The End of My Nightmare.
For a long time my life was like a nightmare. My mind filled with gruesome, horrible thoughts and ideas. I blended in with the crowds around me, never really standing out, no one could know what I had done. I know it's probably hard to believe, but I hated what I had done, what I knew I would continue to do. I wanted it to end, even if ending it meant my own destruction.
It would certainly mean my own destruction, I could not stop on my own. I was completely swept along by my own compulsion, driven to commit more and more atrocities, trying desperately to satisfy the craving. I do not tell you this to make you feel sorry for me, I certainly do not deserve your pity, I tell you this just to tell someone how I felt.
By the time I met the man who brought it all to an end, I was drinking a lot. It blurred out the reality of my actions, I never forgot what I had done, but the alcohol took the edge off, made it easier to deal with.
The man who ended my nightmare was not the first man I took back to my apartment, but he was the last, and the only one to leave alive. Twelve others had come before him, their families mourn them today.
I approached him while I was shopping. He was black, about five and a half feet tall with the body of an athlete. The day was stiflingly hot and he wore basketball shorts and a vest top. I thought he was beautiful, so I cautiously invited him to a party. Homosexuality was not tolerated in my neighbourhood, so I had to be careful.
It turned out he had seen me around, I guess from the bars and stores I used to frequent - looking for new friends. This was good, he was comfortable talking to me, didn't suspect anything was wrong. He agreed to come to a party with me, as long as I bought the beer.
I took him back to my apartment, telling him I need to change out of my work overalls before we headed out. We used the back door of the two story apartment building, and as soon as we were on the stairs his face contorted as he asked:
'What the hell is that smell?' He held his nose, as if to protect it from the foul air he was breathing.
'There's a problem with the sewer around here, it's nothing to worry about. I guess they'll come and fix it soon.' I told him, hoping he wouldn't ask too many questions.
'Let's just grab a beer and get out of here. That's foul.' He suggested, his face wrinkled with disgust.
'Sounds good, I can barely stand it myself.' I told him, opening the front door to my place.
As his eyes adjusted to the darkness, I saw him staring at the pictures and drawings on the walls. They were all of men working out in various ways. I saw doubt flash in his eyes, and hurried to comfort him.
'Those are because of my health club. They're images of what I aim to achieve, eventually.'
He seemed to relax, taking in my muscular physique, believing my story. I led him to the sofa, and we sat at opposite ends. It was a small one, so we were not too far away from each other. He sat next to my fish tank, one of my most prized possessions, and when I saw him looking in, I said:
'Some of those are piranhas. They sometimes like to fight and eat each other, I have to watch them quite a lot if I want my fish to stay alive.'
I handed him a beer and for a while we sat around drinking, talking about times passed, where we grew up and what jobs we had done. I could see my time was running out, He was getting bored of me and my stupid chatter. He was preparing to leave. To get away from that terrible stench and me forever.
I couldn't let him go. I needed him to stay with me so I made my move quickly and decisively. I pushed a handcuff onto one of his wrists, and pushed a large knife into his under arm. He looked at me in shock, not expecting the sudden attack.
'Do as I say or I will kill you. I have done this before, and if you do not do as I say, I will kill you,' I clicked my fingers. 'just like that.'
The blade I had pushed into his torso was military issue, A sturdy black handle with a long, double edged blade. I could see through his vest that he was bleeding from the cut it had left under his arm. The sight of his blood excited me, as it had every other time before. I lost my sense of self, of normalcy, I let the facade slip away, allowing him to see the evil that lurked beneath.
He spent a long time trying to avoid looking at me, but all at once his eyes caught mine. I watched as realisation crept over him, knowing he had finally figured out that what he was smelling was death. Quickly, the realisation was replaced by fear. I saw its shadow fall over his features, turning his mask of disgust into a mask of terror.
'I'm going to kill you, but I want to show you something first.'
I tried to get his other arm into the cuffs, but he kept twisting out of my grip. I pushed him to the floor, pinning him on his stomach, trying to wrestle him into the restraints.
'Come on, just let me get your other arm!' I said in frustration.
The thought never crossed my mind that he would scream or yell for help. If he did, the neighbours would surely hear him and this whole ordeal would be over. He wouldn't though. I knew he wouldn't because of the knife I had jabbed in his side. It was razor sharp and he could see it. He knew if he tried to raise the alarm, I would kill him there and then.
'Stand up.' I ordered, climbing up off his back.
He stood looking at me. I could almost see his brain searching for a solution to his predicament. I took hold of the dangling cuff, and tugged him toward the bedroom, walking beside him, to keep my knife in his side as we walked.
'You don't have to hurt me man, I swear I wont tell nobody, I ain't gonna fight you.' He whimpered as I moved him toward the door.
My bedroom was just off the living room of the apartment, and was dark and gloomy. Dull grey walls were covered in hundreds of my photographs of naked men in all manner of degrading sexual positions. His eyes flickered around the walls briefly, but always returned to the knife I held to his side.
I was fighting an inner battle with myself. I was fighting for control, to keep him alive for a little while longer. The beast within me however, was fighting to kill him now. That was the part of me that created my nightmare. I longed to be free of it, no longer a slave to the cravings that tormented my life. One minute I felt serene, calm and in control, the next I was filled with rage, hunger and tension.
