EXCERPT: The Torture of Chris

This is a rough cut of a few pages from the novel I am currently working on. This takes a more literary course, delving into the power of hatred arising from unadulterated cruelty inflicted. I would suppose that makes it a dark psychological piece that borders on horror in parts. Anytime human suffering takes center stage, the element of horror finds a place in the work. But, the underlying idea is when is enough, enough? How far can someone be pushed by wickedness before they, themselves, turn evil? Are they justified in vengeance? To what lengths must one go to attain retribution? That is the question. I attempted to create possibly the most vile antagonist in history, one who gives everyone who reads cause to despise him passionately. Not just through his actions, but also through how his environment rollercoasters in and out of his favor.

Anyway, like I said, this is rough–nothing final. The revision and editing stages have yet to arrive. Any thoughts?

“Don’t forget my snacks,” he said and she sighed. “And take your clothes off when you do it. I want to see some skin.”

“Do I have to, Chris?”

“Yep. And come in here while you take your clothes off. I want something to jack to.”

Making herself go numb, she walked into the bedroom and started sliding off her clothes for him. He opened his robe and started to please himself. She tried to focus on the headboard above him as she let her undergarments slip to the floor.

“That’s good. Now, go run my bath.”

She went back to the utility closet. “What do you want with your bath?”

“Chocolate cake and strawberry milk.”

She took the requested items out and set them on the table, then ran the bath water. Chris called out, “Make sure the water isn’t too hot. You know how sensitive my skin is to hot water. I burn easy.”

Rolling her eyes, she got the water thermometer off the six-foot long sink along the wall adjacent to the door. She made sure to keep the temperature at ninety-degrees. Once the tub was full, Chris came in there and stood in front of it.

“You know the drill,” he said.

She undid his robe and slid it off and hung it on the coat rack on the back of the door. Then, she took off his house shoes and placed them by the sink so they wouldn’t get wet. She helped him into the tub, where he lay back with his arms resting on the rim, head resting on the headrest.

“You forgot my bath pillow.”

She got the plush bath pillow from the closet and laid it behind his head. He sighed and closed his eyes. “Splash me.”

She then began to move the water around, splashing it on his body. He giggled and moved about in the tub in delight. Seeing his vast enjoyment, his immense happiness, made Elsa want to drown him. He was so jubilant about this moment, having such a good time, and didn’t even care it was at her expense, her slavery, and her dismal sadness, that he was able to experience this glee. He didn’t care at all. As long as he was happy, then that’s all he cared about. He was vile and wretched and didn’t deserve to be so pleased.

After he was satisfied from the splashing, he said, “Cake and milk.”

Elsa cut the cake. Chris held his mouth open for her to feed him, and she did. Even though that was her opportunity to choke him and possibly end his occupation over her life, she just did as he said, feeding him cake and pouring the milk down his greedy gullet.

Half the cake was gone and an entire half-gallon of strawberry milk before his gluttony was sated. Now, it was time for his revolting sexual hunger to be quelled. Bath night was the worst, because of the position he was in within the tub. It was just right for Elsa to have to go all the way with him. Some nights he just wanted hand or mouth, others he wanted it all.

“You’re looking really good to me, tonight,” he said. “I want to see you get wet. So, get in here and ride me.”

She did as he said, and he made her rub soap all over herself. She was hoping that at least one of them would die–preferably him; or, maybe she wanted them both to die: him because he absolutely deserved it; her, because she would still have to live with the memory.

Once Chris was done, he ordered her to help him up. She got him out of the tub, into bed, and put everything away. He wanted his usual belly rub, which she gave him until he dozed off. She didn’t figure he’d wake back up, but she wanted to make sure before she went downstairs.

He was down for the night. He would sleep until Robert forced him out of bed sometime tomorrow afternoon. So, this was her opportunity to descend into the kitchen and have a full and peaceful meal without Chris, the Dark Lord of Dining Despotism, standing over her, making her nervous, and defiling or stealing her food.

She didn’t eat all that much in the way of decent meals, anymore. Thanks to Chris, she usually got scraps. They would always eat as a family, despite the heavy increase in workloads. Robert wanted to keep as much of a family unit as he possibly could.

Patricia had assumed full leadership of their warehouses in the Louisville and Indiana area ever since Robert had officially stepped in as the owner/operator of the whole company. They had a nearly inexhaustible bank account, but Robert stayed modest and humble. Chris had begged Patricia to convince Robert to move into one of the multi-million dollar homes in the East End, but she said that he would never do that. This, of course, made the miniature megalomaniac indignant about having to consort with those he deemed lower life forms. So, naturally, he made sure to satisfy his thirst for superiority by playing God with Elsa as much as he could. So, he often kept her from eating and sleeping much, just to prove his advanced station in life.

But, he was sleeping, now, and Elsa crept downstairs to feast on the leftover Mahi-mahi with steamed broccoli, fried mushrooms, mashed potatoes, and stuffed bell peppers that Robert and Patricia had managed to make that evening.

There wasn’t too much left. Chris had gorged himself on it. William usually only had one helping of each thing, as he was modest and polite. Robert had about as much as any grown man who works a lot and tries to stay fit and chiseled would have. Patricia ate very small portions as she was proud of her alluring, slender curves. Elsa didn’t eat much, as she was warned before they came down.

“Now, Elsa,” Chris started, “you know how much I love Mahi-mahi and mashed potatoes, and broccoli smothered in melted cheese. Don’t eat much. In fact, just eat a small piece of the fish, offer half of it to me; tell mama you don’t want any potatoes or broccoli, and just have the peppers and mushrooms–a small helping of the mushrooms because I’ll want a lot of those, too. I don’t care about the pepper. Just offer me the hamburger inside yours and keep the pepper.”

He always had instructions for her, which she never understood. There was always plenty of food to go around for all. But, Chris was selfish and his hunger massive. He was capable of almost cleaning everything out. That night, she watched in amazement, sitting across from him at the walnut dining table, as he ate long after everyone else had dessert and left the table. She had to stay, though, because he wanted her to. So, she did; and, she watched him eat eight pieces of fish, four mountainous helpings of mashed potatoes, two plates piled high with broccoli so covered in melted cheese that it just looked like a mound of lumpy orange liquid, and a mixing bowl full of mushrooms. It both impressed and disgusted her. How someone could eat that much was astounding, but it was also sickening–especially the spectacle that he displayed while chowing away. He barely stopped filling his mouth to breathe. He jammed food into his face with both hands, snorting and grunting while he chewed and smacked with his mouth open. He belched with his mouth full, guzzled soda, slung food everywhere, and farted at the table. He didn’t use a napkin and, by the time he was through, he had stains on his chin, at the corners of his mouth, on his chest, neck, and stomach. His lips and fingers were covered in grease and crumbs and the area of the table around him looked like the remnants of a feeding trough. While Chris leaned back in his chair, hands on top his head, displaying his gruesome, bloated belly, she imagined him as a giant pig, like the cover of that old Warrant album she used to like. Then, she thought it would be proper if Patricia just started ringing a triangle to tell Chris when a meal was served.

He belted out a long, loud, bubbly burp, firing bits of food and soda out, misting her with his sour breath, and said, “Boy, that was good, But, I still got room for dessert. I think I’m gonna have it with my bath. Go ahead and clean all this up and then meet me in my room.”

Now, she sat downstairs with a regular helping of food to ease her rumbling stomach. Even though she knew Chris was well worn-out and tucked deeply into his beloved bed, she still felt like she had to hurry up and eat. She kept looking back over her shoulder, fearing he’d bumble into the kitchen and demand her attention, or take her supper. It both angered and depressed her that she was living this way.


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