Flesh, that's what lies there, painted with blotched spots of blood. It was strung about the road. Splattered, stretched and molded, whatever this creature was before it was no longer recognizable. Mangled tissue accompanied by fractured bone sat several feet away from the other pieces. Its face was squashed and perched in front of this string of entrails. Road kill was never a pretty sight, and was common to run into on these country roads. I sat there peering into this unfortunate animals eyes, curious of the pain it felt, the thoughts that went through its head. I did not have many other ways to occupy myself.
My vehicle was busted, and I waited along the side of the road for a repair to come. Because of the length the repair men would have to venture and the remoteness of my location, he promised me hours before he was due to arrive. I noticed blown over alongside of the road was a discarded newspaper. I shifted my attention to it, and attempted to use it as a form of passing time.
As I scanned through the paper a specific article caught my eye. There was a girl, no older than her juvenile years, who had wound up missing. She disappeared and police had no trace of her. After further reviewing the paper, I was baffled at the incompetence of the local police. While resting by the side of the road, I noticed in my peripherals a car stop.
An older woman looking in her fifties to sixties approached me. She stared at me with her sharp blue eyes and stretched a minor grin. Crossing her arms and pulling her white wool jacket together, she asked "Do you need some help? Are you lost?" her voice matched the southern dialect many others shared in Kentucky. "Oh I'm fine, just waiting for a repair man." I replied. She then offered me to stay at her house, which I assumed was due to the southern hospitality that seemed prevalent in this state. I contemplated in my head, and decided an old lady couldn't have dealt much harm.
I entered her car, and she quickly noticed something. Her gaze was fixated on the paper I held in my hand. "The girl that went missing, Dee George, what do you think happened to her?" she asked. I replied, "Well mam, I'm no local, just visiting here for story ideas, you see I'm a writer." She looked back to the road, now masking her face with a content and relieved emotion. She oddly said nothing after asking me about the disappearance.
I was startled when I opened the door to her house. She stood behind in a way that if I attempted to escape I would be unable to do so. I stood sandwiched between her guarding the door and a crowd of pale, eerie, and lifeless tall slender figures. They were mannequins and they emanated a rather discomforting aura. I stood static, not moving, as she explained "I have always wanted to become a fashion artist, I have these mannequins to try my designs out with." Juxtaposing my inner feelings, I expressed a masquerade, deceiving her to believe me to feel content with the situation. “Oh, lovely” I replied.
As the sun dipped into the horizon and time passed, I noticed her routine to rarely leave her room. I decided it would be an opportune time to explore the house. I ventured my way past the unnerving mannequins and to a room adjacent to the kitchen. I discovered a hall with three doors that belonged to it. The first door was locked. I grabbed its handle, shaking it up and down attempting to open it; I had no success in doing so. I entered the second room, what lay in it stretched my curiosity, yet it was rather disturbing. I recognized several tools, many sharpened, several appeared purposed to slice and cut through flesh. Under all of the tools lay a pristine box. It was sleek in its form. It looked as if it were a prized possession, a valuable item to this woman. I popped open the box and was quite puzzled by what lay inside.my eyes gazed at a brand. It had initials on the end, was about a foot in length and appeared to be used quite frequently. The next room I went into was nothing more than a simple bathroom. I lay in bed that evening attempting to sleep, tossing and turning in bed. I wondered what my level of concern should be. My focus was swiftly shifted however. I heard a creaking, and I saw a growing slit of light. It extended its form to my resting head. I peered over to see where it originated from. Standing by the door I noticed a shadow, a short figure. It was the woman who resided in the house.
I waited a while I know for sure it was no less than an hour that she stood there staring at me. What did she want? Was she just waiting for me to fall asleep? I thought it was rather odd; however I managed to fall into slumber.
