She knew his heart would crash, landing right at her feet the moment she told him it was over. What had been a fairy tale beginning had quickly turned into the twisted relationship only Dean Koontz could do justice in one of his macabre stories. It had been tumultuous, to say the least, and she just needed to be free of him.
Over the course of their relationship, he had retreated into a cocoon inside his mind, fueled by the haze of booze and cigarettes. She had not realized his heart had shrunk to such a miniscule version of what it once was until she saw it laying before her, cold and lifeless on the stony ground.
His face seemed to become more emaciated the longer she looked at him. He had not reacted verbally to her accusations. He could only nod in sullen agreement because he seemed to have lost the ability to speak. She berated him, lashed out for each minute she spent wishing her life with him had been different. With each bitter word she uttered, her Machiavellian intention became clearer to him.
She couldn’t tell if his eyes actually became bigger when he realized what was happening or if it just seemed like it because his body was withering at such a rapid rate. His hair-line seemed to recede as she watched and his gaunt complexion resembled more of a skeleton than a human body. She pulled the small doll from her pocket and lingered before she pushed the last pin into the woven material that covered its chest. A small sigh escaped her lips and she plunged the final pin into the doll. What remained of his skin and bones hastily turned to dust and fell to the cobblestone street.
She stood idle for a few moments and watched as the ants began to march single file through the crack in the stone. Like a well trained army, they worked as a team to circle the tiny carrion and haul the remains of the lifeless heart down the hole to take home as a trophy. Little did they know, the spell she had created would only allow that heart to exist for mere minutes after the rest of his body had disappeared. The ants would get it into the hole but it would never remain solid long enough to present it to the colony.
As she walked away, she carefully removed each pin remembering the outcome that each jab had on his physical being. She tossed the pins in the gutter and placed the doll safely back in her pocket, hoping, once again, this would be the last time she would need it.
Written for the Grammar Ghoul Challenge – to use the picture above – Just a lonely heart by Marina Carvalho
is licensed under CC by 2.0, and the word crash with the following definition – Move or cause to move with force, speed, and sudden loud noise
Well done indeed!
Talk about a clean break!
Oh, I loved this. I sensed from the beginning that I was witnessing a murder in progress, but your blew me away with the voodoo and the ant minions. You gotta gift for the macabre, my friend. (So please tell me you’re working on a story collection.)
Thank you so much! I have actually thought of putting a story collection together. Thanks for the nudge. 😉
Happy to do so!
I agree. You are truly gifted. Good, good writing!
Thank you, Susan. That really means a lot. 🙂
Yikers! That’s some seriously wicked voodoo. Seems like he had it coming to him, though. I like that his heart lasted just a little bit longer, just to emphasize the part of him that withered first. Great story!
Thanks very much!
Well, that’s one way to end a relationship. 😉 I love the twisted indifference of the main character, and I love the way you incorporated the ants into the ending. Nicely done!
Thank you very much! 🙂
Wow! Just–wow! I love this piece! The ending, though, gave me chills: “She tossed the pins in the gutter and placed the doll safely back in her pocket, hoping, once again, this would be the last time she would need it.” The questions that come up in my mind, like, why does she need to do this, and how many times has she done it before–is it all just this one guy, or are there several guys…all of these questions makes me love this piece more! Great write!
Wow….thank you so much! Your comment just made my day. 🙂
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