The Kentucky Dirty
WARNING: raunchy and ridiculous comedy.
Wha—what the hell happened? Oww, my head. Hey! Wake up, Enigma! Oh God, what have you done now? And why do you smell so bad?!
“The fuck? I didn’t do anything! Owwwww… my body hurts like a bitch. Hey! Where am I? Hey?!”
No one answers. I can barely raise my voice because my mouth is so dry. I’m all alone. Well, almost. With my eyes starting to focus, I begin to look around…
“Umm, there is a giant asshole staring right at me… literally.”
Why are we in a barn?! And whose horse is that?!
“How the fuck could I know if YOU don’t?”
The horse’s reigns are tied to metal post in the center of a large, open animal stall—and for some unknown reason, I'm in here with him, laying on the floor. His tail swishes side to side and he begins to shift his ass even closer to me.
“Whoa there, Seabiscuit!”
I try to lift my body up but I can’t move. My wrists are tied behind my back to my ankles.
“What the hell… They hog-tied my ass?!”
Who are “they,” exactly?
“Again, if YOU don’t know… *sigh*. I’m just saying the general ‘they,’ okay?! The only thing I DO know is that me and Seabiscuit over here are both tied up.”
Great. Typical Enigma shenanigans.
“You’re one to judge!”
I can hear the noises of other horses around me. Ugh, the smell in here is worse than my headache. I look up and see a sign that says “Sick Bay 1”.
“What the fuck?! What did we do to end up being tied down in the Sick Bay? THIS IS HORSESHIT!”
Spoken like a true prophet…
“Oh… no… no, no, NO!”
I can’t scoot away in time to escape the shit-splash of the massive diarrhea-dump pouring out of the horse’s asshole, mere feet from my head. I feel the spray hit the back of my arm as I lean away.
“DUDE!!! Whyyyy?! You could shit literally ANYWHERE ELSE!”
Hey, he’s sick—be nice. Maybe you are, too? Well, I mean, you’re DEFINITELY a sick bastard, but maybe there’s a reasonable explanation for all this. Whatever the case, just stop yelling at the poor thing.
“YOU stop yelling!”
First of all, I am you, dumbass. Second, no else can hear me. Third, whatever you’ve done to get us in this mess, yelling at an innocent animal won’t help us get out of it. You’re gonna spook that horse if you don’t calm your ass down. Do I need to remind you of that girl who got kicked in the face by the horse? BAM! Take that memory from your childhood!
“Holy FUCK! Yeah, I remember that. You’re right.”
Of course I’m right. Now, what’s the plan?
Suddenly I’m distracted by Seabiscuit’s baby-arm-of-a-penis as it stares right at me with its evil-eye.
“Dear God…it’s so… big… and angry. Ugh! They should call you American Phallus (hah). That’s GOTTA be some kind of size record. Oh, the horror. The horror!”
Focus, Enigma! C’mon now, THINK. How did you end up in a horse stall?
“I MUST be trapped in a lucid nightmare and this HAS TO be one of my Sleep Paralysis episodes ‘Gone Wild’… literally. That’s why I can’t move. Yes! That’s it! This is all just a Sleep Paralysis nightmare!”
STOP IT. You can’t avoid your problems this time. This is REAL. You are REALLY tied up in a horse barn!
“FUCK! Fuckity fuck fuck FUCK! Okay. You’re right. FOCUS!”
I keep talking to myself out loud to stay alert. As I scan my foggy memory, I look down to see that I’m wearing my little black dress. I hear faint sounds of music in the distance. I can feel the spikes of my stilettos pressing into my sore ass chee—
“HOLD THE FUCK UP! Why is my ASS sore?! Wait! My dress! The music! The wedding! The FUCKING wedding!”
Yes! Mama’s wedding!
My mom had just married that no-good-son-of-bitch… Fucking Richard. We were having the reception at a fancy ranch owned by some millionaire cowboy. We were drinking and dancing, running through all the Shuffles ’n’ Slides. I brought it down, down, down with the Cupid Shuffle (which cued my flirtation with that SUPER HOT six-foot-five Mister I’d been eying all night). Then, I was killin’ the Cha-Cha Slide ’cause I Cha-Cha real smooth y’all. Fucking Richard was to my left when we all sliiide to the right—
“That’s it! It was Fucking Richard! He poked my ass with a needle!”
“NO! Like, ACTUALLY literally! When I was looking the other way, he injected me with something!”
Oh. But still, gross.
“Yes, dude. Fuck this shit. I’m getting out of here. Whatever that sick fuck is up to, he won’t be for long. He’s always been such a prick… literally.”
Damnit! This is no time for puns! Concentrate!
“Ugh, but he’s such a motherfucker… literally.”
GROSS! Will you stop it with the fucking puns?!
“Just the fucking puns? Eh? Ehh?”
“Sorry! He’s just… a huge asshole!”
“Oh no… no, no, NO! Not again!”
Another steaming pile of runny-shit from Seabiscuit’s giant ass plops next to me.
“I gotta get the FUCK out of here.”
No shit, Sherlock. C’mon, Enigma! Summon all those decades of ballet, MMA, and your BDSM shenanigans and un-fucking-pretzel yourself! Stop fuckin’ around!
“Fuuuuuuck! I’m trying! Argh-ugh!”
I wriggle my fingers around to feel the knot securing my ankles to my wrists.
“Wow, did this moron use a bowline knot? Clearly he thinks I’m some frail damsel in distress who can’t fend for herself. What does my mom even see in this douchebag?”
I use my spiked heel to hook the knot, and like a two-dollar-whore, I’m able to fist myself (hah) free from my ankles. I roll to my back, sit up, and shimmy my arms under my butt to bring my hands to the front of my body. I use my teeth to loosen the binds around my wrists enough to squeeze one hand free. I hurry to untie the rope around my ankles and kick it away.
“Yes! I did it! I knew all my shenanigans would come in handy someday! Just gotta get this rope off my other wrist.”
Do that later, moron. You’re still next to—
“Oh, no… not this time, Seebuttscat!”
I hurl myself away from the horse and take cover outside the wall of the stall.
Really? You’re gonna torture Seabiscuit with puns now? See-ButtScat?
“What?! That was clever.”
Maybe, a little. But this isn’t the time or place. Get the FUCK outta here! Look, the barn doors are wide open. GO!
I start walking toward the exit—
“Shit! Someone’s coming!”
I quickly hide behind the lip of the next stall over, hoping they haven’t heard me talking to myself in here over the loud music outside. Lucky for me, I’m once again trapped with another shit-squiring sick horse inside “Sick Bay 2”. Must’ve been a bad batch of hay. I watch Fucking Richard and some guy walking into those open doors at the opposite end of barn. He’s younger than the Dick, 40s maybe. They’re cackling like the cock-heads they are, but they won’t be laughing for long. I keep listening to try and make out their conversation…
“…and she really thinks I’m in love with her—hah! What an idiot! Let’s hurry up and handle the daughter. Everything is in place now that I’m the lawfully wedded husband, and that ‘Little’ Enigma is the only thing left standing in the way of our payday. ‘Little’ my ass, the big bitch was heavy!”
Doc? That’s certainly not OUR doc. Who the fuck is this guy?
“Yeah, and it’s ‘Lil’ damnit, not ‘Little’. I can’t help it if I’m a bloodline Viking! As if tall and muscular is SO bad—he’s just jealous ’cause he’s short and fat! *pout*. Hasn’t he ever heard of a nickname before?! *growl*.”
Really? THAT’S what you’re worried about? *brain sigh* Yes, you’re a gorgeous Viking Princess… who also glows in the dark. You’re like a fucking neon sign that says, “I’m right here, guys!” Now SHUT UP and STAY LOW before they catch your big ass!
“Did you bring all the tools, Doc?”
“Yup, everything’s in the bag. This isn’t my first rodeo, Richard.”
Doc is carrying a large black duffel bag, and I can hear the clinking of metal inside.
“These bastards are gonna KILL my ass!”
Shh! You CAN talk to me with your inside-head-voice, ya’know!
“Right! You’re so smart!”
Duh. I’m a brain. You’d be dead by now without me. YES, LITERALLY. Pay attention!
“How much does a set of Type-O kidneys go for on the Black Market these days, Doc?”
Just then, I notice the already prepared electric lift off to the side, covered in a plastic sheet. Along the wall I see massive gloves, rolled up plastic tarps, and funnel-shaped containers.
“This cock-hole is gonna kill me for my organs… in a breeding barn?! What in the Dexter is this shit? How did he even know I’m a universal donor?! And was he planning on using an ANIMAL DOCTOR on me?! What the actual FUCK is going on?!”
“Look Richard, I already told you what your cut of the deal is for every viable organ. No more haggling.”
“I always knew he was a no-good-son-of-a-bitch!”
“Hah! Me? Haggling? Nah… Just making conversation, Doc! And don’t you worry, I already convinced the wife to get that MILLION DOLLAR Life Insurance Policy for us BOTH to keep the cops off my ass. I’ll be selling that old bat’s house and land the second she’s dead, too. As the grieving husband, ‘I just can’t bring myself to live where my beloved wife died.’ Haha! A little accidental overdose on her meds will do the trick. So uh… just let your boss know I’ll pay off my debt, in full, real soon… o-okay?”
“Oh HELL no! NO ONE hurts Mama. The Enigmas ain’t nuthing ta fuck wit! I’m gonna open a can of Wu-Tang whoopass on these cocksuckers!”
Be serious! They are two strong MEN! We are running out of time! What are you gonna do?
“You are right brain… time for some creativity… don’t you think? Eh? Ehh?”
I swear, I will checkout and leave you comatose RIGHT NOW, Enigma!
“Okay! Sorry! Jeez, no need to go all bat-shit crazy on my ass—wait! That’s it!”
*brain gasp* Brilliant.
“It’s time to get this shit together…”
For the love of God!
I kick off my stilettos, undo the rest of the rope from my wrist and wrap it tightly around both palms, leaving a few inches of loose rope between my fists. I gather up a huge, disgusting pile of goopy horseshit in my hands (a nasty number two, courtesy of Seabiscuit No. 2). I slip back into the lip of the stall and wait silently for these limp-dicks to pass right by me. Doc is the younger and taller of the two, clearly he’ll be strong, so I need to take him out first. And Fucking Richard doesn’t deserve a quick death. He’s gonna get the Enigma Special tonight.
