I wrote this, intending it to be a single post, however, it turned out to be an approximate half hour read, so I thought it would be better to make it two parts. That way, if you don't have the time, you can revisit it later and complete it when you have the time. Added to which, I could be somewhat of a jerk and hold the second part back for a bit longer to build some tension.
The idea for this story came from a song I was listening to, originally by The Charlie Daniels Band, then redone by at least one artist. The one I heard, the one that inspired this, was by Upchurch. I'm happy to say that the song will also be the inspiration for at least two other posts, so if you de enjoy this, please keep an eye out for future one's too.
Anyway, enough preamble. Please grab yourself something to enjoy - a beer, wine, or whatever helps you to relax as you read what is hopefully the best read you'll have all week! Please enjoy the first part of The Myrmecia Genus.
The ropes that bound his wrists and ankles were uncomfortable. Not unbareable, but they were beginning to cause a throbbing sensation in his hands and feet, particularly in his hands. What he had failed to comprehend, what he didn't actually know, was that every time he moved, he was causing a ripple effect of sorts. Any miniscule movement of his body made the ropes rub, and right this instant, as he was squirming, frantically trying to free himself, they were slowly sawing into his skin, cutting through the tough layers of epidermis. There was a little bit of blood at the moment, just flecks, really. Bits of crimson here and there appearing on his extremities, as they were dislodged by the rope and his futile movements. Soon, though, the rope would reach the dermis, and start cutting through blood vessels. Then the blood would flow a little more freely. And the pain would begin to increase as well. Oh yes, as the bounds got closer to the nerves, the pain would increase.
Five Hours Earlier
The front door came crashing inward, practically imploding, with an ear-splitting cacophany of splintering wood and twisting metal, as the seeminly solid barrier was wrenched from the jamb that had housed it for so many years. It flew into the claustrophobic room, knocking over a small multimedia unit and the fifty-six inch television that had been regally standing on top of it, as it passed. It stopped it's motion a couple of metres further into the room, landing with an equally loud crash, at an obtuse angle, held in it's final resting place by the living room two-seater. The television shattered into a gazillion pieces, popping and fizzing as the last of the electricity that had been powering it, only moments before, spewed from the wound created by the airborne door. Pieces of screen tumbled in a mess into all recesses of the floor, embedding themselves frustratingly deep into the dirty carpet that lined the room. The multimedia cabinet, which had, in reality, only ever actually been a media cabinet, because it had held just the solitary television, fared the best of everything. It was upturned due to the force thrust upon it and sustained a small horizontal crack running the length of the grain of wood that formed one side of the piece of furniture.
The din created by this episode only lasted a brief couple of seconds, but the shock of the event lasted quite a few more for Paul, who had been sitting quietly, watching a documentary about World War II aeroplanes on the television before it had been so brutally attacked. He had instinctively recoiled, swiftly pulling his knees to his chest and wrapping his arms tightly around his shin bones, before ducking his head into the gap made between his knees and chest. His eyes shut automatically, an impulse that was enacted by his brain within a split second of the door beginning it's inward motion, and he clenched his mouth tightly shut. Most of this was simple reaction. Paul hadn't even needed time to react. His body, jumping immediately into self-preservation mode, had done all the grunt work for him. As the racket subsided, but before he had any time to recover, the next absurdity commenced.
The speed with which the men entered the front room of Paul's house would've shocked him if he hadn't still been recoiling from the explosion. Was it an explosion? It had sure sounded like it. They expertly manouvered around the debris, that they had evidently been the masterminds of, and were stood in front of Paul quicker than the time it had taken for the door to stop gently rocking after it's violent arc through the air. They were wearing black fatigues, like the sort you could buy at a military surplus store. Their pants had three different pockets on each side, and and they were bulging out from the men's legs, filled to capacity with something. They stood motionless. They had guns, and they were aimed directly at Paul's head. They were standing like this when Paul's vision finally returned, and his head began to free itself from the vice-like grip of the ringing still left in his ears from the explosion of the door.
The men were wearing balaklavas, so Paul couldn't see their faces, but their stance was solid, and their weapons didn't waver. These were men who knew what they were doing. Fear had not had time to blossom in Paul's chest before a third man entered the room. He walked quitely in through the mangle of where Paul's front door had once stood, and stopped just inside the threshold. He looked around the doorway, surveying the damage that had been infliced. His face remained stoic, never changing, showing no signs of emotion. He looked forward and locked eyes with Paul. Stepped forward over the litter strewn floor and stopped, once agin, level with the two black-clad individuals. His gaze never wavering from Paul's, eyes locked, boring into Paul, reading him as if he were a book. Then, with an almost imperceptable movement of his hand, the two men sprung forward and grabbed Paul, forcing him upright, holding him directly in front of the man, hands wrapped, vice-like around Paul's biceps. They weren't squeezing, but Paul could tell they were strong. As he was held there, staring at the stony-faced intruder, Paul felt the first trickle of fear break through the damn of his psyche.
