“My sensors indicate that you are being a massive bitch right now,” Robo-Mitch revealed.
Sarah slapped him. He felt no pain, because he was a robot.
“I’ll show you ‘bitch!'” she screamed, and kicked him hard in the groin. She broke her shin.
“LMAO. You can’t harm me now that I’ve transplanted my brain into this robot body. I’m fucking invincible!” Robo-Mitch laughed, and turned back to his TV, continuing to play Ignore-Your-Girlfriend 5 on his Playstation VR, where he was doing the exact same thing in-game as he was in real life.
“Wow, so realistic!” he exclaimed.
“If you’re going to keep ignoring me, maybe we should just break up,” Sarah said tearfully.
Robo-Mitch knew she was bluffing. Sure they fought, but their love was stronger than the diamond ring he refused to buy her.
He gestured toward the doorway, still facing the TV.
“It was nice knowin’ ya babe :3 ” he said.
“You asshole!” she yelled and stormed out, slamming the door behind her.
On the way out of the apartment, she almost tripped over the present he’d left for her. She opened it and gagged. In the box, was his heart. No longer necessary in his robot-body, and the perfect token of his adoration for her.
“Fucking gross,” she laughed, and read the card that’d been taped to the box.
“My dearest Sarah,
You know you’ll always have my heart LOL.
She knew beyond the grotesque joke it was true. Sure, he’d been addicted to that stupid video game for a few days, but besides his stupid obsession with obscure indie video games, he’d been a great boyfriend. Strong, caring, always there when she needed him for the last 3 years now. Her only real problem with him was that he refused to stop calling himself Robo-Mitch.
But after he put his brain inside a robot body, those few weeks ago, something about him changed. Something besides literally everything composing his physical body. His attitude had changed. He’d become more ambitious, more daring. He told her he’d been planning to propose to her. But in his new robot-eyes, the diamond he’d picked out for her didn’t seem enough. He wanted to give her something better than “a stupid stone with poor resell-value.” But what exactly he was planning he refused to tell her until he had it.
Victor Gonzales rose from the grave.
It was his favorite time of year: the Christ-mass.
He rattled his bones and walked from the Kekville Graveyard toward the nearest house.
He was about to knock on the door when he heard a ruckus from behind him.
Turning around, he saw the biggest, baddest looking gang of Elf-ruffians he’d ever seen. They all looked like Legolas from Lord of the Rings except they were wearing Christmas-elf clothes with those stupid green hats.
They were all pointing bows at him and the leader walked forward.
The fear struck me instantly; my stomach tightened and my vision blurred. I lost my balance and stumbled backward onto the couch.
“What do you mean you’re haunted?” I asked her.
She sat down next to me and repeated herself. The disembodied voice I’d heard a minute ago say “he looks like a punk bitch” belonged to who she called “just some asshole ghost”. She explained that a year ago, the ghost would terrify her at night; slamming on doors, throwing anything not nailed down against the walls.
She’d tried burning incense, sage, splashing holy water all around the apartment. She tried staying with her parents; it just followed her. But one night, a line was crossed when she’d felt her ass pinched, and she instinctively threw a backhand behind her– somehow making contact with her assailant. The first words she’d ever heard from the ghost were “Ow, fuck”. The story very quickly stopped being scary.
From that point on, he cut the stereotypical spook shtick, and would act as nothing more than an incorporeal jerkoff roommate; leaving lights and the TV on, doing something with her food to make it disappear– certainly not eating it; and apparently, he really liked to “talk a lot of shit.”
She avoided meeting my eyes as she was speaking but when she finished she looked up at me, trying to read my mind. No chance, I didn’t even know what I was thinking myself. I closed my eyes and reached out to hold her hand.
After a few quiet moments on the outside, while I still was desperately trying to organize my thoughts inside my head, I opened my eyes and looked back at her.
“So, what are we going to do?” I asked, “Have you seen like, a priest or something?”
She nodded and frowned.