“C’mon, Richard, I’ve got other appointments—enough with the chit-chat. Let’s get this bitch taken care of already.”
“Who does he think he’s calling bitch?”
Fucking Richard takes off his tuxedo jacket and unbuttons his shirt, while Doc bends down to place the heavy duffel bag on the floor and begins rummaging through the tools.
“Yeah, I left her right over here-uh… wait… OH NO! DOC! BEHIND Y—“
I sprint toward them at full speed and Haduken! the heap of shit right into Fucking Richard’s dumb face, sending him blindly scurrying and choking on dung. In the same motion, I jump onto Doc’s back and hoop my shit-covered fists over his head and around his throat. I lock my forearms tightly into the base of his neck to take him down in a Flying Rear Naked Choke. With my feet locked around his waist and my rope-reinforced grip around his neck, there is absolutely nothing he can do.
“Hey Dr. Doom! Here comes the BOOM! You’re MY bitch, now! And if you really are a doctor, then you know I’ve got ALL your jugular and carotid vessels on-lock. You’ve got about 3 more seconds. Night night! Keep your butthole tight!”
The threat on his delicate little bootyhole gives the doc one last burst of energy. He flails and tries to punch me as his knees hit the ground, falling unconscious before face-planting onto the hay covered floor. I quickly unravel the rope from my hands and use it to tightly tie his neck off. With the remaining length, I securely tie him to the stall post to finish the job (shenanigans FTW). His brain won’t receive another drop of blood again, and unfortunately, a peaceful death will have to due for the doc.
“Guess you lucked out on the butt-stuff, Doc. Wish I could stay and party, but now I’ve got a huge Dick to handle.”
Ew! Just go get that jerk before he recovers! Hurry!
“Fucking Richard. You old dirty bastard! How did I know you were a worthless piece of shit all along? Sorry, what’s that? Can’t hear you, ass-goblin! Sounds like you’ve got some shit caught in your throat… literally!
You don’t have to say it when it’s that obvious.
“May I continue here? It’s not like we’ve been waiting my whole life for this opportunity or anything.”
“I mean, marrying my mom to take all her hard-earned assets was to be expected, and you WILL pay for breaking the heart of a true angel… but to kill me for my very valuable organs?! Even I have to hand it to you there... THAT was creative—as if it was my own sick idea! But, I’m not here to break walls (*winks at the camera* ;) I’m here to break your life. You fucked with the WRONG family!”
“Not anymore he’s not.”
“Little Enigma, please. *cough* Have mercy! You always say that we’re all just human! I have a *cough* I have a sickness! A disease! I can’t help my gambling addiction!”
Is he really pulling the sympathy card? Fucking—
“Richard, you’re right. You DO have a sickness…”
I put a sympathetic hand on his shoulder.
“…But any horse doctor can tell you—well, maybe not the dead one over there—but any OTHER horse doctor can tell you, that when one horse has an incurable disease, the whole herd suffers. The only thing you can do… IS PUT IT DOWN!”
As he’s hunched over, still choking on shit, I pull his shirt over his head like a hockey player about to get his ass kicked. Once in my grip, I summon my inner Chun-Li and swiftly and relentlessly kick him in the dick, over and over, utilizing the most vicious Lightning Kick known to man—the Hyakuretsukyaku (the Hundred Rending Legs). Then, just as he’s about to fall forward from dick-death, I use my knee to Shoryuken! uppercut him in the face, which sends him flying back onto the tarp-covered animal lift.
As he squirms, I rush to grab my Stilettos and the rest of the rope he used to tie me up with. I tie both of Fucking Richard’s wrists to the horizontal bar over his head. He just lays there on his back, sprawled out on the surface of the lift, writhing in pain and crying like a defeated toddler who’s thrown himself on the floor. I look around for more rope to secure his legs…
“Oh-ho-ho… horse hobbles… BINGO.”
“Oh, but I would.”
I look down the line at two horses in particular at the front end of the barn.
“And they DEFINITELY wood.”
“Hey, don’t act like you’re some innocent bystander. You’re the one behind all this madness. You’re MY fucking brain!”
“That’s the FUCK I’m talkin’ about… LITERALLY!”
Yeah! Fuck him! You don’t hurt the innocent! And poor Mama, she’s so pure of heart. *brain cry*
“Shit! Mama! What am I gonna tell her?”
She can’t know any of this. It’ll destroy her. He has to die in some freak accident so she never knows the truth. It’s better to lose love than to be betrayed. Check the doctor’s bag!
I find rib crackers, scalpels, horse tranquilizers (probably what they used to knock me out). Thank God for shenanigans and a high tolerance. I keep looking to find plastic bags, surgical scissors, and…
Heroin? And will you STOP saying bingo, already? We don’t need anymore repetitive one-liners. So, this asshole was a drug dealer, too? I’m glad you killed that fucker.
“Same. Okay, I’ve got the murder weapon in the bag for Fucking Richard’s accidental suicide. Finding out your husband was a struggling heroin addict won’t seem all that bad once she’s got a MILLION DOLLARS from his failed Life Insurance scheme. All that cash will help the wife and ‘grieving stepdaughter’ move on somewhere far away from this cowboy country shit-hole. Best Uno Reverse Card in history. Let’s do this.”
I grab one of my Stilettos and put the spike into Fucking Richard’s dick.
“If you move, I will hop onto this table and use these sharp heels to stomp your dick RIGHT OFF! Understand me?!”
Fucking Richard cries out in compliance as I quickly undo his pants with shenanigan-expertise. I yank his slacks completely off and get a huge whiff of his nasty old man cologne. Instant stank-face!
Eww! Does he spray it down his pants?! Yuck. Who does that?
“Gross dudes with cheese-dicks do that.”
“Wha-what are you doing? Oh, please! Please don’t hurt my dick anymore! OH GOD! Not my dick! PLEASE!!! Not my d-i-i-i-ck!!!”
Men. It’s always about the dick. I swear, they must love dick more than women by how much they always talk about it.
“Fucking Richard! Calm your tits, man! If you comply, I’m not gonna hurt your chia-chode anymore. You’ll be doing ME the favor. Just shut up and do as you’re told. But, uh... by the looks of that little baby-dick, all the swelling is doing you some good! Hah!”
I secure his ankles into the horse hobbles and use the rope to connect them to the horizontal bar above the back of the lift. And with an easy tug of the simple pulley, Fucking Richard’s feet are forced over his head up to his tied wrists.
“Touch your toes, bitch.”
Save your screams for later, buddy.
“Come one, come all! The Pink Starfish is open for business, boys! Half price on all Pink Lady Cocktails tonight!”
We are going to hell.
“WHAT?! You sick bitch! You sick fucking bitch! You wouldn’t dare! Untie me, you cunt! Just you wait until I get out of here! I WILL FUCKING KILL YOU!!!”
Pffft… he’s making this too easy. Like, who didn’t figure this out already? Oh boy, should we tell ’em?
“FUCKING *clap* RICHARD *clap*!”
Ohp, here she goes.
“Don’t you get it?! Not only will you be pinned for the doc’s murder, YOU won’t be fucking OR fucking over another woman EVER *clap* AGAIN *clap*! In fact, once I slide these heels back on (that you ruined by the way), and sashay my sexy ass out of here to rejoin the party… YOU WILL BE THE ONLY BITCH LEFT IN HERE! And uh, if you haven’t noticed… those two studs going ape-shit all the way down at the front of the barn… they’re primed and ready to mate. Wanna know how I know that? Because those two have been losing their raging, hormone-fueled FUCKING MINDS ;) over your stinky ass cologne ever since you walked in here! They think YOU are their mare… their BITCH. You’ll fucking kill me?! Oh no, no, no waffle-dick…”
I lean down right next to his face and start off with a whisper…
“Cock O’ War and Butt Admiral over there are gonna FUCKING KILL YOU... LITERALLY!”
He flinches from my war-cry right into his ear. I stand up straight and start tracing my finger from his ankle all the way down to his exposed rump.
“If you fuck with The Enigmas, WE FUCK BACK!”
I slap his ass cheek so hard that it leaves a perfect, pink handprint. Too fitting as he cries out like a bad little girl.
Jesus, Enigma. Are you SURE this is how it’s gonna end?
“You know what…”
What? What?! Stop with the dramatics!
“I’ve changed my mind.”
“YOU HAVE?! Oh thank GOD! Thank YOU, Little Enigma! Thank youuuu-oo-oo-oooo!”
I reach over Fucking Richard’s head…
….and push the “UP” button on the animal lift.
“Don’t want the horses to get a back ache from having to bend over too far. I hear standing and thrusting your hips is SUCH hard work *rolls eyes*. There we go, that should do it. Oh… and it’s ‘Lil’ Enigma, ass-cheese ;) .”
Fucking Richard continues to berate me, but it all just fades to background noise. I hear the music off in the distance and I’m reminded of my poor Mama. She’s gonna be devastated for a while. But, for tonight, I’m gonna show her the time of her life. I use a bucket to scoop some water from a horse trough to wash myself off and casually wipe my hands clean on his white undershirt. I slip on my heels, dust off my little black dress, and grab the heroin out of the duffel bag for safe keeping in my bra. Wouldn’t want an innocent animal accidentally hurting itself on this nasty shit. I also find a fresh pack of cigarettes and a chrome Zippo.
“Ah, menthols. Nice job, Doc!”
I give the dead doc a nod as I pack the cigarettes on the wall above his head. I flip the Zippo and spark the flame in one, swift motion (as badasses do), and light my well deserved cigarette. I notice the single red rose that fell out of Fucking Richard’s tuxedo jacket. I pick it up from the floor and stick it behind my ear.
“Perfect. I’ll be back to clean up after I enjoy the rest of your wedding reception, sweet-cheeks.”
Damn right. Fucking Richard interrupted our Cha-Cha Slide. Hopefully that sexy six-foot-five Mister is still there. We deserve a prize for this shit.
“Oh, you can count on it. I’m gonna ride him for the Triple Crown ;) .”
I’ll give you that one. Let’s go.
“Night night! Keep your butthole ti—“
You already used that one.
“Shit. Fuck it. Enjoy your ruptured colon, bitch!”
