Most people wouldn't think that I would be into cooking. I love to cook. I never miss an episode of "The Pioneer Woman" or "The Barefoot Contessa." Those women are my idols when it comes to culinary creations. They know how to make good food. Though of course, a lot of the meals you see on Food Network aren't cheap and with me being a college kid with a ramen noodle budget, I had to make do with what I had. Luckily, one of my buddies Angela, was kind enough to tell me the location of this outdoor food market. Everything was cheap and affordable, because everything was fresh and homegrown and made. My favorite stand was this dessert stand ran by this old man. He was kind and could charm you into buying five cakes and a cookie if he wanted to. Every Saturday, I'd go to his stand and he would greet me with a big smile. "Yvette! How are you doing, child?"
"Pretty good Mr. Edwards! What's new in stock today?"
He grinned. "Well, I have a nice batch of lady fingers, a pineapple upside-down cake, a chocolate and raspberry génoise cake-" I stopped him mid-list.
"Did you say lady fingers? That's perfect! There's a recipe I've been wanting to try with those!" I could just picture them dredged in coffee in a trifle with spoonfuls of cream. Pure bliss.
"Why of course! How many would you like?"
"As many as this can get me!" I handed him a 20 and he gave me a decently sized brown paper bag with another paper bag inside. "And there you are! Remember now, you have to prepare these as soon as possible. They spoil easily!"
"Yes sir! Thank you!" I nodded and walked away with my treat.
That evening I decided to show off my culinary skills to my buddies by inviting them to my dorm for dinner. Angela, her boyfriend Zachary, and Sandy. They were a small group of friends, but were the best friends I could ask for.
As I prepared dinner, I heard a knock on my door. "Yvette! It's us! Open up girl!" I could hear Angela's voice on the other side. I dusted off my hands on the sides of my jeans and opened the door. I was happy to see them, but there was someone in the group I wasn't happy to see. An uninvited guest named Lindsay Townsend. She was the girl who tormented me during middle school because my hair wasn't blonde enough, or my Wal-Mart clothes weren't stylish and expensive enough. She scoffed at my sight and rudely walked into my dorm. "It smells like shit in here. I thought you said she could cook." She remarked to Angela. "She can Lindsay. It's probably just because of the mixed scents of everything in the kitchen." Zachary put an arm around Angela and kissed the top of her head. "Be right back, babe. Little Sister and I need to talk." That was my nickname. He lifted me onto his shoulder and took me into my room. "Listen Yvette, I know you're making dessert so I want you to put this ring in Angela's bit, alright?" I laughed and took the ring from Zachary. "It's a bit cliché, but I'll do it." He patted my back as I put the ring in my pocket. He then lifted me back over his shoulder and stood me back up in front of the stove. "Alright Little Sister! Get cooking!"
I could hear everyone talking and having a good time. It was good to know, even though Lindsay was there. Now was the time to prepare the dessert. I opened the package to see delightful Lady Fingers inside. I grabbed a few, and popped them in my mouth. The sweet flavor was amazing and would only get better. I knew this would be special. These coffee soaked Lady Fingers, the luscious whipped cream, and of course the chocolate and caramel sauce to top it off. This trifle would be amazing!
But as a put the last layer of the Lady Fingers on top, I noticed I was missing a few. I was short two. I face-palmed myself. I ate those two earlier. I had to improvise and fast. I hid the dessert in the refrigerator, and called Sandy into the kitchen. "Sandy! I need you to go out and get me a package of Lady Fingers and fast!" She nodded. "Of course! Anyone else wanna come?" Angela and Zachary laughed. "Road trip!!!" They shouted. Zachary whipped out his keys, and Angela followed him to the door. "I'm staying here guys... You go do your thing." Lindsay huffed. The others just shrugged and walked off to get my item.
As soon as they left, Lindsay charged into the kitchen and took a pot of the pasta I made, and tossed it onto the floor. "Listen, you freak! Don't think that this dinner is going to make us friends..." I nodded slowly. This was just like middle school all over again. I could hear her screeching fake laughter in the halls. "You thought we could be friends? Fat chance, freak!" I snapped back into reality and I began to smile. I made a chuckle. "I know Lindsay. You were dragged here because my friends thought we could mend the bad ties. Trust me, to be honest, I didn't want you here either. But how about for tonight, we can be buddy-buddy for show and after that, We can part our separate ways?" She made her annoyed huff and rolled her eyes. "I guess. Just tell me where the bathroom is."
I walked her past the kitchen to a tiny hallway. Straight ahead was my room, to the right was a small window that faced the wall of the dorm building next door, and the left was the bathroom. "It's there." I pointed to the closed, white door on the left and went off back to the kitchen.
I felt my phone buzz in my pocket. I picked it up and saw that it was Sandy. "Hey Yvette, sorry we're running late! We'll be there soon, okay girl?" I laughed. "Yeah I got it!" I replied with a smile. I hung up and heard the sound of my hairspray being used. This was the last straw. She comes into my dorm, insults the smell of the food I worked hard to make, and now she was using my stuff... this was it. I snapped. All of this frustration that I built up over the years now wanted to come out and say hello to Lindsay.