“I did, but he told me there was nothing he could do,” she said, “Because the spirit isn’t Evil, he’s just kind of a prick.”
She started to grin, and it forced me to smile with her.
“So, what then?” I asked.
She shrugged and laid down on top of me.
“I’ve just kind of gotten used to him.”
She kissed me and I held her head against my chest.
“Do you still love me?” she asked cutely, already knowing.
My answer was interrupted.
“Of course I d–”
“Hey,” came a voice from the other side of the room, “You’re both gross, stop it.”
The officer was seated across the table from me. Petrov; a bigger and stronger man than myself, still better suited for field work than the paperwork he’d been doing since his recent retirement. He raised his eyebrows, looked away and sighed. He didn’t believe my account of what had happened last night. I don’t blame him for not believing me.
After a moment of silence, he repeated my story, trying to show me that it was ridiculous, as if I didn’t already know.
“A small girl,” he repeated.
“Killed seven armed men.”
“Yes, yes that’s what happened,” I insisted.
He sighed again. I knew it was over for me.
Everyone in the company had already drawn their conclusions; one greedy fuck decided to screw his teammates. Take the money, take the swag, and skip town. But then why did I come back and report the incident? Petrov must have questioned that. Maybe he thought I did it pass the blame.
“You asshole, why would I make this up, instead of something half-believable?” I demanded.
He frowned and crossed his arms. I read his mind.
“You’re not a stupid man, and as long as I’ve known you, you’ve been an honest one. But you have to understand my position here. Seven men with machine guns are dead, and the only survivor is saying they were killed by some, feral girl. In a zone where we’ve made countless expeditions of, and know there are no surviving inhabitants.”
There was no chance in Heaven or Hell that the higher-ups would let me go. Prison if I was lucky, but more likely execution for the murder of my three teammates. The company doesn’t give a shit about the bandits’ lives; if it’d just been their deaths, I’d probably get a medal instead. Stupid scum robbing and killing stalkers, and innocents, whatever shit necessary to keep themselves rich and drunk and happy. But now I was the scum.
Petrov suddenly stood up, and in entered two of the largest company men I’d never before seen. I was to be killed, here and now. Beaten to death like a traitorous bastard. Petrov turned toward the door.
I let loose a torrent of obscenities as I pulled against my restraints, pleading and cursing Petrov’s name. What kind of a trial was this?
“You fucking bastard! Fine, fine! Let me show you! I’ll bring you the girl!”
The men moved both sides of me. In my periphery I could see knuckles fitted with steel but I ignored my executioners and continued speaking to Petrov, who’d stopped moving toward the exit.
“And the bodies! No bullet holes!” I shouted, “Am I right? Their necks and faces and stomachs, you’re going to see the marks, just like I said!”
Petrov turned around and glared at me. I knew I was right. When the bodies had all been recovered and examined, they’d have found no wounds inflicted by bullets or knives, but by teeth and nails. Maybe with a gun, I could have surprised them all, but not with my bare hands. Like she did.
My story was inconvenient and wild, but everything must have pointed to it being true.
Petrov closed his eyes.
“You have one week,” he said quietly, pointing his finger at me, “I’ll have the gatekeepers give you a tracker so you can’t pull any shit. If you try to escape, you’re dead. Bring back this wild girl, alive.”
He walked out the door without another word. He was followed by one of the brutes, as the other released my wrists from the table. I let out a sigh of relief.
Before he left as well, he asked me,
“If you’re not bullshitting,
how are you planning on catching a girl who’s already killed three other stalkers?”
My wings won’t work, I push on them but I can’t make them move. I’ll never leave my tree again.
I’m looking out at the world and I see so much beauty I’ll never experience.
I’ll never touch the top of that mountain, I’ll never feel the freeing wind as I fly to it.
I’m stranded here, but it’s okay. I’m glad to exist in such a place.
I’ll die soon enough, like everything does. But until my last breath, I’ll be happy. All around me there are trees and clouds and stars, flowers, laughing children, smiling lovers. I’m glad.