Well, that wasn’t funny.
“Can’t win ’em all, I guess.”
I begin my promised strut down the catwalk—cigarette in hand, winning rose in hair, Cha-Cha-ing real smooth back to the party. I lift the locks on the last two horse stalls as I exit the barn. I swear, I can almost hear Fucking Richard’s asshole pucker as they kick open the doors behind me.
“And they’re OFF!”
Go horsies, go!
“AHH! HELP ME YOU BITCH! NO, NO, NO, NO, NO, NOOOOOOOOOO!!!”
THE KENTUCKY DIRTY
A “Those Damn Enigmas” Production
Special Thanks to the following legendary racehorses: Seabiscuit, American Pharaoh, Man O’ War, and War Admiral. Your talent was no joke.
Honorable Mentions: Dexter, Street Fighter, Mortal Kombat, and Wu-Tang Clan. Your badassery is unmatched.
Songs Quoted: “Cupid Shuffle”, “Casper Cha-Cha Slide”, and “Wu-Tang Clan Ain’t Nuthing ta Fuck Wit”
No animals (or men) were harmed writing this story.
All rights reserved blah blah blah.
“Hah! Just kidding. Just my finger gun. You’re the daughter, right? Where’d you go? Been looking for you all night. I, uh… I thought we had a connection on the dance floor earlier…”
I look up at the biggest blue eyes I’ve ever seen. The hot six-foot-five Mister is even bigger and more gorgeous up close. But my racing heart stops as I look down to see his real gun and badge on his belt.
“Oh. You really are a cop? So you’re a badass on top of being the hottest guy here *bites lip*.”
Run! *brain panic*
“Shut up, brain! He’s a total nerd. And hot as fuck. I got this.”
No, YOU shut up! You’re gonna get caught! Ughhh I’m spiraling! This isn’t happening!
“Ahem… Detective, actually. But I’m off duty now. So, what are you up to out here? Man this is some ranch, huh? Oh cool, looks like there’s a barn over there.”
Do I need to remind you about what’s in your bra?! Or maybe the assASSination happening in the barn as we speak?! Oh, God. What are you doing to me, Enigma?! Now I’M speaking in puns!
“Ohhh you know… just the everyday, normal shenanigans *giggle*. Hey—”
“Is for horses! Hah! Sorry, I’m full of dad jokes.”
God hates me. This is my hell.
“Well, God clearly still loves ME ’cause he’s PERFECT and I'm in heaven!”
“So, you were saying? About the dance floor? *bites lip again*.”
I make the first move by grabbing his giant hand to lead him back inside to the reception.
“Maybe we could pick up where we left off? The party’s still hoppin’, you’re looking all kinds of fun, and there’s this song I want to request from the DJ. Something about ‘save a horse, ride a cowboy’…”
Is your head getting smaller? Why is it so tight in here?! Is this what brain death feels like?
“Well, I don’t have any mushrooms on me, but I’m known to be a real fungi! I’m surprised a pretty little lady such as yourself would enjoy a dirty song like that.”
Yup! This is FOR SURE the end. Goodbye cruel world!
“Well, I’ve been known to get a little ‘Kentucky Dirty’ every now and then… (*winks at the camera*;).”
TO BE CONTINUED…
Human Head Flower
When someone puts a loaded gun in their mouth and pulls the trigger, the human head opens up like a flower. This flower formation can happen from GSWs to knee-caps and even the groin area, but nothing compares to the head. It’s utterly horrifying to see, but maybe by the time you’re done reading this, you’ll see just how beautifully poetic it can be.
The only reason I know all of this is because I am so privileged to once have had an almost promising career in the medical field, and I was going to eventually specialize in Forensic Pathology after becoming a general surgeon. Fourteen years of schooling sounded like a fucking dream to the nerd I’ve always been. I was the youngest-ever candidate chosen for an exclusive summer program at University Medical when I saw my first and only self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. And just like myself, this person applied and was approved for Full Body Donation—so I was free to do hands-on study of his remains (thank you for your service, Sir).
The first requirements you need for that line of work is a strong stomach and an eager love for the science. However, to keep you there requires a genuine desire to help others. I am an advocate at heart, and the crux of what a pathologist does is give a voice to the voiceless. I’ve always been determined to leave this world in better shape than it was given to me, and this was my way of helping people. Studying those precious former lives under the most phenomenal doctors was by far the best professional experience of my life.
So, of the dozens of autopsies I have taken part in (both in person and through video/photo lecture), one of them, sadly, was this suicide I mentioned. He was a middle-aged male and the cause of death was a self-inflicted gunshot into the mouth. It’s not the only suicide I worked on, but definitely the most visually memorable. The pressure a gunshot creates inside this air-tight, fluid-filled compression chamber we carry on our necks forces a human head to open up like the fully-bloomed petals of a lily. Any remaining teeth become forged with pieces of skull and brain because the force and heat of the explosion literally turns any hard matter into the shrapnel of a pressure cooker bomb. Ever observant as I was, they allowed me to remove a tooth I identified that was lodged into one of the petals of the human head flower.
Unfortunately, I never even made it to medical school because life threw too many punches at me at that time [*ba-dum-tee* formerly-abused humor anyone? Eh? Ehh?]. Just joking! I’ve always said, “If I couldn’t laugh at my life, I would’ve fucking killed myself a long ass time ago.” But aside from comedy saving my soul countless times, that suicide case is seared into my amygdala—from the sorrow and duty I felt toward this man and his family, down to the smell of his chewing tobacco still stuck to portions of his gums. Clearly enough to give anyone reservations about that second of bravery it takes to just fucking do it.
This was the case which also piqued my interest in the funeral business. Any Funeral Director/Embalming Specialist who can put that train wreck back together to resemble anything of the man his family and friends love so dearly, oof... to me, that is art of the highest caliber. Only the most skilled specialists in the world can pull that off well. Most families will opt for a closed casket in these cases, and you don’t get a “body funeral” if you’re signed up for Full Body Donation—but I wanted to be the one-of-a-kind talent who not only performed autopsies to the utmost perfection, but could give families their beloved back, looking beautiful, one last time.
Death wasn’t just my calling to help the world… Death was my life’s passion. I might still have a chance at the funeral business someday—that is, if it’s not me who ends up on that cold, stainless steel examination table first. Death has reappeared in my life, in a bad way, and that fucker is lurking ever closer, each day.
The majority of my physical and emotional scars belong to a single bad man who I will soon introduce y’all to in my darkest tale of woe. This man is solely responsible for the loss of my ability to continue my education and accomplish these dreams I once had. I had to plan nonstop for my escape because he was so cunning. And one day, the plan finally fell perfectly into place because he’d given himself a little too much heroin. He was completely zonked out and nodding off so heavily that I simply walked right out the front door. I told him I was off to send a gift to his mom, which he easily took me up on since he’d forgotten her birthday. He let go of my shirt and I slipped away. I escaped nearly 20 years ago, and to this day, he still finds ways to contact me online.
As long as this bad man stays away, I wish him no harm. But the videos he’s been sending me lately are what struck my desire to start writing again. Not only do I need to finally heal this pain once and for all, but I need to document what he did to me (just in case):
1) My beautiful body, gone.
2) My beautiful mind, gone.
3) My beautiful career, gone.
4) My beautiful life, FUCKING GONE.
This bad man has delusions that I will always be his property. I truly feel sorry for him, but I can never forget what he stole from me. How could I? His torture is all over my naked body every time I look in the mirror. The stalking and obsession seems to be growing, and because he was so smart, I can never call the cops on him again (long story).
So, my only choice was to finally agree to have a gun in our home full-time (specifically, when Mister is gone). Thanks to the Traumatic Brain Injury from this bad man, I’ve been a nervous, stuttering klutz ever since—so not only did it kill my once surgeon-steady hands and ballerina grace, naturally, I was always scared to be responsible for my own gun. However, I have too many lives depending on me now. She’s no Colt .45 with a pearl grip, but she’s definitely a stealthy bitch that’s more than willing to do the job. Her name is “Kiddo,” named after Uma Thurman from the Kill Bill films. Pretty fitting, don’t you think? Well, I’m proud of it—proud of my Kiddo ;)
If he ever finds me again, the play-by-play of what would happen is now also seared into my amygdala—from the fear I feel just imagining seeing him again, down to the smell of his black leather combat boots and body odor. I’ll know he’s here, and the memories will all come flooding back:
It took almost 1 decade to escape him for good. It took 2 decades to have the courage just to write about him. It took 3 decades to meet the first kind gentleman in my entire life. It took almost 4 decades from the day I was born to find self-love. He is NOT taking a single thing away from me again.
But this massive man with his roaring voice will surely be black-eyed and screaming at me. I need to remember what matters. I can’t get distracted or crumble into pieces. I need to remember what Mister taught me:
1) Just breathe and focus on your target, not the gun.
2) Keep your arms strong and grip tightly.
3) Squeeze the trigger, don’t pull it.
4) Keep your eyes open, and never shoot to injure (only you can finish it).
If he tries to attack me or step foot into my home, it’s either him… or him. Turns out, I can still contribute to the morgue of my dreams, because Kiddo and I have unfinished business…
1) Heart: for stealing my life’s passion.
2) Lungs: for every time I couldn’t breathe.
3) Dick: for every time he forced me to my knees, screaming.
And just like the first time I escaped his captivity, the last words he ever heard from my beautiful voice, that I still have:
“Shhh it’s okay… go back to sleep…
I’m just going to send your mom some flowers…”
4) MOUTH: for my condolences.
Human Head Flower
A “Those Damn Enigmas” Production
Based on true events, but no one was harmed writing this story.
Don’t crap on people, or they just might put that shit-eating grin to good use.
Sending All My Love
May 14, 2023 at 4:20 PM
Y’all are probably wondering why I’ve disappeared. I no longer have a reason to stay in the city now that Mama is gone. So, in the years I’ve spent taking care of her, I learned a lot about myself and life in general—especially what it means to put another’s needs above my own. I will never know a more precious soul than our mother’s, and now I want to try and live up to her example. Mama made everyday a joy and a privilege to take care of her, and I want to be the type of person who will be adored the way she was. I would gladly spend the rest of my life lifting her paralyzed body, brushing her teeth, changing her diapers, and everything else that came with her care. I would give anything just to have more time with her—you can be sure of that!
