“I’ve returned, Raven.” She whispered “And I want what is mine.” The last thing he saw before his mind, finally, thankfully, shut down was her face in front of his. They were pursed for a kiss.” ― Amanda M. Lyons
Late fall was a time for lovers to breathe the crisp air under crimson and gold trees. The click of heels along the cobblestone walkway tapped out a rhythm to the bawdy laughter drifting out of the neighborhood pub. On currents stirred by autumn breezes, the noise of evening crowds wafted along the sidewalks and mingled with the aromatic smells of tobacco, sudsy grains, and the savory roast lamb from the eatery next door. On past the busy street life the lovers walked, arm in arm, swaying in step to their internal melody.
The couple passed by an old man sitting on a park bench under a streetlamp. The girl appraised him with her dilated eyes as they walked by. He was bent over holding a small piece of wood, no more than a half inch in diameter. It was a fallen piece of birch it seemed by the speckled parchment-like bark. His clothes hung loosely about him; the same gray-black color as his shadow cast on the ground under the yellow rays of the flickering streetlight.
The man, noticing his date’s slowed steps, jerked her to his side to remind her who she was with and to keep up. She complied. And then, as if a stray thought had captured her mind with a vivid glimpse into their short future, she slipped loose from his grip and sat at another bench a few paces away from the mysterious old man. She sat shaded from the light by the English Oak branches shielding the seat from the prying sun colored beams and curious eyes.
Pearly white teeth flashed in the darkness of the man’s beard as he realized his opportunity had come with so little investment of his precious time. A smile that whispered self-satisfaction and lust preceded a predatory turn to his victim and sealed her fate. He sat and wrapped his arms around her and pressed a ravaging kiss against her willing lips. She responded by flipping her hair. A brief flash of her smooth skin along the neck drew him closer. A Passionate mist rose from their bodies as lungs surged and hearts galloped in the chilled air.
Shick. Schick. Shick. The sound of a knife slicing through wood entangled the muffled moans and giggles. The old man pushed the blade of his knife through the wood with his thumb. Shick. Shick. Shick. The blade moved with precision, and the end of the stick took form.
While the lust of the bearded man pressed against the object of his desire, the girl with the white ribbon in her hair glanced at the old man longingly. Her eyes searched the calloused hands as they worked the knife through the compliant white wood for some clue he was there just for her. His indifference seemed to say he was not. She looked back to her lover and pulled him closer.
A hand went to her breast. It was ignored as their faces seemed to struggle with some invisible force that held their lips together. He tore at her blouse to get at the apple shaped softness. A hand gently pushed him away.
“No John, not here,” she pleaded. She was answered with a slap to the side of her head.
The knife cut deeper and harder. A large chip fell to the ground, rolled, and drifted on the breeze toward the two busy lovers.
It was only a heal of the hand, John thought to himself. No closed fist. Women like it a little rough to prepare them for the tango of desire. John smiled that smile of conquest and control. He lived for the game he always won.
“No John, seriously, stop.”
Shick. Shick. Shick.
He had her now. She quickly unbuttoned her blouse, her face turned away staring at the ground. He lifted her bra and watched as her enslaved breasts fall free into the waiting crush of his hands, now his teeth sawing on the buttery flesh.
“John, John, you’re hurting me,” she cried. The sound of panic and fear in high pitch drifted through the park, an echo of lost innocence and dreams that were never realized in all the ages that shadows had cloaked lust and selfish desire in darkness and disbelief. He hit her hard this time. He unzipped his pants and leered at the shaken girl. She starred through her nightmare to the old man who was examining his handiwork at the tip of the birchwood rod. And then her face disappeared behind the thrusting hips in front of her as steely fingers rooted in her hair.
In the yellow light cascading down like dawn skies, the talisman carved at the end of the stick showed an angry and vengeful glare. The bearded face was capped with a pointed cone and at the center of the cone was a howling wolf. The old man walked up to the couple and kicked the back of John’s heel above his shoe sending a shockwave of pain through his leg.
John stopped pleasuring himself with the back of the girl’s throat and looked back into the face of the old man. It startled him, and he nearly fell trapped against the bench seat with a knife gripped by white knuckles against his gut. John slung a hard elbow at the face hidden in the shadow and instantly felt forced down in a sitting position on the bench facing his tormentor.
“Piss off you old perv or I’ll. . .” He never finished his threat. They would find him in the morning as stiff as the shaft of wood stuck through his eye and nearly bloodless. It would be several days before the coroner would remove the strange murder weapon from the unclaimed body. It would be six months before he matched it to hundreds of others just like it found in victims across the globe. Some were found with skeletal remains from Roman times.
The girl wrapped her arm around the old man’s elbow. She leaned her head against his shoulder and strolled in step with him as they drifted in and out of shadows growing more obscure in the settling fog.
“It took you long enough,” she said with a bit of ire in her voice.
“Over the years I’ve found that if one suffers indignity, they will savor relief all the more,” he replied in soft reassuring tones.
“I really didn’t savor his cock bruising my tonsils that much,” she replied as she looked up into his face. He continued looking straight ahead reflecting on what he had done. He was in his zone, she noted.
“My point exactly, my dear. If you enjoy such things with the knowledge you have brought them to their deaths, you become like the ones we seek to kill. You become besotted with their blood, and that lust will lead you to your own demise.” The man looked down with eyes that reflected the weight of many sorrows imbued with sympathy and love for his partner and her suffering.
They held each other tighter and disappeared in the darkness of night.
Image Source: Aldo Luongo