Category Archives: horror

The Fire of the Gods

Fletcher at the Dig

His tent snapping in a hot, dusty wind, Fletcher found it nearly impossible to concentrate on his journal entry, an entry on which so much depended.

The porter, Daran, waited just outside with wide eyes, looking up at the group of riders carefully picking their way down the narrow trail snaking along the inner wall of the crater.

“Even now, Bryce approaches with a party of loyalists to steal the figurine,” Fletcher scratched quickly. “My initial academic excitement in the historicity of the piece has been supplanted by more fundamental concerns. No, that is inaccurate; it is an existential dread that now pervades my soul.”

Daran tentatively stuck his head between the canvas flaps. “Sir, only three kilometers more and Doctor Holcombe is upon us.” He looked back over his shoulder, panting.

Fletcher wrote on. “I am giving the figurine to Daran to get it out of the country. His wife’s cousin runs some sort of illegal smuggling operation along the passage to Peshawar. I can only hope that the figurine and this journal will make their way to you from this godforsaken pit. As long as the carving stays out of Bryce’s hands, all may yet be well. Nevertheless, his fumbling interference has awakened something ancient and, what is worse, it has taken nearly complete possession of him.”

Fletcher wrapped the journal, along with the figurine, into a leather sack. He bound it all together with a length of catgut, and rushed to the tent’s entrance. He pushed it into Daran’s hands.

“Take it, for fuck’s sake!” he said, “And do as I have instructed. Get it to Susan!”

He watched Daran’s eastward ascent out of the pit, intermittently hidden by the scorched, black trees and the great billows of steam.

“Godspeed,” Fletcher said, rasping, as he watched the porter climb up through the blasted heath. “Get it to Susan, Daran. My journal will guide her actions. She will know what to do.”

Fletcher  sat in his canvas chair, facing the flapping maw of the tent. The smell of all these burning things made him nauseous. He drew his machete from its scabbard.

And waited.

Fletcher at the Trial

“And your expedition ended in the deaths of several members of your research contingent. Is that not true?” The prosecutor pushed her glasses down to the tip of her nose, her dead, grey eyes fixed on Fletcher.

“That is correct. Several members of the group were horribly mutilated, including my research assistant, Bryce Holcombe, as you know.”

The prosecutor looked at the jury before continuing. “Yes, Doctor Fletcher. Those of us here in the so-called developed world can only imagine the sense of horror to which you were subjected in this circumstance.”

Blinding light crashed through the wall-length windows in the courtroom. Fletcher looked down at his shoes.

“Dr. Fletcher, would you care to comment on how your extended absence may have contributed to your wife’s state of mind?  I mean, raising three children alone, for twenty-two months, while her husband  was off in far-flung places, digging up old civilizations and whatnot. Do you not think that could be stressful?”

Fletcher looked up at Susan. Her eyes were seemingly vacant, but inwardly focused, he knew, on an undying hatred for humankind.

Several minutes of silence ensued, punctuated by stifled coughs and aborted sneezes.

“Doctor Fletcher?” The prosecutor was now standing beside her table.

“Yes?” Fletcher asked.

“Your wife was found surrounded by your mutilated children. This jury would like your insight as to how that might have come about.”

Now Fletcher’s grief flowed out in great, heaving sobs. “It was a mistake!”

The prosecutor strode to the witness stand. “Doctor Fletcher. Do you have any idea what  the words Cthuga kraal boglarthop mean? Your honor, the prosecution introduces exhibit one-forty-three-A.” The photograph showed three humps under a white and red sheet. On the wall above them, the unintelligible words were scrawled in what looked like blood.

Fletcher looked out the window. Heat rose off the pavement of the courthouse parking lot in radiated waves.

“It means ‘Cthuga forever burns’.”

“What did you send home to your wife, Doctor, along with your journal?”

Fletcher loosened his tie and said, “An artifact.”

Susan at Home

She fed them.

She bathed them.

After stories, she kissed them and hurried downstairs to the package.

