Do not pity the fool for his predicament. The fool put himself in this predicament and does not deserve a way out. No mercy for the wicked is all that he will know for the rest of his soon to be shortened life. His life will be significantly shorter, not because of my actions, but due to his own. If not for his own actions over years and years he would not be in this position right now. He forgot the golden rule, not the bullshit joke that “he who has the gold makes the rules”, but the first rule of morality: “first, do no harm”. He spent his lifetime preaching morality at others, condemning others actions, and telling people the sins for which they would be bound to an eternity in hell. Now he will learn what hell truly is. He will learn by my hand that I am hell and from me there will be no repentance, no mercy, no pity, no path to redemption and most of all no way out.
I brought him here for one purpose and one purpose only; punishment, nothing more and certainly nothing less. He deserves more than what he’ll receive here but I am but one man with limited time. Unlike Lucifer, I do not have an infinite amount of time. It is unfortunate but I think by the time I am done it will have felt like an eternity to him and he still has hell to look forward to.
This all began many years ago when I was but a boy, just an innocent, ignorant boy. I still remember the first time I walked into this man’s presence. It was a sunny morning that exuded beauty and innocence. One thing I have learned is that there is no evil in the bright rays of the sun. They wash away evil like a soapy cloth washes the dirt from the skin. Sun rays are innocent as was I in that moment. I walked through the big double oak doors to see the sun’s rays beaming through the stained glass at the back of the pulpit setting the podium where this predator cast his spells in a glow that seemed divine. In my young mind that was a sign that God truly dwelt amidst the walls. He walked among the stained glass and statues like water flowing up on the shore. At six years old I thought I could feel his presence there but I know now it was all an elaborate con. He didn’t flow out like the beams of light pouring through the stained glass windows that day. He didn’t flow at all. I knew now that he never existed in the first place. This piece of human filth that calls itself a man preached lies to me, my family and to numerous changing congregations. He taught us that it was the devil who dressed himself in lies so, in that case, what I walked into that day was no church but the seventh ring of hell itself. Satan sat on his throne and spewed lies every Sunday and everyday in between. It was not a divine aura of sunlight illuminating the pulpit but the fiery embers of hell itself. This devil didn’t have the tell-tale horns of the beast but I learned later that he was there; one only had to catch him in the right light.
This man taught me that there was no God, there was no heaven, there was no Satan and there was no hell. There was only pain and misery and suffering in this life. I only learned later that he was one of many. One of a multitude poured out over the land to reap not joy and love but pain and misery. Their philosophy seemed simple once I realized what they were doing: show a man divinity and he may not believe but show him evil and he will pray forever. I no longer pray but he will. Before I am through he will no longer pray for salvation through Christ but for death; one that won’t come quickly.
I hold his little book of bullshit and wonder how I ever believed a word of it. I wonder, with all that has come to see the light of day, why anyone would ever walk through those heavy double oak doors expecting salvation. They sell it inside but they never deliver it. Instead they deliver lies and contradictions and, for too many like me, pain and misery. Never once has the truth been told within the walls of any Catholic church nor any other faith’s house of worship. They hold up the book and say that it is truth while using its words and lessons to invoke fear and intentional misunderstanding. They never stand before the congregation and say these are the stolen tales of others with the names changed to protect you from the truth. Priests pretend to be historians holding the knowledge of the divine but the truth is they hide it and sometimes don’t even know it themselves. What they preach is all stolen with barely a single word of originality and especially not truth. One doesn’t have to look very hard to find the origins of the “word of God” only to find that God apparently spoke many languages and had many different sons. This man claimed to do what he did to me in the name of Jesus but I didn’t have to look far or hard to find that he could have easily said Perseus or Horus or any one of many others with the same story. He is a liar and a thief and so much worse. So here with me he will seek mercy and find none just as I had found none in him.
