I COULD DO
by Brian J. Smith
wasn’t much I could do but lay there with my eyes squeezed shut while they did
were about to go to bed around nine because she was about to go back to the
university when there was a knock on the door. I walked over to see who it was
at this ungodly hour when the door burst open and they stepped inside one by
one. The chain snapped off the wall and danced across the kitchen floor as two
of them grabbed me by the arms and sent the others into the bedroom.
slammed me onto the floor and whipped and kicked me
until it hurt. Beneath all the beatings, the sound of torn fabric and the
squeal of bedsprings mingled with the worst sound a man could ever hear.
me! Get off me, you-you! Help me.”
tone of her scream burrowed into my brain,
chiseling away not just pieces of my skull but my soul, too. They laughed when
they were done, and I couldn’t taste nothing but blood on my tongue and feel a
thousand rivers of pain and shame pumping through my chest and stomach. I couldn’t
see their faces, but I could tell they enjoyed every minute of it.
him in here.” One of them demanded. “I want him to
rolled me onto my stomach and dragged me into the
bedroom. They’d stretched her across the bed, her head jutting over the side of
the mattress, her face half shrouded by a falling curtain of blonde hair. A
tall broad-shouldered man in black clothes and a matching black ski-mask was
lying behind her, his crotch pressed against her exposed white rump.
man stood in the far-left corner, aiming a sleek
metallic camcorder with a little view mirror on the side.
they pulled my head back to look at him, the man on
the bed said, “You know why we’re here don’t you, Mickey Boy? If you’d just
given us what we want—.”
got until Thursday.” My lips were bloody and swollen.
“You told me I had—.”
“I’ve had enough of
your shit. I’ve given you plenty of time to get us the money.” He hissed
through the ski mask. “I’ve got ways of getting what I want.”
of his zipper made my heart skip a beat; a
blanket of gooseflesh broke out across my skin. She squeezed her eyes shut
because she knew what was coming; we all did. He didn’t exactly ram it into her
but he did a job of finding the right place. The slap of flesh against flesh
mingled with his grunts and the sick satisfying giggles coming from his
bookends; two of them continued to hold me down while the other one recorded
more she screamed the more they grunted. There were too many of them, so the odds
were stacked against me; five on one and you were a mouse trapped by a pack of
hungry cats, their eyes glinting with something stronger than blood lust and
the sweet taste of anger.
no one to blame but myself; no one. I’d gotten into
some trouble and needed a major fix and I’d have done anything for that fix.
that bad when you haven’t had it after a while. You
feel ants crawling under your skin and no matter how many times you scratch
yourself you find out you’ve done nothing but scratch yourself so raw it hurts
and then you feel your stomach twist up like a Christmas bow going in every
direction but where it wasn’t supposed to go and then you begin to sweat so bad
it soaks into your clothes and hair and when you try to wipe it away it keeps
coming back. And that was before the shivers and the hallucinations.
I tried to look
away, closing my eyes to block this moment from my memory, but they pulled my
head back behind my shoulders and made me watch as they took turns. One would
finish and then tag the other one in and so on. One time wasn’t enough and when
they finally finished, they beat the hell out of me but I blacked out before I
could feel the rest of it.
THAT was twenty-four hours
in the hospital and I’m hooked up to so many tubes
and machines I don’t know which one is doing my peeing or pumping my blood. I
can’t hear much of what the doctors are saying but I get the gist of it. They
repeat it to the nurses as much as they do to the cops: broken ribs, contusions
and two broken legs and a dislocated shoulder.
because I couldn’t go without that sweet juice
pumping through me for just one night and then the next night and then the next
night after that. I couldn’t pay my dues to The
Devil so he came to collect
not just my soul but Tonya’s virginity as well. She was the most God-fearing
woman I’d known in my whole useless life and she had plans for that virginity
but here I’d gone off and gave it to The Devil because I couldn’t keep a simple
me to change; she was as good a reason for me to
spin my life back around into the right direction as any other. Instead, I’d
dragged her down with me and I couldn’t blame her if she hated me for the rest
of her life. I deserved everything I got.
was only one way for me to keep them away from me or
I’ve turned up the morphine drip and
waiting for that sweet ride on Cloud Nine to carry me off to wherever I’m meant
worry, Tonya. This wasn’t your fault.
Daddy Loves You.
Brian J. Smith has been featured in numerous
anthologies, e-zines and magazines in both the mystery and horror genres. His
books Dark Avenues, The Tuckers, Uncle Bubby, and Three
O’Clock are still available on Amazon
for Kindle. He lives in southeastern Ohio with his four dogs, where he eats
more than enough spicy food that no human being should ever consume, already
has too many books and buys more, and doesn’t drink enough coffee to suit his
palate, and cheers on the Ohio State Buckeyes. He can be found on Twitter under
BrianJSmith13 and on
Instagram under buckeyefan913.