A large glass of merlot rested on the table as she eyed the leather sack and twirled the catgut binding round her index finger.

She ignored the journal. More of Fletcher’s tedious ramblings.

But the carving was exquisite. She felt its heat and breathed deeply.

The Fire of the Gods

It was much later that night when the children were startled awake by growls that shook the walls.

Together, frightened, they stepped lightly down the stairs.

“Mother?”

Silence.

Then more growling.

Mother?”

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Well, I haven’t participated in one of Chuck Wendig’s FF challenges for a while, so…  The challenge this week was to write a story under 1,000 words entitled “The Fire of the Gods”. Well, I dreamed of Lovecraft and August Derleth and this is what came out. The elder gods, the ancient ones, just love to mess with lower life forms… or perhaps they’re just misunderstood. Anyway – hope you enjoy it!

Image by Beesnest McCLain

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All the Colors of This World…

The teacher’s day started like thousands of winter weekdays before it. She made up the twin bed, drank half a cup of instant coffee, fed the cats, put on her wool coat, and walked across the street to the school. She seated herself primly at her desk. The empty rows of desks reminded her of a barren, November garden. She awaited the imminent clamor of arriving children, children whom she would ignore today while she contemplated the dull grayness of the tenements outside her window and considered what must be done.

Today is the day, she thought. Let the nightmare end.

The teacher had left no note of her plan, but she had filled many notebooks describing her despair and her musings on the different methods one might employ to end one’s life. She would exit the world unheralded and unloved, just as she had entered it thirty-four years earlier. Why had kindness and warmth never bent in her direction? Her body had known no pleasure save for what little she, on those rare mornings, was able to provide herself.

A wasted life, best ended.

And then the new girl was presented to her, all large, sad slate eyes and dirty, coppery hair, and of course she had to be introduced to the class and found text books, and writing implements, and wasn’t this just the worst day to have this type of distraction?

But the teacher was one to fulfill her duty, no matter the inconvenience. She escorted the new girl to a desk where she immediately drew the stares and taunts of the class. The teacher, distracted, vaguely admonished the children to leave poor Agnes alone and get along with their lessons, please.

The tik-tik-tik of the freezing rain against the window mesmerized the teacher. The bells rang for recess but she merely sat, thinking of oblivion, until the children bolted of their own accord, casting worried glances in her direction. All except the new girl, who stood motionless in front of the teacher’s desk staring, holding a pink rose between her right thumb and forefinger.

And the teacher accepted the flower. She pushed its soft pink petals against her nostrils and inhaled deeply, so deeply her ribs ached. But the teacher did not release that breath. She closed her eyes, sat back in her chair, and held her breath, refusing to release the scent from her head. As if in a dream, she noticed that the sun had broken through a crack in the clouds and bore down on the large east windows. Shimmering light bathed her face, and from a place deep within welled up images of love directed at her, the teacher, the woman who never knew love, and then the teacher was startled awake when the new girl said, “Pink can heal.”

The teacher opened her eyes and wept and did not stop until well after the other children wandered back in from recess with fearful looks on their faces.

And so the teacher did not end her life that day. The teacher’s feelings blossomed as each day the new girl brought her another flower. And the new girl always seemed to know which flower was the right flower to present, as if the new girl could read her mind or her heart and apply the just right remedy. And the teacher learned.

She learned blue hydrangeas soothed. And orange nasturtiums thrilled. And white poppies intoxicated. And there was no end to her pleasure while she smelled the flowers, but in the evenings, she still could be counted upon to burn or cut her forearms until the kitchen table was slick with blood and tears.

One day the teacher asked the new girl why the feelings the flowers brought her were only temporary, and the new girl said, “Because you want to die, they will not take root. You are barren. I’m doing my best.”

And the teacher became angry at being called barren for the third time in her life, and she  shouted, “I don’t understand! Where do you get these flowers? I want to see where they come from, do you hear?” And she shook the girl back and forth and tried to reach into her pocket and pull out a flower to sniff, but the little girl threw the teacher off with unexpected strength.