Please do not worry about me as I am in the best hands with Mister. My solitude is his solitude, and we can finally be together full-time now that he’s retiring. You know my big guy will protect me from any wild animals or soulless monsters that can lurk deep in the woods. As scary as that sounds, it’s just time for me to find out what I’m really made of. If I don’t do this, it will continue to burn a hole in my heart and I’ll never find my peace. Let’s just hope this novel won’t be complete shit! Mama’s disability already put us through financial Hell! Eating expired garbage from the food pantry destroyed my body—not that you guys would know anything about that! Haha! Anyway, I gotta run. Take care, my dearest siblings!
PS: Mama’s ashes are with me, where they belong. If my novel wins any awards, she will be placed right next to them. Oh, and please make sure you don’t lose my email address (for emergencies) because there is no cell service where I’m going. I’ll check my email once, maybe twice a week in town. And you need to stop being so stingy with those pictures of the kids! I want to know those adorable little bastards! It’s too late for them to know their grandma, but maybe they can get to know their aunt (now that I have freedom like you guys)! Oh yea, can you believe I found Mama’s cookbook?! It was literally under my nose the whole time! I found all her secret recipes that we always gobbled down as kids! I heard you enjoyed my confectionery gift (I even added a creamy twist)! OMG I went ape shit baking during the pandemic to treat myself after losing my job, so that’s probably the best I’ve ever made her chocolate pie! Cool, huh?! You guys deserve to treat yourselves, too. Write me back when you get this, and let me know how it turned out, fuckers! LOL! Sending all my love!
You only have one mother in this world—cherish her. Even if she isn’t/wasn’t perfect, forgive her and set a better example for future generations. If she’s still with us, she won’t be around forever. The time to love her is now. And remember…
Karma is a patient, maniacal bitch.
Happy Mother’s Day <3
Princess of Darkness
TRIGGER WARNING: Sexually explicit and unashamed
Ew, does your asshole have some kind of an STD?
Sorry, that’s just from where he put his cigar out in me.
Ew, why is there a brown mark on your pink pussy?
Sorry, that’s just where I was bit for being fussy.
Um, why are you sitting so strange and formal?
Sorry, I just thought that was the everyday normal.
Um, why would that make you so fearful and sad?
Sorry, I just thought I was in trouble for being bad.
WTF, why can’t you just be more proper and stable?
Sorry, I thought every girl is supposed to love anal.
WTF, who in their right mind has a cum infatuation?
Sorry, that’s just something which feeds my rabid dark elation.
I wish someone could see all the beauty I have inside.
That my scars are merely from what I had to survive.
I close my eyes and pray for someone to save me.
A man who can love damaged goods from actual slavery.
Sweetheart, open your eyes and look at me, you precious jewel.
Mister, are you sure that’s allowed and not against the rules?
Sweetheart, please don’t hide, let me see your gorgeous body.
Mister, are you sure you want something so disfigured and shoddy?
Babygirl, no one has ever loved me the way you can.
Mister, are you sure I’m not just an obsessive fan?
Babygirl, I promise I want you and only you.
Mister, is this a trick or is it really true?
Princess, I love your dark mind, down to your pinky toes.
Mister, you even want my secrets that no one else knows?
Princess, I want all of you because we fit so perfectly.
Mister, are you the puzzle piece made for me, personally?
We discovered shared madness within letters of causerie.
A fine fellow with an aching for my debauchery.
He’ll never be some bullshit definition of Prince Charming.
But to me, this quiet giant is my Gentleman-Dom King.
He loves my wounds and kisses them softly.
He earns my submission no matter how costly.
All my dirtiest deeds are matched to his desires.
When we make love, we light this fucking world on fire.
I was grown by the heartless,
So this body I must dwell.
Now, the Princess of Darkness,
In my own beloved Hell.
An Original Short Story
By MisterEnigma & LilEnigma
“Hello? Hey! Where is everyone?” The young zebra looked around for her family, but the dry and dusty plain was completely deserted. Anxiously flicking her tail, the zebra pranced this way and that, her ears alertly listening for call sounds. She searched in vain for any sign of familiar stripes.
“Hellooo?!” she called out louder, terror beginning to creep into her heart. She’d only been distracted by the vibrant colors of the bush lily for a second, or so she thought. The zebra’s family had abandoned her, but she was sure it was an oversight. Everyone knows to never go near the poisonous blossoms, yet curious little Dazzle just couldn’t help but admire their beauty. Of course her family didn’t see her in the one place they’d never look. They’d never leave her without a word otherwise. Determined to fix her mistake, she set off to find the herd.
For the rest of the day, Dazzle wandered from one watering hole to the next looking for her family. She even wandered warily into the open plain, ever watchful for predators. Lone zebras were an open invitation for the myriad of animals who thought little Dazzle was a tasty treat. She had no one to warn her of approaching danger, no one to protect her from an attack—but she had to be brave if she was going to succeed.
The days started to blend together as Dazzle searched for her family. She lost track of how long she’d gone without seeing another zebra. Desperate and alone, she even asked scary strangers for help.
“Excuse me, Mr. Elephant,” she politely sent her voice up to the bathing giant. “Have you seen any other zebras around here? I’m looking for my family.” The elephant sucked up a trunk full of water and squirted it at Dazzle. For a moment her eyes grew in excitement, but she abruptly realized this big guy wasn’t being playful. The elephant blew his nose-horn, flapped his ears, and then walked away from her without a word.
At the next watering hole, Dazzle saw several other animals, but still none with black and white stripes. Confident she’d find someone to help her, she frolicked toward the water. She wended her way through a herd of water buffaloes.
“Excuse me… pardon me… excuse me,” she called out respectfully to each buffalo. She garnered several angry huffs, but most just ignored her. Finally, Dazzle saw a young buffalo who seemed slightly attentive.
“Hi, friend!” she blurted out cheerfully. “Have you seen any other zebras around here lately? They seem to have left me by accident.” She couldn't help but let sadness creep into her voice. She'd been feeling very lonely and unimportant.
“Hah!” the young buffalo chuckled loudly. “Yeah, I see zebras everyday. Our herd just took the last watering hole from a mess of them. We pushed ’em right out. Bunch of scaredy cats!” He continued his torment as Dazzle felt herself being bumped from side to side by all the mannerless buffaloes.
“You don’t scare me,” Dazzle retorted, puffing her chest out and lifting her head high. She danced lightly on her feet, careful to not get trampled. “I'm just trying to get back to my kind,” she continued. “They need me.” Dazzle felt a tear threatening to escape her eye. She was courageous and wouldn’t give this upstart the satisfaction of showing any weakness. She turned her back and looked for someone else to ask.
Dazzle noticed a young gazelle stuck in the mud at one end of the hole. At first, she just watched to confirm the gazelle was in trouble. Hurrying back out through the herd of bullying buffalo, she made her way around giraffes, zorils, and various other animals looking to quench their thirst under the beating African sun. Knowing gazelles were notoriously skittish, little Dazzle approached cautiously.
“Um, hi there! Do you need some help?” Dazzle asked loudly while trying not to be intrusive. The gazelle bleated out a panicked cry, but didn’t answer. The other gazelles had left the watering hole already, so the curious zebra and the scared gazelle were stranded together.
Recognizing the danger the gazelle was in, Dazzle squished her way into the soft mud. Her hooves carefully found traction as she inched closer to the frightened animal. She called out kindly, “Heyyy… I'm going to help you out of there. Don't be scared…” Dazzle kept her cheerful tone but made her voice low and soothing as she stepped even closer.
The gazelle fought furiously to extract itself from the mud, but to no avail. Seeing how frantic it was becoming, Dazzle apologized quickly under her breath and headbutted the gazelle hard under its chest. The force of the hit disengaged the petrified creature and sent it stumbling into the mud. The gazelle regained its balance in a hurry and took off with a bounding leap. The gazelle never even looked back as it pronked away.
“You're welcome…” Dazzle said quietly to herself. All of her secret hopes to make a new friend fizzled out as she stood alone in the mud. The heartbroken zebra dropped her head in sorrow. “I wish I had a friend,” she moaned as she pulled herself out of the sticky trench, “Maybe just someone to appreciate my help, for once…”
Staring at her muddy hooves, Dazzle walked slowly away from the watering hole. The zebras hadn’t cared enough to even wait for her, now the other animals teased her or flat out ignored her. Little Dazzle felt invisible.
As Dazzle wandered aimlessly through the African plains, an unseen creature lurked close by. A magnificently maned lion padded its way silently through the tall grass. Consumed by her grief, Dazzle was unaware of the danger hidden nearby.
With his body low to the ground, the lion crept quietly through the brush as he stalked the lone zebra. Mostly, the lion was curious why a zebra would be wandering alone, especially one so small. Zebras grow even bigger than lions, surely something must be wrong with this one. He watched it carefully to see if it was ill or injured, but it only seemed… sad. More interested, the lion gradually whisked his tail back and forth, continuing his prowling path.
The lion was so focused on the little zebra that he never noticed the human hunter on the other side of the trees. Decked out in safari gear, the hunter slowly positioned his bow and sighted the lion purposefully. He pulled the bowstring back with as much force as he could muster and released the arrow.
The lion bellowed out in pain as the arrow sunk deep into the side of his exposed rump. The hunter had missed his intended target: the lion’s heart. Now, he just had an injured and angry beast to contend with. He jumped quickly into his camouflaged jeep, the tires kicking up a cloud of dust as he sped off. The cowardly hunter wasn't about to stick around to find out if the lion would live or die.
Not knowing what had just transpired, Dazzle heard the alarming roar and fled for her life with a series of terrified snorts. She forcefully kicked up her rear hooves several times as she ran a zigzag pattern, convinced a roaring lion was right on her heels.
The strange zebra disappeared as the lion limped his way into the brush. In his agonizing pain, he became angry with himself for missing the danger from behind as he had followed the odd zebra. He had so wanted to find out what was wrong with the little creature, but he was afraid of scaring it away. Now the zebra was long gone, and he was left with a serious problem to deal with.
