Being woken up in the middle of the night is annoying.
Being woken up in the middle of the night to a crying woman with a gaping hole in her chest, is terrifying. But, so it goes.
“Help!” she cries, before falling to the floor. Behind her, F stands, a bloody book in one hand.
“Oh stop being so dramatic,” he mumbles. He opens the book. The pages look dry. He writes something, bends down and shoves the book into the hole in the girls chest.
I am sitting now. Backed to the end of my bed.
“F what the shit!”
He rolls his eyes.
“Just look.” he motions to the girl. I look down. The holes in her chest is sealing up. Her eyes open, tears not yet dried. She looks up at F.
“Hey,” she says, lovingly. She holds out her hand. F takes it and helps her up.
He smiles at me.
“See, all good.” He shrugs and then leaves the room. The girl stays, staring at the wall, frowning. I get up and walk into the other room. F is sitting at the table smoking a cigarette.
“What the hell was that about?”
“Check it out,” he says. He takes off his shirt. There is a hole in his chest the size of a football. The insides are all torn up; bones and bits of flesh cling to each other–the mouth of a cannibal who forgot to brush his teeth. I frown at it.
“I found,” F ashes his cigarette, “that inside everyone, there is a book. It says everything about them dude. Like, everything, what they think, what they want,” he raises an eyebrow, smirking, “who they want,” he finishes. There is a sound behind me. The girl walks slowly toward F. He pats his leg. She listens, like a dog just out of surgery, stumbling, bleary eyed. She comes, she sits.
I back away.
“This seems wrong,” I say, frowning. I back away. I glance at his bookshelf. A box is open, one I’ve never seen open. I walk over to it. Inside there are books, lined up, neat. I look along their spines, recognizing a lot of names.
“F, how many people have you done this to?”
I look back at him. The girl is running her finger around the hole in his chest. He is watching her, smiling. He looks up.
“Oh, you know. I don’t know. It’s fine. I’ll put the books back. You know how I am. I just want to know everything. And, if there is something wrong, I can just fix it. Wouldn’t you?”
I look back at the box. At the top I see a book. It is smaller than the rest, black. On the spine there is a letter. I pick it up. “F”
I open it. Suddenly F stands. The girl falls to the floor. She seems happy about it.
“Don’t!” he yells at me.
I look down. F starts toward me. I back for the door. I look down at the first page. I look up at F.
“Dude. What the hell is this?”
F stops. From his back pocket he pulls out a knife.
“I wish you hadn’t seen that.” He starts walking towards me, slowly. “Don’t worry. You will be fine. You won’t even remember. I’ll fix it.”
He runs at me. I jump out of the room and slam the door. I head for the bathroom. Lock myself inside. I look around for something, anything.
There is a thunk. I turn. The knife has been pushed through the door.
“Shit,” I say, thinking. I get an idea.
I place the book into the tub and turn on the water. I begin ripping out page after page and throwing them in. They soak in the wet. They get soggy. They sink.
“Stop!” F roars from the other side of the door. I don’t.
Finally, there is silence as the last page sinks to the bottom. It is the same as every other page. A marker had been taken to it; written over the original text in thick dark sloppy ink. The same sentence, over and over, down the page it went, falling over itself.
I’m a Good Person