Archive for heart eater

Section Two – Part Five – Saved

Posted in Anthology, Because I love to write, New Novel, New writing, Nightmare, Works in Progress with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 16, 2011 by cjirwin

Section Two – Part Five – Saved

Chapter Five

 

“Greetings Lord of Bauska in the name of the Great One,” Rokus began, his resonant voice easily crossing the distance between the two groups. “I am Lord Rokus Yefrem of the village Rokus to the south.”  His voice did not reveal any of the uncertainty his people felt. When Bauska Mikhail failed to answer, Rokus continued…perfect. Rokus would have an opportunity to tell the village of Bauska his people’s plight without the filter of their warped leader.  “Tragedy has befallen us; a great horde of Huns, monsters from the East with weapons unlike any known to man, fell upon us, killing, burning, and enslaving our people.”

 

There were gasps from the people who had gathered around Bauska Mikhail. Mikhail’s eyes narrowed in suspicion.

 

Rokus went on, “They destroyed our homes, drove us from our land, and pursued us, eager to capture more!”

 

 “Have you led them to our doorstep, that they may do the same to us?” Mikhail’s calm façade faltered.

 

“We would never do something so foolish,” Rokus said, his voice still calm. “I beg of thee, allow me to explain.”

 

 Bauska only nodded.

 

“Most of us escaped to a pre-designated hiding place. Some of us returned to our village, or what was left of it, three weeks later. We found then that they had sent a scouting party back to find us. No doubt they had failed to capture as many of us as they had wanted the first time. But they were careless and lazy scouts, so we found them first. My son organized an ambush and destroyed the miscreants before they could report back to their master.” Rokus finished with a proud look at his oldest son.

 

Rihards laid his hand gently on Mikhail’s shoulder and whispered something in his ear.

 

“Please forgive my outburst,” Bauska said through clenched teeth. “I only feared for my people.”

 

“Of course. I, as a leader myself, understand the pressure you are under. We are equal in our concerns.”

 

 Bauska Mikhail walked toward them, no doubt to escape the ears of his own people. Niklav’s hard body stiffened and Ivan moved closer to his father, his green eyes narrowed beneath his red brow.  

 

“Forgive me,” Bauska said, his voice dripping with disdain, “in the name of the Great One and the people of Bauska, welcome.”

 

“Thank you, we receive your welcome and hope we may somehow repay the hospitality we know we will receive. We will speak to all of your extraordinary kindness to our people in our time of need,” Rokus replied the implications clear. “This is my son Ivan, my right hand, and I believe you know Niklav.”

 

“Yes, I remember you, Rokus. It is good to meet your heir, and of course I remember you Niklav. It is good to see you, old friend,” Mikhail smiled smugly. “I see you have finally produced children Niklav. It is a pitiful thing to see a man with no children.  I was beginning to wonder if you were virile enough to plant them in your beautiful woman.” Niklav did not answer, afraid if he moved he would simply kill Mikhail.

 

Mikhail saw his anger, smiled, and continued. “Korina,” he directed his words to Niklavs beautiful blonde wife he had tried to coax into his bed, “you look well.”

 

As he said the words his mossy, green eyes slithered from her face to her feet and up again. “I knew your body would hold up well through childbearing. You know, that offer I made years ago still stands.”

 

That was the final straw, all Niklav could take. He took one step and planted his fist squarely in Mikhail’s face. The man to the right of Mikhail moved quickly, catching the side of Niklav’s face he sent him to the ground.  Ivan stepped protectively between his father and Mikhail’s advancing men.

 

“Stop!” Bauska Mikhail instructed from where he lay on the ground. He smiled and wiped the blood from his thin lipped mouth. Having gotten the rise he wanted, he stood.

 

“Friends, let us not resort to hostilities,” he spewed the words like vomit. His men took a step back, and Niklav jumped to his feet, unconvinced the fight was over. “I was only jesting, old friend.” He spoke to Niklav; his words were sharp and smug, befitting his thick, square face.

 

Niklav knew he needed to calm the situation, though he desperately wanted to pound Mikhail into the ground. A short distance away, Freya smiled uncontrollably as the blood continued to drip from the corner of Mikhail’s mouth.

 

“Of course. I pray thee, forgive the misunderstanding,” Niklav’s voice was smooth and cold.

 

“Aye, forgive the misunderstanding,” Rokus said in the same cold tone. Rokus decided a change of the subject was in order. “I am sorry to see that your father has passed. He was a great leader and a dear friend.”

 

“I pray your pardon! He trained me well and left this people in capable hands!” Bauska barked.

 

“I did not mean to imply otherwise,” Rokus said soothingly. “I was simply mourning our mutual loss of a great man.”

 

Rihards laid his hand on Mikhail again and spoke to us. His gentle smile was calming, and his dark tan eyes exuded peace.

 

“Thank you for your compassion, my brother and I appreciate it. Brother,”  Rihards turned toward Mikhail as he spoke, “our guests,” he gestured toward us, “must be tired and hungry. We should allow them to set up their camp while we prepare a feast in honor of their safety.”

 

Who is this man, and why is he not the leader? Rokus wondered.

 

Fury frosted Mikhail’s features; grinding his teeth together, he simply nodded.

 

“Good, it is settled then,” Rihards said. “If you would like, you may set up camp on the edge of the lake. Please leave our paths clear, so we also have access to the water.”

 

“We certainly will, and thank you.” Rokus used much more respect when addressing this man.

 

“When you are settled, we would love for you to join us in our main lodge’s courtyard to feast, right, brother?”

 

“Yes, yes, if it please you to accept our hospitality,” Bauska regained his smug look.

 

“We will come, many thanks,” Rokus said warily.

 

The light was dancing and sparkling on the rippling water in one of the most phenomenal sunsets made by God when they finally finished setting up camp. The wind whipped across the beautiful ox-bow lake making tents billow and tree limbs sway. Toward the middle of the rows of tents, rocks were placed for a large, temporary, central hearth. The beauty on the horizon was surreal. What an amazing location for a community, Korina thought as Niklav walked up behind her and wrapped his arms around her waist. They stood in silence, taking in the sunset on the lake, and turned when Ivan called.

 

“They approach. It looks to be Bauska’s brother and his wife. Come, and bring Korina.”
Niklav and Korina walked toward Rihards, Ivan leading the group with his parents on his heels.

 

“Good day, forgive me for not introducing myself earlier, I am Rihards, second son of the former Bauska Niklav, and this is my wife, Danya.”

 

“Apologies are not necessary,” Ivan said. “I am Ivan, first son of Rokus Yefrem, and this is my wife Stepka. This is my father and our leader,” he gestured for Rokus to take over.

 

“I am Rokus Yefrem and this is my other half, Ona.” Ona smiled at Rokus’ loving explanation of her. “This is my son by marriage, Niklav, and his wife Korina, my granddaughter.”

 

“It is wonderful to meet all of you. I pray you forgive my brother’s rash behavior earlier.” He had come with only his wife, so he could apologize for the offense caused by his brother. “We want you to know you are truly welcomed by this people,” Rihards said, conviction evident in his voice. “Please extend your grace over our people.” His kind, charming features begged forgiveness.

 

“We give our grace freely. I pray thee, know we hold no ill will toward you or any of your people,” Rokus replied respectfully. “You have the heart and grace of a great leader,” Rokus complimented.

 

“Thank you, good sir. You honor me with your flattery. The Great One gives all men what they have, so any honor given me is due Him.” Though Rihards common features and body would make him easy to overlook, his voice and mannerisms captured you immediately. He embodied integrity.

 

“Yes, so true,” Rokus marveled that he could respect Rihards more than he had a few minutes before, but he did.

 

“We have come to invite your people to dine with us. We have prepared a celebration in your honor,” Rihards wife Danya spoke. Her face was warm and pink, complimenting her brunette hair and sweet smile.

 

Rokus nudged Ona, causing her grey-streaked auburn hair to fall in her face, and she responded.

 

“We would be pleased to join you,” her smile lifted her full cheeks. “Many of the women have prepared food to add to your feast. It is not much, only dried fruits and vegetables we have gathered on our journey, but we wanted to contribute something.”

 

“You did not need to do that; we are most honored to feed you,” Danya said. The two ladies smiled as they connected.

 

“I know, but we want to bless your people in any way we can,” Ona responded.

 

“Then we accept your gift humbly, and we will see you for the celebration,” Danya said, revealing her slightly crooked teeth when she smiled.  Ona’s hazel eyes sparkled pleased to make a new friend.

 

Niklav’s and Korina’s people walked past the main village lodge toward the square. An enormous fire lit the sky, sending sparks flying high, shimmering like fairies dancing on the wind. Over the edge of the fire, two large carcasses sizzled and popped, sending a pleasant aroma throughout the air, one a beef haunch, the other a pig. Tables stood on the north side of the square with torches burning above them.  All manner of mouthwatering dishes lay upon them. Hot, fresh, wheat bread with caraway seed paste, sautéed garlic and onions, stuffed goose with white mustard, and honey cakes.

 

Rihards walked to great Rokus’s people with a smile. Two young ladies followed behind him, one with cups and the other with a jug.

 

“Would you be interested in some beer? Our man who makes it is quite good! He is experimenting with barley this year, and it is the finest brew I have ever tasted!”

 

Cups were passed out, and beer poured.  It was a strong, smooth, and robust stout that bit a little at the end, and everyone seemed to enjoy it. Freya watched as they devoured the meal as if food had been denied them for months. The pouts on the children’s faces made her heart yearn as she watched their mothers send them to bed. Shame squirmed a little inside her as she contemplated what they had been through. I fuss and cry while little children are murdered and driven from their homes.  As people began to gather in groups talking, playing dice, and gambling, Freya felt hope and faith spring inside her for the foreign people.

 

Full mug of beer in hand, Korina sat comfortably with Niklav in the group while Rokus and Rihards spoke. She was paying little attention to their conversation and instead was people watching. Knowing it was rude, Korina was discreet. She found people enthralling; how fascinating to watch the way they moved, their facial expressions and body language. Mikhail caught her as she looked around, and much to her surprise, he smiled genuinely, tipping his beer and his head toward her.

 

Worrying for her children, Korina whispered into Niklav’s ear that she would check on them; he kissed her, and she rose to leave. Slightly intoxicated, she sauntered back toward the village and Niklav, thinking of his warm skin and callused hands caressing her body. She was almost to the lodge when she noticed someone standing in the shadow of the building.

 

“How now, is someone there?” Shaking her head, Korina tried to dispel the strange feeling and kept walking. Just as she passed the peak of the lodge, he reached out and grabbed her arm.

 

“Oh,” Korina gasped. “Bauska Mikhail, you startled me! What can I do for you?” her voice shook, her fear radiating.  

 

He stumbled a bit as he moved forward. He was thoroughly drunk, and his eyes burned insanely. “Yes, my love,” he started, slurring his words together; “there is something you can do for me.”

 

He still held her hand firmly; she jerked against his grip. Korina tried to scream, but his hand landed firmly on her mouth. Turning her, he slammed Korina up against the side of the lodge, robbing her of breath. With his hand still firmly pressed to her lips, he began tearing at the collar of her dress. It gave way at the seams. His mouth and teeth set hard upon exposed flesh, rubbing and gnashing.

 

Korina’s fist came up and hit the side of his face with a thud, but did little except get him to drop his hand long enough for her to scream. Hand hard across her face. Back driven into the logs of the lodge, Korina cried out. Excited, Mikhail hit her again knocking to her the ground. His massive hand wrapped around her face like iron bent on an anvil. Sharp rocks cut her back, his weight forcing her down. Korina could hardly breathe, let alone scream. His knees were between her legs, pushing them apart, and all her kicking and flailing only seemed to arouse him further.

 

Oh Great One, please do not let this happen to me! Niklav, I need you! Korina prayed frantically.

 

He pulled her dress up. The dried leather of his boots scraped against the bare inside of her leg. Korina wanted to vomit, thinking of what was sure to come next.  Frantically, she thrashed.

 

Oh God help me! Korina prayed.

 

Niklav hit Mikhail; Korina heard the clash of bone and muscle and watched as they flew to the ground. In an instant Niklav laid into Mikhail’s face, breaking his nose. It was a beautiful sound. Half-crazed, Mikhail looked up at Niklav. Adrenalin coursed through Mikhail’s veins along with the liquor. Throwing his fist upwards, Mikhail caught Niklav square in the chin and the force of the blow sent Niklav to the dirt. Niklav righted himself, but before they could clash again, there were men between them. Niklav fought their arms for a moment, but then allowed himself to be restrained. Mikhail was throwing punches at anyone that got close enough for him to hit. He was raving.

 

“She is mine, she belongs to me!” he screamed repeatedly, sweat dripping from his brow, and blood from his nose.

 

Shaking with fear, Korina cried, powerful sobs racking her chest. Her mind reeled, and she could feel blood seeping from the corner of her throbbing eye. People tried to talk to her, but she only wanted Niklav. There were so many people, so many voices.

 

Where is Niklav? She wondered, the question running laps in her head.

 

“Let me loose. I am calm, and my wife needs me!” Niklav said through clenched teeth, and after a moment’s deliberation, the men restraining him released. He ran straight to my side.

 

“My love,” he said through angry tears. “I am so sorry! I love you! I will kill that lying bastard!” He stopped talking because he was unable to control his fury.

 

Others were there, asking how they could help.  Continuous apologies poured from Rihards and Danya. Niklav tried to pull Korina’s tattered dress back over her bruised and bleeding flesh, but gave up and just laid it over my exposed breasts.

 

So many people have seen me this way! So many have seen my disgrace, seen me torn and exposed on the ground! How can I ever face them again? Korina cried inside.

 

“So many,” she whispered once before she passed out.

 

Jerking awake, Korina sat up trying to get her bearings. Her skin recoiled against the heat, and both her body and head ached. The air was thick, making it hard to breathe. The room was extremely stuffy, and Korina could not open either of her eyes. Niklav’s arms encircled her gently, calming. He whispered softly in her ear, his sweet words aligning senses, making her aware of the tent and safety with him.

