Tuesday, March 3, 2009

My newest short story

Yes, I'm back after a while...and I have something new for you to read I pulled out of one of the darker corners of my imagination. This story isn't for the timid. That's all the warning you'll get.

A story for mature readers written by Charles Spencer

Even when he opened his eyes, all he saw was darkness.

He had to wonder if he did open his eyes for a moment, the darkness was so profound. But no, he felt the telltale impulse of his eyeblinks. His confusion was heightened by sudden fear, however.

The eyeblinks were all he could feel. He couldn't feel anything from the rest of his body...it was a dead numbness that made his fear compound instantly. Wait, he could open his mouth...then he centered on the sound of his own breathing. It was quickening with his fear, but he didn't calm down. He couldn't. He thought, Where the fuck am I? What happened? He was somewhere he didn't want to be, he knew that much. He tried to recall his last memory, and he couldn't do that, either. He opened his mouth and tried to speak, to call to someone, anyone.

"Huh...hey...wh-where am I? Hey!" His fear and confusion reached a new level because he finally realized he was inside something. A tight, confined space that made his voice too loud, even though he thought it sounded weak. Each warm breath he exhaled raised the temperature in the tight space around him higher than it already was, and it felt damned hot already. He tried again: "Hey! C-can anybody hear me?! What is this...? I need to get out!" The sudden claustrophobic reaction didn't mix well with the fear and confusion he already knew.

He wanted to scream, and he tried his best. "Hey, goddammit! Somebody better hear me! I need out! GET ME OUT OF THIS!" It didn't help. He didn't hear anything within or from outside of this place he didn't want to be, if there was an outside. He roared, "SOMEBODY, ANYBODY, GET ME OUT! GET ME THE FUCK OUT OF HERE!" He felt his heart's rhythm race like a jackhammer in his ears, in his head as only silence answered his increasingly volatile demands.

All right...all right, getting pissed ain't helping me, he thought after a moment, barely managing to get ahold of his common sense. Giving myself a fuckin' heart attack won't, either. Calm down, goddamn it...calm the hell down. I gotta find a way out of this, wherever the hell this is. But why can't I move or feel anything? What the fuck...? He had a sudden, nasty thought that his body was paralyzed somehow and terribly that thought felt right; it almost brought the panic and terror back in a surging tide but he latched onto confusion instead. How the hell did that happen, was I in an accident or something? I've gotta remember, dammit...think back, man, think back!

But whatever happened to him, he couldn't remember, no matter how hard he tried. Whatever happened to him in the short term, maybe it was ugly enough he couldn't remember. Or he didn't want to remember it.

"Shit," he mumbled in the space he occupied, and it felt hotter than ever with each exhale. He pursed his lips and willed himself to calm down, to slow his breaths...he might run out of oxygen here, wherever this was.

The last thing he did remember, though, was something wonderful. He remembered being with her. Trina.

Trina, the last time he saw her. Her black hair flowed around her face like liquid midnight. Her pale dancer's body, however, nearly glowed in the moonlight as she smoked a cigarette next to the big window of her husband's bedroom. Her husband...his boss. His capo. Her crimson-red pumps were all she was wearing, matching her bright lipstick. The pale skin of her perfect nude body was cooling from the passion they just shared in the bed he laid upon -- he was as naked as she was -- but the cherry of the cigarette she smoked flared hot. He once asked Trina why she wore high heels in bed. Her simple answer made his pulse jump: "Because I like to dig my heels into the mattress when I fuck."

That was when they first flirted with one another, during one of his capo's 'business' trips. A lot of time passed, and a lot of opportunities for him to fuck her when her husband was otherwise detained by drug distribution weren't wasted. But something more happened, too. He knew she had never really been in love with her husband -- it was exciting and fun to be with him for a while, Trina said, but that faded along with any genuine attraction she had for the man long ago -- but love began to grow and then blossom beautifully between them. A love between a Mafia wife and one of her husband's men.

It was beautiful but doomed to die an ugly, early death. Maybe they were, too. Unless...

"Can you do it?" Trina's voice was tense when she asked that. Her eyes were full of worry for the one she looked at as smoke exhaled lightly through her nose. God, she was perfect, he thought. Perfect. "You said you could, but I need to be sure, Marco. I trust you, but..."