'You can't trust anyone any more man, you can't believe people.' I told him, growling.
'Hey, you can trust me man, if I didn't trust you I wouldn't have come back here with you.' He said.
'You'll never leave. You'll see. I'll show you things you wont believe. You'll stay here with me.'
The only light in the room was coming from a television set in the corner, playing a video of the exorcist. I told him this was the greatest movie in history. He only looked at me fearfully. Then his eyes shifted to the window, looking for an escape. He was out of luck, all my windows had security alarms on them, nothing came in or out of my apartment without setting off an alarm.
He saw the alarm on the window, and his gaze moved to the bed in the centre of the room. There was a large reddish brown stain on the mattress, the colour of rust. I watched as the colour drained out of his face, as he recognised the old blood stain. He swayed a little on his feet, obviously feeling faint.
As he tried to catch his balance, his eyes fell on something left behind by my last visitor. A severed hand was protruding from beneath the bed. I watched his eyes widen as he saw it was real. He heaved violently, but failed to bring anything up. I imagined he would be feeling very woozy now, after the drugs I slipped into his beer when we got here.
'Don't be sick, I'll take care of you.' I told him, pushing my blade deeper into his side.
The pain and fresh wave of blood snapped him to his senses a little and he lurched towards the bed. I made him sit, and put myself in the space beside him, above the rogue hand. I reached across him, into the drawers beside the bed. I pulled out a set of polaroids and spread them on the bed. He didn't look at them.
I stroked and caressed his well built, muscular body gesturing to the walls.
'You look just like these men, you are very beautiful.' I told him softly.
He kept his eyes on me, and I could see him hoping to find a chance to run. I decided to change my approach.
'I'll let you go, if you just put your other hand in the cuffs, and let me take some pictures of you. Let me be more in control, let me take some nude pictures of you, and I'll let you go.' I told him, still stroking his body.
I kept a tight hold of the free cuff, occasionally jabbing my blade deeper into his side. He winced.
'You've got to believe me, trust me. I ain't gonna leave you. I want to stay with you.' It was a valiant attempt, but I didn't trust him.
'You're persistent, I'll give you that, you're real good – but you're going to stay with me forever.' I told him.
I removed my knife from his side, and pushed it into his crotch gesturing to the polaroids spread out on the bed.
'You'll look real good like that, You'll look better than they did.' I told him as his gaze fell on the pictures.
The pictures were of bodies in various stages of decomposition, taken right here in this room. After he had taken a good look, I pushed my knife back into his side and forced him to lie on the bed. I lay on top of him with my head on his chest. I wanted to hear his heart beat.
'I want to see your heart work. I want to eat it.' I whispered.
He struggled to sit up.
'I... I... I need to use your bathroom.' He stammered.
I hoisted him off the bed with the loose cuff and took him to the bathroom. My blade never left his side. When he had finished, he unbuttoned his shirt. Finally, he must have given up and decided to co-operate with me.
'Lets have another beer man.' For the first time I agreed with him.
I dragged him by the cuff into the kitchen to get a couple more beers from the fridge. His eyes skimmed the kitchen. It was dirty. I had pots and pans filled with black slime stacked up all over the place. I started to move back towards the bedroom, but he stopped in the living room.
'Lets stay in here, it's cooler in here.' He said.
I decided this was OK. I had been drinking all day and was starting to feel the effects in a big way. I let him get a little way away from my blade, he had decided to stay calm any way now, so I didn't need to be so careful. I let my guard down a little.
'You're so pretty, such a beautiful body. I like to keep bodies here, I like it when they don't move or struggle.' I said, no longer really in control of myself.
We moved back to the tiny sofa and he made himself comfortable. I was happy he wasn't fighting me any more. I guessed the drugs I'd fed him in his first beer had mellowed him out a great deal.
'I'll soon show you things you wouldn't believe, are you drunk? I have been drinking all day.' I told him.
'I'm a little woozy.' He had replied.
This had pleased me and for a minute or two I was locked in a state of utter peace, humming softly. He fidgeted on the sofa, looking at me.
'Hey, I need to use your bathroom again.' He said.
This time I let go of his cuffs, letting him get up and use the bathroom alone. That was when he took his chance. He bounded across the room and fumbled with the key in the lock. I heard the lock click open as I reached him and gripped his arm. I wasn't expecting the fist that hit me hard in the face, sending me reeling backwards and spilling onto the floor.
I watched him take off, never stopping to look back. I quickly shut the door, and set to work straightening myself out. Knowing it wouldn't be long before the police arrived. I was ready to lie to them, I would simply say I had never seen the man before in my life.
It was not to be, when they arrived I acted like nothing had happened, but they came to search the apartment. I was arrested on the spot when they saw the contents of my place.
That was how my nightmares were ended.
So that is the story of how my nightmarish existence was brought to an end. I was taken to jail and tried to help all I could to identify my victims. To relieve the parents. I created this horror, and it only makes sense that I help put an end to it. A complete end.
I didn't tell you this for sympathy, I told you this because it feels good to let it out. I hate myself for what I did, and I do feel remorse for my actions. Maybe not as much as I should, but I am a very sick man.
© Copyright 2016 R A B Bradbury. All rights reserved.
Book / Literary Fiction
Short Story / Flash Fiction
Short Story / Flash Fiction
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