 

Breathing a sigh of relief, Korina painfully forced her eyes to open. He is so beautiful, Korina thought, like the sound of a voice you thought you had lost.

 

“Are you well? You seemed to be having a nightmare. I almost woke you up,” Niklav said, his eyes full of worry.

 

“I am well, but I am very thirsty.”

 

He was up in a second, fetching water. Feeling helpless but loved unconditionally, Korina watched as he poured the drink and then held the cup to her lips. After he finished, she looked down at her arms to find them spotted with large purple welts.

 

It all flooded back; the image of Mikhail’s hands assaulted her mind, his mouth and teeth searching and devouring! As she examined herself, big fat tears slipped over the black bulges under her eyes, tears of pain and remembrance. Tears in his eyes, Niklav took her in his arms again, and she cried until she could cry no more.  

 

“Many of the women are outside. They want to see you, but I wanted you to sleep, so I made them wait. I do not know how much longer I can hold them off,” he said, feigning a serious look. “Caterna especially wants to see you. She has been outside the tent all night long.”

 

“She has?” Korina said and began to cry again…ugh! “She is so wonderful. Tell them to come in.”

 

Aija, Korina’s sister, was the first one in the tent, and right on her heels was Caterna. Aija sat on the bed, her eyes were red. She had no words; she simply wrapped her arms around Korina. Caterna sat silently on Korina’s other side and laid her hand on her knee. Many women came in, loved on her, and left over the next few hours. Aija left just before noon to prepare a meal and care for the children. She found she did not have to cook. The village women sent more food than they could eat. Caterna never left Korina’s side, and Ludis, the village physician, came regularly. Korina knew she was loved.

 

“May I go to the river and wash?” Korina asked.

 

“I do not know if you should be trying to move around yet,” Ludis said, looking at Niklav to back him up.

 

“I can bring water from the lake, love. You could wash here,” Niklav said hoping to dissuade Korina.

 

“I pray thee, let me go, I urgently need to.” Korina pleaded.

 

“Niklav, may I speak with you outside?” It was the first time Caterna had spoken in hours. He nodded, and they walked outside.

 

“Let us get you down to that lake,” Niklav said when he walked back into the tent.

 

Korina did not know what Caterna had said to him, but she was thankful for it. Standing waist deep in the water, Korina scrubbed viciously, leaving the skin red in an effort to cleanse. Wishing for something to wash thoughts away, tears began once more to burn her chapped cheeks. There was little left of the bar of soap when she finished.

 

Sitting on the shore, clean and wrapped in a blanket, Korina felt worlds better. Caterna picked through her long, straight, blonde hair as Niklav reminded her of their first journey to Riga.

 

“Where is he?” Korina asked, interrupting Niklav’s story.  

 

“He is in the Bauska lodge, bound to the center beam,” Niklav’s teeth ground loudly.

 

The idea of that vile creature bound made her smile.

 

“What will become of him?”

 

“I do not know. I would like to hold him under water until his lungs explode!”  Niklav was not jesting.

 

Smiling, Korina imagined Niklav killing him. The image was thrilling except that she saw Mikhail’s face.

 

“Will they do nothing?” She asked.

 

“Rihards and the Bauska elders are good people. I cannot imagine they will let him go unpunished. I doubt his punishment will be severe enough, but they will punish him.”

 

“I would love to see Emilya. Will you bring her to me? I am not ready to go back to that stuffy tent,” Korina said.

 

“Of course, my love, I will return shortly. Will you stay?” Niklav asked Caterna.

 

Korina felt badly; Caterna had been with her all day, but her presence was salve on her wounds. She smiled in agreement.

 

“You feel ashamed,” Caterna said. She was not asking; she was stating, and it surprised Korina that she had guessed her true feelings.

 

“Yes,” Korina whispered.

 

“If you let him take your dignity and self-respect, he wins,” Caterna said, her voice silky.

 

“But I did not stop him,” Korina moaned. “I should have seen it coming, or screamed sooner. I don’t know. I should have done more. I’m so weak. Our whole village will suffer the consequences of my weakness,” she lamented.

 

“You were unbelievable!” Caterna was suddenly in her face. “You held him off long enough for Niklav to get to you. You are a strong, beautiful woman, and you need to give yourself more credit. Mikhail would love to see your spirit broken. Will you give that maggot the satisfaction of knowing he destroyed you? Or will you stand, straighten your shoulders, lift your head, and condemn him for the filth he is?”

 

Korina gaped, awed at the outstanding woman before her. Even after all she had gone through, she was there, encouraging Korina.

 

“You’re right,” Korina said. “I will not give that beast more than he has already taken.”

 

“Good. Remember that you are a stronger and better person than he will ever be. You deserve happiness; do not allow him to take that from you,” Caterna commanded, and Korina knew she would never respect another woman more.

 

“Thank you.” Korina reached to embrace her.

 

Niklav returned with Emilya in his arms, and as he sat on the ground at my Korina’s, Caterna rose to leave.

 

“Remember what I said.” Caterna smiled as she looked down at Korina. “I love you.”

 

“I will. I love you and thank you again.”

 

“You look different,” Niklav said after she had gone.

 

“Different?” Korina reached for her daughter Emilya.

 

“Yes, you look different. The sadness has dispelled. May I ask what it has been replaced by?” Worry still marred his handsome face, but relief softened the harsh lines when he found Korina unsoiled by more tears.

 

“Determination,” Korina affirmed. “I will do whatever is in my power to make sure he never hurts another soul.”

 

“Good, I will be by your side every step of the way,” Niklav wrapped his arm around Korina, and they silently watched the sun set over the lake.

 

***

 

It was time. Mikhail was to be publicly judged. There had been a private trial. All the leaders and elders had heard second-hand accounts from various people who had witnessed the crime. They had tried to allow Mikhail to defend his actions, but when asked to give his own account, he simply stated: “I am the Great One’s appointed leader of this people. You have no authority by which to judge me.”

 

They then called upon Korina. She gathered her strength and went to meet them; Niklav held her hand the entire time.

 

“Korina, of the village Rokus, you have been called upon to recount the crime committed against you by this man, Mikhail of Bauska.” The elders motioned toward Mikhail who sat to their right.

 

To look upon his face was like being punched in the gut. He saw Korina’s immediate reaction and smiled. Damn, she thought, I will not give him the pleasure of seeing me flinch again. She squared her shoulders and lifted her chin, meeting the heat of his glare. Glaring back, showing no fear, infuriating him, hah, she thought, take that you weasel. Standing before the elders of both villages, she gave a detailed account of the evening in question, sparing nothing. They heard everything, even her thoughts as he violated her. She only let a few tears escape her eyes. The elders and leaders sat dumbstruck. They had not realized the full extent of the crime; they listened horrified and ashamed.

 

When Korina finished, the silence was deafening, and she could feel Mikhail’s glare burning the side of her face, but refused to look. Squeezing Niklav’s hand, she swallowed hard.

 

The following day, they heard the verdict. Embarrassed, Korina did not want to stand in front of all the people, but Ivan said it would make the punishment more valid in their eyes. Niklav stood with her on the small, raised platform that butted up against the rear of the Bauska village lodge. All were gathered, and the elders rose to begin.

 

“We are gathered here today to pass judgment upon this man, Mikhail of Bauska, first son of the former Bauska Niklav. He stands accused of beating and attempting to rape Korina, of the village Rokus, granddaughter of their leader Rokus Yefrem and guest of this people. Before we pass judgment upon the accused, we would like to allow him one more opportunity to defend his actions.”

 

“What? Why? Have they not already decided?” Korina whispered in Niklav’s ear.

 

“They have decided, but they want people to see that he cannot defend his actions. They need the support of the people to carry out judgment,” Niklav whispered back.

 

Mikhail said just what they wanted him to say. “I am the leader of this people,” Mikhail began. “You have not the authority to judge me. I have been anointed holy leader, and all that I do is holy. Any who pass judgment upon me will suffer the wrath of the Great One!”

 

There were a few huffs and puffs from the crowd, and Korina smiled to find that many of them looked offended by his words.

 

“So be it,” the elders said, and continued. “We here, under the eyes of the Great One of Heaven, find you, Bauska Mikhail, guilty.” Mikhail’s jaw clamped firmly, and his hands curled into fists. “You are hereby stripped of your office of Bauska, leader of this people. You will never again enjoy any position of power among us. You will henceforth be a servant to this people, filling whatever role best serves the group as a whole. You shall move from the village lodge to one of the dwellings on the outskirts of the community. Your family will not move with you unless they so choose. Your wife may stay on as sister to our new Bauska Rihards and her children as nieces and nephews. This is the judgment of this council.”

 

The veins in Mikhail’s forehead bulged, and his face burned brightly with fury; it was too much. He hit the man to his right, knocking him off the platform. Fueled by anger, he struck like a snake, stealing the sword of the startled man to his left. Mikhail pulled the blade across the man’s middle, spilling blood and intestines across the wooden planks. The man doubled over and fell. Lurching forward, Mikhail darted for Niklav and Korina. Unarmed,  Niklav pushed Korina back. She fell to the floor. Niklav tried to spin away from Mikhail’s attack, but the blade caught his upper arm cutting deeply, staining his shirt crimson.

 

Korina was frantic; she looked around for help, but most were still in shock. A weapon hanging from Rihards belt, Korina grabbed it and threw. Niklav caught it and raised it in front of himself. Mikhail’s blade did not find flesh as he had hoped; instead they heard the terrible shriek of iron on iron. Niklav was on fire. He had hoped and prayed for an opportunity, or excuse, to kill the bastard that had dared violate his woman. Mikhail’s blade met Niklav’s and sparks flew. Natural muscle moved earthen minerals forged into sword, as the two men struggled against each other. Mikhail’s blade landed on Niklav’s shoulder and quivered to rip across his chest.

 

“No!” I screamed, flying toward them and distracting Mikhail for a split second. Niklav pounced in that second, his blade singing as it flew through the air. It found the side of Mikhail’s neck and a second later Mikhail’s head fell to the wooden platform, eyes still open in shock. Gasps came from all around us. It had happened so quickly people were still frozen in shock.

 

Niklav, allowing his sword to drop, moved quickly toward Korina and wrapped her in his arms. Tears of relief spilled from Korina’s eyes as the shock wore off. Niklav cupped her face in his hands and leaned back so he could look in her eyes.

 

“Why did you do that? You could have been killed!” Niklav said, terror shaping his features.

 

“He was going to kill you. I had to do something. I could not let you die!”

 

“Throwing yourself at an armed and insane man is never acceptable behavior, you beautiful, silly woman!” He shook his head, and Korina saw the hint of a smile at the corner of his mouth.

 

“I will try to avoid doing that again,” Korina said, smiling through tears.

 

They both laughed with relief, and Korina fell into his firm embrace again.

 

“You are injured,” Rihards said as he removed his shirt and pressed it to Niklav’s arm.

 

It was true. Niklav’s arm and shoulder had stained Korinas clothes with blood. The healers pushed their way through the mayhem of people. Ludis and his apprentice Roburt set to work on Niklav, trying to staunch the flow of blood. Bauska’s healers had a greater task. The man Mikhail had robbed and cut lay dying. In agonizing pain, he struggled for breath to moan; he was cut from side to side, bleeding to death. They gently lifted him and wrapped him tightly around the center. Two women stood off to their right, wailing; hearts ached for them. They lifted him and carried him into the village lodge. Korina and Freya said a prayer to the Great One, begging for his life.

***

They were ready to go; Rokus had instructed the people to be ready to leave at dawn on the third day following the sentencing. Niklav and Korina wanted to go pay their respects to Alexa and Zhorah. They were the wives of the man that died on Mikhail’s day of sentencing. Korina knew his death was not truly her fault, but she could not shake the guilt. They carried a gift of salt. It was not much, but it was highly prized.

 

“Excuse me,” Freya said, stopping in their path, her silky, black hair falling around her bowed head. “I just wanted to say,” she mumbled, looking up timidly, her sky-blue eyes visible and breathtaking, “I just wanted to thank you. You will never know how greatly you have helped this people.” She smiled slightly, and the wind blew her hair away from her neck revealing deep bruises. She quickly pulled her hair back around her neck and hurried toward Robert and his brilliant smile.

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Heart Eaters – Part Ten – Lucy – The Culmination

Posted in Because I love to write, New Novel, New writing, Nightmare, Works in Progress with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 29, 2010 by cjirwin

(Please note: This post contains graphic violence and adult content.) 

Part Ten

Lucy – The Culmination –

 

“Come on Susan, are you sure it’s not too soon for this?” Lucy asked her sister as Susan pushed her out the door.

“It’s not too soon. You and Doug have been together for five months right?”

“Well, yes, if you count from the first time we made love in November, but I mean for the kids. Isn’t it too soon for me to be going away with him like this? I don’t even know where he’s taking me.” Lucy reasoned.

“Listen Luce, it’s not too soon. Stop worrying. It’s romantic that he has a surprise plan for you this weekend, and its damn lucky so quit complaining and quit making him wait outside in the car. I’ve got the kids. Don’t worry, just go!” Susan said and gave Lucy a hard shove out the door.

Lucy walked toward Doug’s car, toward the gorgeous, dark-haired, green-eyed god in the front seat. He is simply fantastic looking, Lucy thought. Doug’s eyes followed her every move. He couldn’t see enough of her, feel enough of her, drink enough of the sound of her voice. Insatiable, was his need for the lovely woman who walked toward him.

Lucy continued to worry over her children and her salvation, as she open the door, but she wanted Doug, wanted to be with him, the heat of her thoughts for him almost too much.

“Is this ok?” Doug asked, worry creasing his brow. “Is it too much, too soon? We don’t have to go away for the weekend. I don’t care where I am as long as I can be with you.” He dragged a finger along her jaw line, across her lips.

