You Could Fucking Sell That
Zachary Doss

Your boyfriend runs for president as an outsider political candidate. You try not to let this disturb your life too much although your boyfriend is always on the television and the radio and satellite radio and the Internet. He gives interviews in the home you share and you aren't there for any of them, you don't even try to be. His slogan is Turn it around, America! and your slogan is This is none of my business. You have a very important business that is actually your business and you make the money your boyfriend uses to run for president as an outsider political candidate and otherwise you want nothing to do with it.

Eventually you agree to one interview. Short, very short, I'm very busy, you say a little sharply to your boyfriend's campaign manager, who called you at the office. You agree mostly to get him off the phone.

Never call me at the office, you text your boyfriend, even though he's not even the one who called you.

You sit down for the interview with a woman who has a very broad, sensitive face. Before the cameras start rolling, you watch her do facial exercises to stretch out her face muscles. At first, she looks gently concerned and you're about to ask her what her problem is, but then she laughs too loudly and then she frowns deeply and then, excruciatingly, begins to fake cry, which she is not good at. Then she makes a series of very loud noises, stretching her face to its extremes one way or the other, before finally setting into her default facial expression, a very placid affair you described initially as sensitive. She wears spring colors, pastel pinks and yellows, and you wonder whether it's spring. You have no idea if it's spring or not, but her eyeshadow matches her outfit and her eyes, closed while she practices her weep-moaning, remind you of Easter eggs.

She smiles and begins your interview.

Later, you are on all of the shows. People describe you as unlikeable. They talk about how you were too sharp or too mean or too smart or your suit was too grey. Almost charcoal, a very large potato-looking man snarls on his talk show. You wore a grey suit and a black shirt, you smiled but it seemed insincere, you run a very profitable business and are worth billions of dollars and you are not good for the environment or minorities or the economy. Your hair was expertly, beautifully styled. You looked sexy but unapproachable. The American people hate you.

The American people hate you, your boyfriend's campaign manager says over the phone. He clears his throat several times as he talks. You wonder if he hates you too. You wonder if he and your boyfriend have become lovers on the campaign trail. You wonder if your company has a film and television division, because you could sell that story. You could fucking sell that.

You are about to respond that you hate the American people too, but your boyfriend's campaign manager hangs up on you. Almost immediately your face on the TV screen is replaced by your boyfriend standing in a half embrace with the Trash Pope, both men waving with their free hands. The Trash Pope looks benevolent, which you suppose is basically his full-time job anyway. The pundits describe this as a coup for your boyfriend, leading to sharp polling increases among Americans who practice the Trash Religion. When the TV show cuts away from your boyfriend and the Trash Pope, all that remains is a ticker across the bottom of the screen that reads, Popular political candidate has awful boyfriend, has secured the endorsement of the Trash Pope.

You sense a but belongs in that sentence somewhere. Instead, it seems like the two things are connected. Your boyfriend finally responds to your text, with a brief email asking for more money and referring to you as his campaign's "largest donor."

On election night, you stand on the stage with your boyfriend and his campaign manager and dozens of people you don't recognize, people you assume did something to aid your boyfriend's campaign. You're pretty sure one of the men is a high-ranking official in the Trash Church. Your boyfriend has a strong lead in the exit polls and everyone is smiling at each other. There is an outrageous amount of smiling. The campaign manager suggests you and your boyfriend engage in some celebratory affection, a hug or a kiss or a head butt. You ignore him and he head butts your boyfriend instead.

The assassination seems to come from nowhere. The sniper rifle makes a loud crack, still barely audible above the crowd. Your boyfriend is one state away from winning the electoral college. It's Florida, you think, maybe it's Florida. You catch your boyfriend as he falls back. It's a high-caliber bullet, the kind that leaves both an entrance hole and an exit hole.

As you sit, cradling your boyfriend's mostly-exploded head, you think of the First Lady who, under similar circumstances, tried to keep her husband's brains contained within his head long enough for help to arrive. You think of the First Lady who, shortly after her husband was killed, went mad. You desperately wish you were that kind of lover, but you don't feel ready to do either of those things. While you are kneeling in front of maybe twenty thousand people with your dead boyfriend's brains all over your charcoal-colored suit, your face is carefully blank.

Your boyfriend wins Florida and the election, and the campaign manager is sobbing, and you think, yeah, you could definitely fucking sell that.

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