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Disclaimer:
This is absolutely vile - kill it if you like. Written in response to a call for 'bizarre horror'. Violence, despicable sexuality, irrational themes and disdain for coherence. Viewer discretion is advised.



***

Dear (Name Withheld),

You don’t know me, but I know you. And your daughter. But I’ll explain all that later. Up front I’m asking you to trust me and see this letter through to the very end, an act of good faith that could prove worthwhile for the both of us. What’s five minutes of your time worth?

Good, I’m glad you’re reading on.

The beginning seems to be a good place to start...

His name was Johnny Placentaface, the man who is directly responsible for this letter. Johnny was born, became a killer, then died himself. His life was, put bluntly, the epitome of existential excrement. He did what he wanted, when he wanted, in a search to find meaning and love. When love and meaning were denied from him, he settled for killing normal folks like you and me with a seven-inch corkscrew that would, over time, morph into a sort of surrogate penis.

His formal introduction to rejection came just seconds after he exited his mother’s vagina. Even though the doctor on hand had literally overseen hundreds of births, he could do nothing but turn away when his assistant held young Johnny up to the light for inspection. Johnny’s mother, her eyes blinded by a combination of sweat and the sharp overhead glare, could only see the fuzzy outline of her son’s body, since the rest of his features were cloaked in shadow. She asked to hold him, stretching wide her flabby matriarchal arms. As Johnny’s body became sharper and more defined, giving way to tiny nipples and a small dangling piece of outdoor plumbing, his mother’s warm expression took on the appearance of rotting cottage cheese. A jet of projectile vomit forced its way out of her mouth and splashed all over him. The acidity stung his disfigured face.

Disfigured face – of course, what else? Yes, it seems young Johnny’s face had somehow fused with his placenta while he was still in the womb, such that all of his facial features, including his mouth, nostrils, and even his eyes, became obscured by the rubbery membrane that had inexplicably attached itself to his skull. Though he and his colleagues hadn’t seen anything like it before, the doctor tentatively declared the birth a success, prompting an entire sea of white coats with PhDs to snap off their rubber gloves and file out of the room, breathing the fresh air in a sigh of relief. Was his condition really that unbelievable? After all, in this age of microwave radiation, chemically enhanced water and steroid-saturated beef, it’s actually quite surprising that more birth defects of this nature don’t happen. Besides, aside from his, ahem, aesthetically displeasing facial features, Johnny was as healthy as an ox. Physically, anyway. But being rejected by one’s mother, who despite being soaked in sweat and drained fled the delivery room at the first opportunity, can take its toll on the psyche. So can being shipped from one foster home to another, living under the same roof as drunks, perverts, and all around immoral people with short fuses and stiff leather belts, the kind of fashion accessories that leave painful welts on one’s arms and back. It was through these experiences that Johnny learned how to hurt.

Johnny’s first taste of inflicting real violence on another life form came when he was 13 and one of the neighbors bought a beautiful Siamese show cat. As he watched everyone fawning over the svelte kitten, petting it and teasing it behind its ears and rubbing its smooth underbelly, he felt jealous. Very, very jealous. Murderously jealous. When everyone woke up the next morning, the cat’s skinned coat was found dangling on a piece of twine looped over a tree branch, the meat of its body vanished into thin air, save for a few pink flecks stuck between Johnny Placentaface’s teeth.

Gradually, as his taste and aptitude for violence grew, his vile acts started to take a sexual turn. Inanimate objects became broken and violated, pets went missing, old ladies were reportedly beaten and groped, and so on. They say that violence works on a continuum. On one side, you have simple, less diabolical acts, like abusing animals, breaking things, swearing excessively, while on the other, you have the act of murder, specifically the brutal murder of the local high school’s homecoming queen, the one who danced and paraded around town in her daddy’s convertible and always gave Johnny the finger, laughing with her gaggle of equally flawless blonde girlfriends as they drove by. Johnny wondered what her breasts would look like hanging on his wall; they looked funny, he later decided after thinking about it for a minute. Indeed, a life of pain and alienation had crystallized and lead to that one moment – in making someone beautiful, like her, as ugly as him, or maybe even more so, Johnny hoped to slowly climb the rungs of social acceptance, leaving in his wake a slew of victims with uglier faces than his, faces more worthy of scorn than his own. Needless to say, hope can be a very dangerous thing in the hands of the deranged.

Like all of his previous acts of physical aggression, Johnny had no trouble linking murder and sexual intercourse, ultimately deciding to make the corkscrew his signature killing device, contenting himself with committing violent atrocities with a sharp phallus just as twisted and warped as he was. Whoever said that sex and violence don’t go together obviously hadn’t dined on forehead-flesh spaghetti.

His victims were always beautiful young things, bright eyed and curvy mid-twenty-somethings that oozed sex from their open, well-oxygenated pore. He went from city to city in his beat up Chevy, spending months stalking his victims, digesting their quirks and foibles, observing their mating habits, taking in their routines, hobbies, preferred lovers, and most important of all for no reason in particular, their menstrual cycles. Creatures who bled on their own fascinated him.