Breathing deeply, Lucy resolved herself to keep that crease off his brow all weekend, he deserved that. “No Doug, I want to go. I’m excited. Really. It’s been a long time since I’ve been surprised, and I love surprises. So, let’s go.” Lucy shoved all her worries aside, letting a smile and anticipation take their place.

Overjoyed, Doug simply set his lips on hers. Tasting her, warm, soft, tender lips was like being wrapped in spring.

Saturday morning traffic was minimal as they drove out-of-town. Hand in hand, they enjoyed the warm spring air that moved through the car.

“Scott State Park and Wildlife reserve,” Lucy read as they slowed and turned. “Wonderful!”

“Well, I know you love hiking, and animals, and sunsets over water so I thought this would be ideal, and Susan said you’ve never been here.”

“You seem to know a great deal about me my dear,” Lucy smiled.

“I want to know it all.” Doug said as he pulled up to the Parks main office. “I just have to run in here quickly. I’ll be right back.” He leaned in, pecked her on the mouth.

Lucy admired his long muscles and strong pace as he hurried in and out. “Wow that was quick!” Lucy laughed as he jumped back into the car, a school-boy grin on his face.

They moved away from the highway and cabin office the asphalt merging into a brown gravel road that wound fetching through lush, wooded forest. Lucy senses feasted on the beauty of the bright, fresh, green leaves, the brilliant colors and scents of periwinkle’s and wild roses, the sound of water tumbling over smooth rocks before in seeped into the beautiful lake in the distance. Her breath caught as they pulled up to quaint log cabin, grey, weathered, natural, it was simply perfect in Lucy’s mind. Lucy didn’t think she could be any more charmed, but as they opened the door she discovered she was wrong. Golden, superbly finished pine blanketed the walls and floors, small darker colored knots in the wood adding rustic character. Deep green curtains dressed the large windows singing of new life and bright, freshly cut daffodils grace the round kitchen table. The brown leather sofa was plush and inviting, making Lucy want to fall into its waiting arms.

“Doug! This is beautiful!” Lucy sang as she spun around.

Doug set two brown paper bags on the counter and began unloading them into the icebox. “I’m so glad you like it.” 

“Well, you’ve thought of everything.” Lucy said as she watched him put fruit, chocolate, wine, a whole chicken in.

“I tried. Are you hungry? It’s just after noon. I could throw something together real quick, but I am going to make you my famous roast chicken for dinner.” Smiling, he turned to her.

“I don’t want food.” Lucy said with a smirk.

“Mm, what is it your after my dear?” Doug asked as he wrapped his arms around her waist.

Lucy pushed his arms back and yanked on his collar with a mischievous grin. Doug’s breathing hastened when she slammed her lips against his, primal needs blazing through them. He reached for her, but she pushed his arms away again and began to pull him from the kitchen. Surprise mixed with pleasure, lighted his face as she backed him up to the couch and pushed. Sitting, struggling for breath, he watched as Lucy slowly unbuttoned her silky, white blouse and threw it in his lap. His teeth ground together as her tan pencil skirt piled on the floor at her feet.

“You’re exquisite!” Doug breathed.

They spoke softly as they snuggled on the couch; little things like her favorite bird or flower. Relaxed and unbelievably happy, she drifted into dreamless sleep.

Lucy woke to the rich scent of roasting chicken, and it made her aware of her aching, empty stomach. Wrapped in a warm blanket and nestled on the couch she had recently made love on, Lucy smiled as she watched Doug move expertly around the kitchen.

“You’re spoiling me.” Lucy said as she sat up.

Doug turned. “Mm, it seems to me that I was the one getting spoiled earlier.” He walked toward her naked body, leaned to kiss her then her.

“Mm,” Lucy purred. “It was as much for me as it was for you my dear.”

As he walked back toward the kitchen, she noticed he had the table set, champagne sparkling in the tall wine glasses he had remembered to bring, and two white candles lit, glowing softly. “It seems I’ve slept the afternoon away. I’m sorry.”

“Don’t apologize,” Doug called as he walked into the bedroom and retrieved a terry bathrobe. Sitting, he wrapped it around her shoulders. “That’s what I want. You relaxing and making mad love to me all weekend. I’m not surprised you slept so long after the ride you gave me this afternoon.” Lucy blushed. “Come eat my love.” Doug stopped. He hadn’t meant to call her that. Knowing how deeply Lucy had loved Robert had made Doug very careful with that word. He knew, without a doubt that he loved her, but he didn’t want to say it for fear she would feel pushed. It was undeniable that he knew she had strong feelings for him, but he could wait, forever if he needed to for her to realize that she loved him back.

It was like a quick twist in her heart. Love, I am his love. Why is it that the parasite guilt is most fond of love as a host? Lucy squirmed. Am I ready? Can I say it?

 

“Come eat with me,” Doug said relieving her of the decision right then.

***

By the time they drove away from the cabin on Sunday evening dark, heavy clouds bruised the sky. Wind tossed leaves and branches on the road as they were pounded by spring rain.

The children squealed with delight as they ran through the rain and piled into the back of Doug’s car. They dragged him into Lucy’s house when they arrived, and had him sitting in front of the television watching a whistling Mickey Mouse. Lucy smiled at the way they jumped into his lap, pulled at his tie and jabbered relentlessly in his ear. Patiently, he answered, played and held.

***

Lucy lay on her side in her bed reading. The white whale, Moby Dick and his nemesis, Captain Ahab had always fascinated her. Literary genius!  Lucy thought. The sound of chirping made her role, and she was surprised to find a small black bird singing on her bed-side-stand.

“Hey little one,” Lucy crooned as she reached. “What are you doing in here?”

Still singing, the small bird settled onto Lucy’s finger, and she stared in wonderment.

As it sang its beak opened wider and wider until the skin at the edges began to tear and bleed. Lucy gasped as the little bird was rent in two, blood covering her hands and dripping to the floor. In shock, Lucy threw the pieces to the carpet. They began to boil, feathers, bone, innards becoming a gross soup. Birds, loud, squawking, creatures began pouring from the remains. They pecked at Lucy drawing blood, screeched as they wound themselves in her hair. Through the cloud of frantic feathered creatures, Lucy bolted for her bedroom door. Lucy fell into the darkness, but it was not the pine hardwood floor of her hall at her nose. Soil, rancid rotting dirt, covered her lips, her face, filling her with the smell of blood and death. Frantically, she searched for anything other than mud, dirt and blood. In the distance she saw a lights exploding in the air, the earth shook, her ears ached at the tumult of sound crashing upon her. She ran. Without direction, she thrust herself further into the mayhem of whistling bullets and falling bombs. She cried out as she fell into a trench, small glowing lanterns littered the bottom casting light on broken, gutted soldiers. Even as Lucy screamed, she recognized the faces of the men at her sides. Robert, body splayed open, intestines green and rotting smiled up at her.

“Hey Love,” he said, blood on his teeth.

Throwing her hand over her mouth Lucy turned away, but found no relief. Doug’s head lay against her leg only feet from his amputated arm, leg, and torso. Lucy vomited.

“Hey Love,” Doug’s head sang. “Are you ill?”

“Momma, momma!” Violet shook her screaming mother, tears beginning to slip from her little blue eyes. “Wake up!”

Lucy jerked awake. In one quick sweep, she scanned the room, halting abruptly at Violets red, teary eyes.

“Momma, are you ok?” Violet cried. “That’s worse than I’ve ever seen you. I thought the dreams had stopped.”

“Oh baby, I’m sorry.” Eyes wet with tears and body shaking, Lucy gathered Violet to her, drawing strength.

As the coffee brewed, filling the air with a warm scent of a new day, Lucy called Susan. “No sis, you don’t have to come over.” Lucy answered after she told Susan she had dreamed again, and it had been one of the worst. “Really,” she tried to reason. “What kind of shrink makes house calls at seven in the morning?”

“The sister kind,” Susan replied. “I’ll see you in thirty, the kids are up anyway and want to see their cousins.”

Lucy paced the kitchen cradling a hot cup of coffee with one sugar and two creams.

“What does it mean?” Lucy pleaded of Susan. “I can’t bear to lose them both!” She cried.

“Oh, honey your dreams are just screwed up.”

“Is that your professional opinion?” Lucy asked and couldn’t help but to smile.

“Lucy you can’t be afraid to love because you’re afraid to lose.”

“I know. Feeling alive again has made that clear.”

“Then don’t worry about it. Now don’t you have to work?”

“Damn, yes, I was distracted. I’ve got to get moving.” Lucy said as she jumped up and set her dirty mug in the sink.

“Just go. I can get the kids ready and take them to school.” Susan said standing a kissing her sisters cheek. “I love you. You love him, don’t be afraid of that, embrace it.”

“I do don’t I?” Lucy said a smile spreading across her face. “I do.”

Lucy was still smiling as she grabbed her umbrella and walked out the door. Merrily, her heart circled in her chest as she rode the transit distracting her from the storm that ragged.

“Your umbrella Miss,” the driver said as she stepped up to the door.

“Huh,” Lucy responded.

“Your umbrella, you’ve forgotten it.” He said pointing to the seat she had warmed.

“Oh, thank you.” Lucy smiled.

“You’re welcome,” he responded his haggard, old face lighting. “You’re gonna need it!”

She skipped through the rain toward the double doors, surprised at her own lightness of heart. Doug, bright and striking, stood by her locker in the break room.

“Lucy, thank god!” Doug said smiling, the lines on his face smoothing. “You’re late, with the storm I was worried.”

With breezy like steps, she moved to him, laid her lips on him and eased his mind. “You worry too much my love.”

Breath hitched in his chest. Did she just say that? Doug wondered. She did, she called me her love. It’s not exactly, ‘I love you’, but you haven’t actually said that yet either. He pulled her into his arms. “You have made my life worth living my love.” His forehead fell against hers.

“And you have brought me back to life, my heart now beats because of you.” Lucy whispered.

Doug squeezed her tighter, breathing in the scent of her. “How am I supposed to do my rounds with you on my brain?”

“Maybe we’ll have to sneak off to the supply closet for lunch.” Lucy couldn’t stop the giggle.

“We could sneak off now.” He nuzzled her neck. Taking one glance around, Doug grasped Lucy’s hand and pulled her toward the closet. With a quiet click the door opened and shut. Lucy had her legs around his waist within seconds, her lips pressed hard to his. He held her, cradled her around him, relishing her warmth, her eager touch. They bumped against the shelves knocking things to the floor. Hands moved, caressed, set afire emotion and desire. Frantic for her, and insane with yearning, Doug moved across the small room and set her on the counter. His breath heaved in and out like the storm that raged outside as he pushed up her nurses dress revealing her white guarder, and thigh-high hose. Her panties, simply soft and white, did more for him than any lace he had ever felt in his life.

Lucy loved the look on his face, the school-boy adoration. The knowing she was so desperately wanted sent shivers down her spine. She kissed his lips, his neck, his collar and whispered in his ear. They moved, loved, explored each other hearts and souls.

Gasping and shaking, they held each other.  Doug pulled his face from her shoulder seeking her eyes. After running his hands through her hair her took her face in his hands and gently kissed her lips.

He pushed against her smiling at her warmth. “Lucy,” Doug said tracing his finger along her jaw, “I have to tell you, I know it soon for you. But I have to say-.”

“No, Doug.” Lucy interrupted. Doug swallowed hard; worrying it was as he feared, too soon for her to be in love with him as he was with her. “Doug, you’ve saved my life,” Lucy began running the tip of her finger over his brow. “Made me want and feel pleasure again.” Lucy saw the ache in his eyes as he wondered if that could be enough for him. “But more than that Doug,” her heart fluttered in fear and excitement, “I have found that I can love again.” Doug exhaled the breath he’d been holding. “Doug, I’m in love with you. I love you.”

“Oh god, Lucy,” he tightened his hold. “I love you. I have loved you from the first moment I saw you. I have dreamed of holding you, of loving you, but mostly of you loving me.” He took her mouth fiercely in a greedy kiss that brought tears to Lucy’s eyes.

They smiled, teased, and couldn’t keep their hands to themselves as they tried to make themselves presentable. Hand in hand they walked from the little room.

Sirens filled the air.

“What’s going on?” Lucy asked. “Where is everyone?”

“That’s the hospitals storm warning system,” Doug said looking around then stopping, focusing on the hail that pounded against the window. They felt a tremor move through the floor. “Tornado! We need to get to the shelter!” Doug pulled her as he hurried out of the room. The lights flickered as the wind and hail beat against the building. “Oh, my god!” Doug heaved and halted. Lightening flashed in the distance as they watched the clouds circle in the heavens. Wind sucked downward and soil raised from the ground as the first cyclone formed. It was small, but as it spun it dragged earth and sky to it. It mounted on, feed on, and massacred the world around.

“Come on Lucy!” Doug called as they ran through the halls.

A loud whirling sound overpowered the alarm, and Doug and Lucy fell as the building jerked, heaved and settled, a large portion being torn away on the opposite end.

“What’s the fasted way to get there?” Doug asked Lucy. “I’ve never actually done a drill, you’ve been here longer.”

“There’s a stairwell at the end of the C.I. Wing that goes straight to the east storm cellar.”

They ran.

“Oh my god!” Doug halted in front of the C.I. doors. “What is that?”

Blood seeped under the door, running in bright rivers along the wall.

“Someone must be hurt!” Lucy cried and pushed through the door.

“Lucy no!” Doug screamed and reached for her.

Lucy froze. Donald lay dead on the floor, blood pumping from his crushed skull. Heath stood above Donald’s body a smile tearing at his features. “Stupid bastard thought he would save us!”

Lucy’s stomach turned. “You monster!” She screamed and without thinking lunged for him.

“No!” Doug jumped, knocked Lucy out of the way and tackled Heath.

Landing hard on her butt, Lucy scrambled to reach Doug as he fought with Heath. Insanity burned in Heath’s eyes as he swung wildly at Doug. Doug cried out as Heath’s fist connected with his jaw.

