the kitchen he calls his dispatcher,
him he’s still got the flu something fierce, but that he’ll probably be ready
for a load in a day or two.
By 7:30 Rod’s hangover
hasn’t relented, but he
motivates himself to go out because he’s craving pizza and birch beer.
Back at the house he’s
preparing his feast on
the kitchen counter when he hears something behind him. When he turns there’s a
dark mass rushing toward him like a runaway train. He sees stars, then nothing
Before he opens his eyes, he
knows he’s in the
basement because of the distinct smells assaulting his nostrils. Equal parts
fabric softener, Spam, Yavette’s excrement. He’s strapped to a chair and his
arms and legs are bound. He parts his eyelids just enough to see the stacks of
food against the wall. Then there’s a familiar voice from the shadow to his
“You’re going to
eat all of it.” It’s Yavette.
Then there’s another voice.
“Hope you’re hungry,
For 90 minutes they force feed
Rod from the
stockpile. He eats with relish, and when it’s obvious he can’t swallow another
bite Brian and Yavette walk upstairs hand in hand.
They share a Cobb salad, shower,
and fuck. Then
take a nap.
When they return to the basement
Rod’s dead. His face is crisscrossed with pink capillaries and his skin’s the
color of ash. A half-eaten Vienna sausage protrudes slightly from the corner of
They spend hours cleaning and
everything that could be used as evidence into heavy-duty plastic trash bags,
which they load into Yavette’s Mustang in the garage.
Brian was smart enough to park
his car down the
road in the lot of an abandoned car wash, so nobody knows he’s been in the
house for the last 24 hours. He ducks down when they pull out, and he doesn’t
sit up until they’re miles away. They drive into the country, douse the bags with
lighter fluid and set them aflame behind an abandoned pumping station by a muddy
On the way back they devise a
plan to cover
That evening at 6:30 when Mrs.
watering her flowers next door, Yavette opens the garage door and storms out
onto the driveway. When she’s sure she’s been seen she turns back towards the
“Fuck you Rod,” she
screams, “I’ve had it!”
Brian’s standing at the
door out of sight. He
cups his hand over his mouth. Yells back, “Me too. Fuck off!”
“Trouble dear?” Mrs.
“Yeah, Rod won’t
stop eating!” Yavette barks.
Minutes later she’s speeding
toward Chili’s in
An hour later Brian slips out
the back unseen.
The following morning in their
swank hotel room
Yavette blows Brian, tells him she loves him, and makes two cups of instant coffee.
When she gets home she eats a
showers, and calls 911.
“My husband is dead in the basement,” she sniffles. “I
think he’s eaten himself to death.”