Paul was unaware of the futility of his struggling, or that he had been bound in such a way so as any and all movement would cause his body damage. He just knew that he was in trouble. All he could think of was trying to free himself, and relentless movement seemed to be the answer right now. He continued struggling against his bonds, twisting his wrists in opposite directions. Left wrist - turn hand skywards; right wrist - turn hand groundwards, then reverse. He continued this for what felt like an eternity. The rope finally bit through the last of the tougher outer skin, and sunk it's teeth into the softer capillary-laden layers beneath. Blood was now beginning to flow freely from beneath the ropes. It ran warmly down his hands, slowly at first, but picking up pace to become a, still slow, but somewhat constant river from his wrists. As the blood washed his hands, reaching the ends of some of his fingers, and began the decent from fingertip to floor, Paul decided that it might be time to stop struggling for a while. To conserve his energy and start thinking. It had already been a while, the eaxct 'while', he wasn't sure of, but a good while, since he had been taken from the comfort of his own living room.
Something covered his face. It felt slightly rough and tickly on his skin, and it had a wet sort of decaying odour about it. Even if Paul opened his eyes, he couldn't see anything. Whatever they had placed over his head was completely opaque. How one would achieve such a feat, Paul was unsure, but he couldn't ever recall a time when he had heard of a material that would not let, even just, the slightest bit of light in. How had they managed to get something that created such absolute blackness? Paul remembered hearing in a design class, once, that black, true black, doesn't actually exist in the nautral world. True black is a human creation, which is why it seems unnatural if used in designs. What the human eye perceives as true black is actually an extremely dark shade of gray. But the internal composition of this bag seemingly was pitch black, in fact, he was inclinded to say that it was pure black, because it seemed very unnatural, indeed, to Paul.
Five Hours Earlier
The man who didn't have a gun continued to stare at Paul. As had been the case when Paul was seated, his gaze didn't flicker - didn't so much as move an iota. Paul felt the damn move, once again, under this man's stare. He was a short man, much shorter than Paul's one hundered and ninety-seven centimetres, but he had a power about him. Something that said don't mess with me or I'll cut you. Paul averted his eyes. He couldn't look at the man any longer. He felt the first trembles in his knees, and a slight sheen of sweat broke out on the palms of his hands. He rubbed them against the coarse denim of the jeans that he was wearing, to remove the layer of liquid that was pushing through the pores of his skin, but as soon as he rubbed his thumbs over the inside of his hands, the sweat was back. The silence that had settled after the thunderous entry made by these men was very quickly becoming deafening. Some people like silence. Some say it's golden, but not Paul. He liked - almost needed - noise, even if it was just background noise, like a television or radio playing while he was working away.
Without warning, the man took a step forward. Towards Paul. Paul felt his insides constrict and every sphincter in his body puckered all at once. He instinctively tried to match the man's forward step with a backward one of his own, but the two gunmen held him firm. Their hands tightened about his biceps, causing him to wince. He had nowhere to go. The man was less than a foot away from Paul, and he could smell the distinct fragrance of butterscotch. The man, still silent continued to study Paul. He regarded him with an air of someone who knew him, but who, at the same time, was completely disinterested in him. Paul racked his brain, but he could not remember having ever met the man before. It made Paul uneasy. Not being able to recall. Paul believed that he had a pretty good memory. It didn't fail him often. He could usually remember things that most people would forget immediately. Phone numbers for example. Paul could remember just about every phone number had had ever owned, unlike most people who would forget an old number days after getting a new one. But he couldn't, for the life of himself, remember this man.
As quickly as he had stepped forward, the man stepped back. He didn't stop at one step though. He took three and then pivoted neatly on the balls of his feet, completing a full one-eighty degree turn, then without breaking his stride, continued out the remains of Paul's front entrance. The grips on his biceps tightened, and Paul felt pain blast from the points where the fists encircled his arm. He winced and squinted his eyes, trying to breathe and keep his composure. This was getting pretty real, pretty quick. The men led him behind the man without any guns, and as they neared the threshold of Paul's house, they slowed, and just as Paul began to wonder what was happening, he felt the slightest of pin pricks on his neck. It was such a feather touch, that he wasn't even sure if it had actually happened. But then his knees ceased the shaking that they had begun previously, and the edges of his vision began to blur and slowly darken. He felt light-headed, and a strange floating sensation rippled across his entire body. Paul found his weightless self being lifted off the ground and blackness swam across the rest of his vision, slowly, rendering the world dark.
Well, I hope you thoroughly enjoyed this, the first part of my latest little ditty titled The Myrmecia Genus. I'm sorry I didn't put it up as a single post, but I really felt it was too long for one sitting on a platform such as this. I'll get part two up pretty soon.
In the meantime, I'm looking forward to any comments you may have. Please, feel free to give advice, comment on the content, even, speculate as to the outcome. Whatever it is, I look forward to hearing from you.
Thanks so much for reading.
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