The lucky ones were done in quickly; the rest lived out Johnny’s sickest sexual fantasies before fizzling out in a blur of gore, puncture wounds and severed appendages. One memorable soiree de mort saw Johnny playing house with his female victim, casting her first as his mother, then sister, and finally, his father. Of course, that made her all that more appealing to him. Suffice to say that, if the diary entry he had written following her murder is any indication, she prayed long and hard for death the night he finally pounced.

Anyway, his last victim was to be Margaret Foisy, a 25 year-old redhead who had majored in Family and Childhood Relations in college and now worked at the city’s premiere childcare facility, Sunnyside Up Daycare. After following her, watching her, collecting bits of waste, fingernail clippings, tufts of hair, anything that could be pilfered from the dumpster outside her building and be made to enhance his fantasies, Johnny Placentaface decided to make his move.

He slid into the building through a side door, left ajar by one Margaret’s coworkers, cat-like to avoid being spotted on the rotating camera hovering overhead. Like a long-limbed shadow, he slinked along the walls, clutching his trusty corkscrew tightly in one hand and rubbing his groin with the other. Drips of drool forming on the corners of his pink-and-blue lips, he carefully stepped around the maze of cribs housing sleeping toddlers, erect penis ready to burst out of his pants and leap into a sexual frenzy. It was naptime, so the lights were dimmed, making Johnny’s fuzzy form appear even more ethereal.

The scene of a perfect murder.

Someone died that day, but it wasn’t young Margaret Foisy, nor any of her ample-bosomed colleagues. Responding to Foisy’s hysterical call for help, police arrived at Sunnyside Up Daycare to find Johnny Placentaface’s decapitated body sprawled out on the rainbow-colored floor of the nap room, one wiry leg folded awkwardly like a paperclip under him and a corkscrew, unblemished, under a crib a few feet away. Tiny tooth and gum marks gave his bloodied neck the look of kneaded dough, while close inspection revealed that his skull had been broken off cleanly right around his cerebral cortex. His head was eventually recovered – it was found shiny, licked clean, like an oversized molar under the pillow of one of the toddlers, who put up a struggle when an officer attempted to seize it.

Everyone in the building was accounted for during the time of Johnny’s death, except for the babies.

Don’t worry, you’re not alone; the police were baffled, too. They asked the same questions that you’re probably asking yourself right now. First, how? How could a toddler, or even a mob of toddlers, have killed a mass murderer, a bloodthirsty, fully grown adult male well-versed in violence and armed with his weapon of choice? Second, why? Even if it were somehow possible, what could incite such ferocity in innocent children?

To answer the former, I’d like to turn your attention to exhibit A – the bizarre face of our hero-villain, Johnny. Freud wasn’t kidding when he said we all yearn to return to the wombs of our mothers. The urge is so strong, in fact, that we are drawn to anything remotely suggestive of the dark and gooey place of our conception. So imagine, if you will, that you are a child, two years old or so and not as comfortable in this cold, bright world as you would become in ten more years. And the food: terrible when compared to the tasty fluid served in the womb. Imagine next, the explosion taking place in the snotty noses of our toddlers who, still clinging to the hope of a ‘welcome-home’ party in mommy’s belly, catch a whiff of fresh placenta as it wafts by. Who could blame them?

Ah, but how? A physical impossibility, you say? Hardly. Take the documented feats of superhuman strength exhibited by mothers when their children are placed in danger, for example. Frail 110lbs women lifting cars, leaping ‘impossible’ distances and fighting off burglars thrice their size – these are fact, not fiction. How much of a stretch is it to imagine the same sort of survival mechanism powering these mothers could also power the bodies of twenty or thirty young children? Even if the placenta fumes only lead to a minimal spike in their strength, working
synergistically their sheer number would be enough to overpower any human being, especially in the dark and in surroundings familiar to them but alien to their victim.

I feel it coming: one more question. How on earth do you know? There are surely more rational explanations, right? Maybe the janitor caught sight of Johnny Placentaface just in time to take his head off with his…broom? Maybe one of the daycare workers swooped down with a bottle of warm milk and…took his head clean off? Think what you like, believe anything, it doesn’t change the truth, and the truth is that I was there. Yes, my friend, even though I was three at the time, the smell and taste of placenta has haunted me my entire life. I was always a large child, so when the others had their fill of his face I retreated with my bowling-ball sized prize, its membrane still dripping substantially and smelling divine. Dragging it by the hair, I pulled the head back to my crib, where I picked and polished until I drifted off. A baby has never slept so well. It’s strange how after all these years, that night is as sharp as ever as I write this.

So our friend Johnny isn’t this story’s only killer. I’ve come to accept that shame – I’ve had forty-two years to come to terms with eating a man’s face like a savage. But that was only the beginning of my love affair with reproductive enzymes and chewy birth leftovers. When my first daughter was born, I snuck her placenta out in a garbage bag and ate it heartily in the garage. If I could have injected it right into my veins, I would have. When my son was born, I ate his in the tree house, making such a mess that I had to hose the wooden floorboards with the sprinkler system to eliminate any evidence of my carnal feast. Our second daughter’s placenta was eaten in the basement, over a yellow garbage bucket, and was pure ecstasy, bringing me closer to the womb than ever before.