“Bastard!” Doug cursed and threw his knuckles with everything in him. Blood dripped from Heath’s eye, his lips, but he felt no pain, morphine pumping through him. With a cackle, Heath slammed Doug against the wall, breaking the glass case with a fire hose and ax in it. The broken glass cut into Doug side. Lucy screamed as she watched red stain his bright white coat. Without thought, she jumped for Heath knocking him back and Doug fell to the floor.

Heath turned on her, lust burning his insides. “I told you I’d have you.” He cried as he punched Lucy square in the face. Her head rang as she hit the floor. Struggling to stay conscious, she focused on the flickering lights on the ceiling. Heath forced the air from her chest as he fell on her, hitting her face again. Lucy coughed, tried to scramble from beneath him as he ripped at her dress.

“How dare you touch her!” Doug shouted as he jumped on Heath’s back and wrapped his left arm around the psychopath’s throat. Heath felt his windpipe crush and jerked against Doug as he squeezed. A small strangled sound escaped Heaths lips a he took his last breath. Doug dropped him to the floor.

“Lucy!” Doug reached, took her into his arms. “Oh god,” he wiped the blood from the corner of her mouth. “We have to get out of here!” The floor trembled, they could hear glass shattering down the hall, wind sucking at the life in the building. Lucy felt his tense muscles as he lifted her into his arms.

“I can walk,” she mewed.

“No you can’t.” He said as he kissed her cheek and began to get up from his knees. Lucy gasped as he jerked and cried out, a sudden jolt of pain coursing through him.

“Doug?” She called his name as she watched his features twist in agony. He faltered; fell to his knees, still cradling Lucy tightly in his arms.

“Lucy,” he breathed, coughed, spraying blood in her face. They fell.

“No! Doug!” Lucy screamed, and then she saw her, saw the metal ax in her hands, dripping with the blood of the man she loved. “Helen!” Lucy cried shock, pain and rage filling her. Blood pumped from the hole in Doug’s back. “No! No!” Lucy cried, Doug still laying on her. She wrapped her arms around him as Helen raised the ax again.

“Let the sinners be consumed out of the earth, and let the wicked be no more. Bless thou the LORD, O my soul. Praise ye the LORD.” Helen sang as she watched Lucy pulled Doug closer.

Lucy closed her eyes. At least we’ll die together. God, keep my children.

A shot rang in the air. Lucy’s eyes jumped open just soon enough to see the bullet pierce the back of Helen skull and rip a hole in its front. With a shudder Helen fell lifelessly to the floor. Lucy’s wide eyes found Benedict’s shaking hands wrapped around the hilt of Donald’s Colt revolver. Quivering, he dropped it to the floor and ran to Lucy.

“Ruby May!” Benedict cried. “We have to go! We have to go love!” Benedict grabbed Lucy’s arm and pulled.

“No!” Lucy cried.

“Leave the damn grocery boy! The building is falling down! We have to go!”

“No, I can’t leave him!”

“David doesn’t deserve you! Don’t die for him, please Ruby!” Benedict screamed as the building shook, the floor heaved.

Lucy struggled to pull Doug toward the stairwell.

“God damn it!” Benedict cursed then bent and put his arms under Doug. Doug groaned weekly as Benedict adjusted under the weight. Lucy thought Benedict would break, but somehow he moved forward, toward the door.

Wood groaned against wood and metal against metal as the hospital was pulled every direction. As windows shattered, ceilings fell in, the foundation cracked, Lucy, Benedict with Doug dyeing in his arms ran down the steps. Lucy felt a sudden and strong sucking and screamed as the roof above their head was ripped away and the walls began to fall in.

“No!” she screamed as timber and cement fell toward Benedict. He fell. Doug cried out at he was thrown forward and landed hard. Both of Benedict legs were crushed when the beam landed, shards of bone cutting him a thousand times. When the second beam land on his chest he rejoiced in the knowing he would not have to suffer the pain in his bottom half much longer.

“Ruby May!” he cried and reached for Lucy. “Ruby May!”

“Yes,” Lucy answered tears pouring from her eyes knowing there was no help for him.

“Forgive me my love.”

“You’re forgiven Benedict.” Lucy wept. “You’re forgiven, I love you!”

Benedict smiled as his heart stopped and his grip on Lucy failed.

 Lucy turned to Doug. “Hold on baby,” she whispered as she began to beat on the cellar door. “Help! Let us in!”

The door opened and they hurriedly gathered them inside.

“Doug! Doug!” Lucy sobbed taking him into her arms. “Help him!”

Nurses and doctors hovered around them. He coughed, spurting blood. “Lucy, Lucy!”

“I’m here,” she cried he reached for her face.

“Promise me,” he coughed, cried out in pain.

“Anything Doug,” Lucy wailed, “just don’t leave me. Don’t leave me! I love you! God damn it, Doug, I love you!”

“Live, promise me you’ll live. Promise me you truly live!” His hands shook, his body failing, he struggled to hold on.

“We’ll live together! Don’t leave me.”

“Lucy, I love you more than I ever dreamed I could love anyone. Now promise, for me, for our love, promise!”

Lucy’s heart burned, twisted, wanted to die. “I promise.” Tears gushed from her eyes falling on his lovely bloody face. “I promise and I love you. I will always love you.”

He smiled, “forever I will love you.” His eyes closed and his hand fell from Lucy’s face.

***

Three months later.

Red, white and blue covered the long picnic table and hung in bunches along the front porch. Chicken wings, cole slaw, potatoes salad, chips, hotdogs, root beer, lemonade and a large cake decorated with strawberries, blueberries and vanilla icing excited and enticed the many people filling Lucy’s back yard.  

Bobby ran, laughter bubbling out, as he chased Sandra with a sparkler. “Bobby,” Lucy called with a smile. “Leave your sister alone!” then went back to her conversation with Susan and her new boyfriend. “So you and your crew are still very busy?”

“Yes, and I have jobs booked for months. It’s been three months since the tornado and already my crew, and I have fixed or replaced fifteen roofs.”

“ I am so thankful mine was one of them, and that you didn’t have to replace my whole house like so many others.”

“Me too,” Susan agreed, stars in her eyes.

“My crew has also been helping with the cleanup down at the Hospital. You worked there right?” John asked.

“Yes,” Lucy answered with a smile, but felt a twist in her heart. It was like a punch in the gut to think of him.

“Do you plan to work at the new hospital their putting up over on the North side of town?”

“No, I don’t think so. Um, excuse me,” Lucy said and hurried away from the table. Leaning over her sink, Lucy fought the tears. “God, it just isn’t fair!” She took a deep breath. “I promised, I promised,” she remembered as she watched the people in her back yard.

“Are you all right?” Susan asked laying her hand on her sisters back.

“I promised him I’d live, so I will.” Lucy said and wiped away the tears.

“Good,” Susan said and pulled Lucy back outside, “look there playing horseshoes, let’s go!”

“I’m terrible at this game.”

“Oh come on Lucy you just throw the thing.” Susan said as they approached the group. “Lucy wants to play!”

“Not really,” Lucy said but took the horseshoe that was offered. She went to throw, but stopped suddenly at the sounds of Violet screaming. “Violet!” Lucy called and began to run toward the house. Lucy gasped, swallowed hard, and halted. She struggled to keep from fainting as the blood drained from her head.

Her three children, screaming and jumping, dragged their father out the back door and to the edge of the porch. “Momma look! I told you! Daddy’s home!” Violet hung on his side, his arm tightly around her.

Unnoticed tears poured from Lucy’s eyes. “Robert,” she whispered afraid she would wake to find she was suffering another nightmare.

“Lucy,” his thin handsome face shone brightly as he spoke her name. “My Lucy.” The children helped him as he limped down the steps.

Still frozen and weeping, Lucy breathed his name again. “Robert, Robert your alive!”

Leaving the children at the bottom step, he moved to her, and gathered her into his arms. “Oh, god, I’m home! I can’t believe it! I thought I would die in that vile German prison camp, but no! I hold my love in my arms!” He laughed and she wrapped her arms around his neck and laid her lips on his. They laughed and cried though what the children thought was the longest kiss in the history of the world.

“Robert,” she sang, “Robert, God, I love you. Never leave me again!”

Violet, Sandra and Bobby wrapped themselves around their parent legs, and they all, for the first time in years felt whole.

Heart Eaters – Part Nine – Violet

Posted in Because I love to write, New Novel, New writing, Nightmare with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 16, 2010 by cjirwin

 

(Please note: This Post contains adult content and graphic violence that some may find offensive or inappropriate.)

Heart Eaters

Part Nine

Violet

 

Violets shoe tapped loudly against the living rooms hard wood floor. Arms crossed tightly against her chest, she cleared her throat with a grunt, and heaved a sigh when her mother didn’t wake but snuggled closer into Doug’s arms. “Mm, um,” she grunted. Lucy’s eyes fluttered. “Mother!” Violet finally burst.

Lucy’s eyes opened, blinked. Her head jerked toward her daughter’s cross face and rigid form at the end of the couch, then back to the serine, sleeping man with his arms around her. “Oh, crap!” Cursing, she swung into a sitting position, jolting Doug from peaceful slumber.

“What?” he blurted. “Oh,” he said, seeing Lucy’s ten-year-old daughter.

“What is going on Mother?”

“It’s not what it looks like.” Lucy reasoned.

“I’m not stupid momma!” Violet stated then turned on her heals and marched toward the kitchen.

“Oh, god Lucy I’m sorry. I fell asleep; I hadn’t intended to stay.” Doug pleaded. Lucy heaved a sigh, but couldn’t keep from smiling at him, her body rested and still covered in his warmth. Returning the smile, his words caressed. “You just felt so marvelous in my arms. It seems that they were fashioned to hold you.”

“You don’t have to apologize; I fell asleep too.” She let her head fall back. “Oh god, I haven’t slept like that in over a year.” His smile was brilliant, full of hope. Her eyes feasted on him, and her heart devoured the wondrous idea that she wanted to just look at him. Long, muscled, arms moved under his wrinkled shirt, his bright green eyes simmered with what she knew was desire making her stomach flutter, his dark, tousled hair fell across his eye and without thinking she reached to caress it away. The tenderness of the simple act surprised her, and touched him more then she could have known. “Don’t you work today?”

“Oh, shit!” Doug blurted looking down at his watch. “I’m late. I have to go.” He said leaning to kiss Lucy then jumped up.

“I’ll walk you to the door.” Lucy said smiling at his urgent expression. “It’s really hard on you to be late isn’t it?”

“I hate it!” He said with a chuckle as they walked to the door. “So you’ll let me take you out, right?  Please,” he begged after a moment.

Lucy had to look away from the intensity of his gaze. “Doug, I don’t-”

“Lucy,” he interrupted his hand on the doorknob. “Give me a chance. Please.”

Lucy looked toward Violets room and back to his stunning face. One step at a time, she thought. “Ok.”

“How about Friday night?”

“Um, I can’t.” Lucy said and hurried on at the tortured look on his face. “I’m driving to Lincoln tomorrow with Susan to help her pack everything up. The moving company said they would load her things on Friday and Saturday and drive down on Monday. But, I would love to after Monday.”

“Ok, Tuesday? Well, I guess I’ll see you on Monday, but will you let me take you out on Tuesday?”

“That would be swell.” 

Doug kissed the smile on her lips.

How can this be happening? Lucy wondered as she closed the door.

“Was that Doug leaving?” Susan asked as she walked from the kitchen.

“Maybe.”

“Holy Horesfeathers Lucy!” Susan crowed. “Was it amazing?” She asked more quietly smiling from ear to ear.

Lucy simply shook her head and chuckled.

“Because, he looks amazing,” Susan went on, “and usually men that look like that know how to make a woman feel all hotsy-totsy.”

“We didn’t, he didn’t.”

Susan huffed.

“Really,” Lucy assured as they walked back into the kitchen. “We fell asleep together on the couch.”

“Awe, he slept with you before he actually removed your nickers. That’s so romantic.

“It is all, ‘knight in shining armor’ of him isn’t it.” Lucy said, the words skipping from her mouth.

“Good that you woke up before the kids.” Susan laughed.

“Violet woke us.”

“Oh,” Susan replied her pretty features squishing together.

“Yeah, I guess I should go talk to her.”

“Finish your coffee, give her a few minutes.”

Lucy worried over what to say to Violet while she sipped her coffee, and drank every drop before she pushed herself up the stairs. Knocking several times before she finally heard a very resigned admittance, Lucy opened her daughter’s door.

“Can we talk?” Lucy asked.

Violet heaved a sigh and set Little Women on her bed-side-stand. “What?”

“Now, I know your upset with me but that’s no reason to be rude.” Lucy corrected.

“Sorry,” Violet said, eyes on her floral comforter.

How do I do this? Lucy wondered. My girl is so grown up. How did I miss it? Lucy sat on the edge of her bed. “We didn’t have sex.”

Surprised at her Lucy’s bluntness, Violet’s eyes jerked to her mother’s face. She said nothing.

So Lucy went on. “We fell asleep together. He was kind and comforted me when I needed a friend.”

“He wasn’t holding you as a friend would.”

“Ok, I can see that your old enough to recognized the way a man would hold a women when he is after more than just friendship, but that’s all we are for right now. Though, I do think I may want more than friendship at some point in the future.” Wow, Lucy thought. I said it, and I do.

 

“But mom you can’t,” Violet pleaded the child reappearing. “What about Daddy? I don’t want you to break his heart!”

Lucy flinched. Deep gashes. “Honey,” Lucy swallowed hard. “Daddy is not coming back.” Oh my god! Lucy cringed inside. I said and believe that too!

 

“Yes he is momma! Don’t say that! Take it back!” Violet screamed.

Tears slipping from her eyes, Lucy forced  out what she did not want to say, but what her girl needed to hear. What Lucy knew she needed to hear. “He is dead baby. I’m so sorry. He is gone.”

