gregorio and the melon

gina tron

After a long day of working at the crab meat factory, Joey was finally home. He opened the door to his apartment, dreading talking to the thing that he once loved.

“Gregorio! I’m home! And I brought Groceries.”

Gregorio remained in his wheelchair staring out the window. He slowly turned back and brought his sullen eyes up to look at Joey. He sighed deeply and slowly averted his eyes back towards the window.

“When are you ever going to pay attention to me again?! I can’t do anything right!” Joey screamed and ran into their bedroom. He slammed the door twice. His crying was audible through the thick doors to Gregorio’s beautiful yet newly obese ears. Gregorio turned to listen better and once again sighed. He was in the process of moving his eyeballs back to the window, but stopped short when he saw a beautiful sight creeping out of the grocery bag. The brown paper bag was wrinkled from the walk home, yet many of its creases remained intact. The wrinkles mainly stayed within the perimeters of the corners of the bag, and did not venture out. One gaggle of wrinkles formed a shape that very much resembled a swan.

However, a swan whose peak has passed long ago. The periwinkle and mauve "Food Town" logo was slightly faded ,prompting Gregorio to fantasize of all of the fantastic turmoils and adventures this bag has seen. There were auburn water stains sporadically sprinkled all over one side of the bag, although curiously the other side did not soak up one stain! There was a slight tear at bottom right corner of the bag, which created a peep hole. Through it, Gregorio spotted the sweet texture of a melon. His dull eyes brightened and he slowly wheeled over to the bag.

Joey awoke to the sounds of birds chirping. He opened his eyes and he realized he was sleeping alone. He let out a long sigh. Then, he lifted his out of shape body out of the bed and left the room. On the dining room table he saw a ripped apart grocery bag with bananas and yogurt containers and lettuce all over the floor and table. But no melon.

“Why the hell did you do this?!" yelled Joey. "And you expect me to clean this up?! I can’t take this anymore! I bring these groceries home so we can have a nice meal and you destroy them, like how you destroyed our relationship!”

Joey took a shower and left to go to work, without saying another word to Gregorio, who didn’t move and kept his back to Joey. He remained in this position throughout the day. When Joey got home from another horrible day at the crab meat factory, he started yelling at Gregorio again. “I’m not cleaning that mess up! I don’t care if you are disabled! You made my heart disabled before you became that way!! It was your idea to go on the kayak trip. You ruined your body for both of us!”

Gregorio did not respond. Joey approached Gregorio and instead of seeing a sullen sulking face that he had now grown accustomed to, he saw eyes full of hope and a smile of love. “Gregorio!” Joey’s rage turned to tenderness. “I haven’t seen you this happy in ever-so long.” Gregorio continued smiling but did not look at Joey. Instead he looked down in the melon in his lap and began petting it, lovingly.

Joey‘s kind and compassionate smile morphed promptly back into rage-mode. “What are you doing? Why isn’t that in the fridge?” Gregorio ignored Joey’s questions. “Are you ever going to speak again?”

Joey once again fled to his bedroom in tears, while Gregorio continued stroking the melon.

Days passed. Gregorio slept in the living room, in his favorite position, looking out the window, petting the melon. As his new found love began rotting as the relationship between he and Joey further deteriorated. The smell infuriated Joey.

“You look at that rotting monstrosity the same way you used to look at me!” Joey’s initial statement as he returned home from work one foggy and rage-filled afternoon. Gregorio did not respond. “That’s it…” Joey had had enough. He threw his crab-shaped briefcase on the floor and tried grabbing the melon out of Gregorio’s hands. Gregorio held tightly onto the melon and for the first time in months made full eye contact with Joey. He began to let out a high pitch shriek. He proceeded to shriek and spit at Joey. Joey flinched and eventually struggled the melon out of Gregorio's hands. Joey reveled in this accomplishment, taking away his own replacement from the only man he has ever loved. He instinctively threw it out the window.

A splattering sound was heard below. Gregorio could not bare to look. His eyes welled up with tears. His hands turned into fists in a failed attempt for the melon to return to him. He looked toward the window and then to Joey. Then back to the window, which was now the focus of his despair. He sobbed. Joey also began sobbing. Joey lovingly held his sobbing Gregorio all through the night. And in turn, Gregorio lovingly held Joey’s corpse all throughout the next few weeks.


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