They say money is the root of all evil but “they”, whoever “they” are, couldn’t be further from the truth if they tried. Power is where evil resides. Give a man power over another and you’ll see true evil. Just ask the multitudes from the Jewish prisoners of Auschwitz to the black slaves of the American south to the prisoners at Abu Ghraib and they will tell you the truth. That truth being: give a man unrestricted power to do what he will and, inevitably, he will commit unspeakable acts upon his fellow man. The Nazis didn’t kill over six million people for money, they did it because they were told these were lesser human beings, cockroaches, and they could do as they would with them. The same can be said for slaves or prisoners in any time or place. Unfettered power is evil not just the root of it. Priests have not committed the uncountable atrocities on children that they have because of money but purely because they have the power to do so. They believe there is no retribution coming. They walk without fear. I am here to change that. I brought this human garbage here to let him know that there is no retribution after death but there will be in life. I will teach him what pain and suffering look like. He may believe that he has discovered the devil but it’s just me and I will bring to bear the pain of thousands, perhaps millions, with me. He will feel our pain then he will die and die terribly.
I think it’s about time for my little plaything to wake up. Circling and circling him here in this abandoned warehouse is giving me a fucking headache. I can’t stand to look at him. He thinks he’s a man but all I can see is rotting piece of meat. I’ve waited long enough. It’s time to hear him scream.
Unscrewing the little vile of smelling salts I almost feel bad for a moment for the destruction I’m about to reign down on another human being but then again I don’t consider him to be human at all. Sure he has the shape of a man, he breathes like a man, his heart beats like a man but this is no man. He is a demon. He is no more than a twisted perversity of what used to be a man many years ago but no more. His lies won’t save him here and neither will the God he claimed he was trying to show me all those years ago. Maybe he will find God here though I think it about as likely as me turning into a goat before his eyes but he can try if he wishes.
“Wakey, wakey.” The sweetness pouring out of my mouth in sarcasm almost makes me laugh as the priest’s eyes slowly blink to life.
His head rolls back and forth as far as it can as if it were detached from his neck. His head almost looked like it was floating as he slowly regained consciousness. He lifts his head though his eyes aren’t able to quite focus yet. He looks up at me from the chair I have him strapped to like a zombie coming back to life. Unfortunately for him zombies can’t feel pain, he can and most assuredly will. It takes him a moment to make sense of his position and then I see the pain wash over his face and his first of many screams echoes through the empty space of the warehouse.
“Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!” I mock him as I start to laugh.
He is unable to form words for what seems like forever. He just sits there screaming as his eyes force the reality of his situation into his brain. He looks down trying to make sense of what his eyes are showing him and hoping against hope that he is dreaming. His screams cease as he tries to catch his breath while reality sets in.
The priest finds himself bound by leather straps buckled just tight enough as to not cut off the circulation. His wrists and ankles have been immobilized while a leather strap holds his neck loosely to the back of a sturdy wooden chair I found it not ironically in an old church. His eyes are drawn to the current source of his pain trying to make sense of what they see. I peeled back the skin of his right hand exposing the underlying muscle and bone while he was unconscious. I was careful not to go very deep. I wanted every possible nerve alive as long as possible so I could overload them. I want him to know how raw pain can be. I want him to be able to define agony for his master if indeed he finds there is a God at the end of his life. I plan to make his tale of suffering a great one indeed.
I left the skin curled up at his wrists to give him some hope that he won’t be completely disfigured forever. Plus I found the flopping skin highly entertaining. For the moment he doesn’t recognize this as a kindness, maybe later, but not now. Just to assure him that what his eyes are seeing is real and this is not just some nightmare that he can’t wake up from, I bend down and lightly blow on the raw exposed mess of his hand. A fresh round of screams assures me that he gets the point. It assures him that he has awaken to this nightmare and that this is no dream.
“Like that? ‘Cause that’s just a small taste of what awaits you.” My taunt immediately grabs his attention.
“Why? Why are you doing this to me? I’m a man of God.” There is little energy but much fear in the priest’s plea.
“A man of God? Really? Not even you can possibly believe that by now.” I wished to convey disgust with my words but his words have made me laugh.