Then it suddenly seemed to the teacher that it was sunset, although the children were at recess weren’t they?. The sky was dark, and a fiery red sun looked in on her and the new girl from just above the horizon, like some malevolent one-eyed god.

And the new girl was changing too. She grew taller, her head elongated and horns thrust themselves out of her forehead while her eyes migrated off to the sides.  She produced an enormous red rose from the pocket of her jacket and with a low, growl said, “Red means wrath.” And then the teacher was no more.

The teacher was never found, but everyone assumed the worst for in her desk were discovered several personal notebooks, written in her own hand, describing her black depression as well as her thoughts on ending her life. She also described a person she referred to as ‘the new girl’.

The bottom drawer of her desk was filled with dead flowers: azaleas, poppies, lilies, roses.

No one could make sense of the flowers.

And there had been no new girl in the teacher’s class this year.

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This is one of those stories that was completely unplanned. I had not the faintest idea of what the ending of this story was going to be when I sat down to write it. Many times, one knows the ending and the writing is just a blazing of a trail to get there.

I hope people will continue to find the blog and read the stories. I’d like to think the stories provide some invitation to ponder or just a little entertainment on the train, the bus – some stories that don’t require a huge time commitment from the reader.  If you’re so inclined, please leave a comment thanks for stopping by. Hope you come back.

Image by studiobeerhost


The Dead Always Return…

 
The demands of economic survival have settled a pall of dust over this once-vibrant story blog.

I could make an eloquent appeal for society to support those of us committed to scribbling little stories – yes, even horror stories. But those  grapes are just sour, and I need to get clacking on the keyboard.

Now that I’ve established some sense of balance and equanimity in my new job, you can expect to see some fresh stories posted.

Halloween is almost here.

Each year, we return to Salem, MA for trick or treating and then we take up the costume watch at Haunted Happenings. We take the kids around to collect candy and fun along the same neighborhood route I took as a kid in Salem. The kids’ll then hang out at my parents’ house while the wife and I head downtown to see the show with friends.

By the by, I hope to have a collection of short stories completed for next Halloween. If you’re a regular visitor to the blog, you’ll get a free copy (I know who you are!).

In the meantime, enjoy this Halloween. Soon, the wind will turn seriously cold, the trees will click, and the moon will ride high and turn the buildings on Derby Street in Salem a silvery gray. I grew up down near Forest River Park and each October I think of ghosts in Pioneer Village as well as darker things blowing through those beautiful, barren trees.

If you haven’t been, Haunted Happenings in Salem is not to be missed. Perhaps we’ll see each other up on the Common, or pushing down Essex Street.

There is no better place in the world to sit in darkness than Salem, MA in October.

Sit under Hawthorne’s statue and try not to hear the darkness happening.

I dare you.


Rumors of my death are wildly exaggerated…

 

No, I haven’t exited this vale of tears, shed my mortal coil, bought the farm, kicked the bucket, or eaten every bite of a big shit sandwich. No, I am in that living death called a day job, a carnivorous one that has been snapping up enormous chunks of my life like that huge black German shepherd in the old ALPO commercials.

Seriously, I am working on stories and my summer of airports is nearly over. I look forward to the coming of fall: cool nights, Bard owls, coyotes, that crisp autumn wind that howls through New England. It all just puts me in the mind to tell stories. Grab a blanket, pull down the shades, ignore the scratching of the branches on the study window, and fire up some stories on Sitting In Darkness.

Stay with me. Posts will be more regular…


Avenging Angel…

Avenging Angel

Linda reached for her vibrating cell phone on the nightstand. She didn’t need the ringer; she wasn’t sleeping well these days.

“What?” she mumbled.

“Linda, we’ve got another one.”

Linda sat bolt upright. “Like the others? You’re sure?”

“Propped up on all fours. Tail, mane – the works. This one’s extra special, though.”

Linda waited, her eyes wide. She looked at the photo of a young girl on the nightstand.

“For Chrissakes, Marty, spit it out. This isn’t a game show.”

“This one has…more accessories. Just get down here and see it.”

