He passed a street performer dressed like an old Wizard when he said, “Hey buddy, I’ll trade you something for those cookies.” His voice had a very none threating and playful tone that at the same time hid something a little dark, questionable and possibly irritating. The old robe he wore was darkly purple, almost to the point of being black. His feet were not visible and his appearance gave the illusion that he was floating.
Nice trick, Will thought, his costume isn’t half bad even with the fake beard.
William looked at him funny and then laughed a little. He replied, “I’m not trying to get any weed OK. I’m just going home.”
“Who said anything about weed? I’ve got something much better,” his aged voice enthusiastically declared while he waved his right hand over his left hand, which was kept balled into a fist. Slowly he opened his fist and turned it around to reveal a small dark purple metal container the size of those curiously strong breath mints that you get from the gas stations. Upon further inspection, Will noticed he had a real beard. It wasn’t a fake. It was long, braided, and the braids were bundled together in a strange way that made it stand upwards and settle somewhat in front of his chin. It had streaks of red, yellow, green, and blue. This guy was really weird looking. For a very short second, Will could swear that the blue hairs were actually waving at him as if they had a mind of their own.
While walking away, Will told him, “That’s alright buddy I’ll do fine with these cookies.” Then he stopped, thought about it for a second, turned back around, and decided to give him the cookies because he never wanted the nasty rocks in the first place.
When he came back, the wizard’s weird braided beard wasn’t active any more, it was pointing straight down and all the individual colored sections were now unbundled.
The wizard said, “Thanks. Here’s this,” then he opened the metal container that revealed candy that looked like jelly beans. They were safely wrapped in a sealed plastic bag and there was even a small piece of paper at the bottom.
Cautiously Will said, “Why not,” closed the lid, and put the container in his pocket. After he pulled his hand out, he looked at the Girl Scout cookies box again that Mr. Wizard was now holding in his right hand, and only now, did Will notice that Chu Mei wrote her name and number on the box. The Wizard put it away in a big dark blue bag that Will didn’t notice before. Then he slung it over his left shoulder, and said, “Good night young man and may the best of luck be with you. You’re going to need it,” and started to walk in the opposite direction.
“I’m going to need it. What the hell does that mean? I do know I need to get that number off the box you have, that I just foolishly gave to you. Damn! I’m so blind and clueless sometimes,” Will mumbled to himself. He was so frustrated he dropped his book. After picking it up, he looked again for the Wizard and he was gone.
He looked everywhere for him, but couldn’t find him anywhere so he went to his car and drove home.
William lives in one of those small beige apartment complexes in the city. Only 9 units total. It’s an older complex, probably built sometime in the 1950’s. He lucked out and got the only one bedroom that sits on top of all the garages in the alley. He only has to share one wall with a nice quiet family to the left.
It’s mostly quiet. Probably because of the dense cement walls that used to be the cornerstone of buildings in the fifties. Even with the horrible view of an alley every time he looked out of his living room window, he still can’t complain too much. For the city, it’s not a bad find.
He pulls into the dark alley filled with random broken glass, putrid dumpsters, and the smell of urine and feces from numerous drunks and druggies. Decorating both sides of the alley are cars and trucks, legally and illegally, parked. William got lucky and no one was parked in front of his garage this time so he stops his car, unlocks and lifts the old wooden garage door, and as he was walking back to his car to pull it in, he heard someone’s voice.
“Hey man, come on I’m trying to sleep in here,” grumbled a man who had been living in an orange tent in the next garage stall.
“This is my garage stall…asshole! I’m bringing my car in now,” William fired back at him, then picked up an empty plastic bottle that was lingering around in his garage and ran it across the steel wire fence that separated the stalls to purposely annoy him. The guy just grumbled and rolled over in his sleeping bag in his tent.
William pulls his car in and closes his garage. Then he enters the dark blue metal fence leading from the alley way to his stairs. His complex has two two bedroom apartments back to back on both sides of the ground floor, and the same, identically on the second floor. His one bedroom apartment is the only one above the garages. There’s a walkway that goes from the blue door to the front where the street is. Along the way each apartment has well kept palm trees, bushes and shrubs complimenting the atmosphere.
He pivots left and begins to climb his old worn metal staircase, that was liberally sprinkled with cheap chipping white paint. At the top he briefly glances at his apt number “9,” then he unlocks his brown door and walks in.
He sat down on his brown pleather futon and pulled out the metal container. The outside was completely covered with stars and constellations. He placed the container down on his couch and walked into his white kitchen.
The fridge was across from the stove. He opened it up revealing an almost barren environment except for two objects. An almost full bowl of old fried rice from the “Ho Phat Ho” Chinese restaurant down the street. And the other object was a tall glass bong. It was partially filled with semi brown water. It had a cartoony vampire cannabis leaf painted on it with the name “CannaBracula” underneath. He grabbed CannaBracula and placed it on his old yellow Formica counter top next to the stove. He opened up the cabinet above where he was standing and pulled down from the top shelf, an old 1980’s Transformers lunch pail with Optimus Prime on the lid. He opened it up and inside were small various colored medical cannabis containers. There was Sour Diesel, Blue Dream, Mother’s Finest, Jack Herer, Durban Poison, and Strawberry Cough Sativas. There were Skywalker, White Widow, Blueberry, Yoda, Master, and Banana Indicas. There was also one red mini Bic lighter and a small black charcoal filtered device called a Smoke Buddy.
He grabbed the Skywalker Indica, the lighter, the Smoke Buddy and the bong and sat down at his small round kitchen table. He squeezed open the container and poured a small amount of ground Cannabis Flower into his bowl, lit it, and then inhaled. After blowing it out into the Smoke Buddy, very little smoke lingered. He put everything away and then returned to his couch.
He picked up the jelly bean container again and brought it to his kitchen table. He opened it. He noticed that there was a strange symbol etched inside on each corner of the lid. He pulled out the bag of jelly beans, the little piece of paper, and then he put them on the table. All of them were the same color, a very light tan brown. He put the bag of jelly beans back into the container and then closed the lid.
He unfolded the small paper and started to read:
“Congratulations on your obtainment of the Magical Beans. Please make sure to keep your beans in their container while not being used or their potency will be severely diminished.”
He said out loud, “Yeah right, Magic Beans. What do I look like a kid named Jack who sold his cow to climb up a stalk? This is Bullshit.”
He opened the container again and to his amazement the beans were all out of the plastic bag. There was no plastic bag. It had completely vanished. William freaked out and closed the lid again. He paused, blinked his eyes, and with his jaw dropped open, breathed a little. His heart was beating rapidly and butterflies were in his stomach.
He re-opened the container. This time they were all rearranged to form a happy face. He immediately closed the lid again.
He stared at it. He got out of his chair and went back to his fridge, grabbed CannaBracula and poured out the dirty water and rinsed it out and put it back in the fridge. Then he checked the Skywalker by smelling it and looking for anything weird in it.
Maybe it was going bad? he thought. Maybe it was growing mold? It looked fine to him so he put it away.
He returned to the table and continued reading the instructions. They said, “Please read these instructions carefully. You have been chosen to use the Magical Beans. When you are ready and fit to use one of them, they will show themselves to you. Be prepared early on by obtaining a large pot or container of some kind to hold the freshest and cleanest soil you can find. NOTE and WARNING: If used improperly the Beans may be repossessed. Enjoy. 😊”
William laughed out loud. Maybe it was the Skywalker that made him outburst or maybe he’s just tired. He put the beans container away in the same kitchen cabinet next to his cannabis box. He started to yawn and his eyelids were no longer able to stay open without effort. He reheated the fried rice, gobbled it down, then he finally retired for the night.