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Lostprophets The Fake Sound of Progress
It was a Friday afternoon, last day of school, and there was hysteria as emotional teens all clambered to say their goodbyes to one another and take that first step into young adulthood. It would be a transition which many of the cool clique would make rather uncomfortably as invariably prom queens would end up obese single mothers working in drive-thrus while bullies generally never grew up and ended up as abusive manchildren. Amongst all this commotion it is often the ugly duckling who undergoes the most beautiful transmogrification into the writers, poets and auteurs of this world and Lesley had grand designs of becoming one such swan although he was still unaware which.
He had to get through the last wave of turbulent waters first and, initially at least, it appeared he had flown gracefully under the radar. The last bell chimed and he exhaled a massive sigh of relief as things appeared relatively serene. Only once had he endured the discomfort of having his underwear yanked into his balloon knot and the Chinese burns littering his wrists from recess were now fully recovered.
Lesley normally took the less populated back gate out of the premises as that provided his escape capsule from most of the meaner kids but, on this day, Lesley considered that his final walk home would be with head held aloft. He wished to look back at his five-year penitentiary, bid it adieu and scuttle off home to fire up some Rammstein and bite the head off a fruit bat. This proved to be a poorly considered plan as he ran straight into trouble the moment his presence was flagged up.
A number of the most villainous offenders were congregated at the gate and one of their sentinels picked him up instantly. No sooner had he taken a step from the hallowed grounds than he was set upon. “Look guys, it’s vagina basket!” Lesley’s heart sank and hindsight began to kick in but, alas, too late. “We haven’t had a chance to say our goodbyes” one taunted as a group of four regular thorns in his side began to circle around him like famished coyotes.
The usual suspects were present and correct. Dale Goodwin, Charlie Tavistock, Billy ‘Bulldozer’ Botherton-McGee and Stephen Cooper were four particularly repugnant assailants. They had made Lesley’s life a living hell led by their monarch, the infamous Daryl Fellini. He was their ringleader and the only face not visible within the swirling crowd. That’s not to say he wasn’t there, the sudden jabbing pain in Lesley’s kidney signaled Daryl’s presence.
“You think you can leave through our gate parasite?” came the voice from behind as another low blow landed in his midriff. “We can’t let you leave without a little final initiation” Surely five years of habitual dismay was initiation enough for entry into whatever distinguished club they were allowing access? No such luck, the third blow winded Lesley and he dropped to the ground gasping for breath but this wasn’t over by a long chalk.
Daryl crouched and whispered into his ear “you know how fucking sick I am of seeing your spotty face gawking at me day after day?” Lesley hardly had a moment to conjure up a response as he was pushed down onto his face in the gravel and pinned from both sides. His persecutors were still vocalizing their intent but, at this juncture, Lesley had replaced their audio with a mixture of white noise and Killswitch Engage as he was used to blanking out their treatment the only way he saw fit.
This day they had a festival of inhospitality forecast and began to remove his pants and shirt callously to heighten his anguish further. Ordinarily he would resist struggling as it hastened his ordeal but this was a hefty advancement on any of their harsh pranks thus far so he summoned up every ounce of inner resolve and lashed out with both his legs, knocking back both Dale and Charley who both received imprints of his steel toe-capped shoes (rebelliously worn for the last day) in their stupid faces. Dale came off worse as he received the business end to his right cheek providing him an instant shiner, and Lesley saw a fleeting opportunity for escape as the others were temporarily stunned by his sudden surge.
He rose to his feet, trousers hanging off one leg and shirt torn crudely, and bolted as fast as his remaining fatigue allowed. Not once did he look back and eventually the sound of his pursuers subsided. By this time he was a block away from his house and had only one intention: uncle Clive’s radio. He had to prepare his rearguard as the ramifications of his actions were likely to be most severe and inhospitable. The posse knew of his coordinates, indeed he had played happily with Charlie in the school yard before secondary school diminished any flimsy social status.
His parents could offer him no protection as they were virtually passed out in front of the telly in a drunken stupor as per every day. He bypassed them both and shot straight to his tiny chamber, pulled his ropy blinds shut and delved straight into Pandora’s box. He located the radio and dusted it off ready. These fucks were about to discover the error in their actions and, for the first time in his sixteen years, Lesley felt like “the shit.”
John 5 & Griffin Boice The Lords Theme
66.6, that was the frequency he was required to tune into, hardly a chore to remember for a lad whose poky crawlspace was adorned with pentagrams and anti-religious paraphernalia. The moment he hit that dial and the most vile audio spilled out there was an almost ungodly scream from directly outside the house. Naturally Lesley had to investigate as the shriek had been sufficient to curdle his own blood. He parted the blinds and was greeted with an image which instantly caused him to wretch.
Stephen Cooper was down there but it appeared his body parts were covering a wide radius. Appendages and entrails had been separated from his twitching cadaver and his exposed windpipe jettisoned dark red sludge towards his disembodied head which was still rolling lopsidedly along his front lawn. He had been somehow obliterated, torn limb from limb but with no indication of what had caused such an outright bloodbath. Lesley rapidly turned off the radio but kept it on his person as my made his way back downstairs.
His parents still weren’t even shaken from their slumber so he headed straight for the front door and was instantly greeted with a most foul aroma. It was like charred flesh, with a dash of feces as Stephen had evidently excavated his bowl at the precise moment the shit hit the fan, so to speak. Lesley had a stomach of wrought iron but the acidic sting of half-digested slop in his palette testified that even his mighty resolve was being severely tested.
As the realization began to sink in that Uncle Clive’s words were holding some weight right now, Lesley decided that it was high time that the hunters became the hunted and set off through the settling spray of sanguine fluids with his radio clutched tight by his side.
Truly, Clearly, Really, Sincerely,
Keeper of the Crimson Quill
Copyright: Crimson Quill: Savage Vault Enterprises 2014