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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/2323073-The-Dispose-all-5000
Rated: E · Fiction · Death · #2323073
Beware what you wish for, you might just get it. Harry Trimm learned this the hard way.
Harry Trimm was what you would call average. He was in his mid forties, his bald spot was larger than he liked to believe, and his spare tire was not lacking. His job was demeaning, but hey at least the pay was inadequate also. He worked as an internal salesman for a wholesale supply company. It was Harry’s job to sell toilets and other bathroom fixtures to businesses and hospitals. Talk about a crappy job.

On the bright side of things, Harry’s wife made his life a living Hell. They met in Harry’s sophomore year at junior college. When they first met, he was smitten with her girl next door cuteness. Now what felt like eons later, Harry’s wife was different. That cuteness Harry once adored made him cringe every time he looked at her. Harry was the sole provider in the family. His wife spent his paychecks faster than water could drain out of a bucket with a hole in the side. When asked if she worked, Harry's wife would respond by saying, “My job is to run the house”. The problem with this was she rarely cooked or cleaned and Harry’s suits always looked like he slept in them.

Harry and his wife lived in a tiny house that needed more repairs than he could count and the mortgage wouldn’t be paid off for another ten years. They lived in a speck of a town in the Midwest where there was no real form of entertainment. The movie theater was rundown and they only showed C-list movies that did terrible even overseas. All the lanes in the bowling alley were warped and no matter how hard you tried, making a spare was impossible. To put it in the simplest terms, there was no escape or release from the pressures of life. There was no fun in the town and the most exciting thing to happen in the last twenty years was when the roads were repaved. That is until the Dispose-all 5000 arrived.

~~~~~~~

It was a crisp fall afternoon when Mr. Black blew into town. He was a traveling salesman who wore a discounted suit and always had a day and a half worth of stubble on his face. The smell of cheap cologne and cigars followed him wherever he went like the trail of bread crumbs left on the ground by Hansel and Gretel.

At first glance, you would think that no one would ever buy anything from Mr. Black. But he had a way about him that made people listen when he spoke. And if he got you to listen, then he knew he had the sale. Black showed up on Harry’s doorstep at the most convenient of times. It was Sunday, which is a day of rest for most people but for Harry it was another day in prison. Instead of watching the game on a big screen TV, Harry was forced to watch the home shopping network on an 18” black and white set. His wife refused to let him upgrade their ancient floor model television.

Harry heard the knock on the door and didn’t even look in his wife’s direction. There was no way she was going to budge from the couch or her third pack of Marlboros today. Harry opened the door and there stood Mr. Black. He had a presence about him that kept Harry from slamming the door in his face.

“Good afternoon sir. Have I got something to show you! May I come in?” And before Harry could close the door, Black was already slithering down the hall towards the kitchen. Though the hunched over figure engaged in a coughing fit he managed to utter, “Let me begin by saying you have a lovely home.”

Harry knew he was full of shit now because there was nothing lovely about his home. Despite this undeniable fact, and the fact that Mr. Black was huffing and puffing like he was about to drop dead, Harry let him continue his pitch. Maybe it was that Harry was a salesman too, but for reasons he couldn’t verbalize, he wanted to hear what this man had to offer.

Mr. Black cleared his throat and began to speak. When he did, Mr. Black straightened his spine, stood taller than his 5’8” height, and spoke with the velvety smoothness of Mel Torme. “Now what I have to show you will change your life forever. This is the Dispose-all 5000! It is the top of the line garbage disposal on the market. It has diamond encrusted blades that never dull or break. It runs quieter than a mouse sneaking across the floor but it has the power of a wrecking ball.”

“Don’t you be giving my money away to no crooked door-to-door salesman?” Harry’s wife bellowed from a cloud of smoke emanating from the living room.

Harry’s shoulders dropped as if the last bit of life he had was released with a sigh. Black was quick to revive the tormented soul. “Did I mention the best feature? It can grind up ANYTHING!” As Black enunciated this last word, he shifted his eyes towards the miserable pile of tar and bon bons that sat in the other room. As he expected, Harry’s gaze followed him and locked on the source of decades of misery. Harry’s eyes lit up with a ray of hope and he inhaled the possibility of joy in his life. A despicable grin formed on the face of Black for he knew Harry was sold.

“I don’t think I can afford a thing like this.”
“I haven’t even told you the price yet. In fact, because I like you I am prepared to let you have the Dispose-all 5000 on a trial basis.”
Harry’s gaze expressed the hesitation he felt, “What do you mean by trial basis?”
Black’s devilish smile grew greater as he responded, “I will let you use the Dispose-all 5000 for a week. When I come back if you aren’t 100 % satisfied, there will be no charge. On the other hand, when you tell me how happy this device has made you then we will haggle over the price. Do we have a deal?”
“…Well…it sounds… like a good deal but... Maybe I should check with my wife first?”
“A man with your intelligence knows a great deal when he sees it. You don’t need anyone to tell you it's okay. Besides this is just a trial basis remember.”
“Harry? You still messin with that feller?”, the battle ax bellowed.
Harry gritted his jaw closed to keep from yelling profanities in front of a stranger. “You have a deal. Just tell me what to do.” Harry said with exuberance.
“Excelllllent. All you have to do is sign this contract and I can install the Dispose-all 5000.” Harry signed without even glancing at the form and Mr. Black tucked it away in his briefcase with a chuckle under his breath.
Installation took a matter of moments and Harry’s face had the look of a boy on Christmas morning. It was that antsy anticipation that a child holds in while waiting to play with his new toys. Mr. Black headed for the door and departed with a last bit of wisdom, “Go nuts with it. Let your imagination run wild. I PROMISE the Dispose-all 5000 will dispense ANYTHING you put in it.”