I walked to the bathroom with a smile on my face. Lindsay's fake laugh hadn't changed for when she turned to face me, it hit me hard. She set the can down and smirked. "Hey I figured that if we're gonna be "buddies" you should let me use your stuff." I nodded slowly. "Then you shouldn't have a reason not to help me in the kitchen. You can help me cut up something..." I grabbed her hand and yanked her to the kitchen. She tried to push me away but I wasn't going to let her go. Oh no, not yet.
She punched and scratched my arm, begging me to let go. But it only made me clench down even more. I took a dirty dishrag and stuffed it into her throat. I could see her trying to get it out but I lodged it in too far. The next step was to get a weapon. Easy. The drawer where I kept the cutlery was near the fridge. I took out a butcher knife and thought about where I should take her to kill her off.
The bathroom was the obvious choice. I could see she was losing air so I had to do this quickly. I dragged Lindsay to the bathroom and locked the door behind me, leaving us alone in the room. I could feel my mouth curl into a twisted grin as I pinned Lindsay against the wall and took the rag from her throat. I pulled out the knife just as she was about to scream. She softly sobbed. I could see the terror in her eyes. All I could do was laugh. This was funny! For once, she was scared of ME! "Please don't kill me..." She whispered. I shook my head and smiled with eyes wide. "No..." I dragged her over to the bathtub and pushed her in. "Now Lindsay, I decided since we're going to be friends now, I would teach you a few cooking tricks."
I began to draw a bath of scalding hot water. The steam rose higher and higher as the water made contact with Lindsay's cooler body. I swirled my knife in the water over her stomach when the tub was full. "Now Lindsay... did you know that there's different ways to cut things? Chopping, dicing, julienne... the list goes on you know." I pulled a hand out of the water and began to lightly tap the blade over her fingers. "But you know... no matter how you prepare the item, all that matters in the end is how it tastes." I sighed with a content smile on my face. The smile remained as I pushed the rag back into her throat. "Now here's something I bet you didn't know. Lady fingers are a fantastic little dessert when paired with other ingredients. I usually don't harvest my own though. There's this shop downtown in the market that makes desserts that I love. Mr. Edwards, you see, he told me of the most delicious ingredient one could ever put into a dessert. It could absorb any liquid, it wasn't hard to prepare, it had interesting flavor, and had the sweetest flavor. It piqued my interest. Believe me, I was shocked to see that a human had the nerve to eat another... but I knew that he was right. It was perfect. He would sell me his desserts and I would eat them. He'd sell me my own ingredients and I would make my own. The taste of flesh was addictive and I needed more..."
I chopped a finger from Lindsay's hand and she tried her best to scream but it was in vain. Tears streamed down her face as she wiggled the nub where her finger once was. "...and I was going to give up my new habit for tonight but I figured that as long as I didn't say what was in the dessert, they wouldn't care. Lady fingers... remember...?" I chopped another. And again... and again... and again until all of them were gone. I picked up her pinky finger and popped in my mouth. A satisfying crunch echoed in the small room. I knew I wasn't supposed to talk with my mouth full but describing the flavor was needed. "You know, your fingers taste divine... not too tough but not too soft. But I guess that's typical of those raised to be perfect." I made a sarcastic giggle and yanked her other arm to the side of the tub. "These are for my snack later!" I quickly removed them with five swift chops and placed them on another part of the tub wall. I had my fingers now, I supposed there was no need to keep Lindsay around anymore.
The twisted grin crept back to my lips. "Now I guess this concludes our cooking lesson!" I could see her start to worry despite her lacking consciousness from the blood pouring from her palms. I looked down at the quivering girl. I could see her eyes begging for this to end. In due time it would, but I was going to savor this moment. I jammed my hand down her throat once more to retrieve the rag that was gagging her. I could hear her try to rasp out words. "...I'm...sor...ry..." I smiled sweetly as I lowered her head in the water. It was too late now. I ignored her apology. With one hand over her throat and knife in the other, I swiftly sliced her stomach, leaving a cavity open for blood to cloud the water. I could feel the warmth of the blood mixing with the water and feeling happy. That warmth was beautiful. Soon her organs began to float out of the cavity like fish swimming in a sea of red. I just couldn't help myself.
I rolled up my sleeve and dug inside. The warmth was slowly starting to slip away as I inched my hand inside. I ripped out organ upon organ from her body and out of the water and examined each of them in great detail. None of them really stood out to me. But when I came across the heart after gutting the rest of the corpse, I began to laugh. It was low and began to grow louder and louder. Some could argue that it would sound insane but I only thought that being able to hold the heart of this girl was funny. I clenched down on the heart like a stress ball and saw the last of the pump's supply roll over my skin. The blood dripped down my wrist and into my sleeve... onto my arm... I blanked for a minute being entranced by the fact I was now covered in her blood. Its smell filled my nostrils and I was lost in the euphoria her death put me in. It felt so good... so right... but I was running out of time to enjoy the bountiful harvest my victim unwillingly provided.