What of my wife? She’s a plump, bedridden hag, but she served her function well, ejecting children at an alarming rate. We rarely speak anymore, which most certainly is for the best, since we never had much in common anyway.

Though in her golden years she was a proficient child-birthing unit, her reproductive system, ravaged by the strain of multiple childbirths, finally shut down and I had to find a new source. After inheriting a sizable chunk of funds from the passing of a close relative, my financial situation stabilized and I managed to send myself to school in order to procure a position at my local hospital. Though mine was a fairly menial position, I had been given my dream job of disposing bio waste, which, far from coincidentally, gave me access to an abundance of the translucent womb-fruit.

This is the first time I’ve ever written to a patient of ours, much less for the purpose of asking a favor. Or more of a business proposition, actually. The equation is simple: I am a consumer and I’ve found a product that I simply cannot live without. First, how rude of me, congratulations on giving birth to a healthy baby girl. I’m not exaggerating one bit when I say that her placenta was the best I’ve ever had, bar none. Please send my thanks to your wife, whose body, I will not hesitate to tell you, fashioned a placenta worthy of the gods. The gods.

Which brings me, at long last, to my proposition, for though it does function in part as such, this letter is more than just me coming to terms with myself, so please bare with me. I’m perfectly willing to compensate you and your family for your newborn’s placenta, provided that you agree to let me dine on the expelled placenta of your next offspring. Male or female, it makes no difference to me. My wealth is quite vast and I assure you that I will be generous (take the number you are thinking of and add a few zeroes). I am a desperate man who has tasted the kind of bliss that only a very special woman – your dear wife, with her womb of solid gold – can produce. If you are in any way unable to impregnate her, know that I often fantasize about spawning my feast and it brings me pleasure. Please consider my offer.

We will be in touch.

Yours in truth,

(Name Withheld).

***

------
"Imperious, choleric, irascible, extreme in everything, with a dissolute imagination the like of which has never been seen... there you have me in a nutshell, and kill me again or take me as I am, for I shall not change."

From his Last Will & Testament, Marquis de Sade


Related Items

Comments

The following comments are for "Johnny Placentaface"
by strangedaze

Andrew
You are a sick individual. Get help yesterday. Do not go to sleep.

Not my cup of tea, but did keep my attention...



Bobby7L

( Posted by: Bobby7L [Member] On: September 8, 2005 )

Provocative... hahaha
Disturbing... offensive... horrifying... but strangely humorous... Dark, dark humor. But I saw it. I hope that's what you were going for, because if you weren't then you're just downright insane... but brilliant as well. The writing, word choice, putting it in the form of a letter was genius to me. I remember reading this story, back in HS english class... Damn, what was the name... a dark satire. hmmm "A modest proposal" or something like that. About selling babies as food. A way for the poor Irish to make money and relieve starvation and over-population at the same time, while enriching the British economy... If you remember it, please tell me. But yeah, anyway, it reminds me of that...
"Please send my thanks to your wife, whose body, I will not hesitate to tell you, fashioned a placenta worthy of the gods. The gods."
genius... This is where I chuckled aloud.

( Posted by: SirEdwinSantos [Member] On: September 13, 2005 )

Placenta
bobby,

I didn't think this would be anyone's cup'o tea, but I appreciate the read.

siredwinsantos,

good analogy - love 'modest proposal'. Glad you found the actual writing worthwhile and not just the ridiculous premise of it all. cheers!

( Posted by: strangedaze [Member] On: September 18, 2005 )

It's like something good, only...
Even as repulsive horror this needs a few pointers. Not that I'm knocking it; if you're looking for disturbing beyond belief, this is it. However, it could be so much better.

Frankly, I'm going to refer you straight to our very own Viper9. Read 'The Solipsist' or 'Fatty', and maybe you'll have a better understand of how you can be horrific without telling everybody 'This is horrific. Be horrified now.' Some things in this story needed to be implied; you have to let the reader make the connections to really capitalise on the more visceral themes you've got going on. Some of it is over the top; you don't need to specify that the protagonist licked the skull clean. That whole segment needed a healthy dose of reworking. Surely the vagueness of a child's first memory would be more freaky than the perfect clarity you've presented the reader with?

There are moments in this that are really, amazingly good. There are moments of true horror, but you need to know what to play up and what to play down.

( Posted by: MacLaren [Member] On: September 18, 2005 )

Mac
I hear you. I don't usually write things that classify as straight up horror, though I've done it before. This piece is actually in response to a prompt calling for 'bizarre, extreme horror', so I thought I'd pull it all out. Hence the over-the-topness, if I can coin the term. We'll see if it is accepted for publication. At any rate, over-the-topness might not be an excuse for poor writing, so you probably have a point.

Peace.

( Posted by: strangedaze [Member] On: September 18, 2005 )





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