August 03, 2020, 11:26:44 AM

Author Topic: He travels the fastest travels alone I  (Read 919 times)

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Offline Novack

He travels the fastest travels alone I
« on: June 10, 2019, 06:01:42 PM »
“Do you hear anything I’m saying?”

He didn’t.

“No, of course you don’t.”

Of course he didn’t.

Honestly, the woman knew better, though, she continued to carry on--in typical fashion.

 Novack groaned through grit teeth,  nodded, and watched her lips as carefully as he could with all intention of reading her lips with the utmost skill.

(Which he did not have.)

“Roman,” the woman spake. She put her hand upon her temple for balance as she glared up at her ward. Airpods plugged his ears. A quick glance at the foot that tapped the floor. Yes, Roman, was in fact lost in his muse.

Oh well, I roam from town to town
I go through life without a care
And I'm as happy as a clown
I with my two fists of iron but I'm going nowhere

Roman rolled the coin across his knuckles. Ignoring the woman was never intentional. Often he would be so lost in the music that he’d forget she had even caught his attention. Pretending was useless--she knew it as well as he did--and neither dared budge on their front.

So, the woman, continued to talk--and Roman continued to listen to Jr. Walker and feign interest in everything he could not actually hear her say.

“Honestly--at this point, I don’t know why I even send Barrett after you,” the woman complained. As if summoning the man from thin air, her companion, Barrett Waldrop, joined them. Much to the woman’s annoyance, Roman removed the buds upon noticing the other man’s arrival.

“For God’s sake, Roman,” she bitched. “Barrett--you have my tea?”

He did have her tea, and he was quick to place it atop her desk.

“My hero,” she said as thanks. He could hear the exhasberation in her voice.

“Aren’t you both quite tired of that game?” Barrett asked. He certainly was tired of it.

“I was listening,” Novack replied as he fidgeted with the coin more. It slipped over the flesh of his hand in such a fluid motion it was almost effortless on his part.

“You weren’t,” Barrett chuckled. “--but I appreciate your commitment to the lie, young master.”

Novack rolled his eyes and trotted across the room to collapse on the cleopatra chaise. “Don’t call me that--I don’t appreciate your commitment to the roll of my dutiful servant.”

The older gentleman did not reply as he instead looked to his employer and shared a silent laugh at Roman’s expense.

“You could have donated to the charity,” said Novack as he cut his eyes toward her. “Nadia.”

“I believe you’ve been more than generous with your donation,” Nadia Volkov spat back at her ward.

“For a good cause,” Roman boasted.

“For a pretty face,” the woman corrected him, her voice flat and perturbed. “Whatever nonsense you’re calling this good deed, Roman, don’t let it distract you from the real reason you’re schmoozing.

“Image is everything.” He recited her mantra with such eloquence and distaste. He scowled as Volkov stood from her desk. She placed the tea she had been neglecting atop the mahogany and rounded the corner. Her bleached blond hair offset this weeks botox injection nicely. Novack made a mental note to compliment her appearance at a later time.

“You have trained for this for a very long time, Romonchka,” Nadia states. Her hands rest atop his shoulders, and he could tell she was genuinely concerned about his approach to starting in Kings Road. This is a different level of prize fighting--you’re taking home more than little trophies for the cabinet in the den.”

Novack rolled his eyes. While the woman did have a sort of contractual obligation to act as a guardian in his life--his grandfather’s mistress had barely been older than his babysitter when she moved into the Novack beach house in the Hamptons.

Roman had his inheritance--Nadia Volkov had her Russian beauty queen fame and men that would move mountains to take her home.

“Need not worry about me,” Roman boasted with the broadest of grins and puffed chest. “I am made of wit and steel.” That he did believe wholeheartedly. “You’ll see me in action in no time, toots.”

The sarcasm dripped from her pouty lips.  “I can hardly contain myself. Have Barrett put you up in Vegas for the next week. I have business to attend, and I won’t have you lingering about Atlantic City on your own. It’s summer after all.”

“The local cuisine bores me,” Roman said smugly.

Nadia rolled her eyes and returned to her desk. She lifted a brown paper package wrapped with twine and gave it to Novack.

“Happy Birthday, Romonchka,” said Nadia, her warmth radiating with the softness in her voice.

“My birthday’s over a week away.” He was confused.

“Just open it,” she replied, and, so, he did. Beneath the simple packaging was a hand stitched leather journal with crip, thick ivory pages, and a leather hide tie for latching. It was unbelievably soft and smelled as heavily of leather as the boot stores his grandfather would have him visit. Roman moved the book closer to his nose for a better sniff, and the memory carried him back decades. Leather and cherry--like pipe tobacco. Just like Pop.

“I don’t know what to say,” Roman mumbled. The memory was a bit more than for what he was prepared. Baby blue eyes lined with the glassy shine of tears. She wrapped her arms around his shoulders and hugged herself against him.

“For your memoires,” she replied. “I have an event in Milan I cannot miss. Treat yourself to a wonderful ten days on my behalf--hm? When I get back we will celebrate.”

Novack caressed the texture of the leather with a gentle glide of his fingertips across it as if tracing the detail to memory. “I’ll be at the Bellagio,” Roman muttered. He glanced away from the book now that he had composed himself. “Send a postcard, won’t you?”

The woman did not reply. She only cut her eyes at him, fought at hiding that pretty grin of hers, and spun off on her heels. Novack fiddled with the Airpods and returned them to his ears. Book in hand and music restarted--he retired to his room. Roman set the book with the gentlest ease atop his nightstand and fetched the instrument case where he had it propped against his bedroom wall. The metal latches rattled as he popped them open. Inside the case was the glistening Yamaha Custom saxophone his grandfather had given him in fourth grade when he told him he wanted to blow just like Charlie Parker in All the Things You Are.