“It? These were people once, Marty. Have some fucking respect.”

“Says you.”

Lieutenant Linda Einhorn took down the address.

The details of the report she’d been writing earlier that evening played like a movie across her mind: three murders so far, all known perps. Pedophiles. Overpowered, restrained, throats slit, dressed up to resemble what appeared to be horses and left propped on hands and knees. They’d been found in abandoned warehouses around the outskirts of Boston.

No prints.

No witnesses.

No leads.

But something, a faint echo of insight, tugged at the edge of Linda’s mind, depriving her of sleep.

Linda arrived at a warehouse in Revere. The parking lot was loaded with official vehicles, the blue strobes flicking off the stained brick façade of the building. The Revere cops stood around looking resentful while the Staties conducted their investigation. As a State Police detective, Linda was allowed to enter immediately.

Marty – State Police Lieutenant Martin Sutherland – approached her from the shadows.

“Upstairs in the back office. Just follow your nose.” Marty accompanied her to the base of the stairs and yelled up, “Alright, clear the fuck out of there and let Einhorn have at it.”

Linda ascended the stairs, steeling herself. The sweet odor of rotted flesh and blood forced a hand to her face.

As the last of the crime scene techs walked past her, Linda entered the office. It was small, cramped, but with a large window through which, she assumed, a manager could supervise the floor. Linda looked up. Brown stains spread like old maps on the suspended ceiling tiles.

A spotlight stood in the corner to her right, illuminating the star of the show.

White male, approximately forty-five years old. He was naked and draped over a low-slung bench. At first glance, one would think he was up on all fours.

As expected, a broken mop handle protruded from the victim’s anus, the mop giving the appearance of a bushy tail. He’d been spray-painted white and stood out in stark contrast to the bloodied, dirty office décor.

There was a transverse slit across his throat. On his head was a silver-pink wig, like a horse’s mane. Under his chin, a section of rusted pipe held his head up. His milky, lifeless eyes were frozen in a rictus of surprise and horror.

Then Linda noticed it: an ice pick with a spiral white handle planted firmly in the victims’ forehead.

“A unicorn,” she whispered to herself.

Her mind raced through the prior crime scenes.

A pink painted victim with blue mane and tail.

A black ‘horse’ with his forearms broken to make it appear he was prancing.

“Oh my God,” Linda said to no one. And it all fell into place.

She rushed back down the stairs.

Marty was waiting at the bottom with a cup of coffee.

“That was quick. How’d you like the ice pick? Nice touch, eh? We’ll be here all nigh-“

“A  carousel. He’s making a carousel, Marty. Look where the bodies were found. Revere, the North End, Braintree. He’s making a carousel around Boston.”

Marty grabbed her arm and pulled her into a corner.

“It’s not him, Linda. Stop torturing yourself.”

Linda stared through the ceiling up into the office and thought of the Unicorn up there.

Her daughter, Sammie, had loved unicorns. Each time she and her ex-husband Peter had brought their little girl to the Salem Willows, Sammie had only one desire: to ride the unicorn on the ancient carousel.

The day Sammie was taken, Peter was playing Skee-Ball in the arcade next door. Later that night, the Salem cops had found Sammie – or what was left of her – in a dumpster at Pickering Wharf.

Linda had of course focused all her grief and anger on Peter. The marriage was over. How could they make life whole again with Sammie’s violent absence living in the house with them?

“Where were you?” How many times had Linda thrown that in his face?

Peter had left before the divorce was final. Almost two years now.

Then, about four months ago, the bodies started showing up.

No one could know about the carousel. But Linda’s suspicions were now confirmed. She knew it in her bones that Peter was the one.

“Hey, kid. Why don’t you go home? I’ll clean this fucking mess up and we’ll regroup tomorrow at the barracks.” Marty could be tender on those occasions when he remembered he still had a heart.

“Thanks.” Linda was stunned. Not sure what to do next.

At home in bed, Linda wept as she hadn’t allowed herself to weep for the past two years.

