Monday, December 27, 2010

Fourteen (Chapter 1)

This is how I am going to die. She thought miserably. Not at home in my bed. Not in a hospital room with people who love me. No. I am going to die on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere; surrounded by houses and no one willing to help me. Wonderful.

She knew they heard her screams. She could see curtains moving in the windows as he drug her by her hair. She fought him with everything she had. When you are kidnapped during the night, you tend to go into survival mode. You don't think what your next move is. You just fight. You fight to stay alive because you assume you're going to die. After all, if he hadn't intended on killing her, he could have found a more gentle way to get her attention than yanking her out of the comfort of her bed.

Correction. The comfort of the couch. That’s where she had been laying. On the couch, wrapped in an electric blanket under the glow of the kerosene heater. In April, the nights are still as chilly as a February morning. The trailer she was staying in didn’t have any electric heat to it. An open oven turned on high helped heat the living room that they all slept in.

They. They being her family. Her mother and two sisters were sleeping in the living room with her. She shared the long couch with her older sister, Crystal. Her younger sibling, Renee, occupied the love seat. Her mother was stretched out in the recliner, snoring softly. It had been a quiet night following a rather dramatic evening.

The banging of the door had awoken her…..had awoken all of them. Her sisters screamed first as he barged into the small room. Paralyzed with fear, all she could do was stare as his massive presence filled her line of sight. Without a word, he grabbed her and tore out of the trailer just as he had entered it.

She heard the girls continue to scream as he hauled her out of the house. Yet, no one came after her. The mother that held her hand at night and kissed her forehead until all the monsters in her nightmares went away was nowhere to be found. She was learning - quickly- that monsters did exist. In fact, monsters could break into her home, in front of her family, and with a swiftness unlike any she had ever seen, pluck her from safety. No one followed behind as she cried and begged for mercy. No one shouted, threatened to call the police, or even uttered a simple protest as her legs dragged against the dirt. She held out little hope for a rescue team. At the age of fourteen, she was resigned to the fact that she was going to die.

I'm dying. But, that doesn't mean I'm going down with out a fight.

They approached his driveway and he stopped to throw her over his shoulder. She took this opportunity to wiggle free and make a run for it. As she felt his grasp loosen around her, she experienced the momentary sensation of freedom. Daringly she thought she may actually live through this.

No such luck.

With one hand, he reached out and snatched her back. Laughing, he tossed her over his shoulder like a bag of potatoes. She kicked. She punched. She used foul language. His laughter rang out into the night.

Finally, she did the only thing she could think of. She pleaded for her life.

“Please,” she begged. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to hurt you. I am so so sorry. Let me go. Don’t hurt me.”

He snorted. “Hurt me? Didn’t mean to, huh? Bitch. You don’t know the first thing about hurt. I promise you that.”

He began to climb the steps to his house. There were five steps in all. She knew them well. These were the steps that he first kissed her on. These were the steps where he told her he thought she was pretty. These were also the steps where she had told him she never wanted to see him again just hours earlier.

A lifetime ago, she had met him at his birthday party. She had stood on these doorsteps as he introduced himself. She was taken by the color of his eyes. Eyes that were neither blue or grey, but a mixture that left him with a gaze as intense as the sun. Her knees weakened as she averted her eyes from his stare; unable to hold it. She had no experience to draw on to handle the emotions that weld up in her. Over the next few weeks, she would feel her knees weaken, her stomach flutter, and her palms turn sweaty. Once she realized what was happening, she welcomed these little tell-tale signs of young love. He was what she wanted. He offered her the kind word that propelled her during a long day of school. He took her side when she argued with her sisters. He nodded in approval while she described a decision she had made that angered her mother. He was everything she needed and wanted, but never had. He was support. He was companionship. He was her ally.

Her mother approved of the relationship. Despite his twenty years to her fourteen, he was welcomed by her family. Their courtship had quickly blossomed from holding hands and light kissing to passionate love making. She gave him her innocence. He greedily took it.

Now, in a twisted sort of deja vu, she had come full circle.

First step. She began to sob. Not cry. Not beg for mercy. But sob.

Second step. She began her prayer. God, please. Please. Do not let me die. Where are you? Strike him down. Make me safe. I promise to go to church more. Just....please. Don't. Let. Me. Die.

Third step. The step where he told her he loved her. The step that saw him take her hand into his and look into her eyes....into her soul.....and tell her that he held her above all others. He would always protect her. Keep her safe. Take care of her. This sacred step was where she felt the warmness seep through her panties and down her jeans.

Oh, God. I pissed myself. God. Oh, God.

He felt the wetness on his shoulder. He chuckled softly as climbed the steps.