~~~~~~~

Harry started small. He took several items from the refrigerator and fed them to the machine. Then he removed a roast from the freezer. The disposal swallowed the solid chunk of meat as if it was liquid. Harry started to chuckle and a genuine smile rose on his face. A smile he had failed to use since his wedding date. He grabbed some small tree branches from the back yard and the Dispose-all dismissed them as nothing more than a few woodchips. Then before he could further his enjoyment Harry’s wife piped in, “You better not have bought anything from that crook.”

A wave of despair flooded through Harry’s body at the sound of the old ball and chain. But instead of gloom, Harry was overcome by anger and hate. There was no way he was going to let her steal his bliss again. He took a butcher’s knife from the drawer and walked into the living room. His wife was still babbling faster than a chipmunk on a caffeine rush but his ire tuned out her voice. The old crow’s persistent squawking didn’t skip a beat as Harry plunged the knife into her chest causing her to sit up right and gasp for air. Before he knew it, Harry had removed and reinserted the blade a dozen times. The screeching voice gurgled and fell silent. There was blood all over the couch and it pooled into a puddle, which surrounded his wife’s lifeless body. Harry didn’t react or show any emotion. He never glanced at the body or bothered to check the pulse. He just turned off the television, took a shower, and went to bed.

In the morning, Harry called in sick at work for the first time in his life. His face began to sag as the reality of his actions began to sink in. That was until he caught a glimpse of the nag. That face even in silence could suck the marrow from a person’s sole. Harry heard her nasal draining voice ringing in his ears. “Look at the mess you made. If you think I’m cleaning up this sty you have another thing coming”. Rage gushed from every pore in his body and Harry was certain his head would explode.

Until…that is, he heard the calming voice of Mr. Black. “Remember the 5000 will dispense of ANYTHING you put into it.” Harry changed into his yard clothes and charged into the living room with a purpose. Before he knew it, Harry had hacked up his wife’s body and stacked the parts on the kitchen counter right next to the dishes from last night’s supper.

Harry flipped the switch for the Dispose – all and it came to life with a quiet humming sound. Harry wanted to start small so he chopped the digits off each hand and foot. He dropped the fingers and toes one by one into the black abyss of the sink. The blades shredded the flesh and bones with a subtle crunching sound. By the time Harry plopped the last toe into the sink the Dispose – all had come to life. Harry moved on to his wife’s hands and they disappeared as fast as the fingers and toes. When Harry moved on to the arms a light smoke began to rise from the drain. Perspiration beaded on Harry’s forehead in the blink of an eye. A lump swelled in Harry’s throat and panic caused his blood pressure to skyrocket. Just when Harry was about to overload he heard the all too familiar voice of Mr. Black…”Do you smell that Harry? Let your nose revel in your freedom”. Harry sniffed the stale air in the kitchen. On a normal day the kitchen smelled like old grease and out of date food. However, today was no ordinary day. Today the kitchen was engulfed with an aroma of fresh baked cookies. The odor sent Harry back to his childhood when his mom would bake sweets every Sunday. This was one of Harry’s favorite memories and the flashback made him smile like the grinch who stole Christmas. Harry’s blood pressure returned to normal and he went back to the task at hand. The 5000 growled with a hunger for more. It gnarled and grinded the body parts with the greatest of ease.