The priest just stares at me then I see it. Finally I see recognition in his eyes. He may not remember my name but he recognizes me. I can almost see the light bulb going off behind his eyes. Then I watch as one lonely tear escapes the confines of his right eye, rolling down his face. Is it sadness I see? Perhaps regret? Or is it guilt that the priest is awash in?
“Ah, so you do remember me. Do you really remember? Can you remember or does my face get muddled with all the others? How many were there would you say? Do you even know?” My lip curls making me snarl out the words with the disgust and disdain I had lacked previously.
I let him just sit there thinking about his sins for a moment hoping he would drown in them. I don’t know how many lives he has ruined nor how much innocence he has stolen. I want him to feel the weight of his sin before he feels the pain of it reaped upon him a thousandfold. I care not if he repents in words I am here to force attrition down his throat.
“Billy? Billy, is that you son? Why are you doing this? God wouldn’t want you to do this. You have to stop now. Just stop!” The priest pleaded as more tears now flowed down his cheeks.
“Billy isn’t here right now priest. You killed Billy a very long time ago. You’re here to pay for your sins now. And I’m not your fucking son!” My anger and frustration boil to the surface hearing this filth use my name.
“Billy, I am sorry for wronging you but God wouldn’t want this. Look to God Billy. Look in your heart son. You want to stop now.” Again the priest pleaded as the tears continued to stream from his eyes.
I lean forward only inches from the priest’s face with all the calm I can muster, “God is a lie and I’m not your fucking son.”
Standing back up, I turn to the items I have brought here with me. A dusty shelf in this abandoned, and dare I say godforsaken, place holds the few instruments I need. I grab first a pack of matches and a candle. I’ve dreamt of this day for years. Now it’s time to get started. Years of planning and thinking have culminated in this day, I want to savor the moment while he dreads every single, solitary second of what I have in store for him.
“Billy, you’ve gone far enough. You release me right now. Release me now and all is forgiven. Billy just stop it right now.” The priest tried switching tactics to his stern fatherly voice as if he had any kind of authority here.
“Far enough? But we’re only getting started, Father. So shut the fuck up! The only thing I want to hear from you is the delightful chorus of screams which you’re about to erupt into. You may want to start praying to that God you love so much. Somehow I don’t think he’s going to save you but I guess it can’t hurt to try.” I laugh at my own joke as I strike a match and light the candle.
I moved slowly and deliberately staring the priest dead in the eyes. Fresh screams erupt from his lips as I move the candle under his skinned right hand. I swirl the flame around the exposed nerves of his palm making sure to give each and every exposed nerves giving them a little taste of heat. I started with the flame several inches below his hand as the priest throws his head back in glorious screams. Then I move it closer and closer until the flame dances mere millimeters from the raw, exposed and bloody meat. I edge it closer still until I can hear it sizzle and the smell of cooking meat. The priest’s screams echo in the empty warehouse filling the space with sound. I watch as he strains with all his might against the restraints holding him fast to no avail I had tested them thoroughly before strapping him in, Charles Atlas, himself, couldn’t break free of these bindings.
I let the priest’s hand cook for a moment before removing the flame. Before blowing out the candle’s flame, I thought it would be a good idea to pour some of the hot wax on the top side his skinned hand. The priest erupted in a fresh round of screaming much to my delight. I was surprised he didn’t pass out from the experience but, thankfully, he didn’t. There was to be no easy way out of this pain for him. For what I had in store for him this may be as good as it would get. I wanted to enjoy every second of his suffering and I had come prepared in the eventuality of him trying to escape into unconsciousness. I had smelling salts and, if necessary, a concoction that a chemist friend of mine had prepared for me. No, my little priest wasn’t going to miss a moment of this until the very end which was still an eternity away as far as he was concerned.
Then the begging began again, “Billy, please stop! I’m sorry! I’m so sorry my boy. God forgive me for what I did to you but please stop. Please!”
