Beyond the Beyond

Every raindrop was a memory of her, the dripping of fresh blood on the tiles. As the clouds poured forth their anger and dismay, I mused, looking beyond the window glass, beyond the yard, fence, fields to somewhere less distinct. She awaited me there. Somewhere in a distant reality displaced from my own, she lingered. I heard her fingernails scratching the storm clouds, her sneers in the gusting wind, her rage in the thunderclaps. Beyond the beyond she grew tempestuous, and I struggled to make her wait.

I placed the knife back in the kitchen draw, folded down my sleeves and left. I’d be back. I always came back. And she’d be waiting.

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She Came as a Ghost

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She came as a ghost in the depths of the night, her nightgown billowing like a windblown shroud of intangible white. Her feet glided over the hall carpet without ever touching the pile, her bare toes pointed down like a spectral ballerina.

I thought myself dreaming and rubbed hard at my eyes, too hard. As the water ran over my cheeks to plop onto the duvet, I imagined she thought me crying. Perhaps, she even thought me repentant?

She parted long, lank hair from her face like drawn curtains and tilted her head to one side. The angle was acute and uncomfortable, but she was beyond pain. There she appraised me as my non-tears fell. A bulbous tongue clacked against her small, impressive teeth. Her fingers twiddled as though restless. I watched on disbelieving.

She came closer then, ever closer like an onrushing tide. There was no time to even hide beneath the sheets, so swift was her passage. She didn’t stop. Like the net curtains she resembled blown by my open window, she disappeared out into the night. I sniffed.

I thought I’d got away with it then, imagining all I’d have to do was mop the carpet where the seawater had run off her transparent form. In death, she was powerless, or so I presumed.

When I patted the duvet and lay back down, my head turning towards what for months had been her empty pillow, she was waiting.

#VignetteSeries – The Game of Death

Author's Note: In matters of life and death experience always trumps youth. Just another ditched scene, but as my knees are aching it seemed apt.

Objects 365

He sat at his desk oblivious, tap-tapping away on the typewriter, the words flowing from his fingertips. A lukewarm cup of coffee stood still steaming in the cold study, the old man too tired to set a fire when there was work to be done. He shivered, but not because the door had clicked open.
The assassin smiled. An easy job made easier. His target, the once much vaunted Sam 'the man' Witty, creaked even louder than the leather seat he sat in. A sneer escaped his lips as he raised his gun and levelled it at the back of the old man's head.
The shot came. A body fell to the floor.
A final tap of the keyboard and Sam stretched, his right arm still holding his trusted revolver as though it belonged there. He cracked his stiff neck, the sound louder than the silenced gunshot, and cast a second look to his reading glasses; the assassin was as dead in the left lens as he'd been alive in the right. Another dead body in a life full of them, Sam thought. Sixty years old he might have been, but experience counted in the game of death.

Beloved Be Loved

Beloved Be Loved

A Murder in Three Acts

I loved her with a passion that burnt through my body to singe the earth beneath my feet. Every thought of every day belonged to her, every moonbeam bore her features, every sunburst was her eyes. I lived for her, breathed for her, would’ve died for her, and then done so again. She was my beloved.
She eyed me with a mysterious mix of revulsion and curiosity. I might have been something she’d stood in, or an old blouse given to charity then spied on another woman who’d accessorised it with patches in the image of my face. She turned away because she couldn’t bear to look, not for her sake, but my own. Pity, I think? She pitied me. I was pitiful.
I trailed her with eyes upturned; her perfumed perfection provided a trail. Life wouldn’t allow me to part from her. Life, that’s a joke, I had no life without my beloved. To turn away was to fall into hell with a boulder strapped to my back and lead-lined shoes. Torture some might have called it, and they would’ve been right. Having a beloved who wouldn’t be loved. Could you imagine anything worse? I couldn’t. That’s why I ended it in one foul sweep of an over-sharpened blade. Ended it for us both.

Unnecessary

Unnecessary

They deemed it unnecessary, whilst I deemed it essential.
“Containment is the watchword, gentlemen,” I forewarned.
“Containment is the last thing on our mind. She…”
“It,” I intervened.
“She!” they bellowed as one.
“She is impeccable,” Charlesworth continued. “Come in, dear,” he said.
She entered the room dressed in the finest fabrics the orient possessed. Her clip-clopping feet were in perfect time to the batting of her overly long eyelashes. She paused, took in our little enclave and bowed with a creaking and clacking of unoiled cogs, then stood motionless.
“Perfect,” oozed Charlesworth.
“Divine,” grinned Robshaw like Mister Carroll’s Cheshire cat.
She’d beguiled them all.
I left them to their lecherous desires slamming the front door in my wake. I’d barely made it out of the gravel drive when the screaming began.
As I’d stated, it was all very unnecessary. After all, who should understand her faults better than the man who’d made her? And more pertinent, why he’d made her?
I took out the silver cigarette lighter that was far more, flicked the cap and shivered at the ensuing explosion. My movable mannequin had done her job well.
Again, only I knew why I’d made her and her purpose was to kill.
Good riddance, I detested each of them. They were the most unnecessary of all.

