Tricky is a classical example of hustler story: even if Brody, the young man whose voice is narrating us his story in first point of view, is trying to convince the reader that he is happy being a whore, since, as he said, and as his grandfather told him, “If you love what you do, you'll never work a day in your life”, it’s clear that he is not happy. Brody was desperately in love with his best friend John, but they were young and John was scared, he was the son of a pastor and he was taught that their love was a sin. John had not the strength to escape his father’s clutches and he married and build the 2.5 sons family everyone expected from him. And Brody instead continues in the path his grandfather and his father taught him, to screw the world to not being screwed, and what way better doing it if not being a whore? Brody is an high paid whore, he doesn’t work on the street, but in posh hotel all around the world; he is independent and he doesn’t really need to work to live, he has almost taken his job as a vocation: he is giving reliefs to all those “Johns” (no pun intended, or maybe just a little), men like his own John, who had no the courage to live the life they desired, and now, years later, are regretting that lack of courage and are searching in Brody their lost chance.
But then John comes back in Brody’s life, pretending to be the offended one, accusing Brody to not have done enough for them, for not believing enough in their dreams. It’s an angry John, someone who uses sex as a punishment, and again Brody is a willing vessel for that anger: he takes blow after blow; he let John extinguish his anger, to then, in the end, being the one who will store the last shot.
This is a short novella with a lot of hidden and hard feelings, it’s not a sweet story; both Brody than John are hurt men, and they react in different way to that hurt, but with the same intensity. Brody is almost unpleasant, for sure cynical, but you can understand his desperate need of love. And John is nonetheless complicated, for sure he is not a knight in shining armour, and probably he is not a courageous man, but more one that takes advantage of what life gifts him, even an apparently tragedy.
I’m not sure of the feelings I have at the end of this story, but for sure it’s a story that leaves you something, and that is already a great achievement.