I couldn’t stop myself as the anger boiled up in me. I backhanded him so hard a tooth shot out of his mouth flying at least fifteen feet away onto the cold concrete. I wanted him to beg. I wanted him to plead for his life. I needed his prayers go unanswered just as mine had all those years ago. I had dreamed of his suffering so many times through the years. I longed for it the way a child anticipates Christmas morning. Here and now was my Christmas morning, the priest the present waiting under the tree. But in order to fully enjoy it, I had to control my anger. A deep breath or two should do the trick. I’ve dreamt of killing this waste of flesh for years so no need to rush it now. There was much more suffering to come if this was going to satisfy me at all.
I had considered long and hard the idea of justice. Should I go to the authorities and hope for two things that would be in serious question a) believing me and b) would public humiliation and years in prison be justice for what this human maggot had done if they did. I had struggled with this notion but in the end I didn’t care about society’s justice. Does a beaten child care if its abuser feels shame and gets to live out the rest of their life in a prison cell with three hots and a cot? I don’t think so. The first thing they/we want is revenge but revenge can take several forms. No, in the end I knew what I sought was punishment. I want him to suffer and suffer the way I had suffered for so long. How many others there were only the priest knew but I would do my best to make sure he understood the meaning of suffering. I do not care if he repents or feigns lament. No, he will suffer in the worst ways I could think of and then he will pray for a death. A death that will come so slowly he will have time to repent every sin and see all the innocence he destroyed flash before his eyes, then and only then, will I let his light go out.
“Save your begging for the deaf ears of your God. It is wasted in here on me, priest. I am curious though, do you even believe in God? I mean how exactly did you plan on getting into heaven with the things you have done, the lives you’ve crushed, the innocence you’ve stolen? Did you think you’d just stroll through the pearly gates by the sheer virtue of being a priest? There is no heaven, priest, there is no God and the only hell you’ll find is right here, right now. Look in my eyes; do you see any mercy here?” I leaned in nice and close as I asked this last question wanting him to see my hatred of him burning inside me.
The priest drew his head as far back as he could but it was of little comfort to him. I saw in his face that he was seeing no mercy in my eyes. He drew back even further in terror, his lips curling in a silent scream of fear. He could see there was no stopping me barring some miracle that even he knew wasn’t coming. He could pray, plead, beg and cry all he wanted but he had no savior. No S.W.A.T. team was going to break down the door or any such nonsense. It was just him and me and a warehouse full of rats. I had brought him here, a place where hope came to die as he would along with it.
“B-Billy. I..” The priest had finally run out of words, the plea trailing out of his mouth like a dying man’s last breath.
I just glared down at him. I suppose I could have gagged him to save myself from whatever banality he could muster but I wanted to hear him scream. I wanted him to scream so gloriously that heaven itself would open if such a place existed. I watched the dread of realization wash over him in glorious fashion forcing a smile to my lips before I even realized it.
I’m sure there are those that would think me insane or sick in the head, depraved even but those who would have never dreamt of an end to the eternal torture chamber of the mind. They have never woken nightly shaking in a cold sweat from a horror that never stops. They have never known what it is to be delivered unto evil by the very person who was supposed to be the embodiment of righteousness. They have never been violated again and again until suicide seems the only viable solution to end the torment. Eight year old boys should dream of puppies and baseball not for death to save them from a life of agony.
“All out of pleas, priest? Finally settling in, isn’t it? No one is coming to save you. Your God isn’t taking your calls today? He has abandoned you. Is it finally sinking in that you reap what you sow, priest? I remember that moment, you should too, you were there. I’ve always wondered, did my tears turn you on or was it my pleas for you to stop? Would you like to confess before you die priest? I promise the confession I take will be nothing like the ones you’re used to.” I had to turn away as unwanted memories washed over me like a tsunami wave.
