Glenn Gray is back. I mean, I’m pretty sure he’s been here before. If he hasn’t, that’s a goddamn shame. And I did more drugs than I thought.

Here, he proves an important life lesson: go big, or go home.

Buttshot by Glenn Gray

“You stay here, baby. Chill. I’ll get the shit.”

“No way,” she says. “You ain’t goin up solo.”

“Hell I ain’t,” I tell her. “You ain’t gonna risk it, no how. Stay cool. I go up. I ain’t back in five take this ’n’ walk on up.” I nudge the .22 in her palm.

She caresses metal. “Cool, then.”

“Love you,” I say. “Can’t wait to get back to the crib. Know what I mean?”

Starting to smile, playing now. “Like how come?”

“You know, baby,” I say. “Wantcha gimme that buttshot thing you do.”’

“What buttshot thing I do?”

“You know,” I say. “All bent over ’n’ all.” 

A sexy laugh.

“You got the slamminist bubble-butt ’round.” I squeeze a meaty thigh. “You know it.”

“You crazy.”

“Yeah,” I say. “Crazy for that sickass bod.”

“Love you.” Shakes her head. “An watch yo’ ass.”

I kiss her hard.

I hop out the Civic, stroll up red brick. Get my serious head on now. Shake it off. Got my own metal tucked right coat pocket. What I wanna do is get them anabolic agents and get on my way. Sell the shit, make some money is all. Get that ass back to my crib, work that thang.

I knuckle 3B.

Muscle-head gangbanger appears, tank–top, delts ’n’ guns hanging—dang twenty large. Inked up. Friggin full body sleeve.


“Yo,” I say. “Pickin’ the shit up, is it.”

“Ay’ite.” Steps back, bent door swings out.

Smell reefer. Dim and grungy. Make my way center square, look ’round. Bed, covers messed. Chinese food scattered on a table. Bong on a nightstand. 

“You got the cashish?” 

“Fukyeah, bro.” Pat my coat pocket. “Where the shit?” 

Juicehead strolls casual, plants ass on mattress. “Got it bro, easy.” Reaches under the bed.

Hear a slam and some ape-shit dude leaps from the closet, crazy and hyped. Got a rifle, waving it, like he’s jacked up on some speedball.

“Put hands up, bitch!” Has the barrel next to my skull before I get my hand in my coat.

“Yo, dudes.” Throw my hands up. “Chill, man!”

“The money, bitch!” Rifle Boy says. 

Juicehead chest-presses me, growls. “He tell you, where the money, bitch?” He swings and jaw-slams a fist, sends me sideways, wet mouth all crooked.

Rifle Boy gun-butts my skull, pushes me to the floor, face in hardwood. “Money, bitch!”

I figure the money ain’t worth getting wasted so I make some noise. I tell em, “Yo—the pocket, man.”

Juicehead pats me, finds the piece, laughs. “Lookit, bro!” Holds it up, grinning, like he just won a prize. Jams my pockets, finds the envelope bulging with dinero, swinging it ’round.

“Whatcha gonna do now, bitch?”

“Guess I gonna leave.”

“Guess again, yo!”

“You got the cash, bro.”

“You a piece a shit!”

“Take it easy, Chico.”


I struggle to my feet, face the guys. Got their backs to the door. That’s when I
see my girl. Gun out, two hands, feet splayed nice. Like Wonder Woman.

I stay cool. “Yo, you got the cash, man. Won’t say nothin’.”

“That right you ain’t say nothin’,” Rifle Boy says. “You going bye-bye.”

“Yeah bye-bye,” Juicehead says. “Less go.”

“Freeze a-holes!” my girl yells, all official FBI-like.

The guys lock up. Not sure what to do. 

“Drop the guns!”

They don’t move so my girl jolts them with an ear-poppin’ wall blast. Plaster splatters.

Guns hit hardwood.

“Now drop the pants, dirtbags!”

They exchange stupid looks. Shrug. Goofy smiles, uneasy. Another shot and they undo the pants, drop ’em to the ground.

“Undies too, girls.”

“Yo, lady,” Rifle Boy starts but another blast and he’s got the striped boxers at his ankles.

“Turn ’round!”

The guys spin, hands up, slow.

My girl laughs. “The hell is that?” she says. You call those dicks?”

The stupid faces again. “Is cold, yo,” Rifle Boy says.

“Turn around you ugly dickless shits,” my hero girl says.

They turn at me and I hear POP POP and the guys hit their knees, screeching and the muscle guy says, “Fuuaaa!” as he falls to his face. The other guy twists, goes down sideways and I see their asses all red splotched.

I snatch the rifle off the floor and I can’t stand the moaning so I head jab Rifle Boy with the butt of his own rifle. Muscle guy takes two slams before he’s out.

Then it’s quiet.

I look at my bubble-ass queen by the door, smiling.

“Nice shot,” I tell her, walking over.

“Seemed right,” she says. “With that buttshot thing you telling me.”

“Yeah?” I grab the envelope of cash off the floor, pocket it. I look under the bed, nothing. Go to the closet, yank the door. A puffy gym bag on the floor. 


Boxes of shit—Dianabol, Anavar, Anadrol, Teslac. Growth. Bunch of other stuff. Weed to boot.

I smile, show my girl.

She grins.

I clap that bubble-butt. “Lookit those dicks?”

She shrugs. A screwy half-smile face.  “Knew that would throw ’em off.”

“Sure as hell did.” Tick my head at the door. “Harsh, baby. Real harsh.” 

Glenn Gray is the author of a collection of short fiction, The Little Boy Inside and Other Stories, from Concord EPress. He lives in New York.