Monday, January 4, 2010

Here Kitty, Kitty

I hate the days that I can't think of anything to write but due to making an obligation to myself to blog everyday, I am forced to get something down on the page.
I am at such a loss in fact, that I have decided that I am going to post one of my short stories that I submitted recently for a contest.  It didn't win but I got some great feedback on it from the judges.  It's better than nothing.
To give a little background and just so you don't think I am a morbid, sick person in desperate need of therapy, the following story was for a hallowe'en contest with a theme of 'wicked words'So I was forced to get creative, after all that's what writing is all about.


Here Kitty, Kitty

Malea could still hear the visceral screams echo through her head as she walked down the faintly lit street. The noxious odor of burnt flesh and hair covered her body like a dark veil but it exhilarated her, added that little bounce to her step. She glanced back towards the scene, hidden in the dark, but to her as visible as daylight.

The street was quiet at this ghostly hour. Jack o’ lanterns glared at her with omniscient stares. Taunted or congratulated her, she was not sure. Not that it mattered. What needed to be done had been done. What no one else would ever be brave enough to do, or insane enough. Malea smiled.

Humans were so banal. Inexperienced with the exhilaration of a crossed line, unable to bend to the rules enforced by a society of cretins only out for the good of themselves. Who defines the line between right and wrong? Shouldn’t individual free will be the judge of what is good for a person? Nothing but puppets, manipulated by invisible strings. She would never be controlled in such a way. Nor would she conform. Decisions would be her own, based only on what was right for her, made her feel good. No one got hurt. Not really.

Neighborhood cats had disappeared. For weeks, Malea roamed the streets night after night, in search of her precious kitty. This was the conformity she abhorred but on occasion it was necessary to blend.

“Ernie. Here, kitty, kitty.” The words like sand on her tongue. Ernie hadn’t been with her long. Each week she took in another stray, groomed it to perfection and set it free. Content to be alone, she had no need for the companionship of a pet. But when they came to her, she welcomed them in. For Malea did have a need, a fire, inside that had to be fueled and stoked.

Malea fingered the tiny orbs in her pocket, reveled in their smoothness. It amazed her that she found so much satisfaction in such tiny objects. She heard stories about how the first time could never be emulated. But for her each time was just as wonderful as the first. No need to escalate.

Her house was at the far end of the cul-de-sac, hidden behind a wall of weeping willows. No streetlights to illuminate her yard. As she drew closer she had the sudden urge to run. Not out of panic, but out of need, desire. Like the point at which you are about to reach orgasm, just within your reach but not quite there yet.

Not that she really cared, but sometimes Malea was curious what her neighbours thought of her. How they would react if they knew her? Would she be stoned and shunned? It wasn’t like she was friends with any of them. Barely even acquainted. No invitations to dinner or coffee. No baking to welcome her to the neighbourhood. Isn’t that what good neighbours were supposed to do? Maybe that was only in the movies.

Expectations were high in this end of town. To avoid any uninvited attention, she conformed. Her lawn was perfectly groomed and maintained, decorated with all the necessary flowers and lawn ornaments. She watered at the appropriate times, left her garbage on the street on the right day and immediately after collection, returned the bins to the garage. No one had a problem with her and she preferred to keep it that way. We all have secrets, but some worse than others. Unlike her neighbours, she kept her private life private. When she did encounter the occasional dog walker, she kept conversations to a minimum.

Malea crawled under her weeping willows and made her way up to the front porch. Inside she stopped briefly to remove her shoes then hurried to the kitchen. As she approached the sink, she removed the tiny orbs from her pocket, turned them over in her hands, fondled them. One at a time she held them up to the light to admire their smoothness, revel in their sheen. Pupils fixed and dilated.

The water was warm as she rinsed away the blood and brain matter still attached to the optic stems. With one careful slice of a knife, she carved the stem to the necessary length. Next, she soaked the eyes in olive oil, just until they were glossy again. In the living room she opened her special cabinet. The space was ready. One at a time she placed the eyes on the holder, pupils out and stood back to admire her collection. Ernie was finally home.

Malea went to the hall closet and filled a small bowl with cat food and stopped in the laundry room long enough to refill the water dish. Together, she placed them neatly outside her front door. Turned on the porch light, went inside and waited.

© Copyright 2009 Robin van Eck

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