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The Son of the Devil- Chapter One: A Deal, a Streak, and a Monster
I shrugged off the ache in my shoulder and shook my hands. After 30 minutes of waiting out in the cold, I could hardly feel my fingers. The boy- What was his name? Something trashy. Was it Dustin? Tristan?-Anyway, he told me he would meet me here, just behind the abandoned gas station, but he’s no where to be seen. The other kids tell me that he’s the only one selling for a good price, but you know, I’d give just about anything for some. Pot, that is. I’ve been thinking of doing something bigger, but I think I’d better start small, you know? Really though, I just want something to get me feeling normal again. I feel so restless sometimes that I can’t stand to be in my own skin. Also, occasionally I get this weird feeling, like I’m so happy I’m going to cry. It always comes on suddenly too, with no warning.
Something leathery brushed by my back. I shivered violently. Silently, I counted to three, and whipped around as fast as I could. Nothing. Sometimes I feel like little sounds and images and feelings are sweeping over me, then gone in the next second. I get so scared of these things, that I can hardly stand being alone anymore.
I’ve got to calm down if I want to last until the boy gets here. My hands were shaking as I took out a pack of cigarettes, and shook one out. I’m 14, but I first started last year. I had been walking around campus when I’d stumbled upon a full pack. That was when all the weird things were just starting to show themselves, so being restless and curious, I gave it whirl and loved it.
Right as I was sucking in deeply, a slight boy came jogging around the corner.
“Hosanna?” He said.
“Yeah, how much?” The smoke came drifting out of my mouth as I spoke.
“Just 5 bucks for two uses” It seemed cheap to me, but I can’t be sure, so I just nodded, and handed him a 5. He handed me a small Ziploc bag and shared a toothy grin before turning the corner once again. Should a kid that young really be dealing already?
“Hey.” Said a soft voice. I jumped nearly out of my skin. On the ground near my feet, a thin bundle of a person was huddled, obviously homeless. I mentally thumped myself for not seeing him earlier.
“Don’t take that.” He muttered. “It’ll poison you. Your bones will melt, and your mind will disintegrate.”
“Well. I know. I just-“He had looked up and was staring intensely. He had darkish hair and was dressed in a large Heavy coat. He looked terrified. I automatically felt immensely sorry for him.
“Hey, do you have somewhere to go? I mean, you could stay in my sisters old tree house if you want or . . . ” He nodded enthusiastically.
I held out my hand, trying to help the poor boy up. He offered his left hand. I looked down and while trying to stop from crying out, my eye started a slight twitch. His left thumb was completely gone, a large open wound in its place.
“H-H-How Did? . . . ” I ogled rudely. He just smiled faintly and clasped his four fingers around mine. I pulled him up. Suddenly I thought of how the weird things have been coming more and more often, and stronger each time.
“You. Are you real?”
“Real, Hosanna, but not your kind of real.” He smiled nervously. I lead him to my house, and made him wait behind the bushes while I collected blankets from my room. After he’d climbed up the rope ladder, I hauled myself up after him.
“You don’t have to tell me much, but I do want to know your name.”
“Your name’s Untrust?” He nodded. I nodded back and started down the ladder.
“Hosanna?” He called uncertainly. I turned back towards him. “Don’t be afraid. No matter what happens, ok? I’ll help, and it’ll all be fine.” He attempted another smile. I nodded again and climbed down the ladder, feeling more confused than ever.
Hurrying back into the house, I grabbed a bag of chips from the kitchen. Looks like the parent is having people over again. I can’t stand eating dinner with them when her friends are here. They all think that just because I’m a teenage girl, I like Romcoms and romance novels. Their voices filter out from under the dining room door, shrieking with laughter.
I stepped up the stairs as quickly and silently as I could, patting my pocket at the same time. Yep, the little baggie was still there. So were my cigarettes. I’ve been thinking that if any adult ever found these, I’d have to give them some lame excuse, right? Unfortunately though, the best one I can think of is to tell them that I’d found it, decided it was unholy, and was to taking it to the woods to throw it in the lake. Pretty darn lame, I know.
Guidance counselors are wrong. You know how they always say that if a kid smokes, or does drugs or something, that it’s because of a bad family life? Well I can tell you firsthand, that is a lie.
I shut and locked the door then threw myself down on the bed, sending cd’s, books and clothes tumbling to the floor.