In the fetal position, she finally dropped off to a tortured sleep.

In her dream she heard the carousel’s crazy carnival music. The lights blinked and the sun glinted off the many mirrors on the ride.

Sammie, as usual, rode the tall, white unicorn with its flaring nostrils and gleaming brilliance. Peter stood next to her, making sure she didn’t slide off the oscillating beast.

With each revolution, Sammie’s faced grew paler and started to putrefy. Finally, Linda saw Sammie come around, dead, mutilated, gripping the pole that rose up out of the unicorn’s back.

Linda was sobbing in her sleep. In her dream, she was screaming.

On the final revolution, Peter came into view laughing, holding an ice pick aloft.

And he descended from the carousel toward Linda, like an avenging angel.

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Image by Dominic’s Pics

This is the latest Flash Challenge for Chuck Wendig at terribleminds.


All the Way Around the World….

All the Way Around the World was originally published on this blog a few months back; however, Chuck Wendig over at terribleminds.com has issued this week’s Flash Fiction Challenge: An Uncharted Apocalypse. Follow the link to read the variety of submitted tales of the Apocalypse. Happy reading!

cornfield sunrise

Delsante Corporation told me I could take it or leave it. Can you believe that?

My family owned this farm for ninety-two years before I had to go and sell a majority stake to a local distributor. Well, Delsante is way up his ass so you know they’re now up mine.

But I tell you what: if I make it out of this alive, I am sure going to enjoy watching those corporate bastards take a red-hot one in the ass. Same for the USDA.

We had no choice. They told us to plant the G646-DSGMO-666 or we could forget about distribution of any of our corn. Well, if we can’t sell anything, we may as well just give the farm to Delsante and be done with it. They’ll hire some Mexicans to come up here and plant that shit for them and they’ll never even remember my name.

So we planted it, watered it, and did fuck-all that their scientists told us to do. Have to admit, I’ve never in my life seen corn get so big so fast. After a month, I could disappear into those fields. And I’m six-three.

The USDA inspector came out one day along with a fella from Delsante. They were so impressed with how things were coming along. They took some cuttings away in a small plastic bag. Never said a word to me what they were for.

Well, along about eighty days into the growing cycle we started seeing a rust-colored pus oozing out of that corn. I told everyone to stay the fuck out of the fields and not touch anything. We walked the perimeter. That stuff just dripped down the ears. I got on the horn to the local distributor rep and I guess he called Delsante, because they came out to the farm with a huge RV that had a lab right inside of it.

They set up spotlights on the cornfield and kept them going all night long. They said it was just a precaution. Precaution for what? I remember thinking at the time.

There were lots of guys in lab coats and SWAT uniforms. Nobody told us any details about the pus, but I could tell they hadn’t expected it, and they were running around like their heads were on fire and their asses were catchin’.

Each morning, they put on space suits and walked out into that cornfield. Each afternoon they’d emerge with that rusty pus smeared across their suits, carrying laptops and samples.

One day, I was over in the barn replacing a fuel filter on one of the combines when I hear somebody start screaming. I thought one of the lab guys had stepped in horseshit again. I walked out and saw a huge red dust cloud swirling around above the field. All the lab guys and the SWATs were gasping and choking, falling to the ground. They twitched for a second, and then were still.

I know what dead looks like. I was a corpsman in Vietnam. And these people were dead. I know it. But then that red dust started making its way toward me.

Not thinking, I just ran back inside the barn and made for the combine. Closed myself inside the cab. The wind blew that red dust right into the barn and it covered everything. I can’t see anything through the cab windows.

 I don’t have any food or water in here. And I have no way of knowing what happened to my family and my staff.

So, I’m hoping Delsante Corporation sends someone out soon to find out what happened to their scientists and soldiers. I saw them die; at least I think I did. But now I hear things shuffling around the barn and grunting. And one time, something tried to open the cab door, while I held it shut with all my strength, too terrified to breathe. I don’t even want to think about what that thing was.

