The Dump Truck

Steaming hot water splashed down over his greasy forehead, separating the hair into clumps as it poured down his face. Charlie leaned his head against the cool wall. In the last thirty years he’d never had a day this bad. Hundreds of thousands of pickups, but nothing like this.

At first, he started out running behind the truck, tossing trash bags into the back to be crushed. God, he thought to himself, I was in such good shape then. He remembered how he’d grab a quick shower to get rid of the smell, go home, and tell Kim about his day; she always asked.

His breath started coming in quick spurts, the tears leaking from his bloodshot eyes mixing with the water that crashed over his head. She was so proud when he’d been promoted to driver. Less smell, more consistency, and easier on his back.

How would she react when she found out he’d killed someone? His knees gave out at the thought, smacking the hard tiles and cutting against the grate. He, Charles Baker, had killed someone. He threw up as the hot water rained down.
As soon as he’d heard the screams he’d stopped the compactor, but it was too late. He was told they thought the man, whose blood now pooled in the bottom of truck 34, had been asleep in a dumpster.

Getting to his feet, he washed the soap and blood from his body, dressed, and drove home to tell Kim about his day.



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