THERIOPHOBIA: FEAR THE BEAST Part 31
*This is all Chaney’s fault.*
Marley took a bite of the bologna-and-cheese sandwich Leland had made for her, chased it with a swig of lukewarm water from a plastic cup.
*Little Miss porn star. I always warned her that something like this could happen. But the bitch wouldn’t listen.*
Leland ate from an opened bag of pork skins. He bounced on the springs of his easy chair, watching the football game with the volume up too loud.
“Run, you stupid nigger!” he shouted. “Run!”
Marley took another bite. *This should have been Chaney instead of me.*
Leland slammed his fist down on the arm of his chair. “Why don’t you just hand ’em the goddamn game on a platter!” He’d grown angrier the longer the game had gone on. “Come on, Tide! Goddamn it! Get on the fuckin’ ball!”
Marley watched him, sitting on the floor on her blanket. Naked. She hadn’t bathed. She could smell the sweat on her body, the dirt. She felt like she would never get clean again. And she knew she would never feel clean again.
“Oh, come on, ref!” Leland bellowed.
Marley thought about all that he had done to her. *Ruined. He’s ruined me.*
“Shit! That sumbitch is blind!”
Marley stared at Leland. His grotesque, fat, hairy body, his filthy coveralls. His ugly pig eyes, that rotten-mouthed snarl. She hated him. She realized she’d never known what it was like to hate someone, never imagined it possible to feel anything so strong.
“No, goddammit, no!” Leland threw the bag of pork skins at the TV, jumping to his feet. “There goes the goddamn ball game!”
She wondered if maybe she didn’t hate Chaney too, just a little bit.
“Goddamn it!” Leland kicked his chair. He threw the remote control against the far wall, breaking it. The TV droned on.
“…the Crimson Tide just couldn’t pull it off today…”
Leland jabbed the power button so hard it almost toppled the television off its cart. “Fuckin’ A!” He drew back and punched the kitchen wall, his fist going through the sheetrock. The whole trailer shook.
*This is Chaney’s fault.*
Leland spun around. “And what the fuck are you lookin’ at?!” He took a step towards her.
“I’m not looking at anything.”
Leland struck her in the face with his fist. Marley fell back, the world spinning. She felt blood spilling from her nose, over her lips. She spat. Leland grabbed a handful of her hair and pulled her back up.
“You think it’s funny?!” he bellowed. He slapped her, making her ears ring. “Do you?!”
“Fuckin’ cunt!” He let her go, then kicked her hard in the backside as she fell onto all fours. “Bitch!” He stomped off, cursing under his breath.
Marley lay on her face, sobbing. She heard the front door slam. She could taste her own blood. She forced herself up, wincing at the pain where he’d kicked her. She felt certain he’d broken her nose. She gasped for breath.
“I’ll kill you for that!” she said. “If it’s the last fucking thing I ever do! I’m gonna kill you!”
She sat trembling, as much from rage as pain or fear. She felt hot inside.
“I’m gonna kill you, Leland!”
She spat blood. Marley knew something had changed inside her. Leland had changed her. It frightened her, but it also lent her strength. Leland had taken something from her she would never get back. But he’d given her something, too. Something she hadn’t had before.
Something that she’d use to make him pay.
* * *
WAYNE MILLER is the owner and creative director of EVIL CHEEZ PRODUCTIONS (www.evilcheezproductions.blogspot.com, www.facebook.com/evilcheezproductions), specializing in theatrical performances and haunted attractions. He has written, produced and directed (and occasionally acted in) over a dozen plays, most of them in the Horror and Crime genres. His first novel, THE CONFESSIONS OF SAINT CHRISTOPHER: WEREWOLF, is available for purchase at https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/734763
MORTUI VELOCES SUNT!