Before Harry knew it the morning had passed and it was time for lunch. The only remaining part of the prison that had caged Harry was his wife’s head. He left it on the counter and washed his hands. Harry fixed himself a sandwich and some chips. He also found a lone can of Budweiser in the back of the refrigerator that he saved for just such occasions as today. Harry sat on the couch just as the midday news was coming on. Harry dove into the sandwich as if he hadn’t eaten in years. In a way he figured that it was a fair statement since he couldn’t remember the last time his wife cooked. And for that matter the last time Harry remembered eating one of his wife’s meals he chipped a tooth on the hockey puck meat and had food poisoning for three days.

When Harry finished his sandwich and chips he placed his plate on the floor, plopped his feet on top of the coffee table and sipped on his can of beer. As his food digested Harry reflected on his new toy. No matter what size appendage Harry fed to the Dispose – all it would swallow it whole. The drain would widen or change shape to accommodate its meal. This sent Harry’s mind down another road.

Up until now his thinking or lack thereof had only caused him mild trouble. After all, no one knew what he had done to his wife. He could tell everyone that she had left during the night and never returned. Harry was certain he could convince the authorities. The problem with this train of thought was that it was leading Harry on an even darker track. This bleak fork of thought led to the deepest part of Harry’s mind. This was the road to the part of his subconscious that Harry feared. It stored all his painful memories. Every time he had been scared, disappointed or hurt Harry stored it in this darkest of places. Harry never expressed his feelings and this was a major factor in Harry’s development into the wuss he was today.

Harry had gone to a therapist for about a month until his wife insisted he stop. She claimed that there was nothing wrong with him and that Harry was just throwing money away. And if Harry’s wife nagged long enough she always got what she wanted. So when Harry’s imagination began to stroll down this path it started out slow. That is until the voice of Mr. Black returned.
“Don’t be frightened Harry. The Dispose – all 5000 can protect you. It can even help you exact revenge.”
“But I don’t want revenge on anyone.” Harry spoke into the empty room.
“Wouldn’t you love to get even with ALL the people who hurt you over the years? Just think about how better the world would be if you disposed of those bad seeds.” Mr. Black’s voice piped back.
“I just don’t know if it would be right for me to judge them.”
“Was it right how your wife forced you to remain at a job that made you miserable? Or what about that pathetic boss of yours? You can’t tell me he doesn’t deserve some home grown justice. And think of the paperboy who always tosses your newspaper in the sprinkler.”
“Now I know I could never hurt a kid.”
“That punk is going to grow up to be a serial killer if he isn’t stopped now.”
“How in the Hell can you know something like that?” Harry questioned the nonexistent voice.
Black had to pause before answering this last question. “Let’s just say that I have the gift to see who is good in the world and, more important, who the wicked souls are. After all, how do you think I came to be at your stoop yesterday? It was no accident. Just think. You could help the world be a better place if you eliminated these evil people.”
“When you put it like that…I guess I have an obligation.”
And with that Harry sprung from the couch and headed back to the kitchen. With the precision of a seasoned butcher Harry returned to the task at hand. As Harry dunked his wife’s head into the sink a list began to formulate in his head.
“Who could I get rid of?” The wife had been number 1 on his list so Harry felt good about starting at the top. Harry was stumped for a brief moment and then the names came rolling off his tongue. His boss for sure, the paperboy who ALWAYS tossed the paper in the sprinklers, the guy who takes too long at the ATM machine, ALL the women who try to drive while talking on the phone and putting on make-up, etc.…

Harry felt his skin getting warmer and his blood beginning to boil. He wasn’t angry at all these people. He was thrilled at the thought of ridding the world of these pests. Then Harry felt the hatred he had been bottling up inside explode. The cork popped and Harry found himself chuckling in a sinister laugh.

The demonic voice of Mr. Black echoed through Harry’s mind once again, “Yes! Yes! End the miserable lives of those on your list. Kill them all and bring me their souls.”

