Yet another reason to self-isolate rather than travel... :)
|SCREAMS!!! Entry 3/15/20
Theme: A Creeping Redness
“Whatchy’all doin’ in dese ‘ere parts,” the scraggly-faced man said, finger rising to pick at a scab on his nose, then wiping it on his filthy flannel-clad chest. He leaned against his rust-red ‘80-something F-150 pickup.
“Just driving through Iowa, heading west,” I said as the man stared at my chest.
“You bein’ a Chinese feller ‘n all, I’m thinkin’ reg’lar, not premium. Right?” he snickered, still refusing to meet my gaze.
“I’m not Chinese. I’m Korean,” I said, continuing to hold the trigger on the gas nozzle to fill my tank.
“Who fuckin’ cares? One fuckin’ commie or t’other… ‘s all d’same.”
“Dat s’pose t’make a fuckin’ difference?” he said with a wheezing laugh.
“It’s a democracy. Just like the U.S.”
“I’ma not born yesterday, y’li’l yellow bastard. Just ‘cause y’call it som’in ain’t mean nuthin’,” he said, smile disappearing, the salt and pepper stubble on his chin quivering. His voice suddenly gained thirty decibels.
“NOW QUIT LYIN’!!!”
As I wiped the spittle from my face, I glared at him. He still wouldn’t raise his eyes.
“David, come on! We’ll get gas somewhere else. Let’s just get out of here!” came Lindsay’s nervous voice from the car.
“No, Linds. I refused to be intimidated by this stupid asshole,” I said coldly, only a slight tremor on the final word betraying my rising anger. “Who’s too scared to look me in the eye...”
I watched the muscles in the man’s jaw tense. His face turned with unnatural speed toward Lindsay. His arm fired outward, morphing into a crimson tentacle. The bizarre limb was shaped like a bolt of scarlet lightning, with jagged offshoots along its length.
The vermillion appendage blasted through the window of the driver’s side door with a shower of glass. It searched along the seats until it found Lindsay’s hip. It latched onto her and pulled hard. With unbelievable strength, it ripped her out of the seat, through the broken glass of the door, carving long, red ribbons into her soft flesh.
Her head flew into the gas pump with a sickening crunch, and she dropped to the scalding asphalt, head bent at an unnatural angle.
Everything had happened so quickly, I hadn’t even had a chance to move, let alone save her. My jaw, gaping, shook with horrified rage as I gazed at her lifeless body. I felt the nozzle spraying all over my pant legs, splashing up into my face.
Apparently, I had dropped it during the attack.
Licking my lips subconsciously to taste the sweet tang of gasoline, my eyes rose back to the… thing... before me.
He held a lit match with his still-human hand, and his eyes finally rose to meet mine. I saw the reflection of the flame in their glassy surface.
They were blood red.
“Why?” I heard my voice rasp, punctuated by the *whap* sound of nascent flames on my jeans.
“‘Cause yer one’a them fuckin’ reds. I’m t’only Red ‘round dese parts.”