Every once in a while, I’ll post something I’ve done for school. This work may not always relate to my blog’s ~*~*body positive*~*~ message, but I’ll still try and produce something that’s at least mildly entertaining (If it isn’t, I’ll perform the entire musical number that’s at the end of A Chorus Line).
This week, I’ll be posting a piece of creative writing.
I wrote Cravings for my creative writing class.
Warning: A little graphic imagery and mild drug use.
There were 349 tiles on the third floor of the Norton Sound Regional Hospital in Nome, Alaska. When the tiles were waxed, the little flecks of grey and black from aggressive gurneys and failed code blues would sparkle. No matter how many feet would dirty the floor, Maggie would always count the tiles, and every time she counted, she’d jingle the change in her hand.
See, the best coffee in the hospital was on the third floor. It was a decrepit, brown heap of caffeine wizardry that sat right outside the Nephrology department. There were five buttons, their pictures faded into nothing from old age, but Maggie knew which was which. Her gloved index finger jammed into the upper left button, and the machine staggered to life.
Maggie leaned her forehead against the wall, her shadow casting over her scrubs. She stared at her feet. The rhythmic noise of the fluorescent lighting hummed in her ears. Maggie shut her eyes and grabbed at the surgical mask around her mouth. Her nostrils filled instantly with the overwhelming aroma of alcohol-based cleaners, sanitized plastic, and mild hints of death. Maggie inhaled steadily.
The coffee machine made a whirring sound and then stopped all together. She tilted her head. A small brown cup sat delicately with a long line of smoke billowing from the top. Maggie removed the glove from her hand, grabbed her coffee, and walked towards the elevator. Her shoes scuffed the freshly waxed floor. Maggie counted her tiles.
Martin Masek was married to Daisy Ohe. They had been married for 349 days. Daisy Ohe waited till Martin Masek was sleeping, climbed on top of him in her cotton bra and underwear, and inserted a six-inch kitchen knife directly in his spine. Daisy Ohe stabbed Martin Masek nine times. When she was done, she lodged the knife into the base of his skull at the back of his neck. Daisy Ohe wiped the handle of the knife of fingerprints, climbed off her husband, and left little red drops in a path to the washroom. She lit a frosted, rose scented candle and poured a bath. When she was submerged, Martin’s blood drew off her skin and spread in thin strands. The water tinted pink. Daisy inhaled.
According to the police report, Daisy Ohe was arrested two days later on her way to Bethel, Alaska. Her dark red, rusted station wagon was spotted at a gas station filling up. Her black hair was cut into a bob. Apparently Martin’s brother had stopped by the small cottage to pick up some money from the couple. When there was no reply at the front door, he let himself in.
Martin was found in a pool of his own blood and in an advanced state of rigor mortis. There was blood pooling on the carpet, and the yellow floral duvet the couple had received as a wedding gift was brown and rigid. Daisy had left the window open to mask the smell, but the harsh cold had instead frozen Martin’s corpse. The knife, which was twisted deep into the cervical vertebra, had frost on the blade. Martin’s fingers, which had violently contorted after death, were shades of blue and black. Both of his eyes were open.
Maggie sipped her coffee slowly as she read the folder. Martin Masek was now reduced to a thirteen page, Alaska State Trooper police report, and a black, overused body bag. Whoever had transported the body had neglected to think about the knife protruding from Mister Masek’s neck, so it lazily stuck out through the zipper. She finished the report and laid it down on the sterile, silver table before pulling on her gloves and slipping on the surgical mask.
The zipper stuck halfway down the bag, so Maggie stretched it over his head and wiggled it down and out from under him. Each flesh wound was even and deep. Clean cuts. From one angle, Maggie could make out the twelfth rib through the gaping hole the puncture wound produced. From another, a portion of muscle sprouted out of the cut like a weed through the cracks of the sidewalk. Maggie removed the frosted knife from the back of his neck, noted the crushed vertebrae and skull fragments, and placed the kitchen utensil in a silver pan.
There were 511 tiles in the main entrance of the hospital. Maggie tugged on her navy blue, deeply wrinkled parka with the big, patchy fur hood. The Alaskan wilderness was sharp and bitter, especially at this hour in the middle of January. Flipping up her hood and ruffling it gently, Maggie squinted up at the blinking red digital clock. 3:39AM. She waved at Paul, the 66-year-old security guard behind his desk, and made her way into the cold. The wind was so strong that Maggie fought the gust to move foreword. Her boots left a determined, deep path in the snow.
Maggie found her grey, 1990 Volkswagen Jetta in the parking lot, jammed the key in the car door, and let herself in. The car was getting old, and the leather interior was cracking and rough from the wear over the years, but it was relatively clean. Maggie watched with fatigued brown eyes as the snow swirled and shuffled over the hood of her car.
Her hand reached for the glove box and pulled out a crumpled plastic baggie. She flicked on the lights in the car and grabbed a CD case from underneath her seat- Greenday’s American Idiot. She hadn’t listened to the thing in years, but it made a decent rolling tray. Her fingers smoothed a thin sheet of rolling paper overtop the heart grenade on the album. Maggie sprinkled her weed onto the paper, then pinched and rolled meticulously until her joint was formed. She poked the eraser-end of a pencil down through the top and pressed down. Maggie was as consistent with rolling joints as she was with cutting people open.
When she was happy with the finished product, Maggie started her car and took off onto the dark, slick roads that lead up to her house. She pressed off the lights inside the car and slipped the joint in between her lips, lighting the twisted tip in a tiny inferno. The car ride was blissful, and the extreme wind would catch and whistle through her car doors. Despite the cold, Maggie didn’t mind the screaming wind. It was a comforting sound at 4 in the morning. Anything was better than silence or the radio. Maggie inhaled.
There were eight stone steps that lead up to Maggie’s slanted, wooden house, but they were covered in snow. Maggie trumped up the walk and opened the door, throwing her bags on the ground before heading straight to the kitchen. She opened her fridge and stared blankly at its insides, similar to what she had done to Martin Masek earlier in the evening. After reviewing her selection of fruits and veggies (and like, eight bottles of mustard for some reason), Maggie opted to pull out a jug of milk and slam it on the dated wooden countertop. She then opened her cabinets and slowly scanned the shelves. It took a while, but eventually Maggie found what she was looking for.
She sat herself in the middle of the scratchy green couch that was four feet away from the wood-panel television. A distorted, grey image of a local news anchor mumbled about the cost of gas. He would gesture to the upper left corner of the screen, perhaps to some statistic, but the TV was faded into nothing from old age. Maggie stuck a spoonful of Frosted Flakes in her mouth and munched rhythmically. A long line of milk dribbled down her chin and left little white dots on her scrubs. When she was done with her first bite, Maggie threw her head back in triumph and shut her eyes. The screaming Alaska wind slipped through the cracks in the windows and front door. Maggie smiled.
“This is really fucking delicious.”