I brought Lindsay's now lifeless corpse out of the water to look at her face that was once covered in a curtain of red. I could see the sheer terror that still remained in her facial expression. It was a satisfying image to see, but it wasn't enough. Usually the head wasn't good for anything. The only good thing delicious in the head was the flesh around it.
Now as I'm sure those who hunt know the feeling of skinning an animal but a human is a bit tougher than I figured. But nonetheless, I managed to make some rustic looking but decent cuts of meat and preserved it all in the freezer. And all before my phone rang one again.
"Hey girly! We found a way out of the traffic but we'll still be a while though. Ten minutes max, okay?" I looked down at my shirt now soaked with blood. "Yeah, thanks for the info, Sandy! Oh and sorry to say but Lindsay left. I tried to say that the past was the past and I wanted to be friends again but..." Sandy chuckled."It's okay. I understand. I figured she'd leave anyways. She didn't ruin the dinner, did she?" I looked at the pasta that was still on the floor. "Well she threw the pasta on the floor but she spared the chicken so if that's enough I'll plate that for you guys."
"Sounds good! See you in a few!" She hung up and I rushed to find something to wear. I tried to throw together something to wear before they got back. A pair of jeans, a black tank top with a skull and a black and white checkered vest with a pair of old white sneakers. I slipped on a red beaded bracelet, some silver earrings and a small silver chained necklace and I was dressed. I put my hair up in a small ponytail and looked at myself in my bedroom mirror. How beautiful I looked tonight. Could it be that I consumed the beauty of poor Lindsay? No that's stupid... funny, but stupid. I decided to quickly apply some makeup before my friends arrived.
As I applied the last of it I looked down and forgot about the Lady Fingers I had recently acquired. I picked each one up and held them in my hand. I couldn't help but eat one. I had to remember to save two of them for the trifle! So with that in mind, I made my way to the kitchen to finish the dessert.
Placing the remaining Fingers into the circle with the others in the trifle, I looked at the beautiful dessert I made. "Now to cover this with the toppings and I'm set!" I snacked on the remaining Fingers and waited for my friends to return. I heard the door open and my friends laughing up a storm. "Hey girl! We got the lady fingers!" Sandy placed a plastic package of yellow cakey ovals on the counter and went to the dinner table with Angela and Zachary. I didn't know what those were but I was thankful for the attempt. "Thanks you guys! I'll get dinner out as soon as possible! Just let me finish this up!" I quickly finished up the trifle and put it back into the fridge to get cold again.
Dinner of course went smoothly. Sure the lack of food was terrible but I still enjoyed their company. Now came time for dessert. I pulled out the dessert and looked at it. It looked delicious. So delicious.
I couldn't do this to my friends... I couldn't let them be what I am... but...
...somewhere... in my mind... something... told me to share this beauty... this pure sweetness. I made sure to be extra careful as I carried the trifle bowl to the table. Zachary watched me carry the bowl in and spoke up, "Did you make sure you fulfilled my request Little Sister?" I was upset. I forgot to put the ring in there. Just as I was about to apologize, Angela squealed with delight. In a lump of creme was a ring. I smiled. Oh, Lindsay, you decided to be my friend after all...
"Zach... did you...?" Angela stuttered. Zachary nodded and got down on one knee. "Marry me, Ang?" Angela nodded and sobbed a happy yes. She was so happy. But she'll be happier soon...
I brought four bowls and spoons to the table with a large spoon to dig out the dessert in the bowl. I immediately dug in when I got my portion. It was more heavenly than I imagined. I took another bite and could feel the softened flesh melt away, leaving a crunchy treat inside. Sandy picked up her spoon and took a big bite of her portion. I heard the crack and smiled. She jumped in her seat, worried about the sound. She dug into her mouth and pulled out a Lady Finger bit in two. She screamed loudly and dropped the tasty treat on the table. Angela and Zachary searched their bowls and found more of them. Why were they worried? "Yvette!!! What the fuck is this?!? Is this some sick joke?!?!?" Zachary leaned over the table to my face. I remained calm for he was only overreacting, that's all. "No. It's not. This is a trifle I made with lady fingers." He stepped back. "You... this is disgusting!" My heart broke. He couldn't accept who I was...? I looked at Sandy. She was grossed out... Angela was scared. These people weren't true friends... They-they-they were...
Zachary grabbed my arm and just shoved me away. He looked like he wanted to say something but he didn't. The three of them walked out without saying a word. I knew exactly what they were going to do. Once they got back to a safe place, they were going to call the police on me. I knew that they would. So something had to be done. I grabbed my knife and took only that with me. I quickly ran from the dorm, never to look back. I had food to catch.
Weeks later, four young adults went missing. The suspect was Yvette Matthews, a.k.a. The Killer Cannibal. Not the name I would have chose for myself but as long as they live in fear and know I lurk, let them hide. It's an eat or be eaten kind of world out there and I'm starving...