Far as I can tell, anyone coming near this farm will meet the same fate as those things stumbling around my barn. The chemistry folks at Delsante sure did a bang up job. The only thing I know about chemistry is H-2-0 is water and K-9-P comes out the ass end of a dog. But, I’m a farmer and I know pollen when I see it. That red pus dries and blows off. I think Delsante Corporation has a little problem with their fucked up corn.

G646-DSGMO-666 was engineered to survive. I think of all that pollen on the wind.

You can’t stop the wind. It goes all the way round the world.


Margo Heats It Up…

Author’s note: if you’re new to this blog, you may want to read the previous installments of Margo’s story:

Hermosa Beach Heartache

Margo in Rome

An Unexpected Guest

UPDATE: Chuck Wendig over at the great blog, terribleminds has issued a flash fiction challenge regarding “The Lady and The Swordsman”.  Now, although this story was written before Chuck announced the challenge, AND, although this story is above the 1,000 word limit, I felt it should be entered into the challenge for two compelling reasons:

1. “The Lady and Swordsman” seems to apply, thematically

and

2. Margo is a child of the terribleminds flash fiction challenge – you could say it’s her birthplace, her home (see above for earlier Margo stories).

__________________________________________________

Margo Heats It Up

He looked like Omar Sharif. Abrams was right.

His name was Ephraim Zanzibar, and he was a very bad man.

Margo’s knowledge was founded on personal experience, not just talk on the wire.

She’d met Zanzibar in a hotel in Hermosa Beach several months before. Abrams had blackmailed her into seducing the guy for information. Of course, he’d failed to tell her about Zanzibar’s kink: raping women after knocking them out with roofie-laced drinks.

Margo had started out the assignment refusing to kill Zanzibar, wanting something different for herself. And, of course, for the baby and Dan.  But after two hours with the man, she’d known the world would turn more safely with Ephraim Zanzibar unceremoniously turned to crab shit off the Hermosa Beach pier.

Margo had entered his room at the Del Ray hotel and asked him for a vodka rocks. She taken her drink to the bathroom and poured it into the sink, replacing it with water. Her baby was going to have enough trauma that evening without bringing alcohol into the picture, she’d figured.

What had ensued still sickened Margo. But now, she had Mr. Ephraim Zanzibar in her sights. And things were going to get hot.

Margo edged around the riot of bougainvillea and jasmine that surrounded the compound. The sound of Egyptian pop music poured out of the open French doors. The cloying scent of jasmine turned her stomach slightly, but the sheer mass of it hid her from Zanzibar’s view.

Thank God, the morning sickness was all in the past, Margo thought.

Zanzibar was dressed in a white silk bathrobe. He had drinks in either hand and, with closed eyes, swayed to the music. He was completely unaware of Margo’s presence, in the dark, not four feet in front of him.

A young woman entered the room wearing a nothing but a black bra and thong. Zanzibar passed her a drink and pretended to engage her in a dance. The young woman finished the drink in three gulps. Margo of course knew what was coming.

Once the woman was staggering slightly, Zanzibar reached back and punched her squarely in the face. She went down and didn’t move. He moved in like a hyena at the kill.

That’s enough, Margo said to herself.

She drew her Luger and stepped out of the darkness into the soft, yellow light of the open French doors. Zanzibar’s eyes widened when he saw her: black jumpsuit and ski mask.

He turned and started to shout but she reached him in two long strides and pushed the gun’s muzzle firmly against his temple. Margo whispered, “Hello Omar.” She traced the gun along the ridge of his deformed left ear.

“What the fuck are you supposed to be? Some kind of half-assed Ninja?” His cologne was as bad as the jasmine and Margo pushed him away, keeping the gun leveled directly at his face.

She pulled the mask off. “How’s your ear?”

“You!”

“Looks like you were planning on having some fun here tonight, Zanzibar. Sorry to break up your lovely party. I’ll be taking her when I leave.”

He shrugged and smiled. “More, many more, where she came from. Maybe you’d like to take her place? We never got to finish back in Hermosa Beach.”

