Monday, August 8, 2011

Mental Floss

by Kimber Vale

The kabob skewer was metal with a vicious tip. She dumped half a bottle of rubbing alcohol on it and picked a caked-on piece of steak off with her chewed-to-the-quick fingernails. Her head tipped toward her left shoulder and she bathed her ear with the rest of the liquid, feeling it fill the canal and drown out sound.

The girl had performed many a bathroom self-surgery in the past; ingrown hairs dug out with razors and tweezers, boils lanced with molten-hot sewing needles, that pesky seventh toe on her left foot hacked off between butcher knife and cutting board. That one was a yearly; it grew back like Kudzu on a Big Easy brothel. But no one in her class kept seven toes on a foot. It was obscene. So she held an annual chop-and-hop.

But this was a Porche of a different color. Permanently removing Johnny Fitzfrizzle from her thoughts would be a grueling task. But it had to happen. She’d rather walk around with all thirteen toes for the rest of high school than spend one more day with that asshole on her mind.

She took a final shot of courage, feeling the strawberry shake slide smoothly down her throat as she slugged it to the dregs. When the brain freeze came upon her, piercing her eye stalks with frigid agony, slicing through her head like a monstrous paper cut to her grey matter, she didn’t hesitate. The skewer slid into her ear, breaking through the bubble of astringent as it broke through her ear drum. She angled it down and back, above the brainstem.

Her biology teacher, Mr. Bender, had told her that the limbic system was the emotional center of the brain. That it controlled love. That’s where Johnny would be; riding her limbic system hard, heavy on the crop and snuffing out cigarette butts on her hippocampus as he went. That way he would make her forget all the rotten things he had done to her. Make her forget enough to still want him, even. No more.

The metal dug and scraped. It hurt, but it was a cleansing pain. She could tolerate it knowing that the suffering would all be over soon. And then the cry sounded. A high pitched, whining shriek that bounced around her skull like a smashed rack of pool balls. She figured him for the strong silent type. Larger than life tough guy with his Lucky Strikes and leather. But he just squealed like a pig at slaughter when it came down to the showdown.

When she pulled the spike out, he even looked like a shining pink pig on a spit. All five inches of him, wet and bloody with afterbirth. Cerebello Jello. She had the crazy notion to lick him, but refrained.

“How could you do this to me, Rach? After everything we had together?” He pulled a cigarette out from behind his ear. That was handy, because he was naked.

“You got a light?”

Who the hell enters into bathroom surgery without a lighter for sterilizing instruments?

“Of course.” She smiled sweetly as the flame jumped up and engulfed his face. He was lucky he was so damp. That was quite a strike.

“Mother Fucker! What the hell are you trying to do? Kill me, Rachel?”

She turned the tap. It squeaked as a jet of cold shot out. She held his impaled form under the stream to muffle his scream. Johnny sputtered like a dying car, coughing while crying. It sounded kinda cute. His cancer stick slid down the toothpaste-spattered brown enamel and disappeared under the stopper.

“COLD!” He wailed. He was really showing his stripes. If only the other members of the chess team could see him now.

Not so cool anymore, are you Johnny Fizzlegizzard?

“Cold like your frozen heart, you bastard. If I had known you were incapable of love, I never would have looked twice at your stupid freckled ass.”

His face twisted into a malignant sneer. Horns grew from his forehead and an arrow-tipped tail slithered from behind his back.

“Incapable of love? Oh, I’ve loved, Baby. Far and wide. Givin’ more than you will ever get. This heart is burning hot, but never for the likes of you. You unworthy whore.”

Fire spewed from his mouth on the last word, fueled by his venom.

So that’s why he took that snake-handling course.

She doused him again to cool him off. Picked his puny person off of the skewer and held him down with the seven fingers of her left hand while the six on her right corkscrewed the tweezer-prongs into his chest. She ripped his measly plastic heart out like that old operation game. She was the doctor, but the patient couldn’t run.

His eyes had turned to X’s. She plopped him in the toilet and considered saying her goldfish prayer --Oh Lord of the Shitter, my tears are so bitter. To your celestial sewer I offer my dear [insert name of fish here]. But Johnny Flobblenobbins was no fish. He wasn’t worth the detritus in the filter.

His limp little body swirled and swirled. Red blood followed his pink form like crappy spin art until the Lord of the Shitter finally reached a skeletal hand up to pull him down to the other side.

She plucked a piece of tape off the dispenser.

Who the hell enters into bathroom surgery without a roll of Scotch tape?

She stuck the gore-wrapped heart onto her bathroom mirror. Whenever Rachel looked at her reflection it would remind her that she was loveable. She had Johnny Fucknugget’s heart, after all.


BIO: Kimber Vale is a lover of literature. She has ripped its heart out and crazy glued it to her bathroom mirror to remind her that reading is killer. Catch her blog at She loves insolent comments, so go on and give it to her. You can also find one of her short stories in "The Big Book of Bizarro" available on Amazon now.

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