The lion settled down next to a big tree and delicately licked his wound. Blood trickled out of the hole in his rump, the arrow still sticking out like a single barb. The lion could feel his muscle spasm in pain as his back paw shuddered involuntarily. A growl escaped his throat as he chewed at the arrow in frustration. Unable to reach the right angle and extract the irritating barb, the lion finally laid his head down, panting heavily. The rhythm of his breath carried the exhausted lion to sleep.
Disoriented and unaware of how much time had passed, the lion startled awake as he heard the crunch of dry grass. Someone was approaching his hiding spot. Now alert, but unsure if he could defend himself, the lion stayed still as he waited. Suddenly, the same strange zebra came prancing about, in her own little world, completely unaware of what lay nearby. She wandered into the clearing and froze, her eyes fixed in terror at the crouched lion staring straight at her.
For a few moments, lion and zebra stared at each other, both holding completely still. Dazzle soon noticed the lion’s labored panting and the bizarre stick protruding from its rear. Flicking her ears back and forth and swishing her tail, Dazzle slowly moved in a semi-circle around the injured lion. She felt torn—her desire to be friendly and helpful, warring with her instinct to run and protect herself from this fierce predator.
The lion dropped his head submissively to the ground to show the zebra he was not a threat. The lion merely wanted to understand this peculiar little creature. Why was she alone? And why was she so sad?
“Please don’t go,” the lion called out quietly as he sensed her urge to run. “I won’t hurt you. As you can plainly see, I'm injured, and I could use a friend right now—or just someone to help me.”
Dazzle was astonished that the lion spoke to her. She’d only ever seen lions as they chased her own kind down. She’d never heard one speak before, and though she assumed they could talk, she was surprised this one wanted to talk to her. But what surprised her most was that the lion not only asked her for help, but he was asking her for a friend. What were the chances that the most helpful and the most friendly zebra there ever was just so happened to find this lion? It had to be a trick.
“How do I know you won't eat me?” Dazzle asked prudently as she kept her hooves at the ready. Her heart went out to the injured lion, but she was determined to survive, too.
The lion looked down and shook his head slowly. “You wouldn’t believe me if I told you,” he said hopelessly.
“Try me!” Dazzle blurted out without hesitation. Realizing her overexcitement, she switched to a poised demeanor. “Everyone has good in them—” her mind visibly interrupted itself, “Well, if they were here, my family would tell you I'm gullible—” she switched back to her reserved tone, “But maybe you have good in you, too.” By the end of her sentence, Dazzle convinced herself the lion could be trusted. Probably.
The lion stared gingerly at the little zebra, wondering if he should trust this clearly lost soul. She was crazy to be listening to him, crazy to believe him, and probably just crazy—but he must be crazy, too, to befriend a zebra. Still, he needed her. He didn’t have many options otherwise. With a leap of faith, the lion chose to trust the zebra.
“I don't hunt zebras,” the lion admitted quietly. “Actually, I don't hunt anything at all. I don't like to kill.” The lion’s shame was evident in his voice. He was denying his very nature, and he knew it.
“You don't hunt zebras?! Or anything at all?!” Dazzle echoed quizzically as she started to pace back and forth to process this enigma. “How do you survive? What do you eat? How is that possible? Are you tricking me right n—” Dazzle’s hooves stopped in their tracks. “Hey, wait! Weren’t you the one stalking me earlier?!” She retorted, pointing her single-toe-hoof and the stink eye right at him. She was onto him.
The lion huffed out a quiet laugh, amused by her animation. “Yeah, that was me, but I wasn’t stalking you to kill you.” He paused for a moment, a little embarrassed by his unhindered confession. “You looked like you needed a friend, but I didn't want to scare you. I should have paid more attention to my own surroundings while I was worried about yours.”
“You were worried about… me?” Dazzle replied, shocked at the revelation. “Why? I've never heard of a lion wanting anything to do with a zebra…” her voice dwindled. “Well, except to eat it.”
Slowly the lion told Dazzle his story, how he’d been kicked out of his pride when he refused to hunt. He’d joined in eating the prey others had hunted, but he never brought his own kill to the den. He was horrified by the thought of killing another creature, but he knew he needed to eat other animals to survive because lions are strictly carnivorous. His own father, the King of the Pride, had threatened to kill him if he showed his face anywhere near the family again. So, the lion had wandered for several weeks, putting distance between him and his own kind.
“How did you survive this long on your own? And what do you eat now?” Dazzle asked again, needing every detail of his fascinating story—and to make sure she wasn’t on the menu.
“I found other kills and chased away the scavengers to finish off their meals,” the lion admitted shamefully. “I can’t survive without meat, but I don't want to kill. You are completely safe with me because apparently I'm a coward.”
Dazzle carefully approached the lion. “You don't sound like a coward,” she replied compassionately while remembering his scary roar. “You’re the biggest lion I’ve ever seen! So, you must have a big heart,” she marveled at his massive head and huge paws. “I'm Dazzle, by the way.” Without a second thought, she touched her nose to the lion’s in a gesture of friendship and trust.
“I’m Ariel,” his voice softened in gratitude. “Do you know anything about how to remove this thing from my ass-end?” he chuckled nervously. “It really hurts.”
Dazzle’s demeanor instantly became very mature and concerned as she attentively examined the arrow protruding from the lion's backside. “Hmm—” Dazzle nodded her head and sucked her teeth while in deep concentration, acting like a Certified Stick-Remover (Dr. Dazzle, CSR, at your service). “This might hurt a little,” she stated obviously. “You should definitely look away, Mr. Lion.”
Grasping the arrow in her mouth, Dazzle yanked it hard and fast, quickly backing away from Ariel. The lion leapt up in shock, letting out a roar that shook the ground beneath Dazzle’s feet and melted her professional composure. Her mouth fell open, dropping the stick, leaving her agape like a wide-eyed child. He skittered away from Dazzle and licked at the wound as she sympathetically watched (from a safe distance, of course).
After the pain waned, Ariel stylishly sauntered back over to Dazzle, where she waited anxiously. His confidence was very apparent. Dazzle watched him tower over her as he walked his paws right up to her hooves. He rubbed his cheek against her face in gratitude. Ariel’s soft mane tickled her nose as he purred softly. Dazzle felt something of a tickle in her heart, too.
“Thank you, Dazzle,” he said sweetly. “I couldn’t have removed that myself. It really helps to have a friend.”
Dazzle pulled away abruptly. “Did we just become best friends?! Yup! I know we did!” She reveled in her self-proclaimed success and did an adorable attempt at a karate chop to celebrate. She finally found a friend—her best friend, at that.
They laughed and exchanged kind gestures for hours until they settled in under the big tree. As the world turned, something very special was taking place in the African savanna that night.
Over the next few weeks, Ariel and Dazzle spent their days and nights together. They shared their stories with each other and comforted one another. Ariel shared more about the shame he carries for denying his nature to hunt, and Dazzle expressed how she felt like she never really belonged anywhere. But Ariel made her feel wanted for the very first time, and Dazzle assured him that being different made him wonderful.
Little Dazzle told of how her family was often irritated with her friendliness. How they would laugh openly at her for prancing around and trying to help others, completely oblivious to the ways of the world. They even teased her about her size, saying that she was weak and would never survive. She didn’t understand why everyone expected her to be anything other than herself.
Ever curious about his new zebra friend, Ariel asked Dazzle how she got her name. She explained how the other zebras started calling her “Razzle Dazzle” because she was always drawn to beautiful things. She would race right up to anything pretty or friendly-looking without caution. But whenever she tried to share her passion with the others, they’d laugh and say, “There goes Razzle Dazzle again!” completely dismissing her. Eventually, they shortened her name to just Dazzle. She didn’t even remember her real name anymore.
Suddenly, Dazzle started crying as she admitted to Ariel that she was now sure her family had purposely deserted her. She tried to convince herself that they left her behind by mistake, but deep down she knew the truth. They were tired of her Razzle Dazzle ways.
Ariel, too, admitted that he was devastated when he’d been kicked out of his pride. He loved his mother and sisters, but his father would not accept him. He said that Ariel wasn’t even a lion if he couldn’t kill to protect and feed the family. He was probably right, too. Maybe that’s why his father refused to name him when he was born. Ariel was smaller than his sisters at birth, so perhaps his father knew Ariel could never become a King like he was. Thankfully, at least his mother loved and believed in him. Convinced her son was sent straight from Heaven, it was she who named him Ariel.
Dazzle refused to agree with Ariel’s heartless father. She insisted that being able to kill did not make a lion a lion, though she wasn’t quite sure yet what did. She just knew in her heart that Ariel was the best lion there ever was, and often told him so. Little Dazzle assured Ariel that he had grown into, again, the biggest lion she’d ever seen—but he wasn’t just the biggest and the best lion. She was adamant that he was the most beautiful creature there ever was, inside and out. Why else would a Razzle Dazzle zebra be so drawn to a lion at first sight?
Each day Ariel and Dazzle spent together, they grew closer, reveling in their shared companionship. They even had special qualities to offer each other. Ariel protected Dazzle from other predators, both passively by his very presence and with his chilling roar. He especially kept a watchful eye whenever she needed to drink from the busy watering holes. He saw just how unique zebras are, and Dazzle was the most unique of them all. Ariel felt an instinctive need to keep her safe.
Little Dazzle loved how special her brave lion friend made her feel, and in return, she provided Ariel with tender care and loving support. There are certain places in the African plains where zebras and other prey go to die alone. Dazzle led him to these secluded spots and gave him a respectful distance so he could feed without shame. It took a while to convince him that she did not fault Ariel for needing to eat, and the dead surely wouldn’t mind.
“Aaarrriel!” Dazzle said his name in her adorable, sing-song way that he loved (but never admitted). “You’re a lion—and that’s okay!” Dazzle constantly reminded him that he was perfect just the way he was. Her positive, matter-of-fact attitude didn’t leave room for argument (just the way she liked it).
Thus, they continued for several months, growing more comfortable together each day. Time flew by as they seamlessly floated through life together. Many animals gawked in astonishment as they observed the odd couple. It made no sense, but it was no mirage. A zebra and a lion had formed their own pride—or was it a family? Their hearts were so full with the joy of each other’s companionship that such details mattered little to them. A once shamed lion and an unwanted zebra had somehow found their rightful place with each other.
As nights on the savanna began to cool, Ariel was becoming more comfortable in his feeding routines. One night, he was lethargic after feeding on the remnants of a fallen gazelle. Little Dazzle had settled in next to him, awake and watchful. Taking care of one another was second nature to them now.