Marco remembered what he said to Trina, to calm her down. "Then trust me, baby. I can do it, and I will. I'll pick him up from the airport in an hour. Then on the way it'll be like I said. I'll kill him, then make it look like somebody attacked us and took him away. I gotta shoot myself once or twice to make it look good after I dump his body in the river, but it'll be worth it. I'll do anything to be with you."

She nodded, but shakily. "Me, too. I still want to kill him myself...God knows he deserves it."

"I know, baby." What Trina told him about her husband's sadistic streak still burned in his heart, like a fresh brand. The few bruises his boss did leave (at times he was careless or too enthusiastic) weren't on parts of Trina's beautiful body that could be visible if she had clothes on. Marco got up from the bed and strode over to the one he loved and his hands lightly touched both sides of her slender waist. "I know...but that'll be over soon, I swear it. He won't hurt you anymore, and we'll be together after tonight. I'll love you forever, baby."

Trina's eyes were full of emotion as she looked into his, as she absently crushed out the cigarette in an ashtray on a nearby dresser just to her side. "I'll always love you, Marco. Even if it doesn't work, even if..."

"Don't say that, okay? Don't even think that." He didn't want to think about it, either. He knew what her husband had done with people he wanted dead and gone.

Trina smiled and softly shook her head. "I'm just saying even if the worst happens...we'll always be together. Together forever." Her eyes shifted in the moonlight and became needful...her soft smile became hungrier as her hands began to caress his bare chest. Trina slowly, deliberately lowered to her knees before him then as her voice fell into a whisper, still looking up into his eyes. "I hope we'll be like this forever, too. I always want to be your special girl..." One of her hands gently took hold of his shaft, glossy from their shared sex not long ago, and her red lips took him into her mouth.

All he was able to think as Trina gave him ecstacy was that she was perfect.

The rest was a haze of lost memory for him...for Marco. He realized that something had to have gone wrong, horribly wrong, and he cursed himself as his eyes pinched shut in the confining darkness. Stupid motherfucker! Big man with a big plan, huh?! I dunno what happened after that, but it didn't go the way I wanted! If it did, I sure wouldn't fuckin' be here, wherever HERE is! And Trina...oh God, what's happening with her?! I screwed up and she might be paying for it, too! SHIT!

Marco almost lost all control of his emotion then, in spite of the fact he couldn't move and couldn't know where he was. But he had to ask again what was happening to him, where was he now? Oh shit, am I fuckin' dead?? No...no, that definitely didn't feel right, but the future still looked damned bleak for him. The air inside his confined space had lost a lot of oxygen in the few minutes since he woke up, and the stale air only got hotter. He really thought about it, and it was almost funny. Jesus...I'm like a baby in my momma's womb, not even friggin' born yet. It's like living in limbo that way, isn't it? When a baby grows inside his mom, he ain't got no idea where he is, no clue what's waitin'...

It stopped being funny just as quickly for Marco. He had no idea what was waiting for him. Wherever he was.

He heard a noise then...was it a door opening?

Marco couldn't tell where it came from, just ahead or...? Wait, footsteps now. Two sets, it sounded like.

He couldn't feel anything from the rest of his body, but the space he was in shifted somehow...his face made contact with something as he felt the sensation of being lifted. Part of his face rested on a very smooth surface, almost waxy. One word popped in his head: plastic. He was in something plastic?

Then, with perfect clarity, he knew where he was. His capo had his own system for disposing of bodies in a way that no one would ever find the evidence. At least as long as no one else figured out where to look, but even then finding something of substance was almost nil. Marco knew that because he had to dispose of a few bodies for the asshole, too. When a body had to be disposed of, it was wrapped in plastic (But I'm not fuckin' dead, he thought, I'm not dead!) and taken to this place with a sub-basement. There the bodies were taken out of the bags and --

No...aw, no-no-no-no-no-NO! Marco was completely overtaken by panic then, and he tried to yell one more time. "No! No, not like this! Lemme fuckin' OUT!"

He barely heard someone very close by say, "Shit, he's still alive, man!"