“No, no,” Violet struggled as Lucy pulled her into her arms. Violet cried, aching, stinging tears.

***

“She’s hardly spoken to me since Thursday.” Lucy told Susan as they walked out of her house in Lincoln Nebraska each carrying a card-board-box labeled KITCHEN.

“Just give it time,” Susan soothed as they loaded the boxes in the large, white moving truck. “I can’t believe we got all this packed and loaded already.” Susan smiled.  “Me and all my stuff will be home by noon tomorrow!”

“I’m so happy!”

“Me too, now let’s go have dinner and get some sleep so we can leave with the moving truck at seven o’ clock.”

***

Doug waited. He had taken the entire day off in hopes he would have the house ready before they arrived. “Ok, the gas is on, the water is on, electric is on, house is clean, papers are ready to be signed,” Doug went through his list. “All done and it’s only eleven. They probably won’t be here until noon, or maybe one.” What do I do now?

 

***

“We’re home! We’re home!” The children cried from the back seat as they pulled up the little blue house on Oak Street.

The moving truck was already backed in and the movers unloading.

“Oh, the movers are taking stuff in. Doug must be here.” Susan said, relieved the movers hadn’t had to wait the extra hour it had taken her and Lucy to get their five children and their very small bladders home.

Doug had the movers stacking boxes in the dining room and carrying in furniture; while he placed the boxes in their respective rooms when Lucy and Susan walked in.

“Doug,” Lucy called. He set down his box and ran to meet her at the entrance eager to taste her lips, but thought better of it when Violet walked scowling through the door. “You’re so sweet! You’ve almost got everything unloaded!”

“Doug you’re a miracle worker!” Susan sang and threw her arms around his neck. “Thank you!”

“You’re so welcome,” Doug said with a chuckle.

Lucy sniffed the air. “Wow! It smells amazing in here. Are you cooking Doug?”

“And if I am?” He asked with a teasing smile.

“Then Lucy will be your love slave for the rest of eternity!” Susan burst.

“In that case, yes, I am cooking, baked chicken, rice, steamed veggies, oh and of course, wine.”

“Oh my,” Susan and Lucy cried together.

“So, am I awarded major points for this?” Doug asked looking directly at Lucy.

“Maybe,” Lucy said with a smile.

“Well, if it will help convince you, I also turned on the gas, the water, the electric, signed up for garbage removal and have the bill of sale for the house ready to sign.”

Susan’s jaw dropped.

“Ok, I am definitely considering that whole love slave thing now.” Lucy said shaking her head.

“Yes!” Doug replied. “Can we just start with a welcome home kiss?”

Susan stepped up and planted a noisy kiss on his cheek. “I know you weren’t talking to me, but I just had to do that. Thank you, really.” The kids flew by. “Now, you two should go out and see if there is anything the movers need your help with so Lucy can give you a proper kiss.”

Doug slipped his hand in Lucy’s as they walked out the door. She jerked a little then relaxed. “Is this ok?” He asked lifting their entwined fingers and kissing her knuckles.

“Yes, I guess, I’m just worried the kids will see. It’s too soon for them.” He let go. “No, I didn’t mean for you to feel like I don’t want you to. I just.”

“It’s fine, really.” The look on his face was so understanding that Lucy wanted to kick herself for making an issue of it. “I don’t want to hurt them.”

“I know. God, Doug you’re wonderful. I’m so sorry for the way I’ve treated you.”

“Don’t,” he said pulling her in front of the parked truck and into his arms. “May I kiss you now?” He asked his breath hot against her skin.

She couldn’t breathe, or think, so she simply nodded. Desire pressed against craving and want against need as their lips melded. They took and gave, willing and waiting. Heart pounding and chest heaving, Lucy felt his grip loosen and watched him swallow hard, digging deep for control.

He let his forehead fall against hers. “It frightens me a little that I want and need you so severely.” He whispered.

“I understand, and a dollop of guilt to top it all off.” Lucy replied.

“Mother!” Violet called from the front step.

“Oh, damn, that’s Violet. I need to go in.” Lucy said and hurried up into the truck to grab a small end table. Doug followed.

The children ran into the house, up the stairs, down the stairs, out the back, in the front, ecstatic to be out of the car and home. Violet made a point of putting herself between her mother and Doug as they worked to unpack and set up Susan’s home. Doug grunted as he moved couches, tables, wardrobes and everything else, but never complained.

“So,” Violet began as they unpacked kitchen ware. “Do you have a girlfriend Doug?”

Doug smiled and looked at Lucy. “Nope.”

“Have you ever been married?” She inquired.

“Nope” he answered.

“How old are you?” Violet asked, and Lucy shook her head.

“I’m twenty-seven.”

“Did you know that my mother is thirty-one?” Violet asked surprised to find he was younger than her.

“Yes, I do.”

“Ok, Violet.” Lucy warned.

“What, just trying to get to know your friend.”

“Wow,” Susan said. “Mm, seven-thirty, didn’t realize it had gotten so late. Violet, why don’t you help me get the little ones to bed.”

“Fine,” Violet answered and gathered Bobby into her hands and stomped away.

“I’m sorry Doug.” Lucy apologized.

“It’s really ok. I understand.”

Lucy went to follow Violet. “Lucy,” Susan said reaching for her sister. “Let me talk to her.”

Looking toward the stairs, Lucy nodded her head.

“Violet?” Susan called after they had all the children tucked into two beds. Susan pushed the door to the empty bedroom open to find Violet staring out the window. Across the room she moved and set her hand on Violets shoulder. “I know it has been a very difficult year and a half for you,” Susan began softly. “But do you know who it has been more difficult for?”

Violet breathed deeply, “my mother.”

“Yes, and don’t you want to see her happy?”

“I guess it is nice to not have to worry that I’ll wake and find that she has killed herself!” Violet burst.

“Oh sweetie,” Susan said and wrapped her arms around her. “Your mother loves you, and she loves your father but-” 

“I know,” Violet wiped her eyes. “I know. I do want momma to be happy. I just don’t want admit that he’s gone, and Doug being here, with mom, it makes it really hard to pretend Daddy’s still coming back.”

“I know sweetie. I’m so sorry.” Susan held her. “Promise me you’ll cut your momma some slack, ok?”

“Ok.”

***

Lucy sighed as the hot water careened down her naked body. Head back, eyes closed, she reveled in the pleasure of a relaxing shower.

“God, you’re so damn sexy!”

Lucy’s eyes jumped open. Doug, naked, wet, and simply glorious stood in front of her. Lucy just stared.

“What baby? You look at me as if you’ve never seen me before.” Doug said. “Mm, it makes me hard to see you so stunned when you see me naked. Like the first time.”

“What?” Lucy managed. It looks like Doug, but it doesn’t sound like him. Lucy thought. She glanced around, not recognizing anything. “No.”

The door squealed as he opened it, rust against metal.

“Oh shit!” Doug cried out and yanked the curtain back. “Robert!”

The metal poker glowed menacingly in Roberts hand, and his eyes burned more brightly.

“The god damn grocery boy!” Robert yelled.

“Clam down Robert!” Doug pleaded, standing naked in front of me.

Robert swung. Blood splattered across Lucy’s naked body.  Chest aching, she sucked but the air would not come. Gore spilled from Doug’s broken face covering the floor.

“Robert, please, I love you!” Lucy screamed as the metal bare plummeted toward her head. “No-.” The scream ended abruptly as Robert sunk the weapon into her brain.

Lucy woke screaming in Susan’s arms. “Lucy! Lucy! Honey, wake up!”

“Oh, god! Susan?” Lucy blinked, shook.

“Yeah sweetie, it’s me. It was just a dream.”

“Oh, Jesus,” Lucy cried sitting up. “What time is it?”

“Um, six-fifteen, are you all right?”

“Uh, just a bad dream.”

“Yeah, I got that. Do you want to take a hot shower or something?”

“No!”

“Ok, are you sure you’re fine?” Susan worried.

“Yes, I’m sorry. How about some coffee?” Lucy asked getting up, putting one of Susan’s robes on and walking out.

“Sure,” Susan said hurrying after.

Lucy related the dream as they sipped hazelnut flavored coffee. “Maybe, I shouldn’t go out with him.”

“No, no, Lucy you’re just scared to move on. You need to. You have to find a way to move on, and I know you’re carrying a torch for the sexy doctor boy.”

Despite herself Lucy smiled. “He is quite attractive isn’t he?”

“And super considerate, and thoughtful, and can cook, if you pass that up I’ll have to have you committed!”

Laughing, Lucy rose to grab the coffee pot and refill their mugs. “You’re right.”

“I know. Now what are you going to wear?”

***

Lucy donned the silky black dress Susan had suggested.  It cut close to her bust, wrapped tightly around her waist and hips and fell just below her knees, sexy but not vixen. Perfect, Lucy thought as she began to remove her curlers.

“Momma,” Violet called from the bathroom doorway. “I could help you fix your hair if you’d like.”

Lucy smiled. “I would love that honey.”

Violet removed the curlers from Lucy’s hair. Handing her bobby-pins, Violet watched as Lucy secured the curls where she wanted them.

“You look pretty momma.” Violet praised.

“Thank you sweet heart.”

“Wow, look at the gams on that broad!” Susan sang as Lucy walked down the stairs.

“My legs do look rather amazing.” Lucy replied. “Thank  you so much for sitting with the children.”

“Of course, you’ve been working your butt off for me. It’s the least I can do little sis.”

“He’s here.” Violet said from the window and walked toward the door. “Hey Doug,” she greeted.

“Hello Violet. How are you?”

“I’m ok. Um, I just wanted to say that I hope you and my mom have a good time.” Violet said making Lucy smile.

“I’m sure we will. Thank you Violet.” Doug said.

Lucy could see the change in his eyes when he looked up, and realized it was the first time he had ever seen her dressed up. “Wow, Lucy, you look stunning!”

“As do you,” Lucy replied looking over his wide-brimmed Fedora hat and grey patterned tie accenting his long dark suit-coat.

“Thank you, shall we go?” He asked reaching for her soft hand.

Doug couldn’t get enough of the sound of Lucy’s voice and laughter as they ate. He peppered her with questions about her likes and dislikes, her childhood, her favorite foods. “Ok, so let me get this straight,” Doug said cutting the steak on his plate. “You hate just about every food, and if the food you do like touches on you plate you won’t eat it.”

“Yes, that’s exactly right.” Lucy said with a smirk. “So, let me get this right,” she mocked with a grin, and giggled when Doug rose his eyebrow at her. “You’ll eat anything put in front of you, you believe in the ‘five second rule’ for food dropped on the floor, and you like your cow still mooing when you eat it.”

He laughed aloud. “Yes, precisely.”

They joked and teased laughing until their faces hurt.

“God,” Doug exclaimed and reached across the table taking Lucy’s hand in his. “You are so beautiful!”

Her face flushed. “I was afraid I wouldn’t ever laugh like this again. Doug, you have saved me from a hell I thought would take my life.” His hand tightened, and his heart beat a little faster as he watched the emotion swim in her deep brown eyes. “Take me home.” She whispered, and he thought his heart would stop.

Gently, he pulled her up from her seat. They didn’t speak a word as they left the restaurant and drove to his townhouse on Main Street. He cradled her hand until he had to unlock his front door.

“I don’t deserve you,” he whispered as he clicked on a lamp and watched her sit on the edge of his bed.

“A savior always deserves his prize,” she said trying to focus enough to control her breathing, not wanting to look like a school girl virgin.

“You’re shaking,” he took her hands in his, but laid his lips on hers before she could answer.

Hot, slow, the kiss sent her blood blazing through her veins to her center. From fingertip to shoulder, he caressed, leaving a trail of gooseflesh. The silk slid easily off her collar, and he kissed the soft skin it left bare. Sighing, she pushed at his suit coat letting it fall to the floor. He turned her, planting kisses along her neck and shoulders as she spun. His hot breath tickled her ear as the dress slid to the floor.

Inside Dougs embrace Lucy’s heart, so eaten with pain, began to beat with life again.

Heart Eaters – Part Eight – Doug

Posted in Because I love to write, New writing, Nightmare with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 7, 2010 by cjirwin

Heart Eaters

Part Eight

Doug

 

The spaghetti splattered onto Doug’s plate, he speared it again with his fork, dragged it in little circles, the soggy noodles leaving trails of bland red sauce in their wake. Doug heaved a sigh. The last three days at the hospital had been miserable without her. He had thought that his job was ok, even that he liked it, but now he wondered if it was Lucy that made him happy to come to work. The idea of making her smile, even for only a second, the smell of her in the hall, just the knowing that she’s close, were these things what made him smile throughout his workday. With the way he felt he tended to believe so, and he decided that was just fine. Depressed at the prospect of two more days without seeing her face, Doug leaned back in his chair and wondered, once again, if there was anything he could have done to avoid the suspension he had dealt her.

Damn! I’m crazy about her! He thought as he remembered the way her hair had smelled of lavender and vanilla. Lavender, she must love lavender. She has certainly created a fondness in me for the scent. I wonder if I could go by and see her again? She didn’t really invite me back, he pondered. Maybe, I could go by after work? Wait, no, I have the potential buyer coming to look at mom’s house at five… dang! Maybe, I could reschedule. No, no, I can’t. I really need to sell the house.

Doug continued to maul his lunch as he went over the many changes he had made to his parents’ house since their passing nearly a year and a half ago. It took his mind back to Chicago, and the potential his career had had there before he came to be with his sick mother. The youngest of seven, he wasn’t surprised to get the call, his parents were old. She passed soon after his arrival, heart failure, and his father, his mother’s lifelong love, had passed in his sleep only two weeks later. It had been difficult for Doug, but it had also seemed so right for them to go so close together.  It had never been one plus one with them. They had always just been one.

The smashing of glass, the clinging of metal fork and spoon, and the curse of a frustrated nurse that had just lost her lunch to the cold, blue speckled tile, jolted Doug from his memories. His eyes found Lucy’s habitual lunch break seat as he rose and dumped the hospital’s poor excuse for food into the trash.

