Posted on: May 9th, 2010 The Same Under The Skin

by Sandra M. Odell

I recognize her sitting five seats down at the bar. She notices my attention and invites me over with a sip of her drink and a nod to the empty stool to her right. We are diseased, and long for understanding company.

She says her name is Cindy. Small, Clairol blonde, buxom Cindy with a blue, winged heart tattoo under her left collarbone. I introduce myself as Steve, buy her another what-she’s-having. She traces circles around the knuckles of my right hand with the sweat from her glass. There is a band of pale skin at the base of her ring finger.

When the neckline of her blouse has plunged lower than decency would prefer, and I’ve had more than enough to drink, I tell the bartender to keep the change and we follow our need into the night. The haze of the bar gives way to the neon succor up and down the strip. She says it certainly is nipply out tonight, and rubs her chest against my arm to prove it.

Two blocks down, past an all-night convenience store and the huddled masses in empty doorways, there is a once grand hotel fallen on hard times. The Middle Eastern clerk behind the Plexiglas is engrossed in late night wrestling. I pay in cash. He slides the room key through the pass-thru, no questions asked or answers expected. A steroid freak in black and white face paint shakes his moneymaker and the television crowd goes wild.

Room 314, third floor, at the end of the hall beneath a bare bulb choreographing stark shadows. Cindy precedes me into the room. I make a show of enjoying the show. Faded floral wallpaper and anonymous watercolor landscapes are what pass for décor, not that we pay much attention. She, me, the bed. Our kisses curdle as we undress one another without the hassle of diagnosis or other small talk.

We stretch out together, hungering in earnest, seeking, perhaps for a moment, an elusive human connection, until flesh gives way to rot. The worms slither out from under my tongue, coiling past my lips, eager for the Bacardi heat of her mouth. She swallows, no surprise there, and gags, or groans; it all sounds the same anymore. I top her and force myself down her throat, writhing, black mucus slick. Press-on claws lay open my back as she thrashes beneath me, septic blood seeping into the sheets. I buck against the meaty rise of her hip, and she dry-humps my thigh like a high school sweetheart.

Down from her mouth to the hollow of her throat sour with sweat. The worms slither over her nipples, areolas tightening at the segmented intrusion burrowing under the skin. I slide a hand between her legs. She is moist with contagion, ready for me, I think, but she wiggles away and pushes me onto my back. She nips and pinches down my body to my gangrenous excitement, cooing as she takes me in hand. What a big boy am I, and well cut. She wraps her lips around the head of my penis, probing the slit with her tongue to open me for her own worms. They coil up my urethra, a throbbing counterpoint to the claw up my ass.

Too much, not enough. I crave release that comes from the heart and not the pustulant rupturing of my balls. I want to feel again, genuinely feel, not scream and thrash and sweat. Feel for myself alone. I struggle to remember what it was like before the infection took hold and I became a used thing like a crusty wad of tissue or scabrous Band-Aid. No good. The memories are far and away as I ride her mouth with fistfuls of hair for reins.

Cindy is glassy-eyed and drooling when I finally let her up for air. Fuckable. Used. I don’t look down as wet tendrils guide me into place and pull me in for that first, clammy thrust. Neither does she. Worse. We see one another for the first time. It. Hurts? Cindy brushes her fingers across my cheek. I dare press my lips to the inside of her wrist. Yes. Hurts.

The worms crawl in, the worms crawl out. Diseased. And hope a pox on our souls. We kiss, eyes open, as she cries my tears. When the end comes, there’s nothing for it but to hold tight to one another and pretend, for the barest moment, there are only two of us in bed.

Filed under: bad-ass, stories

17 Responses to “The Same Under The Skin”

  1. Todd Vandemark Says:
    May 9th, 2010 at 12:37 pm

    Pretty much puts an end to the “I’ll have what she’s having” line. Damn good & nasty story!

  2. Todd Vandemark Says:
    May 9th, 2010 at 12:37 pm

    Pretty much puts an end to the “I’ll have what she’s having” line. Damn good & nasty story!

  3. Some Like It Dark « Sandra M. Odell Says:
    May 9th, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    [...] http://www.brainharvestmag.com/ [...]

  4. Some Like It Dark « Sandra M. Odell Says:
    May 9th, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    [...] http://www.brainharvestmag.com/ [...]

  5. Taik Says:
    May 10th, 2010 at 5:13 am

    Floored. That was spectacular.

  6. Taik Says:
    May 10th, 2010 at 5:13 am

    Floored. That was spectacular.

  7. Peter Says:
    May 10th, 2010 at 9:12 am

    Good god! What a fantastic last line.

  8. Peter Says:
    May 10th, 2010 at 9:12 am

    Good god! What a fantastic last line.

  9. Carol Bruce Collett Says:
    May 11th, 2010 at 6:34 am

    Awesome! Totally disgusting, but I couldn’t turn away.

  10. Carol Bruce Collett Says:
    May 11th, 2010 at 6:34 am

    Awesome! Totally disgusting, but I couldn’t turn away.

  11. David Backer Says:
    May 13th, 2010 at 8:18 am

    Great story. We’ll be featuring it on FictionDaily.org tomorrow under the “Genre” category.

  12. David Backer Says:
    May 13th, 2010 at 8:18 am

    Great story. We’ll be featuring it on FictionDaily.org tomorrow under the “Genre” category.

  13. Sandra Odell Says:
    May 17th, 2010 at 3:05 pm

    @David Backer: Thank you!

  14. Sandra Odell Says:
    May 17th, 2010 at 3:05 pm

    @David Backer: Thank you!

  15. The Great Geek Manual » Free Fiction: May 17, 2010 Says:
    May 19th, 2010 at 1:37 am

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  16. The Great Geek Manual » Free Fiction: May 17, 2010 Says:
    May 19th, 2010 at 1:37 am

    [...] “The Same Under The Skin” by Sandra M. Odell at Brain [...]

  17. Free Fiction for 5/15/10 - SF Signal – A Speculative Fiction Blog Says:
    January 6th, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    [...] @Brain Harvest: “The Same Under The Skin. [...]