The memories of the priest’s “private confessions” are what brought me here today. I still remember the first time he took me, as I had seen so many others go with him, to his office for confession. It would be more private he said. There was no chance of our parents or others we knew overhearing he had said. In order for our sins to be forgiven we had to stand naked before God he had said. God demanded we obey he had said. No, this is not the time for memory. I feel a tear leak out and, for a moment; I am that weak eight year old again standing in this pig’s chamber room, naked before him then the pain came, never-ending pain.
Enough! This is his day to feel that pain. I don’t expect a cleansing of my soul but I do expect a reckoning. This is the day he pays for his sins. This is the day he knows what it is to watch hope speed away across the horizon like a bird flying south for the winter. Winter has come, it is time for his suffering and I refuse to suffer in his stead or alongside him. The time of my torment is over. It’s his turn now.
Salt is such a versatile substance. It can enhance flavor, preserve meat and, as is the case today, cause intense pain when poured on a wound. His screaming starts before the first grain even hits the exposed nerves of his flayed hand. Just a few grains is all that is needed but it’s not enough. In order to insure that my priest really feels it deep down to the bottom of his spine, I grab his hand and rub it in, nice and hard. Tears stream down his face while the muscles in his neck strain so hard they look like they are going to pop off his own head. I can see by his expression this is a pain he can feel from the tips of his toes to the top of his head. There is no escaping from it. It fills to overflowing as his screams begin again in earnest. Seeing his suffering only tightens my grip bringing the smile back to my lips. This was the face I was looking for. I can almost see the hope dying behind his bulging eyes. Whether he will admit it or not, he is praying for death right now and I can’t help to laugh knowing he still has so much glorious suffering to go through and even when I’m done he still has hell to look forward to.
As much as I want to see this man suffer, he first needs to realize that he is alone here. He needs to understand that there is only him and what pain I give him left in the world. He needs to realize the outside world he manipulated, so well for so long, is gone. The realization that there is only him, me and suffering left needs to settle down into every pore, every fiber of his being. It may take him awhile to hit bottom but when he gets there the only thing he is going to find is more of the same. He will find me there at the bottom laughing because I’ve awaited his arrival for so long and I know he still has hell to look forward to.
“I’m going to leave you now. Do not fret your pretty little head, I’ll be back. You won’t even be alone; I hear rats love priests (I can’t help but laugh at my own joke). Don’t forget about me while I’m gone now.” The sarcasm drips off my tongue like the spittle out of the priest’s mouth. “Oh, but before I go I wouldn’t want you forgetting about me so here is a little something to remember me by.” I was smiling ear to ear as I rub a handful of salt into the bastard’s eyes.
Fresh screams erupted from the priest’s throat and all the pleas of “stop” and “please” were dead. He would be blind in the dark. I couldn’t help but smile as his cacophony built to a crescendo. I moved two of the largest speakers I had been able to find to within a few feet of him. I didn’t want him getting any escape from his suffering by way of sleep. He had once told me that rock and roll was the devil’s music and that heavy metal was the worst thing the devil had ever created. Given the priest’s thoughts on the subject, I had no doubt that the entire discography of Cannibal Corpse would make for a nice accompaniment to his solitude. Perhaps by morning he’ll have found an appreciation for the finer things in life or at the very least be able to appreciate their differences. The guttural growls of Chris Barnes begin and will fade to the primal howls of George “Corpsegrinder” Fisher in a couple hours. I make a mental note to ask him which he prefers. I’m guessing neither but he’ll have all night to think about it.
For irony’s sake I kiss his forehead before leaving for the night, “No rest for the wicked Father.” I whisper in his ear then I hit “play” and leave him.
A lifelong resident of NY I found myself fed up with corporate America so I left my job about 1 year ago to write full time. I have nothing published at this time. I am currently working on a collection of short stories I call Tales From The Abyss taking inspiration from the world of heavy metal which is near completion. I write a daily blog about music, horror, etc at http://fiendsabyss.tumblr.com/
Excerpts of my writing can be found on my facebook page https://www.facebook.com/feind.gottes or requested by email @firstname.lastname@example.org