Anyways, I have a fine family life. My Dad took off from my mom, but he’s a good guy. He calls me at least weekly, and visits all the time. Apparently, him and Mama were best friends and decided to get married. Mama already had Natalie by then, but Dad loves her, too. So a few months into their marriage, they mutually decided that they were better off as friends. That’s when Mama discovered that she was pregnant with me. Great timing, I know.
So we all fight occasionally, but it’s never anything really serious. I guess I just do bad stuff for a distraction. Something to keep me entertained. It still shocks me sometimes when I light a cigarette without thinking, or just think “Oh I forgot my homework? No big deal, I’ll just skip the whole darned class." It’s like I just forget that I’m only still a kid.
School was dull. I guess that’s a given, though. There’s never anyone to talk to. The girls in my school are always all lip gloss, bubble gum, and top 100 songs, and the boys are always to obnoxious and vain to even think about. At least there’s no homework this weekend. Well yeah, there is work, but personally I believe that if I can’t do it in the five spare minutes I have before class, then it’s not worth doing. One of my many mottoes is “If you don’t feel up to it, forget it.”
I hate walking to and from school. Occasionally it can be a nice time to think, but most of the time, it’s the same dull view over and over.
My plan for the evening is to hurry home and wall myself up in my bedroom. Mama will be off on a business trip until Sunday night, and Natalie’s going with her this time, they’ll be driving right through the hometown of her Ex (Natalie’s father), and he’s been wanting to visit Natalie for a long time. I would’ve come too, but since all we have is the old truck, we’d be way too cramped. I’ll be okay by myself, though. If I just stay in my room, everything will be okay.
I hurried past the old gas station. Wait. WAIT. UNTRUST! I can’t even believe I forgot! I forget anything that’s ever important to me! Damn it! DAMN IT!
I started running, even though I knew I’d be out of breath within a couple of minutes. Damn, I wish I hadn’t cheated gym all these years. I always only sprint while the coach is looking at me, then walk the rest of the time.
I finally arrived at the base of the big tree house tree. I scampered up the ladder and practically hurled myself through the trapdoor.
It was empty. Completely empty. I sunk down on a futon that served as a sofa. Taking deep breath after deep breath, I glanced around the room again. Not a trace. And all of my covers are gone, too.
I felt the hairs on the back of my neck slowly rise. Someone’s here. Watching me. I shook the feeling from my head. That’s what it is, just a feeling. It’s not even real. I hummed a few lines of an old song. Sound always makes me feel better. Whenever I get scared or upset, I always put on music or turn on the TV really loud. Hearing other people makes me feel less alone.
Is Untrust real? I never really thought about it, but I guess it all could have been a dream. Yeah, I mean, I have no proof. Maybe I came back alone after getting the stuff from the kid, and had a dream last night that all the other stuff had happened. It does make sense, where would someone get a name like Untrust? And it’s pretty darn weird to have a giant gaping wound where a thumb should be.
That must be it. Also, now that I think about it, there was strange, flickery light whenever he was around. My dreams have always had weird lighting.
I sighed as I climbed back down the ladder. How depressing, the first interesting thing that has happened to me in forever didn’t really even happen.
Suddenly all of my thoughts stopped. My arm was in front of me clinging to the rope. On my hand on the very place where it had touched Untrust’s absence of a thumb, there was a smudge of blood. I jumped the rest of the way down, and ran into the kitchen. Damn it. Mama and Natalie wont be back until Sunday night, and I’ve already completely freaked myself out.
I jammed the key into the door and shoved it open, swinging it shut behind me and locking it again. I ran to the kitchen sink. The blood was streaked across my knuckles. Now, I can’t get excited. There’s a possibility that I’ve gotten scratched somehow and just not noticed- No. no, that’s stupid. I would’ve noticed if I was bleeding this much.
I rinsed off the hand. The blood left a faint red stain. There was a small cut across one of my knuckles, but nothing big enough to give that much blood.
If nothing else, I have got to stay calm while everybody’s gone. If I get just a little bit upset, then the terror escalates until I’m paralyzed with fear. I don’t want that happening again. I’m not going to let it get to me. Before, I’ve had to call Mama to come home from her business trip early because I was so scared. She almost lost her job from it, too.
I scurried over to my favorite arm chair and sat down gingerly. At least I have the TV. if I just sit here quietly the entire weekend then there's a chance I won't freak myself out so bad.
My fingers twitched as I flipped on the box. There's never anything decent on nowadays, but that doesn't really matter. it's the sound that I need.
