The knife’s tip sunk easily into the flesh like butter. Just bringing a trickle of blood, and easy enough to wipe off. Her cries muffled by the handmade muzzle fastened to her face. She was a newspaper reporter, and had stumbled on me through investigation. And, well, I couldn’t let her tattle on me and the pretties. It was an added bonus that she had a very pretty pretty on her belly. I ignored her as I pressed the blade in deeper. I was cutting a bit deeper then I needed, but I didn’t seem to care. It was her fault, and I was still a bit angry with her. That and I wanted the pretty in perfect condition.
My hand worked the knife easily; after all, I have been skinning animals since I was about seven. A good age to learn my father had told anyone asking. When I had finished, I gathered the edges of the pretty and gave it a small tug. Using the knife, I cut it loose. Blood and meat hung from it, dripping. I transferred it over to a small plate. I looked briefly into the crater I had formed. It was a bloody meat crater. The blood swished as the reporter moved her body. Like a red lake. The red meat reminded me of the animals dad used to bring home when I was younger.
I shook my head, snapping myself from the thoughts. I needed to finish. I had no time to drift off. I looked at the pretty, and all I saw was a mound of flesh. And then my eyes took in the pretty. I took it to the contraption I made that helped me make the pretty perfect. I fastened it in tight, clipped it under the UV light, and set the timer. I then went to the moaning creature on the table.
Skinning is much harder than people think it is. And there are certain areas you can’t get the skin off properly. The biggest lesson dear old dad taught me was always, ALWAYS, clean up your mess.
“Daddy always knew best,” I said out loud and laughed. The laughter hit hard, and I doubled over laughing until my face was drenched with tears.
When I was done, I wiped my eyes and went to my mess. What got me was that she was still alive. I put my hands on my hips and looked over the mess: bleach, check; fire, check.
I got passed an old house that used to belong to my great granddaddy, who supposedly built it with his own hands. I believe he actually killed the man who built it and took over. It just shows you how I think of my family. Each generation was to be born under the roof. But I’m the end, and I didn’t feel sad about it at all. There was no way in hell I was going to give birth. Too painful and way too fucking messy for me. I watched and helped my mother who was nothing but a baby maker with short, stubby legs. And each child gave her nothing but grief. I saw it and what they did. Each one born after me had horrible problems. Too anger, too crazy, too something. So I helped mommy. It’s a wonder what a knife can do during childbirth. There was so much blood. In the end, when it was time to grieve, daddy had us clean up the mess. Dad was a different story.
The reporter wiggled and squirmed. Pain pinched her face as she fought to get loose. If I had been a man, maybe the sight of her naked and squirming would have turned me on. But it didn’t. In fact, it affected me in a totally different way. I ran to the toilet in the corner, the bile rising. The toilet had been mistreated. You could tell by the green film that covered it. And as I looked into the cruddy water, eyes opened looking at me. My head tilted as I looked back at the eyes. A frog jumped out, startled. Well, it wasn’t the only one. Where the fuck did the frog come from? I found a mess I hadn’t noticed before.
I turned and stepped around the old lawn mower as I returned to the table. No falling apart I told myself. I went back to the reporter. She still struggled. It would only be a matter of time before she passed out from the blood loss. I didn’t have the patience to wait. I pondered the many ways I could kill her and put her out of her misery. I could take the same knife and slice her throat open. But then that would create a bigger mess than I already had to clean up. I guess I could just suffocate her.
She went still, and I went to work. I started to remove the homemade muzzle. I was the freaking Martha Stewart of the woods. Dad had always hated my tinkering. How many times had he found me making a mess was beyond my thinking tonight. All I do remember was lying in bed crying ‘cause of the whip marks he had given me, fearing when he would join me to finish my punishment.
I placed the homemade muzzle on my little work table. I placed my palm over her petite mouth and used my middle and pointer finger to pinch her nose. She was already unconscious so it would be fairly easy. Her eyes sprang open, startling me, and then the bitch bit me. My other hand smacked the side of her head, and her teeth released my palm.
I stepped away to look at the bite mark; she had drawn blood. Sick bitch! I examined the wound. The human mouth held so many germs. They were so dirty. I went to the sink and poured a whole bottle of rubbing alcohol over the bite. And then she started to scream, high and shrill. It hurt my ears, making my head feel like it was going to explode.
I grabbed the nearest thing I could, which was daddy’s sledgehammer. I hefted the head onto my shoulder and started walking toward the noise. My eyeballs throbbed in their sockets. I stopped at her head, and let the hammer fall on her face. I broke off the bottom of her jaw and shattered all her teeth. It sounded like glass. I thought that would be it, but she shrieked again. I picked up the sledgehammer, and in anger, lowered it onto her face again. I hammered away even after the screaming stopped, until her head was nothing but shattered bones, blood, and brain matter.
I let the sledgehammer fall to the gore covered ground and looked down at my apron. I was covered in blood and brain matter. I was drenched in crap, and it revolted me. Never had I ever been so fucking dirty. It took me most of the evening to clean up the mess I made.
When I was finished, I stepped back and took in my clean basement. Bleach hung heavily in the air, threatening to choke me and bringing tears to my eyes. There was nothing like surrounding yourself with cleanliness. Just then the timer went off. The pretty was done. All that mess and all that bleach, all worth it.
I unclipped it after switching off the light and turned it over. The skin had darkened to a mahogany, and the ink around the bellybutton was a nice black. The design itself was something I had never seen before. I trailed a finger over the soft, leather-like skin. To make it even more eye catching was a piercing. A pretty diamond. A mouse ran across my bare feet, and I barely noticed since I was too busy looking at the pretty. I carefully undid it from the contraption and made my way up the stairs with it.
I walked it into my neat work room where I had created a frame for it. A nice oak color would bring out the pretty a bit more. Of course it was only for me to see. I never show people into the house. Actually, they get a shotgun to the chin and a get the fuck off my property. I wasn’t a people person. I put it carefully into the picture frame and walked it to my living room. I had just the spot and put it up with the other pretties. The grandfather clock, which stood in the corner and was even older than the house, chimed twelve. I yawned. It was way past my bedtime.
The sun woke me from a dreamless sleep. I felt alive and refreshed. Good work usually did that to me. After my normal morning duties I went straight to the kitchen and made me some eggs, toast and milk. Breakfast. You wouldn’t believe it, but I’m a vegetarian. Two much animal killing when I was younger, I guess.
Or maybe it was daddy. The sick fuck. I had finally killed him one night as he was “punishing” me. Letting my siblings go. He was in baby making mode, and after mom died, he needed new hosts. All my sisters were coming of age to bear children. The boys were taught to hunt and defend the home.
My bloodline was tainted. It was a comfort to me that I would be the end. One of my brothers ate a cop. He liked meat a little too much. One of my sisters is a prostitute with AIDS. She doesn’t have long. About six are already dead. Shot down, death sentence, suicide. One is on death row and two others are serving life sentences. Me, I’m the only sane one in the bunch.
I sat down in the living room with my breakfast, surrounded by my pretties. There were about fifty give or take. I loved sitting here in the early morning looking at them, thinking of all the hard work it had taken to create them. By my chair sat a pretty, little pink phonebook. I had found the treasure in the bitch’s purse. There were a lot of names. I couldn’t risk that she might have told someone about me. And they might have pretties too. For now I was sated. I ate and looked at the pretties. But my eyes kept wondering to the book.