Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Kiss of Death

Fellow writer, and runner of Blackhall Writing Group, Chris Robinson held an event at Blackhall Library last night in aid of World Book Night - Springtime Spooky. The event was horror themed (since her chosen giveaway book was Stephen King’s Misery) - and the foggy weather outside proved to be perfect.

We all had fun writing and reading our scary stories, prose and poetry - and, of course, indulging in lots of cakes and nibbles (Chris’s mam’s chocolate brownies and ginger cake were particularly bloody nice!)
Anyway, my piece was inspired by two of Freud’s examples of the uncanny - death and anthropomorphism (I attempted to amplify the first element of fear by turning death into Death).

And so, here it is:
Kiss of Death

The stitch in my side paled into insignificance when a new pain suddenly erupted in my chest. I stopped running and bent double to alleviate the fiery agony.
It was because I was so distracted I didn’t even notice him approach.
At first he whispered in my ear; nothing legible, just a sigh. Goosebumps pricked up all over my body and my chest tightened like a vice - squeezing my pain deep within.
I’d seen him around before. In fact I’d seen him most places. He’d be the one standing at the other side of the road as I walked past, he’d be the one in the car travelling towards me when I was out driving. He’d be the man in the crowd when I was out drinking, and sometimes he’d invade my dreams. He was everywhere.

I’d always wanted him to speak to me - but he’d remain at arm’s length. He didn’t want to communicate with me verbally - just wanted to let me know that he was there. Taunting me with his cruel stare and his brooding silence. Reminding me that I could never shake him off.
And at that moment, looking up, I saw his death-white gaze. We made eye contact for the very first time. Funnily enough, I no longer wanted to speak to him, and so I quickly looked around, helplessly searching for somebody who could intervene. Somebody who could save me. But he grinned and shook his head.

“Is this it?” I asked, sucking in air through gritted teeth. But it was no use, my heart had stopped working and I couldn’t fill my lungs. Panicking, my eyes bulged and I gasped and coughed.
He raised one eyebrow and just watched me.  He offered no words of comfort; in fact, no comfort at all. He simply towered over me.

I reached out my hand to grab him, desperately pleading, and he surprised me by taking my hand in his. His grip was freezing cold and it jolted me - though not enough to make my heart beat again. I fell to my knees, clutching his hand to my chest.

“Please help me,” I wheezed.
He laughed loudly, mocking me with his eyes. I used my own to plead with him above the roar of his guttural laugh, wanting the pain to stop. I couldn’t take any more.

He pushed me roughly to the ground and I banged my head on the gravelled path. Before I had time to cry out he was on top of me; his bulky mass weighing heavy on my chest. My heart was crushed.
Stooping down he covered my lips with his own and he breathed in my last breath. There was no warmth in his kiss of death. And the last thing I saw, as he stole my life, were his stark eyes burning into mine. Even frostier than his mouth, they’ll be etched into my mind for all eternity.

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