Saturday, October 15, 2011

Dead Redheads and Human Hearts

     What had been a vibrant, young woman that morning, was soon a mass of gristle, carved bone and liquidated organs.  I ran the water to slough the remaining blood, liquids and smaller bits down the drain.  Curiosity led me to save her heart for last.  It was a curious thing, the heart.  It caused so much suffering for humans.  I’d always wanted to taste the heart’s forbidden fruits, and wondered if in so doing, I’d share some of the humans’ heart driven experiences.  For fun.  For a change.  I snipped a piece of her heart and bought it to my mouth.  Nothing had passed through my lips for the past five hundred years other than blood and the most exquisite alcohol. 
            It was chewy, not altogether an unpleasant texture.  And then I had to steady myself against the wall, for I was filled with a euphoric sense of wellbeing and a power that surpassed even my supernatural abilities.  I’d heard humans talk about heroine.  I imagined that I experienced similar sensations to that.  I felt the theatre rumble as the storm surged in response to my experience with the redhead’s heart.  And I took another snip and savored that bite more than the first.  I slid to the bathroom floor and grasped a handful of her hair.  I bought it to my lips and inhaled the lemon verbana fragrance.  I was hungry, perhaps hungrier than I’d ever been.  And I felt reckless.  That was not a good thing.  I fought to maintain some composure.  I had work to finish. 
            Time passed in indivisible segments, so that I could not determine which was the minute and which the hour.  But I know that I lay like that with her hair beneath my nose for a long time - perhaps an hour, maybe more. When I at last roused myself I went to my Rolex and saw that it was almost dawn.  I’d not joined Jasmine at the hospital.  But the worry and tension seemed to dwell in another universe.  I didn’t want to dispose of the rest of her heart.  But I dared not take another taste.  It was time that I’d finished the job and left. 
            I took the saw to the remains of her heart and was shocked when I felt tears in my eyes.  I ruthlessly shred the muscle and dumped the remains in the juicer.  I followed methodically with what remained.  Originally I’d thought to package her remains in the bags that I’d bought with me, and fly over the skyline, dropping plastic graves in the Hudson and East Rivers.  But the juicer seemed just the thing.  It was so much tidier.  I then flushed her juiced remains and she would ultimately join the river in her last journey. 
            My last chore was to burn her hair.  I took a match to the coppery curls and watched the flames in the bathroom sink, before I extinguished the sooty remains with water.  I did not know if my eyes stung from the smell, or from my new experience with tears.  I would not dwell on that.  It was a job well done.  I disinfected the tub, sink and toilet bowl and exited the theatre, walking into the violet dawn towards Jasmine’s apartment.

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