Burning Soil

The ground below your delicately formed feet begins to shift, sending you tumbling to within a breath’s width of the insanity you know awaits should you ever truly fall. You struggle to maintain your grip – a hold that for eons has treated you so kindly, so reverently, so graciously. You suckle and gasp for that earlier delight that still echoes through your now destroyed body.  This gaping new view of the emptiness you see leaves you wondering which part of this horror-scape is to be accepted as a revulsion of your own making, and which part is far too heinous to be allowed to exist.  How does one go about choosing their individual nightmare without having a grasp of their own tenuous reality? A reality stroked so gently, consumed so fully; torn to pieces in such an eloquent display of cruelty. Naive, silly girl, you never did pay attention to anything other than your own wants. Why did you not heed the danger when you still had the chance?

Existence in this newly scorched realm is – other. You breathe in the foul air, retch vile fluids from your own rotting organs while desperately clutching for handfuls of once moist, rich soil. You weep for a blanket to shroud you from the view of your newly exposed self.

Can you no longer feel the gentle caress of the sun’s offered warmth? Have you, like the insignificant creatures that feed from your lush womb, begun to shrivel under his now harsh and ever seeking glare? No, not you; for you will offer yourself to this beast who brings searing pain only to weep at its feet while its brilliance burns you from within; laying to waste the wretched thing you are.  You will seek to undo this cruel fortune that has been bestowed upon you, but in that seeking, you will yourself be undone. You are a creature of will, one foolish enough to forgo turning your face from the ever increasing blindness the searing light brings, you are a creature that believes yourself to be the worst of all things… worthy in his eyes.

This all consuming brightness, this overwhelming luminescence, this addictive, abusive wave that pounds its putrid nourishment into you – how you will suffer for it – begging for mercy, a mercy that he does not pretend to offer, but you will beg for nonetheless. And in doing so, you will try to rise up, to grow closer to the light believing yourself to be his equal – this giver of all things; this taker of pure souls. But your soul isn’t pure, is it?  Your soul is tainted by the ecstasy of being. You, who have fed off the offal that has been lain down upon the altar before you. You, who have sipped from the chalice with the proffered blood of those baring no shame, the untainted; the yet to be ripened. You, who have ripped the meat from the bones of small bleating sheep with your bare teeth and ragged claws as they lay staring up at you with trusting, unknowing eyes. All the while, glorious creature that you are, you felt nothing; not an ounce of remorse for each gluttonous act of satisfaction, feasting on the dying embers of the slowly dwindling soul before you.

She who tainted the sweet nectar – the devourer of forbidden fruit – the selfish wretch who cannot exist without consuming the flesh of the gentle, the deserving; you are these things and more. You are the speaker of lies – muttering those sacred and meaningless words while they are being whispered every so seductively into your own arrogant and self-indulgent ear.  You are the reason the soil shall burn; you are the reason the soil is burning.

You are a thing not worthy of worship, though you have had much of it, but now the beast has come to set you to rights; your penance shall be to worship him with the blind devotion you once commanded for yourself.

skull_fangs2~ Nina D’Arcangela

© Copyright Nina D’Arcangela. All Rights Reserved

The Wrong Guy

Jon stubbed out his cigarette and took a mint out of his pocket.  The mint might have seemed odd, given the circumstance, but it was for his enjoyment rather than consideration of the man in the chair.  He rolled the mint around his tongue for a minute before he pulled it out and placed it next to his cigarette.

It was time to get started.  The leather of his imported loafers made a gentle scuff-tap sound on the aged concrete as he walked.  Jon’s cultured voiced bounced across the large room.  ”Greg.  You’ve had enough time to think about what happened yesterday.”

The man in the chair breathed unevenly through his nose.  Jon knew Greg was exhausted. Certain steps needed to be taken before things could be corrected, but Jon was ready to be free of this problem.  “I need you to think about what happened four days ago, and I don’t want you to respond until I’m ready for your input.  Do you understand?”

Greg nodded his head.  He was broken and compliant.