Sick bastard.

Fourth step. This was the step that had ended it all. It was on this particular step that he had accused her of flirting shamelessly. He called her a whore and spit in her face. Outraged, she had slapped him with all the force she could muster and told him they were over. He had shaken his head at her and laughed that laugh. The laugh she once loved, but now was sending terror throughout her body.

On this step. The fourth step. He stopped. He reached into his pocket and fumbled for his house keys; almost dropping her in the process. It amazed her that he had consciously locked the front door prior to kidnapping her.

He was always responsible like that.

Fifth step. She quieted. Her fight was gone. Her prayers went unanswered. She had nothing left in her. No hope. No anguish. No fear. She simply was.

Aren't I supposed to be seeing my life flash before my eyes or something? Since God has gone on vacation and my mom isn't here, who else is there?

He opened the door. Fluid in his movements, he threw her across the room onto his couch. He quietly closed the door behind him.

She briefly considered calling for her mom. Perhaps she was outside in the bushes, waiting for a surprise attack. To be sure the police were going to show up at any moment. She imagined her mother throwing open the front door with a squadron of troops behind her. In a fit of gun blaze, he would go down and she would be rescued. As quickly as the thought entered her mind, she dismissed it. She knew no one was coming for her. She knew she was alone. Her mother was not there. God had other business to tend to.

“You don’t know how much I loved you,” he informed her. He looked at her with such detachment, she wondered if he had ever really loved anyone.

“Just let me go,” she cried. “Let me go back home. You don’t really want to do this.”

“Oh, but I do.” He informed her. “I do want to do this. You have no idea how much I want to.”

Then he smiled. She looked into his eyes and saw none of the shine that had stolen her heart. His eyes were black and dull. His smile revealed jagged, razor sharp teeth. He licked his lips with an elongated black tongue that was sliced down the middle causing the two separate pieces to wiggle in different directions. She grimaced and tried to look away as blood trickled from the corner of his mouth. A redness crept up around his neck. Veins bulged in his temples as if he was straining to come up with a particular thought.

This is what the devil looks like.

It was the fire that consumed her that she would remember the most. Not the pain as the fire shot forth from his hands as he touched her. Not the smell of burning flesh as he entered her body. But, the heat itself. She could not fight the heat. Her screams seemed to fuel the flames even more. No matter how hard she tried, she couldn't break free from his grasp. As he pinned her down, the fire swept over her. His fire swept over her.

The devil is surrounded by fire.

No words were spoken as he grabbed her off the couch. Her undergarments seemed to melt away from the heat. Her nightgown, having already traveled above her waist line, offered up no protection. She fought. But, his hands

hot, burning hands

were too strong. He chuckled as she tried to free her wrists. At one point, he threw his head back in laughter as she tried to bite him.

I really, really hate him.

Engulfed in flames, all she could do was pray for death. Pray that Death was kinder than the God she once believed in and would deliver her from this hell.

She had heard  stories of women who were in similar situations such as her own. Women, aided by God and fueled by their anger, becoming victorious over their attackers. This was not happening for her. Her anger fueled nothing but his delight; and God was nowhere to be found. She began to doubt these tales of heroism. Rather, she believed, all these women were lying to cover up the fact that they were too weak to protect themselves from the evil of the world.

God, whatever I did to piss you off, I am truly sorry.

At some point, while he was still inside her burning her flesh, the blackness arrived and began to take over her mind.

I'm loosing it.

The walls around her began to shift. Blood seeped through the door and windows. The sweet stench of vomit filled the room. Dark reds, purples, and browns danced through the air. Electricity crackled and popped. The carpet beneath her became a stream of black sludge that stuck to her body; caressing the raw spots where her flesh had been burned. She caught the faint sound of laughter from somewhere off in the distance. Smoke billowed out around her as the blackness spread throughout her mind. Before she lost complete consciousness, she thought she saw a lone figure standing in the corner. Watching. Waiting. With it's head cocked to the side, like it was listening for the same laughter that she'd heard only minutes earlier, the figure began to move towards her.

Hello God. How nice of you to finally show up.

She met It in the blackness. It reached out to her and offered her It's strength. It's raspy, coarse voice soothed her until she was free to listen. The dark killed the fire, It said. Here, nothing can touch you. Only I can save you, It informed her. Not God. There is no God here. Only I exist.

Yes. She realized. My prayers are answered. Save me.

The blackness crept around her as she searched for the source of the voice. She couldn't see anything; fore the blackness was total. She wasn't scared. She was oddly at peace.

Am I dead? Is this what Heaven is supposed to be? Surely, I'm not in Hell. I left Hell back there. 