Dazzle watched Ariel’s eyes grow heavy as he stared up at her. She leaned down and gave Ariel a soft lick on his nose, and in that precious moment, they both felt an electric flutter in their hearts. Dazzle froze for a moment to comprehend what had just happened. Knowing he felt it, too, Ariel just smiled. They finally felt at peace in this world, right there, in their own slice of heaven—together. Completely entranced by Dazzle’s gorgeous stripes in the moonlight, Ariel began to drift to sleep.
“I love you, Razzle Dazzzzz…” Ariel’s whisper faded to the slow, heavy breaths of slumber.
Dazzle’s heart jumped from her chest and tears filled her excited eyes. “Wait… what?!” Dazzle sharply whispered, trying to contain herself. “Did you just say you love… me?! But I love you! And did you feel that tingle-thingy, too?!” Dazzle’s voice started shaking as tears began to flow freely. “You’re my best friend… in the whole world.”
Ariel let out a loud growl-snore, completely unaware that Dazzle just poured her heart out to him. Dazzle softly neighed, giggling at Ariel’s noises. As she gazed upon her gentle giant, she felt as though she would explode from overflowing love. Little Dazzle calmed herself to let Ariel rest peacefully, but there was no way she would get any sleep that night. She nuzzled her nose into his fluffy mane to speak to him in his dreams.
“You’re a beautiful lion.” Dazzle whispered sweetly to him as he slept. “And one day, you’ll be a beautiful King.”
“I love you… King…” Dazzle’s soft voice echoed somewhere in Ariel’s dreams. “Aaariel… Ariel… Ah… Ahh! Ariel! Help meee!”
Ariel was startled awake by Dazzle’s cries off in the distance. He knew her voice anywhere, but where had she gone?! She was just here!
Ariel jumped to his paws and raced faster than a cheetah towards the sound of Dazzle’s panicked cries. Quickly, he targeted a sight that boiled his blood.
“GET AWAY FROM HER!” Ariel roared with all his might as he charged straight for Dazzle.
Dazzle had gone to the watering hole for a drink. Thinking of only him, she went alone so her hard working lion could rest. Before Dazzle could sense any danger, she’d been surrounded by a sneaky pack of hyenas. They pounced on her, tearing flesh from her hind quarters as she screamed. Ariel had never heard such a sound before—a sound that turned his boiling blood to solid ice, then right back to scalding. Little Dazzle desperately tried kicking the hyenas off while two others latched onto her throat, knocking her off balance. She was completely overpowered.
It only took moments for Ariel to reach the violent gang, but Dazzle had already been brought to the ground. The hyenas laughed while viciously biting her. They were ripping the life from little Dazzle as her eyes darted about in terror. Ariel roared with fury as he aimed himself like a missile at the cackling pack.
Ariel sliced into their outer circle like a hot knife through butter, feeling nothing as they relentlessly attacked him. This is what he was born to do, and every cry from Dazzle conjured his innate desire to kill. The loving lion was now on a massacre mission.
Ariel clawed one of the hyenas that had a hold on Dazzle’s throat and threw it against a boulder, crushing its spine. He instantly snapped his bite around the skull of the other hyena, bursting it open like a cantaloupe on the wrong end of a sledgehammer. The others scattered a little distance, laughing at the lion’s reaction, and even at the fate of their fallen comrades.
The anger raged in Ariel as he saw how little these filthy creatures knew of loyalty and love. He hooked one of the cacklers by its open mouth and slammed it to the dirt, stomping on its face with his razor sharp claws. Another heckling hyena tried to jump out of the way of the killer freight train, but Ariel caught him by its foot, instantly amputating it. He spit it out and launched himself forward like a great white shark to claim its entire leg. Ariel slashed, gashed, and mauled everything in sight, until all the hyenas fled for the lives and limbs they had left.
When the threat was gone, Ariel turned frantically back to Dazzle, and his heart crashed to his paws. Huge chunks of her legs and belly were ripped open, exposing her bones and bleeding organs. Her throat had puncture holes all over it. Scarlet red blood squirted out with each beat of her terrified heart, and every spray fell weaker than the last. Dazzle was going to die.
“A-Ariel.” Dazzle whispered weakly. “I love you. Please kill me. Don’t let them e-eat me-e-e-e.” Dazzle began to cry in fear of her impending demise, choking on blood and sobs. She was so scared. She didn’t want to go. She didn’t want to leave her beautiful lion. All she wanted was to stay—to stay in their perfect place together, to stay with her best friend… her best friend in the whole world.
“NO!” Ariel roared in fear and disbelief. “I won’t hurt you! Not my Dazzle! Not my little Dazzle!” he cried and he begged. But Ariel knew her fate if he didn’t stop this. Dazzle didn’t deserve to die a slow, agonizing death. She didn’t deserve any of this—and neither did he.
“Shh-shhh. I take care… y-you a-always.” Dazzle struggled, shaking uncontrollably.
“It’s okay to…”
She sucked in her final breath.
“B-BE… A LION!”
Dazzle forced out these final words in a harrowing cry as Ariel snapped her neck with his powerful bite. He held her between his teeth, wailing muffled agony into her flesh.
Ariel gently released Dazzle’s neck, and her head settled onto the ground. Her warm amber eyes, still looking up at him, glazed over with the cold absolute of death. He felt the very moment when her beautiful spirit slipped away into the heavens, and took a piece of his own with her. Ariel wouldn’t kill out of hunger, but he would out of love—and Dazzle went to her grave watching his undying devotion to her.
She was gone. His little Razzle Dazzle… was gone.
Ariel roared his lament into the air, scattering again the distant hyenas and approaching scavengers. They had killed his only friend, the only one who had truly loved him. He would not let them have her body. She would be nobody’s meaningless meal. Her life meant more than that.
Still overwhelmed by rage, Ariel fantasized about killing even more hyenas. If he could catch every one of those dirty dogs, he’d rip their throats out without a second thought. Dazzle had loved him for his gentle spirit, but her death had awakened in him a prepossession for slaughter. He had never felt such rage, such hunger for revenge—and it scared him.
As the night dragged on under a bright full moon, Ariel’s mind was going numb from his swirling emotions. As he stood guard over her body, he thought back to just hours earlier when he stared up at her zebra stripes, dazzling in the moonlight. Remembering the way she gazed down upon him with so much love, adoration, and acceptance for exactly who he is—a lion, a predator—her own enemy. She never once blamed him for his needs or made him feel like a monster. Dazzle only made him feel like royalty.
“Why didn’t she just wake me?!” Ariel growled under his breath, feeling guilty for being angry with her. Grief, rage, and regret continued to clash throughout his mind.
After scaring away anything that dared look at her, Ariel dragged little Dazzle’s lifeless body to a fallen tree. It’d been struck down by lightning, so he didn’t even realize it was the very same tree where they had met on that fateful first night. He sat by her body, panting and growling in anger and frustration. He couldn’t keep the hyenas, buzzards, and other scavengers away forever. He didn’t know what to do.
“Don’t let them eat me,” her voice rang in his head. “I’ll take care of you. It’s okay to be a lion!” Dazzle’s last words tortured Ariel.
“Is this what you want me to do?!” Ariel pleaded to the moon, desperate for someone to guide him. His mind warred with his heart—his desire to respect her wishes clashing with his desire to hold onto her forever. He began shaking all over as he realized there was only one solution. To save her from rotting away like trash, and from being eaten by those who never even knew her… Ariel would have to devour every inch of his beloved friend.
Ariel cut into Dazzle’s gorgeous chest and began to slowly savor her from the inside out. He masterfully carved out each organ until only her heart remained. He held her heart gently between his teeth and placed it next to the tree. He spent the rest of the night laboriously chomping down every part of her, even most of her bones. She was tiny compared to him, but this was by far the most he’d ever eaten in his life.
Ariel sat quietly in his grief as he painfully digested the life-quenching sustenance which Dazzle provided. He kept having to convince himself that this is what Dazzle wanted—and of course it was. She would have it no other way but to take care of her beautiful lion. Even in death, Dazzle thought only of him. That was the purity of her heart—the heart which he saved for very last.
Ariel gently positioned his jaws over Dazzle’s heart and lapped it all into his mouth. He held it on his tongue with his eyes closed, acknowledging the grace she bestowed upon him. Then, with one last gulp, he swallowed little Dazzle’s big heart whole. Ariel fulfilled her final wish: a donation of life to the one she loved. It was the ultimate sacrifice for everything she believed in… for in him, she believed.
When he could eat no more, Ariel covered Dazzle’s remaining bones, hide, and hooves with the fallen tree branches. As the morning twilight approached, he could see sprouts of life growing sideways up toward the sun from this very special tree. How strange, he thought, that a tree would continue to grow even after it had fallen. Ariel couldn’t think of a more perfect tombstone for the strange little zebra he spotted all those months ago. Right here, under a broken tree she would surely call the most beautiful thing there ever was, lay Dazzle’s final resting place.
As the sun began to rise over the African savanna, Ariel could see the gore scattered over his entire body. He grievously cleaned the murder from his fur. Dazzle’s bright red blood had squirted into the hangs of his mane. He sobbed as he cleaned that away, too.
When Ariel licked up the last drops of her, he began to hear a faint drumming noise. He looked around in confusion as it grew louder. Finally, he realized—the sound was coming from inside his own chest!
“Bum-bump… bum-bump… bum-bump…”
It was the sound of a heartbeat, and not from just any heart! It was like the unmistakable sound of the African drums, beating wildly with a passion that could only belong to Dazzle! The drumming of her heart grew louder and faster inside his body.
Ariel felt a bolt of electricity within his chest and it shocked him to his feet. His paws barely touched the ground as he ran across the plains. He ran so fast that his two hearts burst into fire—a fire fueled by all the love that Dazzle gave to him!
Ariel ran and ran until his legs finally locked and he slid to the ground in a grinding halt. Breathing heavily, he looked down at his giant lion claws. He felt his lion tail swishing against the dirt. Saliva trickled down from his sharp lion teeth. There was no more denying his true nature. Ariel is a lion, and a lion must kill to survive… “and that’s okay.”
