Monday, July 26, 2010

Forties Club Finalist #50

Diamond in the Rough
by Angel Zapata


Chris pushed the other boy back to the ground.

“Leave me alone.” Brandon was too weak to get up. “I didn’t mean anything by it.”

“Yeah, you did.” Chris circled his former classmate and smacked him in the head several times. “Go ahead and say it again.”

“No!”

“Say it!”

The boys were alone in the woods behind the church. It was Sunday afternoon and the wind was deathly still. There were no cars in the parking lot and the playground was barely visible through a thick line of trees.

Brandon looked up at Chris. The boy’s face was a swollen mask of rage.

“I’m sorry for calling you a pirate,” Brandon sobbed. “Please don’t hit me anymore.”

Chris kicked at Brandon’s legs. “Arrrrrgh!” He gritted his teeth and smiled. “There’s me treasure.”

“What are you talking about?” Brandon slowly shuffled backwards in the dirt.

“My grandma says that a little boy’s tears are like diamonds falling out of God’s treasure box,” Chris explained and watched Brandon quickly wipe them from his cheeks. “And you know what a pirate does with his treasure, right?”

Brandon had backed up against a large rock.

“Well, do you?” Chris taunted and lifted up the patch that covered his ruined eye.

***

Later that night, police officers used the sketch Chris provided to locate the shallow grave.

It was aptly identified with a big red X.


(Angel Zapata has fiction appearing in the Toe Tags Anthology, House of Horror: Best of 2009, Mausoleum Memoirs, Flashes in the Dark, The New Flesh, and Howl: Dark Tales of the Feral and Infernal. Visit http://arageofangel.blogspot.com.)

25 comments:

Oddyoddyo13 said...

Now that's a bad day for you-scary what people do to each other.

JR's Thumbprints said...

Very well done. I like your take on the treasure (or should I say Chris's take on the treasure) how it leads to the police going on a treasure hunt of their own.

Peter Dudley said...

Oh, man. That is cold blooded.

Very well written. Truly unique use of the prompt, very clever.

J. Elis Morgan said...

LOVED the eye patch over the ruined eye and the line: “And you know what a pirate does with his treasure, right?”

Excellent story!

Jade L Blackwater said...

Hee hee - GREAT STUFF. So many lovely intersections of brutal humor and of course... pirates!!! Nice.

Erratic Thoughts said...

ooooh! that was scary...
It kept me glued till the end...wow!

Linda said...

Oh good stuff, and completely eerie. Big red x. Ugh. Peace...

Precie said...

Vivid and brutal!

Aerin said...

Please may I nitpick? PLEASE? 'Cause there's too much that's really well done and I feel mean-spirited.

I feel like the last two lines could have been combined to make a bigger punch and a smoother ending.

(Chalk it up to me wanting to punch someone myself.)

Haunted by the church themes.

Aimee Laine said...

Yikes! Poor Brandon!

Dottie (Tink's Place) said...

Hi Angel

I guess it gives a whole other meaning to buried treasure. Chris needs psycho analysis... LOL What happened to his eye BTW?

Frighteningly done!

Dottie :)

Aniket said...

Brilliant take on the prompt. It had that eerie feeling right from the first line. Loved it through and through.

McKoala said...

A sinister little tale! Good interaction between the kids and a suggestion of intriguing back story. Very nice.

Lewis J Peters said...

Echoes of Lord of the Flies.

Joni said...

Budding little psychopath?

Freaky. Nice work.

Chris Allinotte said...

Excellence in execution as always Angel.

I wonder if the ruined eye contributed to Chris' ruined mind? I think yes.

So much in so few words. Well done.

Katherine Tomlinson said...

Not your Pirates of the Caribbean sort of buccaneer. What an immensely creepy story and fantastic use of the prompt. I was icked out. Thank you.

Laurel said...

ICK! This one is chilling! And that last detail of the big red X...shudder.

Great piece.

JaneyV said...

Shudder me timbers!

OK - sorry but I always turn to childish humour in the face of the scary. You wrote this very well but I'm left feeling rather disturbed by it.

Deb Smythe said...

The was chilling. And very well done. Unlike Aerin, I thought separating the last two lines added punch. But either way works for me.

Meghan said...

Wow. The ending IS chilling. Great job!

Michael Morse said...

Pirates, jewels and big red X's; what's not to like!

I did wonder at the beginning, though, how wind could be deathly still.

Vincent Kale said...

Just goes to show you, never pick on someone for their differences. They might just bury you in the sandbox!

Reminds me of Jason Vorhees from Friday the 13th. The kid gets his revenge on the bullies, but I have a feeling he's got a taste for it now. Should we expect a pirate-related serial killer in the near future?

Catherine Vibert said...

Bad bad child, evil bad terrible awful child. GREAT story, awesome excellent well written wonderfully wicked story.

Michelle Davidson Argyle said...

OUCH! This is nicely done. I like the dialogue! And great title. :)