“Wait a minute!” Harry shouted to no one. “I’m not a killer. I can’t do this.” Harry’s eyes grew to the size of a night owl’s as he stared down at the blood stained sink and counter. Why did he not see the mess before now? Harry wasn’t sure but he knew that he had to end this madness.

Harry flipped the power switch to the off position and dropped his knife into the sink with a clank. He was about to step back when his wife’s pudgy hand and arm came crawling up from the drain. Harry tried to scream but the anxiety transformed him into a mute. The hacked up limb launched itself and landed on Harry’s shirt. Harry swatted and swatted but the appendage’s grip tightened.
The Dispose-all’s power switch flipped on by itself. Harry put it back in the off position only to have it switch right back. Harry pulled the plug from the electrical outlet but the Dispose-all 5000 did not need standard power. The 5000 ran off of hate and anger. The extremity’s dangling nerves stretched towards the drain. The nerves clamped onto the rim of the drain and the hand began to pull Harry down. Harry tried to resist but was flabbergasted at the force with which the hand tugged. Harry started to shriek and the dispose-all roared louder for its next sacrifice.

“I’m a good person! This can’t be happening to me!” Harry exclaimed to no one.
“But you’re not a good person Harry.” declared Mr. Black’s voice. The voice projected from deep in the drain. “If you were good you would not have killed your wife.”
“It was an accident. I wasn't in my right mind.” Harry tried to rationalize.
“I beg to differ. Your heart does not deceive. The only way for you to think such evil thoughts is if they are in your soul "
"It was the Dispose-all. I will give it back. You said this was a trial."
"Give it back? You signed a contract. I'm gonna drag you into my hell where you will burn for all eternity and your evilness will fuel my army of sinners.”
“I’m not evil. I’m not evil. I’m not evil.” Harry repeated over and over.

Then he was startled yet again, as if his heart could take anymore stress, but this time it was his wife’s dismembered head that did the talking. And all it kept saying was…Harry, Harry, and Harry…over and over and over.

Harry started hearing a ringing sound and knew for a fact he was losing his mind. He closed his eyes so tight it was making his head hurt. And just when he felt his head was about to explode Harry blacked out. Harry opened his eyes a few moments later to a black void. The noises around him were muted. Given everything that had happened over the past two days you would expect Harry to expunge the remainder of his sanity. Instead, Harry had a tranquil feeling.

This feeling started off as a small seed in the depth of his heart. He couldn’t describe it but knew he had been rescued. Harry heard a different voice this time. “It’s never too late Harry.” And with that a light began to illuminate Harry’s surroundings. The light started out faint around the edges and grew in intensity as more of the room was revealed. By the time Harry could see the entire room the light was blinding.
Harry realized he was in his living room but it wasn’t the same. He was sitting in his recliner drenched in sweat; the TV was tuned to an evangelist declaring, “Your soul will not be safe without the Lord. If you believe in The Almighty and trust his vision then all you will see is the beauty that surrounds you”. Harry began to look around the room in awe. Everything had a newness and beauty that Harry never saw before this moment. Harry gazed at his wife napping on the couch and slightly snoring if he was being honest. Harry thought she had never looked more beautiful. His heart was filled with peace and joy until he heard the faint ringing of the doorbell. His wife startled awake and spoke in a soft angelic voice.

“Harry? Would you mind getting the door?”
Harry looked between the door and the vision that was his wife. He couldn’t explain how she was so different from just a short time ago. Or maybe it was him who had changed during that time.
“Harry? Are you okay dear? Do you want me to get the door instead?”
“No, I’m fine dear. I’m sure it’s one of the sleazy door to door salesmen. And Heaven knows we don’t need their snake oil items.”
“You are so right. My friend Marci was just telling me how this fella was tryin’ to sell her some fancy garbage disposal. Claimed it could get rid of everything. Offered her a 2 for 1 deal. Marci said we could have the other one. Now what did she call it? The Dispose of all something? The 500? No, I remember. The Disposal 5000! ”

Harry’s eyes bugged out of his head. He sprung from the recliner and slid across the floor in his tube socks. He shoulder banged into the door with a thud and he quickly turned the deadbolt to the locked position just as the person on the other side knocked again.

“Don’t you at least want to tell them we’re not interested?”.
Harry gilded back to the couch where his wife was now sitting up. He looked lovingly into her eyes and said, “The only thing I care about is loving you for the rest of our days!”. And with that the knock faded away.
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