Unfinished Stories Pt 1- Blaine's Game
This series is going to be composed of stories I've only started but never finished. If I get good feedback I'll be more likely to write more. This particular story is actually a screenplay idea that I've been writing out as prose for character and dialogue experimentation. I don't really consider myself an experienced prose writer, so I consider this to be something like practice. Any and all feedback is appreciated.
Two big guys are dragging me by my pits across concrete. Their arms are meat hooks, bulging with muscle and fat and living sinews. My sinews are dead. I am nothing but dead meat. Already slaughtered, but still waiting to be butchered, and conscious enough to feel it. Just barely.
The big guys drop me hard in a square room with blank gray walls. The searing pain in my knees from the long drag on the floor is a precious reminder. They take the restraints off of my wrists and ankles. They leave. I am off the hook. The literal one at least. Really, I won’t be off the hook for another forty-five years to life. This is the freezer, where they provide storage for the cold, and keep them cold.
They slam the door without saying a word, bolting it, leaving me in solitary confinement, so I won’t disturb the other popsicles. Some people can be so impolite. Nothing but darkness and a greasy green toilet to keep me company now.
Got a light?
I must’ve hit my head sometime recently.
You know, if there were no such thing as fire, no one would ever smoke.
I must’ve hit my head hard.
Leaning casually against the door of my cell…
“Who are you?” I ask.
Your name’s Jernigan isn’t it? I was kidding about the light.
A man, I think it’s a man, in a black pinstripe suit, with a white ascot around his neck and dark gloves on his hands… and a purple-black hole where his face should be. He rubs his thumb and the tip of his index finger together in front of the cigarette dangling from—were there lips?A small flame appears there in his fingers and lights the cigarette. He lifts his fedora from his head and I can see the tip of the purple-black pantyhose he has stretched over his face.
My name’s Blaine. Obliged to meet you.
Maybe I shoulda plead insanity.
Nonsense, you’re perfectly sane.
When someone appears outta nowhere and starts talking to your inner monologue, all sure signs point somewhere south of sanity.
He takes a long drag on his cigarette straight through the pantyhose and exhales, the smoke sifting through the material and pouring out from all around the edges of his head. If this guy has one swatch of skin anywhere on his body I might never know.
They say the insane don’t know they’re insane.
“Yeah, well I just think I’m insane so where does that leave me?”
Enlightened. Or… not.
I put my head in my hands. I’m beginning to think I’d rather have a conversation with the toilet. It’s hard to tell how a guy’s feeling when he has his face covered like that.
Listen, Jernigan, I’m not here to ruin your perfectly lovely day.
His sarcasm was enough to make me want to kill him. First I lose my freedom, then I lose my mind. My day couldn’t possibly get worse.
As a matter of fact, I’m here to improve your situation. You just tell me what you want, and it’s yours.
“I wasn’t born in the last five minutes. No figment of my imagination is getting me anything worthwhile.”
A momentary silence seems like an eternity when a man with no eyes is staring you down. Okay, Blaine, I’ll play along. How about this: I want whatever I want, whenever I want it.
Now we’re talking. Well, not literally.
He laugh-weezes out some more smoke, and then flicks the butt of his cigarette onto the floor, where it turns to ash.
That’s one big want. For that you’ll have to give me… your soul.
“Don’t I need that?”
He bends over laughing this laugh that makes me sick. I feel like I’ll never laugh again.
You can still use it. It’ll just be mine.
“Are you the Devil?”
I think he’s smiling. Through the tiny window in the door I can see the outside― whatever lights were left on start to flicker and die out.
When you don’t have a hope left in this world, does it matter?