And Aleksy Novack had been the boys beatnik father. Piotr oft thought the nature to be genetic. Like father--like son. Songs are just music with poetry, his father would say. Then Aleksy would set Roman down and they would tickle the ivories and harmonize over Climb Every Mountain because that was Audrey’s favorite song from the musical.

But it all ended so quickly. Roman shook his head and fetched the orange, plastic medicine bottle also atop the night stand. A dry swallow, but he tossed back a dose and returned back to admiring his brass.

Life was no longer going to be just hole in the wall jazz sessions and fancy card shuffling. No, Novack had to set the playboy aside and commit to the cause. After all, this was the only thing he didn’t have. Having the obtainable--pure clarity of purpose--and what a feeling.


The lid clinked as he fastened the latches back to the case then propped it back against the wall. He checked a notification on his watch then fetched the Italian leather suitcase the woman had given him for Christmas last year. She loved her furs and hides.

Years of having had Nadia Volkov as an au pair had ingrained a subconscious need to be presentable and prepared for absolutely any emergency of fashion. All of her years of starving herself for modeling had left her with a sense of self importance in regards to keeping up appearances.

He had formal wear for dinner--casual for breakfast--swimwear--sleepwear--undergarments--three suits for clubwear--three pairs of shoes--athletic wear for the casino gymnasium--and normal, daily attire.

His luggage was basically a mobile wardrobe. It was absolutely the type of manicured habit and effeminate trait on which people enjoyed harping. Of course, when you needed for nothing--petty bullying by lesser people was hardly akin to that of a gnat buzzing about his face. Thus Roman the human doll lived his life the Romanest of ways.

 His coin. A simple, ordinary, weathered 1982 quarter. Other than being from the year Novack was born--the coin held no significance whatsoever--but yet he’d held onto this exact quarter for as far back as he could remember.

Some people immediately would cry foul. How could someone be so anal that they would keep track of an unimportant coin for an eternity? The reasoning was simple--because Roman was that anal over detail. (And because he’s almost certain Barrett had replaced the coin on numerous occasions as it was very unlikely Roman had kept track of it for this long.)

There was strong desire within him to say to hell with the luggage and pick out an entirely new selection once he arrived in Nevada. Nonetheless, He glanced over his belongings and mentally checked off every important item from toiletry to phone charger. And after he had checked his list more times than Jolly Saint Nick--Roman collapsed atop his king sized bed and breathed in the stale aroma of nothing and perfume that wafted from the silk bedspread.

Only the best. The best of the best.

“Alexa, play lofi jazz,” he ordered and the device chatted back to him with her bold female pleasantness to dutifully provide him with relaxation.

He could feel himself drifting off as the blanket absorbed him with its smooth texture. Like dry water. The finest tread from the most giving worm. He believed that silk was what the angels felt like if you could in fact touch them.

All that was left now was him and his eternal muse--pooling the words into a neat pile of thought. He could write short stanzas forever. But a book--Nadia had more faith in him that he had realized.

Every distraction was welcome. He sat back up and looked to the glass case where such trophies as she had teased him about existed. Belt in this--second place in that. Good--but never exceptional. Something he never had.

A man of many vices. Wasn’t that how he always painted himself to be? He thought of the ones he’d met so far. All very pretty--all very different. None of them as intriguing as--. He chuckled and rested his head in his hands. He hadn’t done much at all today, yet he felt positively drained, and he wondered if this was the infamous fatigue you often heard of that plagued celebrities and landed them in rehabilitation facilities.

Was he going to burn up or fade away?

Three licks per mister owl--and that was that. Pop said always bet red--Roman never knew why but he abided daydreaming that his grandfather’s fondness for the color as his go to for betting was a the color of the hair of the woman he had loved and lost a lifetime ago.

Roman, you fucking romantic. A real Don Juan DeMarco he was.

A nagging sensation to write would have been a blessing, however, he was cursed with absolute obsession currently of an entirely new work of art. It was upsetting.

How could such earthly perfection exist? Was this the great inspiration the greats before him had found on their own--such otherworldly beauty. It was absolutely ethereal.

The charity. The present backhanded him into the matter at hand. The charity was due to happen on June 15th. His birthday was June 15th.

How insanely coincidental given he had donated his time for charity. After all, who wouldn’t want to gamble away on the dime of an old money heir playboy with piercing blue eyes.

The blue eyed devil.

Who, in fact, was more correctly to be called the blue eyed show pony.

An entertainer who had been taught an assortment of skills as he matured. If anything, Nadia had molded him into the debonair man he had become.

Roman smirked and found that loose deck of cards he kept on hand for fidgeting. Between shuffling and flipping his coin, he had ample ways to keep himself busy.

(As he shuffled, he would think on the running joke that was him being some sort of magician and how appropriate it was that he had learned a few card tricks coming up.

Poppa Piotr loved illusionists. Houdini his most favorite. Escape artistry. Sheer brilliance in selling point with a devastatingly high cost. Pop would nag about the importance of the selling point endlessly.

What he would not give to have that lecture once again.

The playing cards bent with the manipulation of his his fingers and shot them from his right hand to his left with a ssssttthhhh noise.

Kings Road had a reputation for being full of the brightest and most sought after talent on the market. There were respected, accomplished names that had walked 4cw and there were unforgettable characters as well.

Burning at both ends would be the living end.

He could see the headlines now Playboy and Philanthropist Takes Wrestling World By Surprise, because who would believe dashing-in-Dolce had a mean left hook.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2019, 09:22:12 PM by Novack »