Posted on October 23, 2008 by Flames
Another bit of fright from game designer Chuck Wendig (Hunter: the Vigil) is here for the Halloween Horror collection. This monster just might be one of us.
Created by Chuck Wendig
I am reformed.
It’s been the same every ten years or so. Grave dirt in my mouth. Pillbugs nestled in my nose and eyes. My parts come back together. The skin reaches for skin; tendons tangle and braid and knit. I’m drawn back to myself and I struggle to the light and then I march out into the world.
I always find them. Don’t know how, I just do. It’s like I can smell their blood, like rich sap from a broken family tree. Teenagers, usually. Laughing and dancing and drinking and fucking. Ignorant to what’s coming. Ignorant to what’s come before.
Wasn’t their parents, or their parents’ parents, but somewhere down the line their forebears put me down like a rabid dog. A cabal of them, a hoary host of conspirators that held me down and chopped me up, and the funny thing is I can’t even remember why. Maybe I was a monster. Maybe they were monsters. Maybe we all were. They threw me in a deep grave, but it wasn’t deep enough. Because year after, I got back up under the lightning and rain and I didn’t kill the ones who killed me, but I went after their children. Got a few of ‘em, too.
But then, as it always is, they put me back down. Chopped me back up. Buried me deeper.
Still not deep enough. I always come back. Put me in a metal box. Burn me. Cut me into a hundred pieces and send the parts to the four corners. I always come back. The cycle goes on and on. I find my prey. I get the dumb ones, the slow ones, the ones that don’t know what’s going on outside their screwing and carrying on. They catch on, though. Then they turn the tables. One of them finds a knife. Tricks me, because I’m not always as smart as I’d like. Flash of metal. Sharp of the blade.
I die. I come back. I kill. I die. I come back.
One of them finally did a real number on me, though. Smart kid with a smart dad, a dad like I wish I maybe had (hell, maybe I did, not that I can remember much). Guess they did some reading. Guess they found out who I was, and that I had a pesky habit of hugging this mortal coil like a worm clinging to a tomato vine.
They didn’t kill me. They trapped me in a pit. Then they shocked me, drugged me, held me fast. Cut open my head, put something inside of it. Something that itches. Now I hear static. I hear them whispering to me. They tell me what to do.
And goddamnit if I don’t have to do it, too.
They have me kill for them. This time, it’s someone calling himself “The Rebreather.” Wears a strange mask over his face, looks like an insect’s face, but the boy and his father say it’s something from “the war,” some “gas mask,” whatever that means. The Rebreather, he kills folks like I killed folks. Not teenagers, though. Women. Single women, white skin, red hair. Gasses them in their apartments, then cuts them up in the bathtub. Atomizes the blood. Breathes it in. Thinks it gives him power.
This is what they have me do, now. Kill the killers. Hunt the hunters. I can’t do any different because of the scratching finger in the deep of my head. So I’ll find this Rebreather, and I’ll put him down like a rabid dog, because I’m trained, now. I’m heeled. Healed. Or whatever.
I’m still a murderer.
But I’m different, these days.
I am reformed.
About Chuck Wendig
Chuck Wendig has contributed to over sixty books for White Wolf Game Studios both as freelance writer and freelance developer. His short fiction has infiltrated Whispers From the Shattered Forum, Not One of Us, and The Town Drunk. He mentored with screenwriter Stephen Susco (The Grudge, The Grudge 2), and he’s already produced a handful of scripts that hopefully will one day see production. He lives in the wilds of Pennsyltucky with two dogs and a recently captured wife. He is drunk and untrustworthy. You can find his crazed ramblings carved out in 1’s and 0’s at his website, at www.terribleminds.com.