Hearing that voice almost made his heart stop. Another voice, one he thought he recognized and just as close, grunted, "Shut up. I'll take care of that, just keep goin'!"

Desperate, he yelled again. "Hey! I heard you, okay!? Listen to me! Just let me outta this shit, please! Please let me out!"

The first voice again, almost muffled by the plastic. "Goddamn! This is freakin' me out -- !"

The second voice again, the one Marco thought he knew: "I said I'll take care of it, shut the fuck up!" The space of two seconds passed, and before Marco could yell again... "Okay, drop him!"

A lurching feeling, and then he felt himself jarred so hard he reflexively cried out. "Uhhh!" A sharp, sudden feeling in his neck came with it that didn't feel good at all. It was the first feeling he felt after waking up, and in spite of everything, he was glad for it. Disoriented, he felt the plastic his face was against shift and stretch...

...and finally, the plastic broke open to pleasantly cooler air, air Marco could breathe, and he breathed it in gratefully as he laid on his side. Panic and dread gripped him again soon enough as his eyes adjusted to his surroundings as he looked up from the floor, where he'd been dropped in the plastic bag he was put in. It was a dark, dreary place he was in, this sub-basement he did indeed remember...the floor not far from his face was gray, uncaring concrete. Footsteps again, and then someone was standing next to him...he still couldn't move, he couldn't even turn his neck to look up, but his eyes moved just as easily to see the man who was now lowering to one knee and looking down upon him. The man nodded and said, "Hey, Marco."

Marco's voice trembled as he finally recognized the guy. "L-Leo...? Wh-what the hell...?"

Leo sighed with legitimate regret. "You gotta understand this ain't personal, Marco. We always been like brothers, you and me. But you shouldn'ta tried to whack the boss, man. I understand why you did it, though. His wife was one helluva beauty."

Marco felt it hard to breathe again, but in reaction to Leo's words. He had failed. But...what did he mean by Trina 'was' a beauty? "Leo...Leo, man..."

"But look at it this way, Marco. Wherever you're goin', you won't be alone. See?" He saw Leo hook his thumb in a 'see that?' way to something not far behind the man. It was a work table, and close by that was the huge, drum-style woodchipper, its output chute modified so it could direct the machine's waste into an open sewer outlet. The chipper was ominously quiet at the moment, but Marco knew it could be fucking loud. That was why there was soundproofing down here, of course.

The soundproofing wasn't really needed to keep screams from being heard, though, since anyone who'd be sent here and then through the chipper would already be dead. Each body had to be dismembered on a table, and then fed to the machine in pieces so its works wouldn't jam up. He'd cut up a few bodies there himself, Marco remembered. His soul went cold and he cried out, "Ah, fuck!" Because he saw the bloody pieces of a body on the table now, ready to be sent into the chipper.

He saw Trina, who had been disassembled gorily. He saw her beautiful face, lying on its side...her head disconnected from the rest of her by someone long after she was dead. Her eyes stared out neutrally at nothing, and he hoped it meant she didn't see it coming.

Marco moaned, "Trina..."

"You can see she got a head start on ya, though." Leo looked down on Marco with regret as he got out a simple .22 LR rimfire revolver. He usually fitted it with a silencer when he was going to kill someone in a hit. He wouldn't need the silencer now. "She tore the boss up, wantin' to break from him by havin' you kill his ass. He wants to return the favor, man. I'm sorry I gotta do this, Marco, I really am."

He tried to look up at Leo again, knowing his death was approaching fast, but he was so frightened. He wanted to live. "Leo, wait...p-please, don't do this -- !"

Leo barked back, "I gotta, man, or I'm in the chipper with you!" His friend frowned then and shook his head. In a softer, reassuring tone: "It'll be okay, Marco. You'll be with her again, and I'll make it fast like I did for her. Cause we always been like brothers."

Leo put the muzzle of the gun flush to the side of Marco's head, then. He squeezed the trigger as Marco cried, "No -- !" Marco was dead seconds after the deafening gunshot, the bullet tearing up the gray matter of his brain.

Marco's last thought was that he wished he didn't see what was waiting on the other side of limbo.

This story is the copyright (2009) of Charles Spencer. No part of this story may be reproduced or transmitted, by electronic means or otherwise, without the express permission of the author.