A short story by Cult
A wide expanse of polished wood separates us. Its deep mahogany finish reflects various bland prints and an assortment of framed credentials nailed to the walls above and behind her seated position. I'm perched in an uncomfortable plastic pastel monstrosity, hastily pulled from the dimly lit hallway outside upon our approach. I feel honored to have the chance to be seated on such a creation. I have a guardian, a police escort, especially for this occasion, who sits closely on my right in the second of the room's plush chairs. A bored expression is plastered across his pale features. My wrists are bound as well as my ankles. You could say I am in somewhat of a peculiar bind.
I lift my bored gaze from between my feet taking my time to look back at the person across from me. She has on a conservative blouse, the fabric pulled tight across her chest and slightly open. I catch a glimpse of the lacy brassiere she wears beneath. I fight the growing urge to smile flirtatiously as I begin to speak choosing my words carefully.
“He threatened me several times, for no reason I might add.” The truth was I never knew the guy but I wasn't about to tell my companions this.
“Where was it you knew him from?” She takes a moment to brush her pen's tip across a single page atop the small pile of paperwork spread out beneath her fingertips, I've seen my name several times already sometimes highlighted but mostly circled.
I take my time to answer. Following several moments of silence she lifts her bored gaze up to meet mine.
“He was my mother's landlord. She never said a bad word about him but I could tell he scared her witless. She could barely utter his name without pausing to look around lest he be within earshot.”
“He died from complications during heart surgery back in oh two. I might be off on the exact year but it was at least five years ago.” He was yet another to perish under the grip of my own hands, I neglected to mention this as I didn't deem it important to the overall flow of my current improvisational tale. I continue, “True I didn't live at home but I felt it important to keep an eye on mother as she took the death of my father rather hard. They had been married for forty-five years.” I blink several times slowly while tilting my head toward the floor as though I actually cared. In doing so, I stop staring at the ample flesh showing from the gap between the decorative buttons of the psychotherapist's blouse. My shoulders slouch as I begin to fidget rapidly clasping and unclasping my hands in an act of (practiced) feigned sorrow. “Ted, I only know his name as my mother had at one time began to feel something for him, began to pop up more and more frequently as I continued my visits.”
“Would you say you were becoming jealous of their relationship?”
What an absurd thing to say! My mother was only that (for this tale's purpose) my parent. Her business was her own, not mine to delve into and dig around in. Regardless, this was a scenario I was 'stringing along', improvising, to keep my rapt audience happy but alas it seemed that I might also be falling for my own BS fabrication.
“I would say he was actually, not me. Jealous that is! I was always closer to my mother than my father.” That part was true, my father, for the sake of this story had only shown one emotion toward me since birth, that of seething hatred. I had rarely seen him and only my mother between tricks. The money she earned kept my father, her pimp, off her back and a roof over our heads. I would mention this later if the need arose for now I'll keep this gem on the back burner. I spy a box of tissues within easy reach to accentuate my feigned sorrow. I continue, “The more I visited the more his dislike for me grew, it was as if he thought that my reason for visiting was to take her away from him.”
My escort coughs suddenly beside me, admittedly for a second I had forgotten he was present. I shock everyone in attendance by uttering acourteous “bless you.” The abrupt interruption could not have come at a better time; it had successfully managed to cover the sound of bending plastic. The fiber of the ungodly uncomfortable shape I am perched in is twisting and warping as I speak. I can feel a warmth growing in intensity under the seat of my pants as it continues to split and separate. I continue to fidget, massaging my hands rapidly against each other as if nervous. I rub the dry flesh of my hands together making enough noise to mask a slithering noise as an elongated form drops from between my legs. As its length increases it comes into contact with the metal limbs of my chair, its descent is unhurried sans grace of any kind. I peer through a swath of unwashed hair that hangs like a curtain across my face concealing a smirk, a facial feature that I cannot, at this time, easily control.
I reply, “I can remember him hitching me up against the wall, several inches above the ground with his hand gripped tightly around my throat. His voice was barely above a whisper when he warned me to not fuck things up. He said he had a great thing going here.”
