Ash to Ashes
By Caitlin Somerville
The small screen on his iPod lights up as he skips to the next song. Something about his mood tonight changed what he was hearing. Ash had heard this song hundreds of times before but this time he really listened. It wasn’t just a song anymore, it was a plan…
"Take, take, take, take, take, take it away… take my life". As he walked through the door and into a dilapidated building, the words played over and over again. The song was on repeat.
Ash was watching Belle; she was still sitting on some cushions which were inside half a 44 gallon drum. He started to walk out of the room but stopped at the door to look back at Belle. He finally had her.
Ash looked back at Belle, lying unconscious on the floor of a tiny room. Ash laughed, it had been so easy. He shut the door behind himself after her, leaving an apple, a bread roll, a few bottles of water.
Belle opened her eyes to find herself in a tiny room with some food and water. What the hell was going on? Bashing on the door didn’t bring any help, it only hurt her hand. She curled up in the corner before remembering her phone. She put her hand down to her pocket and attempted to retrieve her phone, it was not there. Forgetting about her aching hand, she felt around in her other pocket, it wasn’t there either. Oh shit, shit, shit, shit, she thought. I'm going to die here. Tears streamed down her once pretty face. She heard him return and the hatch opened again and a several lit candles appeared. She could now see her prison. She started compulsively biting on her finger nails, ripping open the nail-bed.
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It seemed as though hours had passed when her stomach gurgled. The simple noise brought her back to from her daydream, and at least there was food. She outstretched her arm towards the food and began to eat. The light given out by the candle made the room look smaller. Belle was becoming claustrophobic. Within minutes she had eaten all the food. She was less than satisfied but couldn’t do a thing about it. She shuffled a few centimetres into the corner and drifted off into an uneasy sleep.
When she awoke the plate had been replaced with a bottle of water and several more candles. Starving, she drained the bottle hoping that it will quench her hunger but to no avail. The air was starting to get thick. Ash had stopped providing her with food and with the water now gone there was only one thing left, oxygen. He was taking away everything that kept her alive.
All she had left was air, and that was the next thing that Ash would take. He got the glue putty to fill the big gaps beneath the door. Next, tape was used to seal around the edges, then glue to seal the edges of the tape. With all the candles there, this shouldn't take longer than a day.
It must have been in there several hours before she blew out the candles. The darkness enveloped her; her eyes will never saw light again.
Later that night Ash opened the door after great difficulty, it took him ages to remove the air-tight seal. When he entered the room a smile was plastered onto his face, it almost hurt because he hadn't smiled in so long, he stepped closer to check for breathing. It was still there, very shallow. His smile faltered but only momentarily. This was an easily-solved problem. He pulled a length of string from his pocket. He looped it around her neck and tightened. There is no struggle from an unconscious victim. A minute later he let go and watched as she fell to the ground. There was no heart beat, and no breath. Ash would sleep well tonight.
Jason walked into the building, concern was imprinted on his young face Belle was supposed to call, and she hadn’t answered her phone, something must be seriously wrong; what the hell had had happened to her?
"Belle? BELLE!!! WHERE ARE YOU?! COME OUT ITS JASON" he bellowed, silence followed. He took a few more steps and screamed once more.
"BELLE, MAKE A NOISE IF YOU CAN HEAR ME!!!" again, there was no response.
He came across a door, it was the only one still attached to the door frame, he approached it warily and placed his warm hands on the cool metal door handle in an attempt to open the door, surprisingly it was locked. His eyes scoured the littered ground searching for something that would have assisted him in picking the lock. Jason was making a significant amount of noise when he became aware of the door opening behind him, someone was there. Jason was looking his fate straight in the eye. Ash had concealed a pole in the sleeve of his jacket and slowly approached Jason. There was less that a metre separating them.
Ash slid the pole down his arm and held onto the end. He made one swift stroke and Jason was unconscious on the floor. As Ash drags him through the door he notices a medi-alert bracelet, Belle was wearing one too. He compared the two to notice that they are both allergic to bee stings, different blood groups though, how convenient, he started to giggle.
The little screen lights up again as the song changed. "Can you feel her running through your veins, she will always and forever, can you bear the burden?" this gave Ash an idea…
Belle’s skin slightly indented as the needle pushed into her skin, it slowly slid into a vein. Then carefully drawing out the blood from below her skin, slowly he pulled the needle out of her arm and brought it forward in front of Jason showing him the needle. He was strapped down with leather belts, so tight that it was impossible to move. His pupils contracted to pin-points in terror as Ash toyed with the tourniquet on his arm, he had always been petrified of needles. Taking much less care than he had extracting it Ash pressed the cool metal of the needle to Jason's skin, then shoved it into his arm, he watched as all the hairs on his skin stood up, how satisfying. Ash jiggled the needle under Jason’s skin; he was trying not to laugh at the expressions on Jason’s face. Play time was over, he slid the needle point into a vein and injected him with Belles cold, dead blood. Knowing that different blood groups coagulate when they come in contact, this was the perfect plan. Ash left his sanctuary knowing that soon, Jason will be stiff and cold, just like Belle. Ash looked back to see the look of acute horror tattooed across Jason’s face.
"Burn the evidence of my existence, Clear the ashes on the ground" the song changes again. Ash walked back to his sanctuary and stood in the middle of the room and looked around for one last time. He shivered with anticipation, so much so that he struggled to open the first container. Once the lid was off he emptied over himself, petrol flowed over his body. He did the same with the second container; the smell in there was asphyxiatingly strong. He picked up the lighter from the table and flicked the flint, it didn't spark. He tried a second time, and again there was no spark. Third time lucky, third time lucky, third time lucky Ash repeated in his head, nauseated by his failure. He placed his thumb on the flint for a third time; he can't fail, not again. He quickly pushes his thumb down on the striker, a spark appeared he pressed on the gas release valve; a flame emerged from the pilot light, the petrol caught alight. He was in ecstasy, this was perfection. Screaming with joy, the flames engulfed the room. This was his end. His own personal little hell.