It felt scorching, the pain was searing. I wanted to cut my leg off to take the pain away. I shot up in bed in the middle of the night gripping my leg. Something, had bitten me, or cut me. I felt an immense amount of pain. It shot through my leg. The room was suffocated in darkness, not a spec of light. I could not view the wound. I stumbled out of the bed, and regained my strength, limping to the door. As I cracked it open, I noticed no more light present than in my bedroom. I limped hopping one footed to the open room, searching for a light switch.
Something bumped my head, making me jump in fear. The collision was followed by a thumping on the floor. Whatever it was it had fallen to the floor. I finally found a light switch. When I flicked it, light filled the room, and overpowered my eyes. For a moment it was too bright and delivered a burning sensation to my pupils. I waited for my vision to adjust, but when I did I had discovered what was knocked over.
A mannequin lay before me on the ground. I crouched to pick it back up and return it to its spot, but the texture of it intrigued me. The coating on the mannequin felt soft and smooth. I gazed closer at the figure and noticed the extreme detail in its facial features. I felt the lips and they possessed the same coloring, the same consistency as real lips would. As I continued to feel the mannequin I realized that it wasn’t human looking, it was human.
This realization shook me, and I recognized, the coating I touched was not plastic, it was human flesh. The lips I felt were no artificial material; they were a person’s lips. As I slowly pushed myself back from the static human, I recognized a similar sight. There was a scar on their leg, looking closer I matched the scar to the initials on the brand. But this notion was hastily surpassed by an even more disturbing similar sight. The face that lay on this mannequin was that of the missing girl in the paper.
The woman I was imprisoned in the same house with was no fashion designer, she was a taxidermist; a taxidermist of humans. That woman, stood behind me as I turned my head. She looked to me with a grin and spoke “Do you like my work?” I once again held back the knowledge I had, making her believe I knew nothing of her sick and twisted ways, I responded “Oh yes, The shirt is beautiful.” She then looked to me with an unchanged face, and delivered the eerie words “I’m not talking about the clothes.”
I stood up, and slowly started to back up to the door. She began to follow my path. She spoke “What’s wrong? Don’t like it? I’m sure you’ll love the current project I’m working on.” I paused, standing at the door. She said “Well what you think of my current piece?” I gazed over to a nearby mirror, panning down I soon discovered the growing pain in my leg. There lay a brand no different than the others, her initials imprinted on my skin. I soon realized her newest piece of work, was me.
I tried the door knob; to no surprise it was locked. She crept closer, “Stay a while, don’t you want to see what lies beyond the first room in the hall?” I thought to myself, this was her house, her ground, she knew the ins and outs. I had no advantage; I felt my demise was inevitable at this point. I then realized something else. I stood closer only around four steps away from her room of tools. I could manage to escape I thought. My plan was prepared; I would grab a tool and fight.
I looked to the direction of that room and darted down the hall, she followed attempting to match my speed but unable. Once entering my eyes shot about the room, quickly I had to find something, I grabbed a tiny skewer, and while turning my head I was whacked with a bat. I fell to the floor. Almost unconscious she brought her head closer to mine. Looking at me she spoke “You will be perfect for my collection.”. I raised the skewer, she had no indication I possessed such a weapon. Bringing it behind her chest I thrust the blade down. Easily it slipped through her flesh, ripping a gaping hole in her. Blood dyed her white shirt, and continued to escape through the wound. I turned the jagged skewer swiftly releasing it from her body; I multiplied my stabbings, producing several holes in her skin. More and more blood rushed from the wounds. Her body lay doused in blood as I left.
Wavering through the woods in dizziness, I sat by a tree and passed out. I awoke the next morning to several police men. They took me in and questioned me. After they returned me home they promised to search the area and gather evidence. Oddly months passed and they discovered no sign of the women or her mannequins. They told me, many people have strange dreams in the woods, and I should disregard it. I thought they were right, in fact I wished they were right. But after hanging up the phone I looked down at my leg and saw those unforgettable initials branded to my skin.