Indecision-#love #murder

Indecision

My mind, wracked with indecision as it was, failed to function with the clarity to which it’d become accustomed. I stumbled as though in a fog, a blind assassin, a fool for love.
Reclined
Marianna rested on the sheets of her sumptuous bed, her naked breasts liked heaped snow barely rising, almost dead. She was perhaps at her most peaceful at such times, the only times. To see her reclined as though whispering to angels reminded me of the fact I dealt with a person, a woman, a live and very beautiful contagion. I had to act whilst still I could.

The dagger the Visconte had given me shone in the near dark. English steel twinkled in the hand of an Italian murderer under the auspices of a French night. It seemed as though half the continent was involved in Marianna’s death, perhaps, it was.

I struck and slashed and stabbed and wept. When finally I ceased, my arms too heavy to lift for another strike, Marianna opened her eyes. The action did not last. A mere acknowledgment of her murderer, an account to be settled at a later date, she appraised me, loved me, and carried my name into Hell. I could not blame her, I deserved damnation.

I never returned to France. How could I? I disposed of the blade as the Visconte had instructed and fled.

It was many years later as I punted along the Arno with a beautiful young damsel named Annabella that I saw her. A glance, nothing more, Marianna’s emerald eyes flashed from in between the Ponte Vecchio crowds, then disappeared into the throng of humanity.

“What is the matter, Antonio? It is not like you to look troubled.”

“Oh, it is nothing, Bella, a mere moment’s indecision, nothing more. I thought I saw someone from my past.”

“And did you?”

“No, it couldn’t be, but I expect to see her soon.”

The End.

The Steampunk Solution

I loved her. That’s why I had to kill her.

Isabella’s pros outweighed her many, many cons. After all, one may only sing the praises of one’s maid to so many people before they wish to meet her. I had extolled Isabella’s virtues from the moment she opened her big, blue eyes and smiled at me. I melted that day and have many days since.
Isabella busied herself about my mansion with the verve of a bee overloaded with nectar. She buzzed from here to there with her feather duster in one gloved hand and cleaning cloths and bucket in the other. She would start her cleaning before I awoke, tend to my needs when I did, then return to her incessant sanitations. At first, she was a godsend. Later, she was a hazard.
The problem with Isabella was everything. She understood that I required hygienic conditions for my work and took that knowledge to quite dizzying heights. One day, I walked in to find she had scrubbed so hard that the raised patterns of my carefully chosen wallpapers had been extinguished, buffed away, gone.
My decorating conundrum paled into insignificance once she started on my guests: faces, buffed; nails, trimmed; clothing, stripped and washed. The latter proved the final straw for one elderly dowager who walked out of one particular party with more than just an agog visage. Orders were given. Isabella was to be expunged.
I apologised to my guests, some senior clergy and parliamentarians amongst them, promised to do the deed that evening and made my excuses to bring the shindig to an early conclusion so as to facilitate said task. If only it had been that easy?
As I looked into Isabella’s beautiful glass eyes, those that had once been my beloved wife’s, I crumbled. I wept like a fool as Isabella tried her best to comfort me, her metal arms almost wringing my neck in her supposed embrace. She meant well, but as usual was not made for such things.
I reached around her back, slipped my fingers under her blouse and flipped the termination button, then backed away.
Isabella had no understanding of what occurred. As the steam of self-destruction engulfed her, she even fetched her mop and bucket and began to dab at herself. She only saw something that was not right, as did I.
Once Isabella’s violent juddering ceased, her head coming to rest with her eyes open and fixed on my own, I did the one thing I should’ve from the start. I opened up the trapdoor between her steel breasts, extracted that which powered her, my darling wife’s heart, and held it in my hands one last time.
If only those fools had known my wife wasn’t the only one to be resurrected that day, but they did not. With that I reached under my shirt, flipped the auto-destruct and waited for the boom before heaven to engulf me. It didn’t hurt, not this second time around, not too much, anyway.

The End?

In the Eyes of The Beholder.

In the Eyes of The Beholder.

Her beauty, indisputable to any onlooker, meant little to me. She cavorted around like a mink on steroids, stilettos tapping, indigo eyeliner a blur in the low light. She burned, of that there was no doubt, had fire in her belly, even, but for and on behalf of what, who could say? She was a woman who lacked virtues, a moral compass, yet had enthralled a small community of men. What that said about they maddened me further.

My son, a boy of six, and daughter aged nine, held my hands tighter as the crowd grew more raucous. They anticipated, and had reason to be. I did not, for I knew her true self.

The buzzing she emitted gave her away if her exaggerated display of energy did not. The cobalt light that flickered behind her rather too opaque eyes only sealed my opinion: she was an automaton, a remade, and not a man amongst them knew it.

Like the Pied Piper, she led her tribe of oversized rats down a back alley; I covered Kara’s and Jame’s ears then. In a flash of blue and thirty seconds of screaming, she had her way. All was silent in the alley until she tottered back out.

“Your lipstick’s smudged!” I bellowed across the divide for everyone knew an automaton’s auditory capabilities were poor.

“Sir,” she nodded in thanks. She wiped her lips with the back of her handbag, the crimson blood spilling across porcelain cheeks. If she noticed, she did not show it.

I watched her realign her wig, tug her knickers back into position, no one liked to see an exposed metal arse, and trotted away into the coming night replenished.

How did I feel?

Relieved, in truth. Better them than us, I thought, as my daughter tugged at my cuff and said, “Wasn’t she pretty.”