My smirk widens threatening to consume my entire face as I witness a look of shock that washes across my female companion's features. Perhaps she was starting to feel more than just sympathy for me? Doubtful though as I'm certain her profession regularly placed her in the path of others with considerably worse problems and more violent tendencies than my own, at least within the tale I am currently constructing.
“And their relationship turned sour?” She asks as if she already knows the answer.
“It did, after she cottoned on the fact that he was trying to keep us apart. It took her a while but I believe it was the last brawl we had that connected the dots for her.” Edging closer to the table's edge never once breaking eye contact, she was enraptured by my narration, more than I had bargained for.
“Yes. Often, but this was the very first time that Mother had seen us.” I feel the fabric of my companion's jacket brush against my shoulder as he animatedly shakes his head from side to side. I know what he's thinking, I often think exactly the same thing, fuckin' trash get yer shit together. I'm playing into their hands, giving them something they can relate to easily. I continue, “Love had blinded her to reality, she needed something, anything, anyone to latch onto following Dad's death. You could say she was easy pickings for the right person if they knew how to act and spin a yarn.” Ironically this was exactly what I was doing... rather sucessfully I might add.
An abrupt muscle spasm sends a shockwave of pain lightening quick throughout my torso. I have a difficult time concealing it as a shudder of emotion but I manage. The body I chose to accommodate me, some might say borrow not that I had any desire to return it (besides it wouldn't be in any condition to return), is transforming. I can feel “my” vital organs shift under the fabric of my shirt. The musculature of my lower region stretches, sinew and cartilage twist and grind together. An intense heat sears my bones it's as if the marrow has spontaneously ignited. The change is more noticeable now than in the previous few minutes. I’ll have to concentrate to maintain my composure and my companions’ ignorance to my rapidly developing predicament.
“Based on what you have told us it would appear that you might have had a reason for murdering your mother's lover.” She shoots me a sly smile as if to say, “but we all know you didn't do it, so you have nothing to worry about.” She was so smug yet not the slightest clue of who (or what) I truly am. “Do you know of anyone else that might have had a reason to dispose of him in such a way?” Dispose, what a great word! It was exactly what I didn't do with the slob's body thus the reason why I am currently here on display pleading my ummm… case in front of these gullible buffoons. “Are you comfortable?” She asked.
I shift in my chair, I most certainly was not. Leaning forward I obscure a length of wiry flesh lethargically squirming, seemingly without a care in the world, past the toe of my boot.
The pen falls from her grasp, leaning forward she props her elbows on the table and slowly folds her hands. Through the greasy veil that shields my vision I see my mesmerized audience exchange a look. They're intrigued and apparently hooked on the slop I’m dishing out. Good. This should make what's about to happen marginally easier.
Her chair squeaks as she turns her attention back to me. After a slight pause she implores me to continue.
I begin, pausing momentarily, as the knee of my escort brushes against mine. His chair is now turned towards me for a better view. “The upstairs neighbor, Larry, caught up to me as I was leaving one day. He warned me, in not so many words, that Ted was trouble.” I feign a cough as I notice a subtle change in the posture of the person across from me. There was a near unperceivable tilt of her upper lip, a flirtatious narrowing of her eyes, a facial advertisement expressing both hunger and yearning. I detect the unmistakable scent of pheromones released into the atmosphere permeating the air between us. A quick glance at my male companion tells me he is oblivious to what is going on in front of his very eyes. Obviously, he is not as practiced as I in the dark art of seduction and all consuming lust. Pinpoints of flesh press against her constricting brassiere as her areolas thicken with excitement. It's easy to spot desire when you know just what to look for.
Her ankle is warm to the touch. I can feel her legs part trembling slightly as a roaming part of me slides higher.
Just how long does she think my legs are?
The body I'm possessing has its apparent uses after all. Who would've guessed that a persistent chunk of rigid flesh poking through a hole in a restroom stall would have such useful attributes? Even I have to admit my current domicile is quite the charmer.