Margo remembered the first wave of unreality that had alerted her to the fact she’d been drugged back at the Del Ray. She’d taken a long, deep gulp of her water, but he’d somehow slipped a roofie in there. He was good, no doubt. It seemed only seconds before she was reeling.

She had staggered toward the door but he’d grabbed her wrist and yanked her back into a bear hug. Margo had bit down and ripped off a large chunk of his left ear, which she’d spat into Zanzibar’s face. His punch brought stars and then a deep, velvet blackness.

When she’d come around, she was naked, lying on the bed on her stomach. He was on her back, trying to push his cock into her ass. Her first thought had been, at least this will be easier on the baby.

At one point, he’d pushed off of her and gone to the bathroom.

This is it, move Margo! she’d told herself through her stupor.

Lying there, she’d had a vision of the baby, of Dan, and of the new life she wanted. She’d bit down, hard, hard, hard, on her tongue. Blood had spattered the sheet as she’d swung her head back and forth, trying desperately to wake up. She’d been able to scramble to the door, get on her knees, open it, and fall forward into the hallway. Then she’d crawled like a crab to the fire alarm, reached up, and pulled for all she was worth, flooding the hotel with its wail. Zanzibar appeared in his doorway just as the other Del Ray guests were emerging to gawk and scream at the bloody, naked woman with the dazed but crazy eyes.

“Oh, I’ll be finishing all right. I need to go image your hard drive. You, in the meantime, can sit down right here while I tie your ass up.”

Zanzibar started a low, guttural laugh. A troll’s laugh. “You’ve put on some weight since we last met. You can’t blame me…I used the other hole.”

Margo shot off his left kneecap.

“Aarrgghhhh! You miserable bitch!”

“Shut up or the other one goes, too.”

Margo tied his hands behind his back. He was going nowhere, with no hands and one leg.

After making a copy of Zanzibar’s hard drive, she came lightly down the stairs. This should get Abrams off her back, finally.

She went into the bathroom. She had to piss like no one’s business. She looked at herself in the mirror. Baby bump clearly showing now.

Back in the living room, Zanzibar was looking pale and pissed off.

She took a small envelope out of her back pocket. It was filled with something lumpy.

“Omar, there was a time when I would have made you cut off your own dick and eat it.”

Waving the envelope in front of Zanzibar, she continued, “But, I’m trying to have a new life. Something that makes me happy instead of satisfied. There’s a difference, you know. I’m sure you wouldn’t understand.”

She opened the envelope. It was filled with fiery, red peppers.

“These are my  roofies, Omar,” Margo said. “I wouldn’t want to leave you with the impression that my desire to turn over a new leaf has somehow dulled my sense of justice.”

She pushed Zanzibar’s bathrobe up and crammed the first red pepper up into his ass.

He moaned loudly.

“This may get nasty. Hold on a minute,” she said.

Margo returned with a dishrag that she pushed deep into Zanzibar’s mouth.

“That’s better.” And she shoved another pepper deep into him.

And then another.

And another.

“Hmmmpphhh. HMMMPPPHHH!” It was all the sound he could make. Tears filled his eyes.

“Did you know you have digestive juices in your rectum? It’s true. Wait until they get a load of these, Omar. This should help you remember what you did to me and all the others.”

Zanzibar’s face was purple with pain and rage. Veins bulged in his neck and forehead.

“I’m going to leave the rest of these for you. As a memento,” Margo said, and threw the envelope onto the table, spilling some of the peppers.

Then she went into the other room and picked up the comatose girl. “C’mon, baby doll. This is no place for nice girls like us.”

On the way out, Margo leaned down and kissed the envelope, on a whim.

Then she kicked Ephraim Zanzibar in the balls, as hard as she could.

“Don’t come looking for me, Zanzibar, you fucking loser. You’re the last bit of shit I need to wipe off my shoes so I can start a real life.”

After dropping the girl off at an emergency room door, Margo went in search of Abrams.

To give him the disk.

And to claim her future.

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Once again, Margo image by Nathan Eckinrode

Hot pepper image by Nina Matthews


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