“Good.  Four days ago you were driving down the turnpike shortly after 8:25.  You were in a Jeep.  You cut in front of somebody in a vintage Jaguar.”

Greg’s breathing sped up.

“The individual in the Jaguar briefly flashed his lights at you.  Do you remember what you did next?”

A drop of moisture fell from Greg’s nose as a quiet whimper sounded in his throat.  Jon felt a sudden spike of heat in his chest and head.  “Answer me,” Jon screamed.

Greg sobbed through his nose and shook his head dejectedly.  Jon backed up and cleared his throat.  “I apologize.  A refined man doesn’t need to raise his voice.  Besides, I should have remembered that you are not allowed to speak yet.”  Jon straightened his shirt and toyed with the cuffs until he was calm and collected.  He opened a box of latex gloves and began to put them on.

“Back to four days ago, Greg.  You slowed down, dangerously, and then pulled behind the Jaguar.  Then you proceeded to follow the Jaguar, flashing your lights, driving erratically, and endangering other people on the toll way.”

Jon’s voice lost its refined tone and picked up an angry edge he could no longer hold back.  His heart beat heavily as adrenaline started to flow through his system.  “You followed the Jaguar into the city, stopped in front of him at a light, jumped out of your Jeep and began to scream obscenities.  I want you to tell me the last thing you said to the driver of the Jaguar before you left.”

Cold silence filled the room.

“Don’t forget what happened yesterday when we did this,” Jon warned.  “I only want to hear one thing from you.”

He turned on the industrial lights, filling the large room with their intense glow.  There was a table covered with an array of dirty surgical instruments.  The wood of Greg’s chair was sprayed with stains, old and new, in a horrific mix of colors and odors.  Greg’s right foot sat in a dark pool of coagulated blood and gore.  His left foot, ankle, and half of his lower leg had been carelessly removed.  The frightful stump was still raw and stinking from being cauterized yesterday.  Greg’s arms were secured tightly to the chair’s arms, his thighs tied down to the seat, and thick bands kept his shoulders pulled flush against the chair’s back.

Jon’s manicured hands deftly pulled a knife out of his pocket, slipped the curved blade under the dirty material tied savagely around Greg’s head, and slashed through the gag.  Much of the material had been tied in a large knot and shoved into Greg’s mouth.  Jon yanked the material and pulled the foul-smelling knot out with a dry flop. A soft mewling tumbled incoherently out of Greg’s mouth.

“Now, Greg, tell me the last thing you said to the driver of the Jaguar.  If you don’t, I will cut both of your hands off at the wrist.  It will hurt much more than what I did yesterday.”

Greg moaned pathetically.  His words passed over his dry tongue like sand over boulders.  “I told him to watch who he flashed his lights at.  I told him that one day he was going to fuck with the wrong guy.”

There it was.  Greg had admitted it.  Jon felt the fury swell, but he did nothing to hold it back.  He no longer needed to.  The way was clear.  Greg had admitted his impropriety, had exposed himself for the ignorant wretch he was, and now it was time to excise this cancerous growth.

Jon slipped the knife behind the dirty blind fold and cut it off.  The rag fell from Greg’s head.  His eyes, hidden from light for the last three days, opened and shut sporadically as he tried to see where he was.  He finally stopped squinting and looked at his captor.  It was the guy from the Jaguar.

“Please no,” Greg wailed.

Jon smiled as he felt his anger move beyond the point of no return.  He only had a few more minutes of self-control before he lost all composure.  Jon hated people like Greg, and he had known more than a few.  He viewed this as a social service he offered to educated and polite people who had to share their oxygen with human waste like this.  His vision started to grow dark around the edges.  His time for coherency was coming to an end, so Jon decided that he had better start now while he could still remember some of the cutting.  It was his favorite part.

He picked up the medical bone saw, something he was very familiar with, and turned towards Greg.

“It was you that fucked with the wrong guy.”

~ Zack Kullis

© Copyright 2014 Zack Kullis. All Rights Reserved