Rejection of Acceptance

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Thrillers  |  House: Booksie Classic
a man spends his day surrounded by people at at the most horrific moments of their lives

Submitted: November 25, 2009

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Submitted: November 25, 2009

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Screams of agony. Real-life agony, not the groans of a trained actor. Somebody in real pain, wearing a body that is torn and battered. Behind the curtains. The security guard stood in the square room with ten smaller rooms surrounding it. He leaned on the square in the center of it all, the command post, the control tower, if you will. Someone off to the left of him was puking, puking hard. Jittery dry heaves and bilious strings of stomach acid quivering from the old lady’s mouth. Of course he couldn’t see her, she was behind the curtain. But his mind’s eye could see clearly the horrors that this place was filled with on a daily basis.
More screaming from the room with the accident victim. “Oh God! OHHHHHH.. SOMEBODY HELP ME!”  From the other room the terrible retching that seemed by the sound of it sufficient to tear the small old woman’s insides to tatters. Goddamn somebody get her a glass of water, the  guard thought, but continued to lean. He looked around the room. Everything was normal. This was the life of the ER, anything different would be considered irregular. It was an emotional place, the people walking by, crying over shattered lives, stumbling around in new found confusion. At the same time death taunted it’s victims like a cat playing with a mouse, making sure it hurt on the way out. In his time, the guard had seen stab wounds, gunshots, crushed limbs, people with their bodies torn open, burned and melted, all wheeled past to share his workspace with their moans and death cries. You can’t censor pain. The world and all it’s moving parts are largely unfriendly to the human body, and it’s impossible to dodge them forever. The guard shifted his weight to the other foot and wiped a palm across the sweat on his forehead. He wasn’t hot, but he was well on his way to being there. He felt stiff, tight, like his tendons were pulling on his muscles, trying to bend his bones out of shape. He heard what sounded like a rising level of voices coming from the direction admissions. The sound grew and blurred in his ears, the vocal quality of it turning into a humming buzz that was vibrating his eardrums, low and fast like a cell phone. He realized he was staring at a single point of color on the countertop, his eye transfixed to it, watching it resonate with the same frequency of the sounds he was feeling.
A pair of male nurses came into his light of sight and broke the trance. The tiny bones in his ears were sending the right signals to his brain again, and were moving to the rhythm of a third person, a raving lunatic of a kid being wheeled into THE SQUARE OF SUFFERING. The kid looked no older than seventeen, had a face full of acne. He was strapped to a gurney with leather belts. The kid’s body was flailing as far and violent as the restricted movements would allow.
“Let me out! I feel fake! What did you do to me! This is where you want me! AHHH-“ the kid’s words crossfaded into gibberish for a sentence and a half “-I can’t breath, I need to go the hospital but don’t tell my mom she’s gonna hate me I never should have stolen the pills my brain is shrinking.” Then the kid was quiet with a sudden and odd close of his lips. An eery silence pervaded the air.
“IT FUCKING HURTS!” Screams from behind curtain number 1 came back to life, the pain fairy had returned. Splashing vomit to the left of him. The bed rolled by and the guard eye’s were magnetized. A second pair of magnets below him came close enough for the chemical attraction reaction. The eyes looking into his were a strange kind of different. You didn’t have to be a doctor to know that the brain they were attached to was going through some shit. Kid looks like he’s in another dimension, the guard thought. He felt a crispy ripple crunch in his brain, like a stiff plastic box squished slowly on bubble wrap and pebbles. His heart bucked, spit out a shot of adrenaline. Sounds around him were melding, merging, wrapping and folding. The screaming guy over there, the old woman tearing her chest apart vomiting, the kid belted to a bed with wheels, and now he was singing, but the guard couldn’t hear it selectively through the humming, whispering roar climbing steadily into his ears like maggots.
“You ok, Cliff?” Someone was saying his name, he heard that much clearly, but the rest was getting louder. He noticed a man standing right in front of him, leaning over the counter, shaking him by his shoulder. The guard unholstered his gun and put a bullet between the man’s eyes. A thick red foamy cake of destroyed brain sprayed behind the man, soaking a nurse from waist to face. She screamed and threw the stack of folders in the air. The noise, the unceasing noise, it had to be stopped. Cliff flung himself at a red curtain, pulled across a small exam room, got tangled in it and wrapped up momentarily, his black non-slip shoes hanging out of the bottom, then the curtain tore free from the ceiling. A man leaning back on pillows was holding his stomach and moaning. He had a long and wide cut that ran from his belly button half way up to his nipples. It was stitched, but the sutures weren’t doing a very good job of keeping things closed, his insides visible through the half inch wide puncture. Cliff was free of the curtain now and heading the way of the man in the bed, his arms flailing wildly above his head. He ran arm first with his fingers extended and landed on the man’s stomach. Cliff’s fingertips broke the stitches, and the skin of the wound stretched, tearing the top and bottom of it, making it longer, wider. The man let out a small sound that sounded like “oof”, and his eyes rolled backwards. Cliff’s hand was wrist deep in the man’s stomach, and it was warm in there, so warm. He forced his hand up and the skin separated, he tore it until his wrist was stopped by the man’s sternum. His hand was thrashing around wildly, grabbing, squeezing, squishing, feeling it all. His fingers found something that felt a balloon wrapped in foam. His grip tightened and he yanked his hand out, twisting his wrist. Blood sprayed like a short burst from a weak firehouse and the guard ran from the room, taking inhumanly long strides along the way to a random location ahead of him like a panicked mouse in a maze. Cliff threw another curtain aside and stormed into the room. The hum was louder in this one, he could see trails of a large amount of it coming from the mouth of a young woman on the bed. A nurse was bent over it, working a syringe full of fluids.
“DON’T YOU HEAR THAT SHIT AND GUNSHOTS!” Cliff announced, stomping with stiff legs around the room. The nurse ran a few steps and hit the floor, sliding like a home run hitter around the man she saw coming at her with his eyes closed. She felt his hand grab into her hair then her face was being slammed into a piece of metal on the bed. Vision in her right eye was cut off, her eye socket crumbling, the second slam broke her nose and she blacked out. The needle was still sticking out of the patient’s arm and Cliff pounded his fist on the top of it, allowed the mouth to open again, watched the hot streams of sound radiate from her throat momentarily, then he put a bullet through her neck. The sound continued. The sound. Too loud. Cliff ran out of the room and jumped on the counter in the middle of the next one. He had the gun raised to his temple and he pulled the trigger. Some of his brain landed on the edge of the counter, slid off, and the body landed across a nurse’s lap.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


© Copyright 2019 Ryan Szontagh. All rights reserved.

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