You're not dead, It told her. You are here with me. I own the darkness. I brought it with me when I came to help you.

Where are you? Who are you?

Laughter reached her. Maniacal laughter that reminded her of the witch's laugh from the old cartoons her mom liked to watch.

Don't worry, It replied. I am what you've been waiting for. You called and I came. Now, open your eyes and see the chaos I created in your honor.

Cries. That’s what she awoke to. Cries and the smell of burnt flesh attacked her senses. She was too dizzy to think. Too dizzy to open her eyes.

“She’s coming around.” She heard a voice from somewhere over there. Another distant voice thanked God.

There is no God here.

“Are you ok? Can you hear me?” She shook her head. She couldn’t seem to free herself from the blackness.

“Stay with me,” the voice begged. “Open your eyes. Talk to me.”

No. Let me go back. This is Hell. Return me to the darkness.

But the voices kept on. Begging her to open her eyes. To speak. She prayed for the blackness to come back. In the blackness there were no voices demanding ridicules things of her. There was no pain. Nothing but sweet, cold…..blackness.

“Maybe we should call the police,” a small voice suggested. That sounded like her youngest sister, Renee.

Geeze, that’s an idea. Maybe you should have thought of that….I dunno, when I was being DRUG DOWN THE FRIGGIN ROAD!

Renee’s timid suggestion was ignored. The others argued amongst themselves about what to do with her and the body.

The body?

At that, she opened her eyes to a small band of people. Not the platoon of soldiers she had been hoping for. Her mother, sisters, and two men she didn't know were there. One of the men knelt beside her with a look of 

is that disgust I see?

worry on his face. Her mother stood by the door; while her two sisters huddled together in the corner. The other man was on the far side of the room accessing her attacker.

My attacker. She thought bitterly. My ex-boyfriend. My Robbie.

"I got to get out of here," her mother declared. "This isn't right. I can't stay here."

Her sisters nodded in agreement and they all left out the front door. She surveyed her surroundings and saw what her mother had been talking about.

The blood splatter on the walls told a gruesome tale. What was once brown paneling had been replaced with blood and what she assumed was human tissue. There was a distinct odor in the air. Had she thrown up? Bits of skin hung from the crooked picture frames. What seemed to be matted hair was stuck in the carpet; along with some type of black mud. And what exactly was that hanging from the ceiling fan? Intestine?  She touched her faced; feeling the swelling that would later become bruises. She shivered and looked down at her arms and legs.  Her arms had long scrapes down them; as if Jesus, Himself, had decided to show her what the nails of Calvary felt like all those years ago. Hand prints were burnt around her wrists and forearms. Her legs were not in much better shape. Skin had been burnt off of parts of her legs. Her left knee was swollen with a knot jutting out of it. Her right ankle was purple. And she wasn’t sure, but it looked like she was missing a couple of toenails.

Where is he? Where’s that bastard?

The bastard, or the bastard’s body rather, was sitting upright against the opposite wall of the room. He looked as if someone had taken a giant cheese grader and played ‘scratch-that-itch’ down his face and arms. His left leg did not look just right. It took her a moment to realize what was so off about it.

Oh my God.

His left foot was pointing down to the carpet. Where his knee would be visible; instead was the back of his leg. All one saw was his hamstring and his heel. His right arm dangled at his side. His stomach bulged out, revealing what the inside of a monster actually looked like. A tube of some sort ran from his abdomen to his mouth.

Tube? That's not a tube? Oh, God. Oh, my God. Did I do all that?

“Look at me,” a man commanded her. She looked up. “My name is Steve. I'm a friend of your mom's." He gestured towards the other man that was now backing away from Robbie. "We’re gonna get you out of here.” She nodded, unable to trust her voice. Unable to trust herself. She tried to stand but fell to the ground.

“She needs a hospital.” Steve's friend said.

"I know," Steve replied. "You got your phone on you?" When the guy nodded, Steve instructed him to call the police.

The friend stepped outside to make the call. She leaned her head against the wall, not caring how bloody or nasty it was. Her rescuers were here and that was all she cared about. She felt Steve gently rub her head and she let him. She could not cry as Steve was obviously doing. All she could do was be thankful that help arrived before Robbie had the chance to kill her. She had no memory of the blackness. All she was aware of was the here and now. The trailer. Steve, her hero, and the smell that seemed to live in the room.

Remembering Robbie, she stole a glance his way.

Robbie. Damn you Robbie. What happened to you? Why did you do this to me? What did I do to you?

As if sensing her confusion, the Body of Robbie looked at her and grinned.

She screamed.

1 comment:

  1. OK, after reading that, I need to call my mama and have her sing me to sleep ...