*****

 

The fragrance of apples and cinnamon danced in the air exciting and tantalizing Susan’s and Lucy’s children. Minute particles of flour hovered in the streams of late afternoon sun that poured through the kitchen windows, and Susan and Lucy chatted through lifted lips as they baked.

“Damn!” Susan cursed dropping the rolling-pin beside the pastry. “I tore it again.”

Lucy moved beside her, retrieved the rolling-pin and began smoothing and shaping, quickly repairing.

“How do you do that?” Susan said with a smile as she refilled her wine glass.

“You are too impatient with the dough.” Lucy said, turning to Susan as she wrapped the now perfectly shaped and tear-free pie crust around the rolling-pin then eased it into the pie tin.

“Well you always had me when it came to baking, but give me a rump of beef and a few potatoes and I’ll give you the Mona Lisa of main dishes.”

Lucy laughed. The sound tickled Susan’s heart.

“Luce, I have a favor to ask.” Susan said.

“Anything.”

“I want you to come look at a house with me.” Susan said, but hurried on when Lucy raised an eyebrow. “It’s on Oak Street, you know off Main.”

“Yes, I know where Oak Street is.” Lucy replied the smile growing on her face. “Susan what does this mean?”

“I miss you, I miss home. The only reason we were in Lincoln was for Jonathan’s family. Jonathan is gone,” Susan paused. “I never grew very close to his family, and I’m ready to come home. I have savings from working the past two years, and there was some life insurance. Anyway, I have more than enough-”

“So you’re staying!” Lucy threw her arms around Susan almost knocking them to the floor. “This is the most wonderful news I’ve heard in years!”

“Yes, and it’s the most wonderful news I’ve had to give in years. So you’ll look at the house with me? I have to meet the owner at five thirty.”

“Yes!”

Sheets of water pounded against the windshield as Susan struggled to get to her appointment on time. Gusts of wind tore the few remaining leaves from their limbs and tossed them against her car. Susan hated storms; tornadoes were the only thing that bothered her about moving back home.

“There,” Lucy said squinting. “That’s it, 201 Oak Street, that little blue house.”

Doug heard the car pull into the drive with relief. As he walked toward the door, he heard high-pitched cursing that  he figured was directed at the weather and smiled. “Mrs. Harmon,” he called as he opened the door then froze when he saw Susan’s face. “Susan!”

“Doug!” Susan said eyes wide. “I guess it’s Mr. Doug Harding, funny that we never exchanged first names.”

“Yes,” he said smiling. “Lucy?” He called as she jumped from the car into the rain and ran for the porch. His heart flipped in his chest making him feel twelve years old.

“Doug,” she said as she lowered her umbrella and shook it slightly. “Susan never told me you were the homeowner.”

“No, we neglected to give our first names for some reason.” Doug said unable to remove his eyes from her. She glowed, brighter than he had ever seen her; it made his mind reel with pleasure.

Doug endeavored to focus as he showed them the house. Laughter, even giggles spilled from Lucy and Susan as they examined the lovely little place. Unable to avoid it, he joined them often and made no effort to control his desire to let his eyes soak in and lick at the corners of Lucy’s bright face.

“It’s perfect!” Susan declared. “Three rooms, two bathrooms, which means, I get my own, close to Lucy’s, remodeled well,” she said looking to Doug. “Did you do the remodeling yourself?”

“Yes, I like carpentry. It gave me things to do after work, which was a distraction after my parents died.

“Oh, I’m sorry Doug. I didn’t realize.” Lucy said feeling ashamed. I worked with him and didn’t even know. How self-absorbed have I been?

“It’s ok now. That’s why I’m here actually. I moved from Chicago when my mother fell ill, and didn’t go to war for the same reason. My father couldn’t be without her and died a short time later.

Like a cannonball the guilt hit, all this time he has mourned too. He reached out, tried to lift you, and you merely brushed him aside with a polite smile. How cruel to not even notice his pain, and judge him for not going to war without even knowing the cause. Lucy berated herself.

“So,” Doug said interrupting Lucy’s internal rant. “Do you want it?”

“Yes!” Susan proclaimed and spun around taking in what would soon be hers.

“Wonderful!” Doug beamed. “I’ll get started on the paperwork. We can have you set up in a week.”

“Thank you Doug.” Susan chirped.

Lucy and Susan chattered about color schemes, rental trucks and furniture stores as they sauntered toward the front door. Doug smiled uncontrollably at the light he saw all over the two women. Happiness was banging at Lucy’s door, and he prayed with all his might that she’d let it in.

As Doug moved to open the door for them it reminded Lucy of the thoughts he had interrupted earlier. “Doug,” Lucy said thoughtfully.

“Yes?”

“Susan and I have been cooking and baking this afternoon, and I wonder if you’d like to come join us for dinner? We have more than enough.”

“That would be lovely,” he jumped.

“Great,” Lucy smiled. “It’ll be soon, if that is alright? Susan and I were just going to get some wine in town then head home.”

“Yeah,” Susan added. “Some one seems to have drunk all our wine.” They laughed.

“Why don’t you ladies allow me to pick up the wine and meet you there? Merlot, Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, what is your desire?” Doug inquired.

“Merlot,” they answered in unison.

“Ok, see you in a few.”

*****

 

“Well ladies,” Doug said leaning back in his cherry wood chair, “that was probably the best roast, and pie I have ever eaten!”

“Oh, now you lie simply to make my little sister feel good.” Susan crowed as she refilled her wine glass.

“Surly your mothers were better than ours,” Lucy said, the words warm as they feel off her wine stained lips.

“No, my mother was an excellent mother, but a horrible cook.” Doug laughed. “Everything was mixture, some of this, some of that, terrible! To this day, I cannot eat casserole and enjoy it.”

Lucy watched him as he remembered his mother; his laughter was like little fingers inside her chest that pulled at the knots and cords choking her heart. The sound of her own laughter startled her and made her want to weep with joy. This is what it must have been like for Rip Van Winkle, Lucy thought. What beauty to be awake, what joy to feel more than emptiness.

For hours they talked, laughed, drank, lived. Lucy’s insides hummed like a bee on the wind, ecstatic to feel alive.

Doug was telling Susan and Lucy what is was like to grow up with six siblings. Face bright, he was recalling a time when two of his older sisters had fought.

“Oh my,” Susan interrupted. “Are you serious? She actually swung a hot frying pan at her!”

“Yes, but it was because Sarah had thrown a loaf of bread at her!”

“It sound like fun,” Susan laughed and noticed Lucy staring at Doug.

 Doug did too, his heart and body stirred. Lucy looked away, her cheeks bright red.

“Anyway, Doug, I had a lovely time. I’m tired though, and think I’m going to head off.” Susan bent, planted a kiss on his cheek.

“It was lovely. I’m so happy you’ll be staying.”

“I can’t remember the last time I enjoyed myself this much,” Lucy said as Susan walked up the stairs.

“I can’t either.” He sipped his wine, trying not to stare at her gorgeous face, he failed. “You’re so beautiful.”

Lucy smiled, surprising him. “Well, I told Susan that you were pretty attractive, but that was a lie.”

“Oh really,” Doug said leaning toward her. “Do you not think so?”

Lucy shook her head. “No, I would have to say that you’re closer to incredibly handsome.”

In one swift move, he leaned in and laid his lips against hers. She jumped but quickly relaxed into the softness of his mouth. It was tender, slow, simmering. Lucy gave into his arms as he pulled her to him. Hotter, fiercer it built; Lucy twined her fingers in his hair as his grip around her tightened. Somehow -she didn’t care by what force- Lucy found herself straddling his lap. She moaned as his hands caressed her shoulders, her back, and her ass. A year of pent-up desire beat at the edges of Doug’s control as he fought the urge to take her there, pleasure her right on the table. God, how he wanted her.

“Doug,” the word rasped out of her throat.

“Lucy,” he breathed ravaging her mouth once more.

Lucy danced inside at the immense desire she felt as she pulled at his shirt. It was so real, so overwhelming.

“Wait, wait,” he forced the words out.

Breathing hard, face flushed, she pulled her lips from his.

“I don’t want you to feel like I’m pushing you. I mean, I haven’t even taken you out on a date.” He ran his finger along her jaw, and acutely felt the warmth of her bare back against his other hand.

“You’er right,” Lucy said leaning her cheek into his hand. “I don’t know Doug. Are you sure you want me? I think I’m broken inside. Really, I’m not sure of what I am ready for.”

“You’re not broken. You’re perfect. You’re what I want. We can do this slowly, let me take you out.” He said, and just because he could he pulled her face to his again and softly kissed her.

  “Ok, I’ll give you a chance if you’re willing to take one on me.”

Like heaven, like springtime, like a fire in the night, that was what he felt as she spoke and laid  her head on his shoulder.

He lifted her and walked to the couch. Sitting, he said. “Just let me hold you, feel you near to me.”

She snuggled into his side, breathing deeply his warmth and slept without nightmares for the first time in over a year.

 

 

 

 

 

Heart Eaters – Part Seven – Susan

Posted in Because I love to write, New writing, Nightmare, Works in Progress with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 21, 2010 by cjirwin

Heart Eaters

Susan

Part Seven


 

“I guess you’re right.” Lucy grudgingly admitted. “It did work out perfectly. If I’m going to be suspended from work for the week it’s good that it’s the week you’re here.” Despite her sour tone, Lucy smiled at her older sister Susan. “This wine is amazing,” she said as she lifted her glass again. Lucy studied her sister over the rim of her crystal, fluted glass. They looked nothing alike. Lucy was petite, slim, whereas Susan was extremely tall and sturdy, like an Amazon princess Lucy always thought. Susan’s emerald eyes sparkled with joy to be with her sister, and her lovely high cheek bones blushed from the wine. Many men had been intimidated by Susan’s size as they were growing up and had shied away despite her exquisite face and long, full golden hair. Lucy had never shied away.  Susan was beautiful, and Lucy loved her so dearly she almost cried when she thought of it.

“I agree,” Susan said, a smile helping the words to dance a little. “It’s so wonderful to see you. Davy and May really miss their cousins as well.”

“I know they’re not going to want to go to sleep.” Lucy said, looking toward the joyful shrieks and shouts coming from Violets and Sandra’s room.

“Yes, but they need to so we can talk.”

“Oh no, is this my sister talking or Dr. Mason talking?” Lucy said frowning.

Susan narrowed her eyes but still smiled. “I know you say you don’t need any of my therapy mumbo-jumbo, but in all seriousness sis, how are you doing?”

Lucy sighed loudly. “Ok, lets get the little ones to bed. Then, I will let you hypnotized me or whatever it is you do.”

“I’ll ignore the mocking because I’m so pleased you’re ready to talk.” Susan said smiling and set her glass down. “By the way, if you’re so happy to have the week off since I’m here why are you so pissed at your boss? What was his name, Doug?”

“I don’t know. He just, he sometimes, well, I just thought he would let it go. You know, give me a pass or something.” Lucy said trying to avoid the questioning look on Susan’s face.

“Why would he, doesn’t he have to. I mean isn’t he required by law?”

“Yes he is required by law to punish employees that assault patients, I guess. He did find a way to wave the fine though.” Lucy said as they helped Bobby and May into their pajamas.

“He got you out of the fine, and you still bitched him out? Good grief Lucy!” Susan scolded.

Lucy smiled, thankful for the honesty of a sister and sucked in a deep breath. “It’s just easier to be angry.”

A look of understanding softened Susan’s features, “easier to just be angry in general or angry at Doug?”

Lucy swallowed hard. “Both.”

“Oh, I see.”

After a massive amount of fussing, crying and begging Susan and Lucy finally got their five children to bed. Gathering their wine, chocolate and green olives, they moved out to the porch. A cool breeze rustled the brightly colored, fall leaves, and the moon shone brightly on the leaves that had already fallen.

“So,” Susan began, “tell me about this Doug.”

“There really isn’t anything to tell. Nothing has happened, and nothing will happen.” Lucy said avoiding eye contact.

“Come on Lucy. You know I know you better than that. Do you have feelings for him?”

“And what if I did? I can’t, I just can’t. It’s wrong.” Lucy looked at Susan, her eyes begging.

“Lucy, its been a year hasn’t it?” The question was soft.

“Eleven months, and fourteen days since the army gave me the news. Two years, three months and five days since, I saw him.” Lucy fought the tears.

“Sis, I know it’s hard. After, I lost David in forty-two I thought I would die.”

“I remember.” Lucy said turning to Susan.

“But, I found a way to live; I had to, for my kids, for myself.”

“I just don’t know. I just don’t think I’m ready for the relationship that Doug wants. He’s a good man, and he doesn’t deserve to be hurt.”

“Is he hot?” Susan asked with a smirk.

“Susan!”

“What? Well?”

“Well, I guess he is pretty attractive.” Lucy couldn’t help the smile that came with the words or the warmth. “Anyway, I thought I was going to get a session with my favorite shrink?”

“You try and distract me with your flattery dear sister. Fine, you can tell me more about this pretty attractive guy later. So, talk.”

“Just talk, no questions from the Doctor, no ‘you are getting sleepy’.”

“You know you mock me a great deal for being in the medical field as well.” Susan said poking Lucy in the arm.

“Yeah, well I’m in a practical field.”

“Oh shut it,” Susan laughed. “Just tell me about these dreams you said you were having.”

“Well it used to be that I only ever dreamed of Robert, but in the last month I have been having nightmares about some of my patients from the hospital.”

“Yeah, I think I remember talking about your dreams of Robert last time I came down from Lincoln. You always dreamed of how he might have died. I mean how, if he had died.” Susan corrected.

Lucy swallowed hard.

“I’m sorry.” Susan pleaded.

“You don’t have to apologize.” Lucy said managing to lift one corner of her mouth. “I know he’s gone.”

Susan wanted to encourage her to have hope, but she believed Robert was gone, just like her David. At least I knew for sure. It’s time for her to move on, Susan thought.