My wandering limb suddenly encounters moistness. It becomes slick with excitement as it enters the warm confines of an inviting cove. It doesn't surprise me in the slightest that the psychotherapist isn’t wearing panties, in my experience it’s often these office types that are the most extroverted behind closed doors. I tilt my head narrowing my eyes slightly. She can't seriously think my legs are this long. It's true though, more often than not, that wanton lust negates common sense.
Dammit! I don't have much time left.
“Felicia?” My overweight deputy escort moves beside me registering his concern. He places both hands on the glossy surface of the table. Balancing his considerable bulk on the edge of his chair, he leans in for a closer look. She appears frozen. Her lips are open but the string of words previously falling from them came to a sudden halt as though she had trailed off mid-sentence. It was as though her ability to function in any way had been revoked as if by some higher power. I can't help but smirk at this thought.
“What the…!” He glanced at me turning his head as if I might have some inkling as to what medications she may, or may not, be currently abusing.
“Yes, very peculiar” I amuse him with a brief uninterested comment.
Moments pass but the therapist's statuesque posture remains the same. A devilish smile plasters itself under my nose as I witness the unmistakable look of panic creep across the face of the agitated deputy next to me. With a grunt he moves as if to rise. I watch his gaze flutter around the room moving from the slightly open window to the closed door. Finally they fix on the lazy twisting movements under the table of what must to him seem like an absurd sight indeed. It was enough to make his jaw drop comically. He blinked several times in rapid succession hoping he was hallucinating. I watch as his eyes follow my appendage's path. He tries desperately to come to terms with the strange tableau that is playing out before him. The psychotherapist's skirt billows and lifts slightly from the exploratory writhing movements beneath it. I sense a brief flicker of boyish excitement cloud the air in the deputy next to me. I would guess that the only action he got came from his hand to lurid sites on the world wide web. Stretched like a taught cord under the table's width, my appendage continues to burrow inside my therapist attempting to anchor itself deep in my new host to be.
My companion looks to me, we lock eyes exchanging a comical what the fuck look. It's strange the way that I often make new acquaintances. You could say that the lady and I instantly connected. The exploring appendage is a part of me, my companion has by now worked this out. Though he doesn’t yet know it’s the part of me that takes on many varying forms, all different depending who I have chose to possess. It originates from the base of my mortal shell's spine. I don't feel the need to impart this knowledge as I think it's safe to say that his mind at this point is quite literally blown.
I stand in a fluid motion surprisingly unlike a person who has been seated in restraints for the last hour or so. I’m careful not to disturb the wandering part of myself that has become very attached to the inquisitive, conservatively dressed business professional mere feet away. The metal and chain contraptions previously encumbering my movements fall from around my wrists and ankles clattering noisily to the floor losing any semblance of usefulness they might once have had. A sudden satisfying crunch is like music to my ears as I turn to see that my escort's skull and the table's hard mahogany have connected violently with jarring force. The table thrums like a tuning fork as he crumbles in an untidy heap.
A scene of comedic proportions unfolds as a nearby antique lamp, nudged by his flailing motions, teeters back and forth on its base as if in slow motion. Smoky stained glass reflects muted rays of light in all directions as it admits swift defeat to Newton's law and plummets. I chuckle watching the dark reflected hue wash over the polished floor, an encroachment of crimson liquid across the lamp's shattered fragments.
I turn my attention back to my female attachment. Not much time now. Her body is static and surprisingly rigid. Her only movement was caused by my writhing appendage twittering deep inside of her making her flesh vibrate ever so slightly giving her an out of focus appearance. Her lip trembles as I detect a modicum of her spirit still fighting to maintain control. I move closer until I’m leaning over her. I impart a gentle kiss on her forehead muttering, “thank you”, before sliding the heavy table with care not to sever our umbilical connection. Various papers filled with her recently scrawled notes, recommendations and suggestions, of what had been the utmost importance slid to litter the floor.
I stand over my plaything admiring her beauty. Flowing brunette locks frame her slender face with healthy mocha colored skin. I can only presume the payoff of a carefully planned, rigid diet and an effective workout routine. She has a physique many would envy and now it's mine to do with as I please.