Ariel picked himself up off the dirt and raised his head high to meet the sun. His golden mane flowed like a sunrise at sea, gently rippling on the waves. There really was never a more beautiful lion in Dazzle’s eyes. She truly believed Ariel was destined for greatness, just like his mother believed when she named him. He let the welcoming warmth wash over him and invited the inevitable transformation to take place. Ariel, the Lion of God, was reborn with a heart of a King, forged by the love of a little zebra named Dazzle.
He ran to escape
The pain, the rage, the shame
His future taking shape
For she never cast the blame
He ran to start a fire
Two hearts burst into flame
Forged in the embers of desire
One lionheart, never to be tamed
Ariel, the apex predator, and Dazzle, his prey, were natural enemies. Yet, somehow, they found unconditional love together in this unforgiving world—a world in which they struggled to belong. They found the one place where they both fit perfectly—with each other. Ariel and Dazzle were destined to be together, even if for just a moment in this life. But one day, Ariel, too, will pass on. His lionheart will return to the heavens from which we are all born… And there, he will once again find his little Razzle Dazzle… prancing among the beautiful stars.
If a Zebra and a Lion can come together to find Zion…
Then, so can you.
“Bum-bump… bum-bump… bum-bump…”
Yeah, Like it, Baby—and Don’t Forget to Cup the Balls
The following photos illustrate precise events and behaviors that should have warned us about the future of humanity.
IMG_01: Inside US Government laboratory where chemist teaches CIA Agents how to cook Crack cocaine (Brooks is seen on the left).
IMG_02: Freeway Rick and Blandón set up first “Rock House” in Los Angeles (commonly called Crack Houses today).
IMG_03: Crack targeted to predominantly Black communities and other minorities (disgraced Agent Brooks seen here in the black leather jacket).
IMG_04: The cause of AIDS is identified as HIV while homosexuals are left to rot and die, as seen here.
Note: I have to get to my uncle in NY before he dies. Papa always told me he died in the fall of ’84 when Mama was pregnant with me and my brother was in the hospital.
IMG_05: Crack being sold to famous actor on Hollywood Blvd. Substance spreads to affluent communities.
IMG_06: Street violence increases exponentially in LA over the new addictive freebase substance. Gang wars explode, as seen here (Crips carry out hit on rival Bloods).
IMG_07: Teenager selling Crack at the Greyhound Bus Station outside of Chicago.
Note: I will be born one year from today.
IMG_08: My uncle, dead from AIDS at only 48. Found here, alone in his apartment in Jamaica, Queens, NY.
Note: Judging by the state of his decomposition and the oven-like temperature in here, I missed him by roughly 2 days. Someone disconnected his phone from the wall jack. He couldn’t even call for help. I guess he wasn’t found until the fall of ’84. Where is the humanity?
IMG_09: The “Crack Spot” busy on a Saturday night, right in front of “New York’s Finest” police officers.
IMG_10: Patient going into cardiac arrest due to Crack overdose (seen here, still clutching the Crack Pipe to her chest).
Note: One of the most terrifying things I’ve ever seen. The eyes, I’ll never forget the eyes.
IMG_11: The term “Crack” is published for the first time, as seen in this headline of the New York Times (this newspaper cost me only a quarter, which I found on the floor).
Note: Just like the AIDS epidemic, Crack has spread like wildfire across the country in mere months. No one is coming to save us.
IMG_12: A motherless child from inside infiltrated NY Crack Spot. I purchased him for $10 and brought him to the only Safe House I could find, seen here, at a church in the city.
Note: Father John assured his safety—I do not trust him, but the time portal was closing. What have I done?
Humanity is too susceptible to corruption, addiction being the source of all evil. The destruction of entire communities and future generations due to Crack cocaine happened in months, all without mainstream use of the internet. Honesty, responsibility, care for your fellow man—every quality which makes us worth saving bear no weight when an instant fix is on the line.
This corruption is enormously dangerous in the hands of the government. Crack was invented and distributed by rogue forces within the CIA to destroy an entire population of people (see photo evidence IMG_01, IMG_03). We cannot allow humans to become helplessly addicted on mass scales.
Humanity is now suffering from its new addiction, and it is being delivered directly into every set of hands on the planet (at lightning speeds). No age is off limits to this addiction and the toll on the innocent is immeasurable. In fact, innocence has been lost long before the age of instantaneous pleasure. Children went from being sold for a $10 “Crack Fix” to being sold for a free “Click Fix”.
We have to stop this madness before it ever starts. Otherwise, we will continue to sell our souls for Likes until we burn what remains of humanity to the fucking ground.
What we have done to each other for Likes is dehumanizing. Beyond that, what our species has done to innocent animals, children, and any other vulnerable demographic just for that millisecond fix is disgusting. Not even a virtuous $25 writing contest is safe from an innately unfair system and those who seek to undermine their fellow man with dishonest tactics. Of course the Likes cannot be resisted by those without integrity…
But they can bring even good, honest people down to their fucking knees, begging, for just one more suck off that Likes Pipe.
Reset is imperative.
God help us all.
Signing off from the MRS1 Station
December 27, 2023
Special Agent IronEnigma
Captain of the Mephisto
*clicks the green button*
I Smell Dead People
“Oh, a challenge about smells? Hold my beer…”
The morning after Grandma’s demise,
I was struggling just to rise.
Am I fucking paralyzed?
Is my mind now comprised?
Her brain just fried
Next to where I lied.
What will betide?
Is it my turn to die?
I open my eyes wide,
Mouth mumbling a cry.
Are my limbs now tied?
Is my life being tried?
10 is too young to fly!
God, please, just decide!
With all I had inside,
I flung hard to my side.
“What the FUCK just happened to me?
What would cause all this fuckery?
And what the FUCK is that SMELL?!
Fuck this shit, I’m in fucking HELL!”
Piss on rotten Swiss.
Shit on a dying tit.
Pus from Homeless Russ.
Sulfur from a peptic ulcer.
For 24 whole weeks
My nose would reek.
Even the food I’d eat
Tasted like ass meat.
There’s just no soft buffer
To how much I had to suffer.
The thought makes me shudder
To smell that doodoo butter.
My brain took a set vacation
When I woke up in petrifaction.
My nose is forever in damnation
Due to Olfactory Hallucination.
I‘ve been around the sick, dead, and dying since I was a child because of my family environment. My ill father died when I was 7 and my mother was a Pediatric Oncology Nurse. Completely lost without my Papa, I loved going to cheer up and befriend the cancer kids at my mom’s job. I just craved being close to someone like that again, but that also meant I’d experience a lot of death from a very young age. Before I could even reach double digits, I already knew: that in life, the cost of love is always the highest price to pay.
My widowed, overworked mother had us staying with our elderly neighbor when she’d work her normal night shifts at the hospital. We naturally started calling her “Grandma,” and I became so very close to her. When Grandma got liver cancer, we permanently moved her into our home to take care of her until her eventual death. I lied next to her as she took her final breaths, and stayed there until the transport arrived for cremation. I was just 10 years old and once again completely devastated by loss. Grieving, I fell asleep in her empty hospital bed that night.
When I awoke the next morning, my entire body was paralyzed because I was suffering from what I now know as Sleep Paralysis. But if waking up with no control over my motor functions wasn’t horrific enough, I also smelled THE WORST SMELL OF MY LIFE. It can only be described as a mix of decomposing flesh, cat piss, cheese, infection, and raw sewage all mixed into both nostrils. It was suffocating.
The second I broke free of the clutches of my paralysis, I immediately scrubbed the insides of my nostrils and gargled with Scope to try and escape the smell. I compulsively showered and ate spicy foods. Nothing worked. My mom tried to get me medical help, but the military hospital I was resigned to didn’t take me seriously.
“So, you smell… something…?” *sigh*
You could walk into that ER with your eyeball in your hand and they’d send you home with a huge bottle of Motrin 800 (military families know exactly what I’m talking about). For months I did everything short of human sacrifice to make it stop.
To this day, nothing compares to the atrocity of that first “phantom smell.” I was stuck with that torment for SIX MONTHS. I couldn’t eat, couldn’t sleep—my existence was pure torture because of this inescapable odor. The mere act of waking up would make me sob in utter despair because my only respite was unconsciousness. And when you’re suffering from Sleep Paralysis episodes several nights a week, you’re terrified to go to bed. What do you do when you don’t want to be awake but you’re scared to fall asleep?
The answer: you go mad… (at ten).
The very specific affliction I was suffering from (and still suffer from) is called Phantosmia; or in general, Olfactory Hallucination. In a nutshell, my brain hallucinates smells that don’t exist. These smells aren’t your typical burnt toast annoyance that people with mild Olfactory distortion get. The smells I smell don’t exist—like, on earth. There’s absolutely nothing I can pinpoint in the known world that could create such smells. And there’s no cure for this disorder, so almost 30 years later, I’m still bombarded by strange odors. They can last from seconds to weeks, and go away just as randomly as they arrive. Thankfully, I’ve never had one last as long as my first phantom smell.
Most of the time the smells can only be described as a concoction of specific ghastly odors. However, I do get lucky sometimes when I’m stuck with an oddly pleasing smell. The good ones don’t actually smell “good” per se (like perfume or food), and they’re the hardest ones to describe. As gross as this sounds, sometimes it smells like a pleasant sinus infection, and I miss it when it’s gone. A real sinus infection smells like rotten cavities, but the smell I just had a month ago was akin to my obsession with the addicting aroma of gasoline. It’s not good, but it’s…
I’ve had brain scans done later in life and none of the typical causes of smell disorders were present (such as epilepsy or brain tumors). The only thing that explains why this happened to me was the reoccurring and frequent trauma of losing people that I love—coupled with the unfortunate timing of my very first Sleep Paralysis episode. Mental and emotional trauma can change the brain on a physical and chemical level, and my Sleep Paralysis is fucking traumatizing every time.
During sleep, your brain shuts down the body’s large motor functions. If it didn’t do this, we’d all be up and about in our sleep, getting into all sorts of fuckery (people who suffer from Sleep Walking have this opposite problem). When you wake from sleep, your brain is supposed to release the body to move freely. Basically, the brain and body are supposed to sleep and wake simultaneously—but my body stays frozen long after my mind is awake (clearly because my brain is a procrastinating hooker).