“Anyway, my patients, Benedict Galloway, Helen Christenson and Heath Deerborn, I’ve dreamed of them all. It was like living, experiencing the things they did.”

“What did they do?”

“It’s not pleasant.” Lucy warned.

“I can handle it.”

Lucy told Susan everything about the three that had plagued her heart, mind and subconscious. Images of a red-hot poker in the forehead of Benedict’s wife, Ruby May, Helen’s parents burning for their sins, Camilla, violated and broken beneath Heaths furious need. Susan blanched a few times, but for the most part hid her revulsion. Lucy finished, and they sat in silence, Susan thinking and Lucy knowing she was.

“Well do you want to know what I think?”

“I guess.” Lucy replied.

“Well, I think it’s a warning, from your subconscious.”

Lucy huffed.

“I’m serious. Just hear me out…ok.” Lucy tilted her head. “Please,” Susan begged.

“Ok, enlighten me.” Lucy smiled and shook her head.

“Alright, so, first Benedict, what finally caused him to snap?”

“His wife I guess.”

“And what his wife wouldn’t give him.”

“Sex?” Lucy asked with a chuckle.

“No, love, he loved her, and she didn’t love him. Love drove him insane.”

“Ok, I can see that.” Lucy agreed.

“Then there’s Helen. Her sense of morality, of what’s right and what’s wrong, her moral compass-”

“Yeah, I see. Her sense of what’s right caused her to kill her parents, lose her mind.”

“Right,” Susan confirmed. “And Heath, it was his misuse of passion and desire. He allowed it to consume him.”

“Ok, so what does that have to do with me?”

“Can I be honest sis? Are you ready for that? I don’t want to hurt-”

“I’ll be fine,” Lucy interrupted.

“I think you’re allowing the same emotions to destroy you, to depress you, to rob you of your sanity. I did the same thing for a long time. Your letting your love for Robert kill you.” Lucy flinched, it was like a knife in Susan’s heart to see her sister in pain, but she pressed on. “You’re letting your idea’s of what’s right and wrong cause you to painfully mourn him still. I know you think, you feel like it is wrong to move on with your life, but if you don’t move you wither away.” Susan took a deep breath hoping Lucy would forgive her for what she was about to say. “If you suppress your desire for Doug it will fester and swell, like a splinter only worsening your pain. You have to learn to let go.”

Tears slid silently from Lucy’s deep chocolate eyes. Susan moved her chair closer and gathered her little sister into her arms; wishing she could take the pain into herself, but all she could do was comfort.

“I’m sorry. I said too much.”

“No, no,” Lucy countered. “I need to hear it. It’s true. You’re right, I feel like I am only inches from being in a padded room myself, but I don’t know how. How, Susan, how do I move on?”

“One step at a time little sister, one step. But you have to be willing to take each little step as it comes.”

They both turned in surprise as a dark blue ford pulled into Lucy’s drive.

“Who is that?” Susan asked staring at Lucy’s shocked expression. “Is that Doug?” She asked when Lucy said nothing. “Dang!” Susan crowed as he stepped from the car with flowers in his hand. “That is way hotter than ‘pretty attractive’!”

“Shh! What is he doing here?” Lucy asked as she stood.

“Hey Lucy,” Doug called as he approached giving them a large grin.

“Mm,” Susan grunted and got an elbow in the ribs.

“Hey Doug, what can I do for you?” Lucy asked and Susan frowned at her detached tone.

“One step at a time little sister.” Susan said in her ear. Lucy heaved a sigh.

“Would you like to join us?” Lucy asked gesturing toward the table. “We have a lovely Merlot, uh, Italian I think.”

“I would love to.”

“This is my sister Susan,” Lucy said after he sat at the wicker table.

“Its wonderful to meet you,” Doug said as he took her hand in his and laid a soft kiss on her knuckles. Susan turned red, and Lucy smiled knowing the power of his charm.

“So very nice to meet you.” Susan purred.

Doug released Susan’s hand and turned toward Lucy.“Um, Lucy, I came by because I wanted to, needed to explain something. If you’ll let me.”

Lucy was about to answer when Susan spoke up. “I’m tired. I think I’m going to head to bed.”

“No,” Lucy blurted. “You don’t have to go. I’ll just tell Doug goodnight.”

“No, no, don’t worry about me. I can find my own way to bed, just one step at a time…right.” Susan said as she rose to leave, despite Lucy’s pleading eyes. “Goodnight Doug, it was lovely to have met you.”

“Same here,” Doug called as she walked into the house. “Anyway, I brought you these.” He said handing Lucy the flowers.

One step at a time, Lucy thought as she took the flowers.

“I’m so sorry about-”

“No,” Lucy cut him off. “I’m sorry. I know you had no choice except to do what you did. I Know I shouldn’t have hit Heath, but he deserved it, and I knew there would be consequences. Please forgive me for the way I treated you Doug. I shouldn’t have taken my issues out on you. It was wrong.”

“God you’re beautiful when you apologize,” Doug said gazing into her eyes and smiling. He reached up and cupped her cheek, and his heart danced when she didn’t jerk away but pushed closer. With a sigh of pure bliss, Doug let her fall into his arms.

With no more tears to cry, Lucy simply sank into his strong embrace.



Heart Eaters – Part Six – Heath

Posted in Because I love to write, New writing, Nightmare, rape with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 15, 2010 by cjirwin

(This post contains graphic violence that some may consider offensive.)

Heart Eaters

Chapter Four

Part Six

Heath

 

Lucy was dreaming, and she knew it. Like a prison, the dream held her. Nearly eleven months ago she had realized her dreams would not be an escape for her as she had hoped, rather they served only to intensify her misery. Robert, her lover, her husband, the father of her babies, that’s who she normally dreamed of. Countless times her subconscious, or maybe demons Lucy thought, had vividly portrayed Robert’s gruesome death, but as she stood praying and staring at a white wall with blue floral pictures she knew this dream was different. With mixed emotions, she realized it wasn’t Robert in the bed behind her. Relief that she wouldn’t have to see him die in yet another way filled her as fear of the unknown tightened in her belly.

Her lungs ached from the smoke, and the heat at her back was almost unbearable. Don’t turn around. Wake UP! Lucy cautioned herself, but morbid curiosity, like a fish-hook in her cheek spun her around. The scene that assaulted her eyes had her head spinning like the eye of a hurricane and her stomach heaving like the waves tossed by that storm.

Flesh, skin, muscle, bone burned. A sick, sweet iron smelling smoke billowed from the two blazing corpses. One of the four wooden bedposts fell onto the bed breaking open the blistered bodies. Blood sizzled and popped as it oozed into the mayhem.

Lucy retched, her body doubling over. Vomit covered her black shoes and her tan and blue uniform.

“Oh God, oh God!” Lucy screamed. “I’m Helen!” She looked back at the bed. “Those were her parents!”

“Mommy, mommy,” Sandra called as she shook her mother. “Wake up.”

Lucy’s eyes flashed open and she bolted straight up in her bed. “What?” she asked holding her hand to her stomach.

“You were crying and screaming. You woke me up. Are you ok?”

Lucy turned to her young, fair-skinned daughter. “Oh baby, I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to wake you. It was just a bad dream.” She pulled Sandra into her lap relishing her warmth. Lucy felt so cold.

“You always have bad dreams.” Sandra said still wide-eyed with worry.

“I know baby.”

“Do you want me to sing to you like daddy used to do for me when I had a scary dream?” Sandra asked as she pushed her mother’s hair off of her eyes.

Lucy only nodded afraid she would cry.

“You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. You make me happy when skies are gray. You’ll never know mommy how much I love you. So please don’t take my sunshine away.” Sandra, with her sweet, high voice sang it again and again as Lucy cried in her daughter’s arms.

Lucy’s eyes were still a little red and puffy when she walked into the nurse’s office at the hospital. Her heart sank when she realized Doug wasn’t there and her frustration at knowing she wanted to see him made it that much harder to control the tears.

“Thank God Helen isn’t on my schedule today.” She said as she went over her duties, then retrieved her supplies. “Time to work and not think.”

Lucy cursed herself as her heart fluttered at the sound of her name on Doug’s lips. Pushing her cart of supplies to the left of room one o’ one, Lucy turned to face Doug. A smile tugged at the corners of her mouth so she pressed her lips together in an effort to hide it.

“Good morning,” as always his face shone brilliantly causing the icicles on her heart to drip.

“Hey Doug,” the smile escaped.

“Are you ok?” He asked as he examined her eyes.

“Yes, just had a rough night.”

He wanted to send her home. Tell her to get rest. Mostly, he wanted to just hold her, but she was smiling at him, and it frazzled his thoughts.

He stared and Lucy demeaned herself for wishing his arms would encircle her. It’s just wrong! She thought.

“Did you need something?” She asked.

“Uh, yes, sorry. I needed to tell you something.” He paused. “Uh, oh yeah, patient one o’ one, um, Heath Deerborn,” he struggled to regain his composer. “He has been here three months, and I need to do a mental examination so his opium dosage has been reduced. He will be more alert, perhaps aggressive. The institution he came from had to heavily dose him because he was,” Doug paused wishing he could just tell her she couldn’t see Heath that day, but he knew she would bulk.

“He was what?”

“Sexually aggressive, he attacked one of their nurses. Anyway, I want one of the security officers in the cell with you.”

“Oh, ok.”

“If you don’t want-”

“No,” Lucy said quickly. “I can do it.”

“Yeah, I thought you’d say that. So Donald is coming now.” Just as he said it Donald came through the doors and headed down the hall. Watching Donald’s long, black night stick bang against his knee made Lucy rethink her decision to tend to Heath. Seeing the fear slightly change her features, Doug tried, once again to dissuade her, but to no avail. “I asked Donald to come even though he is ancient,” Doug said it loudly giving Donald a big teasing smile; “because I know you kinda like him.”

“Now, sixty ain’t ancient.” Donald replied with a smile. “And Lucy loves me even though I’m old.”

“That I do,” Lucy smiled broadly causing both Donald and Doug’s hearts to skip a beat.

After Heath was secured Lucy attempted to clean his cell. He watched her, his eyes slithering, gorging, making her feel soiled and used. Even with Donald standing two feet away tapping his weapon repeatedly against his palm Lucy felt vulnerable, and was dismayed to find it could become more uncomfortable. Heath spoke, like plague it filled every corner of the room.

“You are beautiful,” Heath breathed. “Has anyone ever told you how exquisitely lovely you are?”

Lucy tensed. The sound of Heaths voice was smooth, and sucked at her strength, it wriggled agilely like a parasitic creature to embed and feed.

“I could give you such pleasure.”

“Now there ain’t no reason to talk to Miss Lucy in that manner!” Donald ordered as he stepped toward Heath.

Heath continued to stare at Lucy. “Mmm,” he sucked air in, “you smell of Lavender and peaches, so much woman.”

Donald hit Heath in the arm with some force. “I said you ain’t to speak to Miss Lucy!”

“I love to see the flush beneath your cheeks as I think of running my hands along your soft skin,” Heath said not even sparing Donald and his night stick a glance. Even after Donald hit him again, knocking him to the floor his eyes drilled into Lucy.

“No,” Lucy called getting up and stopping Donald before he hit Heath again. “He is going to talk wither you hit him or not and Doug can’t examine him if you beat him to a pulp. I can handle it.”

“Are you sure Miss Lucy?” Donald asked, and Lucy smiled at the care and concern she saw in her old hazel friends eyes.

“I am.”

“You ignore me now, but once I show you you’ll be begging me for more.” Heath said sitting up. His russet hair fell across his face and his chocolate eyes burned with desire. Blood dripped from his full angled lips and his strait small nose staining his white strait jacket.

Lucy imagined he had been very attractive once, and from the sound of his voice she figured he had probably been very skilled at getting whatever woman he wanted.

“You could be like my first, Camilla. Yes, Camilla screamed for me to stop, but after I took her she only begged for more.” Lucy scowled at him. She doubted he was referring to the time he lost his virginity, and she doubted the woman he referred to ever agreed to do anything with him. “I’m wealthy,” he continued, “connected, a business owner, I could give you a job. Camilla worked for me, she was my secretary.”

Lucy turned back focusing on her task. Just ignore him!

“Let me tell you about that night,” he said with a wicked smile. “I know it will arouse and impress you.”

As he began to rehash the event he spoke of Lucy damned her vivid imagination.

*****

For weeks Heath wooed her, flowers, chocolates, bonuses, but still she remained professional. As he sat at his desk he watched her through the glass separating his office from her secretarial station. Heath Deerborn was an attractive, wealthy and powerful man, and not getting the object of his desires was a new and infuriating experience.

God I want that women! He though as his eyes traveled the length of her sharp chin, full red lips, sexy dainty nose, and deep blue eyes that he wanted to drown in. And I shall have her.

 

 “Camilla,” he called.

“Yes Mr. Deerborn?” She answered stepping into his office on her long, shapely legs that he could not take his eyes off of.

“Could you close the blind and the door so I can dictate a letter?” He asked as he watched the way her high wasted suit rubbed against her full butt as she moved.

“Right away Mr. Deerborn.”

“Come here.” He called after she finished. Direct, he thought. I just need to be more direct. She stepped in front of his desk with a pad of paper and a pen. “Come around here,” he indicated to the side of his chair and turned that direction. Hesitantly, she moved to the corner of the desk. “Closer,” he said softly rising from his chair. She swallowed hard and took one small step.

“Mr. Deerborn,” Camilla said as he took her left hand into his.

“Heath, call me Heath.”

“Mr. Deerborn I’m married. I don’t think-”

“So am I,” Heath said cupping her cheek in his right hand. “What of it. I want you, and I always get what I want.”

He was smiling as he moved his lips to hers. Anger flashed in his eyes as she jerked away.

“I’m sorry sir! This is not appropriate!” Camilla blurted and stormed from his office.

