89 - The Pursuit

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The Narrator

He smirked. The girl in the black dress went into a public bathroom and donned a bright red dress more inappropriate than the one that she had worn when he had begun pursuing her. She had then gone to a night club with a board that read 'Girls Only.' So, puffing a cigar, he waited for her - his next prey. The night was chill and, except for the sound of music filtering through the squalid four walls of that run-down pub, the streets were dead silent - the silence occasionally interrupted by dog barks.

He pulled up his collar, trying to cover his neck. His eyes were sore from the treatment he had to undergo. The lump of mud that someone had thrown on his face earlier had shards of glass in it and little stones. Fortunately, the particles didn't damage his eyes in such a way that he could not see again. He had to blink continually, even after the doctor removed the bandage because a burning sensation in his cornea tortured him. Beneath his calm composure, he was screaming in pain silently.

While he was smoking and trying to relax, he noticed a parked bike near a dilapidated shed just a few kilometers diagonal from the pub's worn-off door. He scampered towards the motorcycle and sat against it. The streets resembled the village in which he grew up. It looked like a replica of that place. He used to live there in a shack belonging to his mother. Only, the area he used to reside in when he was little, was not the suburbs of a city such as Roboré. Instead, it was an obscure hamlet, virtually disconnected from the world. That was where he met his first young victim. A girl of 13 she was when he first saw her, at the age of sixteen. She had just recently moved into the village with her mother. He first took a liking to her and started to spend time with her, always talking with her whenever she came home. Her mother liked him and encouraged their fraternization. They were like brother and sister, the old woman thought. She invited him to playdates where she rambled about her life. She loved him and he knew it, but he had not an ounce of affection towards her.

While he reminisced about the girl - he couldn't remember her name - a dog came wagging its tail into the street. He had begun his experiments in torture, back in his village, with dogs first, starting with puppies. There was one bitch in his elderly neighbor's house that had a litter of whelps. His elderly neighbor used to pay him to take care of those pups because she was too feeble to do that on her own. Whenever he had taken care of the whelps, he had always enjoyed taking a pup or two to an isolated cabin that he had discovered a few miles away from his village. There he used to torture the pups. He had enjoyed their screams, cries, and whimpers. They had been irresistible music to his ears. He began by gouging their little eyes out with his bare hands or by piercing it with a pin. Then he moved onto breaking their limbs, relishing the sight of their suffering. He grew addicted to their pain and it gave him a sense of satisfaction. This had become an addiction for him, a source of immense pleasure. He hadn't given any of those whelps a quick death. He let them linger on in pain and suffering, drinking from their affliction until they died of excessive bleeding, shock or hemorrhage.

His move to murdering them with blades had begun after he had seen a slasher film when his mother took him on one of those rare trips to the nearest city: a journey that comprised of a three-day hike across the mountains until the highway, and, a six-hour bus journey through hilly terrain to the little town of Los Caballeros. Ever since he saw that movie, he began slitting the throats of those puppies, basking in the pleasure of their warm blood pouring down his knife and hands. Then, when his hands came on some pulp fiction novel, he began to learn about how to flay someone from 'forbidden' books that had only a cult following. He found them when he had stumbled upon an abandoned narcoterrorist camp not very far from his village. Using those manuals of torture as a guide, he skinned the puppies alive, enjoying the sight and sound of their pain. He used to accentuate this torture with the application of salt on the skinned bodies, relishing as the whimpers and yelps of the whelps reached their peak.

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