|Note: This story is a part of a larger series of short stories and flash fiction. You can find these stories on the Oubliette home page.|
Griswold examined his back in the mirror. He saw at least a couple dozen semi-circular welts; a few of them bled. There was no explanation of how they got there except for his dream in which his so-called friends whipped him. The memory of that dream burned fresh in his mind. As much as he did not want to believe, Grease doing it was the only possible explanation.
-He does not respect you. –
Despite his pleas and Ms. Adams’ threats of kicking them out, Grease continued to smoke weed in the apartment. The guy had no respect for anyone. Sometimes Griswold wondered if Grease was taking advantage of him; he only needed Griswold to pay for half of his rent. He shook his head for allowing himself to be used.
-He stole from you. –
There was that one time when Grease stole from him. The memory was still fresh in Griswold’s mind. He found his wallet on the floor and it was empty. When he confronted Grease, he acted like nothing happened. That still bothered him especially with how he played dumb. Griswold tilted his head as he looked himself in the eyes in the mirror. Did that really happen?
-He attacked you. –
Grease was hostile towards him earlier. When he tried to meddle into what happened with his so-called friends, he called him an asshole. He took their side instead of being supportive. When he told Grease about being chased by that thing, he did not care and called him a name. Griswold scowled; it was the time that he and Grease part ways.
Griswold stepped into the living room and walked towards his room. He came to a stop. He saw it standing in the doorway of his bedroom. It looked at him with red glowing eyes. It did not act and stood there watching him. The last time he saw it… him, he was terrified and would have run if someone did not push him down. Griswold was not afraid. The dark figure was like an old friend to him; someone who he could trust. The dark figure understood being betrayed by the people who he considered as friends.
The dark figure’s finger pointed towards Grease who was sound asleep on the couch. At first, Griswold did not see it in the darkened room but next to the couch, he saw a long black USB cable. It dawned on him, that cord created the welts on his back. There could be no other explanation; Grease did it to him. The fire of Griswold’s rage ignited as he stormed across the room.
-Take him by surprise. –
Griswold grabbed the cable and used it like a whip to attack Grease. He did not immediately react but once he woke, he screamed loudly in pain. He used his arms to block the blows but he only succeeded in getting welts on them.
“DUDE! What the hell are you doing?”
Griswold did not answer. He kept swinging the cord at him with an emotionless expression. Grease jumped out the couch and rushed towards the door but he came to a sudden stop. The dark figure stood at the door. His eyes burned as if they were portals to hell and his hands ended in long, sharp talons.
“Oh, holy shit! What is that?”
The distraction gave Griswold the opening that he needed. He wrapped the cable around Grease’s neck. Grease struggled to remove the cable and he wrestled with Griswold. Griswold got the advantage, knocked Grease to the floor, and used his weight to pin Grease to the floor. Griswold pulled the cable as tight as he could.
Grease grabbed at the cable and futilely tried to pull it from Griswold’s hands. Griswold heard Grease try to breathe but his efforts were in vain. Between the failed breaths, Griswold could tell that Grease was trying to plead with him. Eventually, Grease stopped moving and his body went limp. Griswold allowed the cable to go lose. Grease did not move and there were no signs of life left in him.
-You are free. –
Electricity flowed through Griswold’s veins and he felt alive. His heart raced and he breathed heavily as he tried to catch his breath. For once in his life, he knew what it was like to be powerful; to be feared. Most importantly, this was the best that he has felt all night and he had no regrets.