Eyes on fire, he slammed his fist against his desk. Never in his life had he felt such rage. Never in his life had he been denied something he truly wanted. Well, he though, we will see about that!

 

As he drove along the well-lit streets of Kansas City he deliberated. I should just call Jane or Mary or Amelia, he thought. They all realize what an honor it is to be with a man like me! Hmm, I could call one of those whores from the gentleman’s club, for the right price they let me hit them and dominate then. He grew hard just thinking of it. How dare her! How dare she brush me off! The more he thought of it the angrier he became. I should have fired her right then and there! After everything I have done for her, given her! She probably went immediately to gossip to all her white trash friends, to laugh! The fury mounted displacing reason. Didn’t she say that her husband was off in Nevada working on one of Hoovers ridiculous projects? I could drop by to apologize. He thought with a wicked smile. As the car turned left, the peaceful air of late fall was left smudged and dirty, a dark trail lingering.

Straightening his jet black tie, Heath reached for the knocker on the door of the small, white house. White trash, he thought again as he compared her small neat house with his mansion outside of town.

“Mr. Dearborn!” Camilla gasped as she opened the door.

“Camilla,” he said quickly. “I don’t want to bother you. I just wanted to, needed to come by and apologize for my behavior earlier. It was deplorable! Can you ever forgive me? I swear if you would continue to work for me it wouldn’t happen again.”

“I’m not fired?”

“No, god no!” He said almost even convincing himself. “That was my fault this morning. You’re just so lovely that I lost my head.” He said as he realized that he was standing directly under the porch light. “May I come in?” Anger blazed inside him when she hesitated. “There’s quit a chill in the night.” He said with a smile as he wrapped his arms around himself.”

“Sure, um, yeah.” Camilla swallowed against the bile that rose in her throat as she pulled open the door.

“Mmm, it smells wonderful.” Heath said and beamed a charming smile. Despite the warning that rang in the back of her mind she responded to his magnetism. “What is that? Pot Roast? I’d love to join you.”

“Oh, well, it’s not much, just leftovers, nothing special.”

“I don’t mind.”

Camilla swallowed hard. “Mr. Deerborn,” she said firmly. “I will see you at work tomorrow now that we have this misunderstanding under control.”

“Yes, of course.” He said through tight lips.

Camille moved around him toward the door, her long blond hair hanging in loose waves past her shoulders. He reached and wrapped his hands around her hair. With one violent tug, he pulled her off her feet and quickly dragged her down the hall and into the kitchen. She struggled to stand, to run. He threw hard against the floor, and she choked for breath. A second later he was on top of her. Once, twice, again he hit her across the face, setting her ears to ringing, her head to spinning. Camilla could feel the soft skin on her face bruising under his heavy hand that muffled her screams. Heath’s eyes burned, firing scorching arrows into her soul.

Ripping and tearing warned her of what was to come. Her tight suit couldn’t just be hoisted and she thanked fate for any extra time it bought her. Blood dripped from her nails as she swung wildly at him. Grunts and groan escaped his lips as her knee cam up between his legs, but she was dismayed to see the pain was only more arousing.

 

Camilla fought. She wondered for a moment why he didn’t simply knock her out to make things easier, but then she realized it was what he wanted. Tears poured from her eyes. Somehow she knew if she could stop struggling it would piss him off, take some of the pleasure. Camilla couldn’t stop. Good, bad, it didn’t matter, she had to fight.

Crying out she felt blood start to flow from her breast. Heath drank at it. Clawed at it. Laughing, nearly singing, he tore away her blouse.

“Never before,” he said staring into her eyes. “Never have I felt such pleasure.” He laughed it out triumphantly.

When he reached between her legs she kicked hard, her knee catching his chin staggering him back. Anger danced with arousal as he back-handed her across the face. Her eyes went black ,and for a moment she wanted to sink into oblivion. NO! She thought. Not without a fight!

 

Lucy couldn’t take it any more. “Stop!” She screamed at Heath. Her teeth ground together when she realized she had just given him the reaction he had wanted. A fury she didn’t quit understand stood up inside her. The smug look on Heaths face faltered slightly as she marched toward him. Donald smiled as Lucy jerked the club from his belt and let loose a vicious swing. His jaw made a lovely cracking sound and he fell unconscious to the floor.

Heart Eaters – Part Five – Helen

Posted in Because I love to write, New Novel, New writing, Nightmare, Works in Progress with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 9, 2010 by cjirwin

(Please note: This post contains graphic violence that some may consider offensive.)

Heart Eaters

Chapter Three

Helen

The three days off that  Doug had insisted Lucy take had been misery. The only thing that kept Lucy sane was not having time to think. Too much time to wonder, to dream of Robert, and Lucy knew she would end up in a padded cell alongside the helpless souls she cared for. Violet, Sandra and Bobby were her life vest in the raging, stormy sea she was trying to survive. Extravagant meals in the evening with custard and fresh raisin bread pleased Lucy’s precious children, and helped her to busy herself while the children were in school. She doted on them, playing games, making treats, even taking them out to the local dinner one evening, she needed them so she wouldn’t remember. However, the prospect of not being alone in the house cleaning all day trying not to wonder where her love might be laying, pondering the many places his bones might be scattered was calming as she prepared to go the hospital.

White, like the color of early morning mist and soft as rose petals, Lucy wrapped the scarf around the dark purple marks on her neck. Parts of the bruise had started to turn the sickly yellow of healing, and she was thankful for it.

It was Monday, another week without him, Lucy thought as she gathered her things to care for her patients. For Christ’s sake Doug! Lucy thought as she went over her rounds for the day. Only one patient from the C.I. Wing, I can cover my own responsibilities! No reason to push my patients onto other nurses because I was careless.

 “Good morning Luce,” Doug called enthusiastically.

The cheerfulness in his voice irritated her as she spun to face him. “What right have you to change my schedule!”

“Whoa, whoa, Lucy, I was simply worried for you and I, as your supervisor, have every right to organize the nurses as I see fit.”

“Ok, I understand that I was careless, but that is no reason to make the other girls carry my weight!”

Sighing, Doug shook his head. “I was trying to help you. You know it might do you some good to let somebody behind that wall of yours from time to time. The other Nurses wanted to help anyway. They were all more than willing.”

“Great! So now I’m a charity case! I don’t need your help or anyone else’s! What I need it to be able to come to work and not be coddled.” Lucy put her hands on her temples and breathed deeply. Doug said nothing. You’re being ridiculous! Lucy thought to herself. He is, after all, only trying to help. As if to remind her of her need for help  the white scarf slid of her shoulder.“I’m sorry. I, mm,” Lucy grunted looking up at him. His forest green eyes were deep and troubled, not angry as she had expected. If Zeus could have been hurt that’s what he would have looked like, Lucy though examining his staggered, chiseled face and tense, muscled form. Along his jaw line, down his pristine white jacket that did nothing to hide his tone and robust shape, her thirsty eyes traveled. Jolting at the realization she wanted to see his eyes sparkle as they usually did when he greeted her, Lucy’s face hardened again. “I appreciate your concern but it’s not needed.” Lucy gathered her things and stormed past him.

“Lucy,” Doug entreated.

“I have work to do,” she called over her shoulder.

Doug cursed and walked into the break room. Running his hand though his dark hair, he shook his head wishing he could see that look of interest, of want on her gorgeous face again. It had only been a glimpse, but he knew he hadn’t imagined it.

Shame, anger, disloyalty bloomed and danced hideously inside her as Lucy hurried down the hall. It had been over a year since she had felt any stirring, any desire for anyone and it rubbed her insides raw that she had. Not knowing what had come over her, Lucy begged Robert for a forgiveness he could not give.

Needing to work, Lucy pushed her feelings to the back of her mind alongside so many others she could not, or would not deal with. The thought of Doug’s tortured eyes didn’t resurface until she made her way to her only C.I. patient.

Before Lucy had completely slide the small window open on cell one o’ seven, she heard the prayers, smelled the blood, it made her stomach turn. Sato masochism, that’s what she remembered reading about her patient, Helen Christenson and also reading something about a self-inflicted stigmata. That’s what Lucy expected to see when she entered. That was always the way with Helen, cutting or hitting her head with whatever she could find to inflict damage, biting her wrists, digging holes in her feet with her nails, breaking her skin and ribs by throwing herself against her bed to try to recreate Christ wounds. That was until they removed her bed to save her rib cage.

Blood crusted under Helen’s finger nails and flaked, falling dry and sour from her hands as she pressed them together in prayer. “Forgive me father for I have sinned. I have no confessor, and unable to stand before our Holy Mother and ask her forgiveness for my wickedness. Please preserve their souls, keep them from the fires of Hell. Forgive them their sinful deeds.”

Lucy couldn’t help the revulsion that rose like bile in her throat. She knew who Helen prayed for; she knew what sins she begged forgiveness for. “Focus on your job.” Lucy said to herself as she called out. “Helen, Helen, please come to the door.”

Helen did not answer, and her prayers did not cease. “Hail Mary, Full of Grace, The Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now, and at the hour of death. Amen.”

“Helen, please come to the door,” Lucy reiterated calmly

“Soul of Christ, sanctify me. Body of Christ, save me. Blood of Christ, inebriate me. Water from Christ’s side, wash me. Passion of Christ, strengthen me. O good Jesus, hear me. Within Thy wounds hide me. Suffer me not to be separated from Thee. From the malicious enemy defend me. In the hour of my death call me; And bid me come unto Thee, that I may praise Thee with Thy saints and with Thy angels. Forever and ever, Amen.”

Lucy huffed. “I hate having to do this,” she whispered then called through the hole. “Helen if you don’t do what is asked of you, we won’t allow you to see Father Cohan this month.”

Lucy cringed when Helen’s prayers came to an abrupt halt. Her hands, bruised and bloody thrust through the hole.

Lucy began methodically wiping the crusted blood from the floor and chaffed inside as Helen began to pray. It was like, Lucy thought, a pair of dirty hands desecrating a holy relic.

From the day Helen had been admitted and Lucy had read the police reports given to the hospital a war had ragged inside her; pity for a young girl who would never lead a normal life and revulsion for someone who could do something so horrific in the name of God. The simplicity of her chore allowed her mind to wander back, imagining how it must have happened based on the information from the reports she had read.

*****

November 21, 1944

The gasoline vapors burned Helen’s nose as it gurgled out of the red, spouted, metal can, and sloshed on her conservative, black shoes as it dripped of the plush, floral, king size bedspread. Satisfied that the bed was thoroughly soaked, Helen set the nearly empty can on the carpet. She prayed under her breath as she reached up to assure herself that the steel cables were tight around their wrists and ankles and secured to the wrought iron bedpost.

“Dear God save their evil souls,” Helen prayed as they breathed heavily in their drug induced slumber. “Holy Father save their souls from Hells damnation. Dear Jesus forgive them for their wicked acts knowing that after this night they will sin no more.”

Over and over she prayed the simple prayer as she sat in the rocking chair next to the bed. She prayed as she waited. It shouldn’t be too long now, she reasoned. I gave them the pills six hours ago. They should wake soon so I can tell them I love them before I save their souls.

Helen turned at a moan from the bed.

“Helen, Helen, what is going on?”

“Relax Daddy,” Helen said softly. “Don’t struggle. I don’t want you to cut your wrists on the wire.”

“What the Hell is this,” Helen’s father said jerking against the bed. “Untie us now! Is that gas I smell? What in the Hell Helen!”

“Daddy you shouldn’t curse. It’s a sin. Don’t you see I’m saving your soul?” Her voice was deceptively calm.

“What are you going to do? What do you mean saving our souls! Honey, please untie your mother and I and we can talk.” His chest started to heave quickly.

“No daddy it’s too late. I saw what you did, with the Susan Flyn.” Helen said as she moved to the side of the bed.

“Helen, I don’t know what you’re talking about.” Her father said, sweat beading on his forehead.

“Dad, I may only be sixteen, but I know what adultery is! I listened as you coupled with her, made her squeal unholy things. Susan will go to Hell, but daddy, I’m going to save you.”

“Yes, yes, I have sinned.” He blurted. “I repent. Please honey it was my sin not your mothers. Release her.”

“You don’t know do you?” Lucy waited, he did not answer. “Daniel Weber, you know you’re very best friend, has been bedding your wife longer than you’ve been bedding Susan.” Lucy smiled at the shock and pain on her father’s face. “How ridiculous!” Helen laughed. “You judge mother even when you’ve been doing the same thing.”

Dumbstruck he turned toward his wife, now awake, “Is it true?”

Not seeing any reason at that point to deny it she simply nodded as tears began to tumble from her eyes.

“I have been worried that you and mom had been drinking too much so I was watching you. I had been reporting back to Father Dexter.” Lucy said.

“What! The church had you spying on us!” Her father raged.

“It’s a good thing they did. Now you won’t go to Hell. Ask God for forgiveness before I say goodbye.”

“No, Helen, don’t do this. Baby, we love you please this is ridiculous! Let us go!” He begged as her mother blubbered.

“Repent daddy, repent!”

“Honey,” Helen’s mother mewed. “Please!”

“Helen, stop this!” He commanded.

“Repent mom, repent for your unholy acts. Repent before I save you from eternal damnation.”

Helen pulled a small, brown matchbox from her pocket.

“Oh God!” Her mother cried. “What are you doing? Please honey, we love you don’t do this.”

“Helen! No! Please!” Her father cried.

“Repent Daddy, repent!” Helen commanded.

“I repent! It won’t happen again! Please, please!”

“Repent mom, repent for letting that man inside you!” Helen almost begged.

“I repent baby. I repent.” She cried struggling against her bindings.

“Helen stop!” Her Father cried, his wrists bleeding against the wires. “No, no, please. We have loved you!” He screamed as she drew the match across the side of the box and it flamed to life.

“I love you to daddy,” she said as she threw the match.

The bed became an inferno.

“Helen!” Her parents screamed in unison as they were engulfed in fire. “Please! Helen! Please! No!”

She prayed as she watched them burn.