Absent the table her body noticeably slouches forward with nothing to hold it upright. I casually step around the chair, once behind her I manipulate her flesh into a more secure seated position. I take caution not to step in the clear liquid that drips off the expensive leather chair forming a rapidly widening puddle directly between her legs. The slightest topple at this juncture would result in complications or damage the product which would make all this an unnecessary waste of my valuable time and everything I have achieved so far this morning.
I was once human. An abandoned youth turned street urchin turned hunter. I was a gatherer, a merchant, a purveyor of the rarest kind of commodity, ironically a product that is always within easy reach.
I sigh as the flesh of my fingers smokes and splits. An uncontrollably shudder racks my body as a surge of movement tears at my current form's very core, a violence of such intensity it threatens to rip this flesh suit in twain. Bleached bones begin to show as the skin dissolves to ash. My grip on her caramel flesh tightens with the intesnsity.
As so often happens, my life ended unexpectedly. That's not to say that death brought an end to my fun. Looking back, I realize that I had become complacent, carefree. I had thought of myself as indestructible. My demise was the best thing that could have ever happened to me though unfortunate and unforeseen, of course, but my arrogance was more than deserving of my fate.
My current borrowed shell trembles as its inevitable expiration looms ever closer. Bodily fluids instantly evaporate leaving behind only a dark residue as they are forced through blistering flesh. Every pore and orifice gapes open to vomit out the waste making way for my eventual exodus. I will never get used to this part. It's the reason why a “loaner” cannot be reused, they’re one and done.
Following my death, I warmed to a most intriguing proposition. On offer was a return to my former calling but in service to a new client. One that was a fervent supporter of my previous achievements. My client was a fan and the most discerning, demanding collector. With price being no object and money certainly having no meaning when you're technically neither alive nor dead, how could I say no? My new freedom and abilites were such that I would not have thought them possible before, even in my wildest dreams.
Traversing steadily through atrophying muscles, my liquid essence travels with purpose toward freedom. My soon former domicile begins to collapse in on itself. The last vestige of structure giving way in a deflated heap of twisted, decaying meat covered by a thin layer of a humorously ill fitting skin blanket. I plummet the short distance to a new host as a viscous swarm of liquid menace. A host that has been meticulously prepped for my arrival, a fresh domicile that eagerly awaits my instruction, warmth and purpose.
A sudden, single, polite knock at the door pulls my gaze fom the floor, “Felicia?” A quiet summons, assumedly a concerned female politely checking up on her coworker. “Felicia, are you alright?” Slightly louder this second time, concern creeping into the voice, professional courtesy momentarily forgotten.
Apparently I will have no chance to practice with my body, no time to familiarize myself with its senses. I cough loudly, as if to make an example of my co-workers rude interruption, “Excuse me Sirs. It appears I have a matter to attend to.”
“I... uhh… huh… heard a na…noise?” By placing the onus of explanation on this newcomer I have made her nervous and apologetic. It was the perfect distraction for my voice and how it may sound slightly different than usual.
“I would've called but I didn't want to disturb you as I knew you had ummm… company.”
A note of steeliness lends an edge to her voice in an attempt to “Kill me with kindness” though it falls on deaf ears as I continue, “Thank you Claire.” I amaze even myself by pulling the name from the ether of my new host’s conscious, “The lamp fell over is all. I tripped over the blasted cord... again. I'll fix it before lunch after my appointment with these gentlemen comes to an end.”
It had already come to an end, now the only thing left to do was escape without raising anyone's suspicion. Anyone discovering this collection of useless discarded flesh, in what was now my destroyed office, would certainly raise an alarm in an instant placing me in yet another peculiar bind. That is most definitely something I would not prefer to let happen twice in one day. I slowly rise from my chair, every new host takes a little getting used to though admittedly I was starting to enjoy this one already.
I place my hand on the door handle opening it only slightly, “Claire? Could you please grab me a towel? I've spilt my soda.” I'd actually spilt a damn site more than that.