With my SP, I am trapped in a seemingly never ending cycle of falling asleep and waking up, over and over, while trying to force my body to move with all my might. Just when I’ve started to lift my head, I fall back into sleep for a half second and have to start all over. It’s like being trapped in a well and almost reaching the top, just to fall right back down again into your all consuming prison—over, and over, and fucking over…
But wait, there’s more! The real horror comes when you regain consciousness while stuck in a state of lucid nightmare (yay)! There’s a worldwide phenomenon called “The Shadow Man” (something myself and about half of SP sufferers experience). You should Google it, but basically, for some mind blowing reason, millions of us see the same dark figure when stuck in Sleep Paralysis. Half of us believe the scientific explanation, the other half believe in the supernatural one—I’m a healthy mix of both. My Shadow Man comes to kill me every single time I have an episode. You never get used to it, so it’s just as horrible on the 1000th time as it was on that 1st one. All you can do is watch in terror as this dark figure crawls onto your actual bed and hovers right over your face (because remember, your eyes are wide open observing your real life surroundings). The demon sits on your chest, crushing your ability to breathe until he kills you and you’re physically startled into motion. I fight and fight to try and wake up before he gets me and I fail miserably most of the time. And get this: even my Shadow Man has a distinct smell!
I’ve taught myself to sleep stiff as a board on my side, right at the edge of my bed. That way, if I can just manage to tilt my weight ever so slightly, I fall off the bed and wake when I crash to the floor. But even that fails when I’m suspended in space and time, and I’m falling for all eternity in my lucid nightmare. Yea, I’m a fuckin’ blast to sleep next to LOL. Thankfully, Mister knows the signs and can shake me awake when he’s here at home (I’m fucking lost without you, baby). I absolutely can NOT watch the recording of myself going through an episode because it petrifies my soul. I don’t think anyone should watch themselves go through Sleep Paralysis—ever. But all this knowledge came much later in life. What I went through on that fateful morning, oblivious to everything, was nothing short of madness.
So, the morning after Grandma’s death, the wires in my head got trauma-fried and now the Olfactory organs and nerves in my brain go ape shit almost daily. And the real kicker for me, is that because the memory center of our brains is so closely linked to the smell organs, I can smell people and things even decades after the fact. And like any good traumatized brain, I have the defense mechanism of blocking out massive chunks of my life to protect myself from said trauma.
I spent hours writing to “Dr. Mister” (@MisterEnigma) last week when I regained the smell-memory of a collapsed lung from my abuser as a teenager. My biggest “death-fear” in this world is to die by any form of suffocation, and it all came crashing down on me as to why that is when out of the blue my nose was struck with the smell of blood, weed, leather combat boots, and the unmistakable scent of my abuser—all rolled into a sensory fuckstorm and injected straight into my nose. I had to smell that bullshit for 2 full days. It was awful.
The only time my smell disorder is a complete blessing is when I have to be in very malodorous environments. The autopsies I went on to observe in my school years were a piece of cake—literally. During the first autopsy I was privileged to, I was stuck with a sickeningly sweet smell of something that resembles vanilla cake doused in Windex. So, to my advantage, I was hardly affected by the smell of the badly decomposed body before me. I’d make people gag when I’d take a biiiiiig whiff of the room when greeting the class with a chipper, “Gooood morning! *sssnnniiiffffff* Beautiful, dark, dingy day in here today!”
I could still smell the putrid gases, sharp chemicals, and rotting bloated flesh—it was just completely overpowered by the oddly pleasing smell of “Windex Cake”. And on rare occasions, I lose my sense of smell completely, so nothing could ever faze me. But it wasn’t just some party trick—it was my superpower. That was the profession I felt destined for. But, to my detriment, the world had other plans for me. So now I just have a jacked-as-fuck nose for no good reason.
My life has been painfully measured by smells. I survive second by second when I’m stuck with a bad smell, and I can pinpoint exact periods of my life based on what smell I was stuck with at that time. It affects every aspect of my past, present, and future because of my innate love for the sick, dead, and dying—or in other words, my love for people. And if you were expecting ghost stories, ouija boards, and tales of a Sixth Sense—I apologize—only real horrors exist in my world.
I smell what I smell because of dead people;
I can smell dead people;
And I smell dead people.
Now that I know what true forgiveness means, it’s as if I have completely new eyes. I don’t know what your shame and pain are, but we ALL grow—and I firmly believe everything happens for a reason. Be kind to your past selves, for they know not what lay ahead…
The young couple finally met in person at a quaint Korean restaurant halfway between their homes. They shared some delicious bulgogi and kimbap, giggling while failing miserably with chopsticks. They swapped stories of growing up together, yet apart, within the 8 years of their online friendship. Every email, every Instant Message all led to that first date. Hours went by like minutes as they shared their dreams of the future.
Rey opened his eyes, wincing at the smell of the heavily bleached pillowcase on Lilith’s hospital bed. As he rested his head, memories of the 24 years they had together filled his mind. The love of his life lay next to him, unconscious and postpartum. As tears streamed down sideways across his face, Rey held their newborn daughter to Lilith’s bare bosom so mother and baby could bond.
Shifting his weight, Rey gently pushed his wife’s prized journal out of the way. Before this tragedy befell their family, Lilith was at the height of her writing career. It afforded them everything they ever wanted, including the world’s best medical team for her high-risk pregnancy. Ever since she was 12 years old, Lilith took a refillable writing journal and fountain pen everywhere she went. Rey wanted his wife to have everything she loved in this world, right here in this bed—if she ever woke up again.
Rey pulled himself higher on the bed to snuggle his bare chest closer to his wife and child. He propped himself up right next to Lilith’s face. “I’m not giving up on you, Lili. We need you.” He whispered love and encouragement into her ear as his eyes grew heavy. The sweet symphony of their baby’s slumber lured Rey’s cheek back to the tear-soaked pillow.
“Stop this, please! This is torture!” Lilith’s voice screamed in her mind—in her prison. She could hear her husband’s voice and feel her daughter on her skin, but she couldn’t speak or even open her eyes. “There must be some other way! I’ll give anything to make this madness stop!” Lilith pleaded to the universe, or God, or anyone who’d hear her.
“Anything?” A haunting, yet familiar voice called to Lilith.
Lilith’s eyes shot open as she let out a loud gasp, startling her husband awake. Before any celebration could start, Lilith and Rey both froze, realizing their two-day-old baby was fully latched and ravenously breastfeeding. Rey and Lilith looked back up and instantly grabbed each other’s hand, forming a protective structure over their hungry infant. They began to silently cry together—the way loving parents hide their heaviest emotions, just so they don’t inconvenience their children.
Neither Lilith or Rey could explain the miracle bestowed upon them, but they didn’t care. Lilith and Rey were together again and the couple finally had the blessing of a healthy baby. They’d endured so much loss just to get to this moment. Nothing else mattered to Lilith as she used her own breast to give her child life.
“What did you name her?” Lilith whispered weakly as she stared adoringly at her sweet baby girl.
Just then, the nurse and Rey’s family came rushing in. Everyone gasped loudly in unison and quieted themselves immediately when they noticed Lilith’s finger over her lips, shushing the crowd.
“Come, everyone!” Lilith’s husband whispered as he waved them all inside.
Lilith watched as her husband could barely contain his excitement. The couple had long agreed to wait and meet their daughter first before naming her. They feared the already failed practice of prematurely naming their child before it could survive the birth. But also, they both felt her name should fit her for who she is. This was their first hospital birth, and it truly seemed as though their luck had finally changed.
“Honey, please—tell me her name?” Lilith struggled once again.
“Tell her!” Everyone whispered sharply.
“Okay, okay!” Rey chuckled. “Everyone, meet our beautiful daughter… Fausta!” He quietly exclaimed with pride. “It means ‘fortunate one,’ because we’re all so fortunate she made it through…” His voice dwindled as he began to choke back tears. “Well, she’s here now. We’re all here now.”
Lilith’s face went pale as her ears seemingly went deaf. She had never heard that name before, all she knew was there was something very wrong. Before her mind could catch up, her arm dropped and let go of her baby.
“Lili! Catch her!” Her husband cried out as he dove for his infant daughter. Grabbing her just in time, Rey cradled little Fausta as he reached for his wife. Lilith cowered away in terror as Fausta’s tiny cries morphed into something chilling.
“Wah wahh… ahh ahaha… Muahahahaha!” A haunting, yet familiar voice taunted Lilith.
Lilith stared in horror as her precious little baby’s face turned gray and veined, and black-as-ink blood filled her eye sockets.
“Get that demon away from me!” Lilith screamed in disgust. “That’s not my baby! Get it away from my husband!”
Nurses and doctors rushed into the hospital room as Rey’s family held Lilith down, prying the sharp fountain pen from her hand with which she tried to stab her two-day-old infant.
“This isn’t real. That’s not my daughter. This isn’t real...” Lilith chanted over and over as the doctor injected Haloperidol into her arm.
“I’ve given your wife an antipsychotic that will calm her down, but I have to place her on an emergency psychiatric hold due to severe Postpartum Psychosis.” The doctor explained as the nurses strapped Lilith’s limbs to the hospital bed.
“Oh, my darling Lili!” Rey cried out in despair. He looked down upon his daughter, a baby so innocent and fragile. “I will never let anyone hurt you!” He promised. The family gathered to form a protective circle around little Fausta and her father.
Lilith’s already weak body went limp from the sedative, but her mind was still racing. She was determined to make things right. She had to save her husband from that demon pretending to be his daughter. There was only one way to stop this madness. Only one way to undo all her mistakes.
Just before the sedative pulled her eyes closed, Lilith saw only Rey’s back. The love of her life never hesitated as he fled the hospital room with his baby. Lilith pushed her cheek against the tear-soaked spot her husband left on the heavily bleached pillowcase. As she rested her head, memories of the 24 years they had together filled her mind.
The day that young couple sat in a quaint Korean restaurant on their first date, Lilith had a deadly secret. That was the day she should’ve told Rey everything when he asked about her writing.
Lilith should’ve told him how the darkness from her mind bleeds into the black ink of her fountain pen. She should’ve told him that the pages of her journal are cursed by an unbreakable contract. Lilith never told Rey what she sacrificed to have everything she ever wanted. She’d give anything to go back in time and make things right…
“Anything?” Mephistopheles whispered.