"A few days later, Sally over there's still pissed that it worked out for me, and all he gets is his shaft. Heh. He starts coming in to work dressed all goth-y, talking about how he met some chick at an industrial club downtown that's going to teach him how to take over the world using black magick, and then Tilly'll be his. Or something. It was kind of precious.
"I didn't think anything of it until one day, I was closing up shop and just about to leave when there's a thunk on the door. I go check it out, and there's this garden gnome, about thigh-high, sitting on the stoop. I go next door to ask the security guard what happened, but Cliff's asleep, so he didn't see anything.
"I shrugged. If it was still there in the morning, I'd decide what to do then. As it stood, I had to meet up with Tilly."
"What about Kiera?" my doctor, whose name I either couldn't remember or still hadn't gotten, asked.
"What? Oh, Kiera was only important to this story to set up when it took place."
"I thought you said you were in a-"
"It's not important to why I'm going to murder our young...friend here. Anyway, over the next few days and weeks, more gnomes began appearing. Random times and places, too. All over the gated community. The worst part was that the other residents absolutely loved the tacky little things."
"Aw, come on, Jim," began Diego, "they were cute." Sal nodded in agreement, nervous beneath Diego's firm pin.
"They were hideous! And they turned out...er...I'm getting ahead of myself. Moving on, pretty soon, every surface with enough space inside the office had a gnome. They were sitting in front windows, they were everywhere! Side note, this is also why Emporia Foothills Gated Community's mascot is a garden gnome, because of this incident.
"One day, I had just finished doing some paperwork in the office, and stood up to go outside and have a smoke, when I stood up too quickly and knocked the gnome on my desk over onto the ground, where it broke evenly along a seam I hadn't yet noticed.
"You ready for this? The gnome was hollow. Inside there was some sort of canister that was leaking some kind of smoke. I took a step back, but I wound up inhaling too much anyway. Diego found me later on, passed the fuck out, laying in the doorway, half inside the office shack, half on the pavement.
"So we put on our fumigation masks and broke open another gnome. And another, and another. Eight gnomes later, we surmised they were all Trojan horses for canisters. Something monumental was about to go down at the Foothills, and, to my knowledge, no idea when.
"So Diego and I grabbed some extra gear, hopped into our cart, and tore ass outta there, up the block, collecting gnomes, armfuls of gnomes, when several black vans pulled up to the gate at the bottom of the hill. I radioed Cliff to call the cops and say that the entirety of the Foothills was about to be robbed.
"He thought I was crazy until the gate was ripped from the ground. Fortunately, though, that act sets off an alarm that calls the cops anyway. I thought things were going to get dicey, so Diego and I went to hide. The closest yard was Tilly and her husband's, so I jumped behind their shrubbery and prayed I didn't get murdered on this pillaging of the community.
"As I'm hiding, the gnomes in my arms begin vibrating. There was a pain in my arms as gnome hats started popping off with a strange 'thoonk' sound, so I threw them away from me. One of the hats in Tilly's yard went through her window, so she came out to investigate. I tried waving her back in, but she didn't recognize me with my mask on, and with seconds to spare, I wasn't sure if she'd be okay, so I just ran and tackled her into her living room.
"I took my mask off and gave it to her, opting for the tiny rebreather I grabbed, and told her to hide as gnome hats kept popping off around us. Despite the sort-of decapping not happening simultaneously, all the hats must have been off, as all the canisters began spraying simultaneously.
"'Brave heart, Tilly,' I said before turning around and running back outside to face our attackers. The things a man does for the woman he loves, eh?"
"Anyway, I ran outside as one of the vans drove towards the end of the cul-de-sac, and stopped short when he saw me. These thin, wiry fucks get out, and while I may not be very big, I was bigger than they were. I whip out my spades and prepare for a knife fight when my eardrums explode, causing the two from the van to drop.
"I look around, and who do I see? Tilly standing there, pistol leveled and fumigation mask loose. When she falls, I catch her, put her over my shoulder, and grab the gun. Long story short: I saved the day, and got the girl in the end." I winked at the doctor, who looked baffled. With a sigh, I continued my story.
"Either way, when all is said and done, the cops show up to me in a Mexican standoff with these total hacker-types, and then Sally comes up and sees me tending to Tilly and begins spewing mangled Latin at me-serious Harry Potter-type shit.
"Then he tells me that he just placed a physical unattractiveness hex on me, and when I'm least expecting it, I'm going to look like Chunk, from the Goonies. I'm bad at impressions; my 'Hey, you guys' sounds nothing like his."
"Okay, first of all, that was Sloth who said that. Secondly, your face, and vanity, are intact. Wholly. Third-"
"Wait, then which one's Chunk?" I cut the doctor off before she could continue, looking to Diego and Sal.
"Oh, damn," said Sal. "Chunk's the one who grew up to be the one to help Mr. Frodo take the ring to Mordor. He's not bad-looking at all."
"No way, moron. That was Mikey," Diego corrected. "Chunk was Corey Haim." He nodded, as though in self-affirmation.
"What? No, he played Mouth," I said. My doctor looked like she was about to blow a gasket. "Corey Haim wasn't even in the Goonies! That was Corey Feldman! The actor who played Chunk never really went on to do anything else, and it's your arms that are scarred! Not your face!"
I looked down, and for the first time, I noticed the bandages that completely encased my forearms, slightly discolored by blood. What had happened to them?
"Huh. What d'you know? How 'bout that?"