Teaching a Lesson. Short Story.

He stood over her, looking down at her naked body, a sight he had longed to see for years, now it just filled him with disgust. Her smooth, unblemished skin seemed to taunt him, he ran the blade of the knife against her stomach, she whimpered through the gag. He wasn’t going to kill her, no he was going to do something much worse, he was going to force her to live as he had. Hidden away from people, afraid of their judgemental stairs, their hushed whispers, their mocking laughter. Soon she would know what it was like to be him.

He started cutting slowly, drawing it out, running the blade along her forehead, carving jagged lines down her cheeks. He paused at her eyes, tempted to gouge one out, but he wouldn’t do that, that was too cruel and he wasn’t a sadist, he just wanted to teach her a lesson. He screams and cries were muffled by the gag, an old, dirty sock, he had planned on using a ball gag, but the sock seemed more fitting, an added layer of humiliation. Blood flowed freely from the cuts on her face, staining her blond hair a rusty red. As he cut her he stared into her deep blue eyes, relishing the dying light in them. She had been so pretty and so loved by everyone, but soon she would see that they only cared for her for her looks, that a simple genetic quirk was all that separated her from a lifetime of loneliness and misery.

He put down the knife and looked at her naked body again, one hand gently caressed her neck, he moved his fingers across her collarbones, then down to her breasts, he gave her nipple a painful twist then moved his hand down to her stomach. He paused at her belly button, his hand moving back and forth gently. He could see her trying to pull away from his touch. He held the knife thoughtfully for a moment, did he dare? He had planned to only cut up her face a little, teach her a lesson, but maybe she needed something more than that. He ran his hand between her legs, feeling her, then he pressed the cold, blood slicked blade against her, she whimpered and he smiled.

He moved the knife back towards her stomach, gently slicing here and there as the whim struck him, he did not scar her breasts or what was between her legs, there was no point in that, no one would but her would ever see them again anyway. Once he was finished no one would be able to look at her.

He looked at her naked, blood stained body and smiled to himself, he was almost finished here, she was still conscious, he had expected her to pass out by now. He grabbed a handful of dirt and began to rub it into her cuts, her eyes bulged as she tried to scream. He had to make the scarring last, otherwise she wouldn’t have truly learned her lesson.

Once he was finished he carefully removed the sock from her mouth, he held a glass of water to her lips and started pouring, she gulped down a mouthful or two before she started to choke, he pulled the glass away and turned her head to the side. Now he just had to wait for the drugs to kick in. Once she was out of it he began to untie her, she was barely able to stand, he half dragged, half carried up the stairs and into the dark kitchen. He made his way outside and put her in the front seat of the car, after getting himself strapped in he began to drive. It was late and his headlights were the only illumination on the road, no one would be out at this time. The drive was a pleasant one, she moaned in the seat beside him as he listened to the radio, he wasn’t sure if she was trying to talk or scream, not that it mattered. He had done everything he had wanted and more.

He stopped the car near the town square, he reached over her and opened her door, then he pushed her out and drove away, she lay on the side of the road, naked and bloody. Someone would find her sooner or later, he had every confidence that she would survive. He drove the car to the field he had chosen earlier, there he stripped out of his bloody clothes and changed into the clean ones he had packed earlier, he pulled off his mask and threw it onto the front seat. Then he doused the car in petrol and set it aflame. He didn’t stop to watch it burn, he just turned and walked away.

He followed the story in the papers and on the news, the talks of the poor girl who had been horrifically mutilated, he chuckled as they showed a photo of her, wrapped in bloodied bandages, warning people of its graphic nature and that young children should look away as they did so.

It was almost two years before he saw her again in person, she had quit her job and had been living with her parents again, apparently in fear. Every time someone brought up the girl he felt a bloom of warmth and happiness in his chest. When he did see her she was wearing a hoody, the hood obscuring her face, she walked with her head down and her shoulders hunched, but he still recognised her. He saw the way people looked at her, those pitying looks, the ones of horror. He smiled as she scurried about her business, content that she truly knew what it felt like to be ugly.

As he drove home that night he had a sudden idea, sure he had taught her a lesson, but how many out there were like her? Going about their lives, blithely unaware of the horrors that others faced, but he could change that, one person at a time.


About Alan James Keogh

I am a 26 year old writer who somehow tricked U.C.D. into giving me not only a degree in English and Classical studies, but an Hons Masters in Creative Writing too. Visit my blog where I post short stories twice a week (Monday and Wednesday) and an installment of a serialised novel on Fridays. I did consider writing this in the third person, as though it was written by someone else, but Alan is not comfortable writing in the third person as it seems kinda creepy and unbalanced so Alan decided it was probably best to write in the first person. He hopes it went well for him.
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