A deafening crack of thunder penetrated the drone of the television and nearly shot me out of my skin. I breathed in deeply. I don't know what I’m going to do if the power goes out. Maybe I could just take a bunch of sleeping pills? then at least I wouldn't be so scared. And I could just sleep until everybody else comes back!
Wait. No, that's stupid. I'd probably accidentally overdose or something.
The TV flickered. Oh no. Just at that moment, all the lights in the entire house went dark. No.
Please God, if you do exist, can you please, PLEASE, not do this to me? Don't leave me alone when I'm so afraid! Could you just try to hold off until I'm with someone? That's all. Um. Amen.
I thought that would help somewhat, but if god heard me, he sure isn't letting on. the rain had picked up the pace, steadily drumming against the window. I shuddered. it may have been only 4:30, but the sky was as dark as night already. Tree branches clawed at the glass window. Ok, I admit it, I am getting really freaked out. Everything will be fine though, because I am in control.
Another loud clap of thunder shook the house. My heart was thumping so hard, it seemed capable of snapping one of my ribs. I'm not in control. My hands were trembling so hard, I had to press them tightly against my jeans to still them.
A loud crash emitted from the kitchen. it sounded like the window breaking, and shattering across the floor. I forced myself not to turn my head, too terrified that I would see something horrifying lurking in the doorway.
Now another sound showed itself. A kind of sick, watery gurgling. My chest tightened, making it nearly impossible to breathe. Oh merciful god in heaven, I have never been this scared in my entire life. Don’t turn around. I have to be asleep, this is not real. The gurgling was joined by a wet slap and an occasional squeaky moan. It continued to grow louder and louder until I could feel it right behind me, it's breath hot against my neck.
I know this can't be real. It just can't. but still. . .wait!
"Untrust!" I cried hoarsely. "Help Me!"
In the next moment, three things happened of great importance. Firstly, I leapt off the chair and turned to face the sound. Secondly, a huge bolt of lightening shot into the room, illuminating Untrust's face to my left. And thirdly, Across from us and lit by Untrust's flickery glow, was the most hideous thing I have ever seen.
It was a sick mockery of a human. Half of it's face was covered by huge eyes that glinted like coal. The rest looked like melted wax, with two bloody holes for nostrils, and a raw, gaping smile. Tufts of lank, greasy black hair sprouted in random places on the rotting liver-spotted scalp. The long body was mostly covered in some type of shawl, but what I could see was mangled and distorted. parts of it were unbelievably thin: The ankles almost at the width of a pencil. And some parts grotesquely large and flabby: the knees emerged directly from underneath the bloated belly. The thighs completely enveloped. A thin runny black liquid seemed to emanate from under the billowing fabric. I couldn't help but gasp at the overwhelming odor.
Before I could think, the disgusting creature placed it's decaying claws on the back of my favorite armchair, and hurled it against the wall with inhuman strength. Like I always do whenever the situation is so hopelessly bizarre that nothing can be done, I laughed. The laughter cleared away a little of my fear, I think. Because when Untrust glanced over, flashing a quick grin, I felt crazy excited, Deadly terrified, and strangest of all, fantastically elated.
there was no trace of the fear or weakness I’d seen so prominently before on Untrust. His face was bright and eager. The creature began to inch forward, but Untrust only laughed. he stepped forward and straightened up, glaring down the hideous creature.
"Putrefy" Untrust spat at the thing. "perorate, perish." It took a hesitant step back. Untrust grinned and stepped forward. "decease, deteriorate, dilapidate,
disintegrate, degenerate, decompose!" He looked wild now, advancing on the beast. "Spoil! Rot! Ruin! Rust! Wane, Waste, WITHER!"
the thing seemed to melt even further, snorting roughly while sinking into itself. it's head slowly sagged into it's neck, and it's skinny legs were enveloped in the
huge stomach. It cried out as it collapsed, eventually making a burbling strangled notice and ending as a gooey black puddle.
Untrust turned towards me abruptly. His eyes were sparking, and his shoulders were trembling, but he was beaming like anything.
"That," he said. "was incredible." He laughed and clapped me on the shoulder. I grinned.
"Yeah, that was somethin' alright, Untrust. But really, Who are you?" He looked down sheepishly.
"Your hair is nice, Hosanna, very fluffy. You should cut it all off."
"Untrust! Stop trying to change the subject! What are you?" He sighed and kicked at the ground. Then swung his head back up, looking into my eyes.
"I'm the son of the Devil."