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copyright (c) 2017 Debra Anastasia
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Published by Debra Anastasia
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BEAST is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are all products of the author's twisted imagination and are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locals, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
Except as permitted under the US Copyright Act of 1976, no part of this publication may be re-produced, distributed or transmitted in any form by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the prior written permission of the author.
TJD—it’s always for you
I knew who he was before he introduced himself. Jeans and a black sweatshirt with the hood pulled up over his head. The hem of the material hid his face like he was the grim reaper. Or a dementor.
Dick Dongy is a legend in the circles I traveled in. At 23, my circle pretty much just included my bar crew and the staff at the three rival bars on Tictac St. in downtown Midville.
He navigated the tables like he already had the layout memorized even though I knew Dongy had never set foot in my bar before. I was shameless as I eyed him up and down. I knew he was coming to me, that was part of his modus operandi.
I looked down at my Crocs for a few seconds before I wiped down the bar. The horrible looking shoes were my very own protest against the uniform I was forced to wear. The schoolgirl was my burden. Short plaid skirt, long thigh high socks coupled with high heels and a white shirt tied under my breasts was what I had to wear everyday. As soon as my feet were hidden behind the bar, I slipped into the Crocs to save my knees and spine from paying the price for my employment.
On good days, I pretended that the get up was just another character and the Meme’s bar was my stage. I pretended that I wasn’t a failed actress that moved back to her home town. But on bad days, like today, I just felt inconvenienced by the boss’ insistence on the female adherence to the Internet meme theme of the bar. Honestly, the only theming was the demeaning costumes the girls got to wear. There were a few crappy print outs of famous memes framed and hung on the walls, but that was not done in any kind of convincing way.
Dongy took a seat at my bar and held up some folded cash. Whether I wanted to or not, I was about to be introduced to the weirdest, slightly dangerous man on the bar circuit.
It was maybe my shame that made me hang my head and lift my hoodie to cover the abs on my face. Or it could be the swooning reaction from the ladies when I pass by if I’m not shielded. Ladies love the abs. And I had countless sets all over my body. Even on my penis. I have penis abs.
Every lady wants to know my name It’s is Dick Dongy. Everyone laughs when they hear it, which is another reason I work so hard on all my abs. I want to turn my name from the butt of a joke into the name every woman wants to sigh once they see me.
I have tricks that other body builders would kill for. If I weren’t so intimidating, maybe they would have already come after me. But I flex my abs –all of them—and I get the distance I require.
I needed to protect this new bartender from the overwhelmingness of me. Of what I am. What I can do. So I made fun of her shoes first.
She was gorgeous. Which was why I saved this bar for the last one on my hit list. I tried to get what I needed everywhere else but here. I heard a lot of guys groan her name when talking about the hot bartender in Meme’s. And her name was all over the bathrooms in the other bars as well.
Hendrix Lemon. She went by Henry, as far as the graffiti could tell me. She was sassy, or so I’d heard. She’d fall in love with me, of that I was sure. They all did. Even if I tried to save them from catching the feelings. And then I would be even more on the radar. Because getting Henry on the Dongy fan club would lead to even more attention. And I wanted less of that for sure.
“You noticed my shoes? Usually guys don’t look below these.” Henry motioned to the top half of her outfit. The white shirt was really just a frame for her black push up bra with a cherry pattern on it. I looked, because I was invited and I didn’t want to be rude. She had lovely boohoomamas.
“Don’t get excited, they’re mostly material and padding.” She wiped down the bar again. “What’s your poison?”
She took the money from my hand without touching my skin. Smart girl. Touching my skin would doom her to fall even faster in love with me.
“Whole milk?” I waited for the snort. There was always some teasing when I revealed my drink of choice.
“Sorry Dongy, all I have is seltzer right now.” She turned her back and grabbed a glass from the shelf behind her.
I felt my eyebrows rise in surprise. Of course, she already knew my name. Just like I already knew hers. I bet my name was all over the ladies’ room walls as well.
“That’s fine, Hendrix. Not everyone can be perfect.” I tapped my index finger and my middle finger on the walnut wood of the glossy bar top.
She placed the drink in front of me and added an umbrella. “I go by Henry. For future reference.”
She left me alone as she went to the end of the bar to talk to another customer. I liked the way her little plaid skirt swooshed around her upper thighs. Which was probably why she was wearing it. I felt a pang of sympathy that I would have to reject the advances of such a fine looking lady. But it was, of course, for the best.
I was too much to handle. There was no way I could watch her descend into the madness of loving me. I needed to be here for reasons. Some of them I admitted to myself, but most I didn’t.
“So that’s the infamous Dongy.” Becca turned her face so he couldn’t see her and rolled her eyes. “How in love are you? I’m surprised you can stand with all the internal swooning.”
I swallowed a smile. The infamous Dongy was less intimidating somehow, now that he was at the end of my bar playing with a tropical umbrella fit for a Barbie doll. “Remind me about him again? What’re the worst of the rumors?”
Becca pulled the end of her ponytail in front of her mouth and spoke, “First? That he’s a goddamn serial killer, of course.” Becca peeked at Dongy. “He’ll probably kill you with the toothpick on that thing. I’ll miss you, too.”
“And why do they say that?” Becca always had the gossip, it was as if she thrived on it. Becca was hanging out even though she wasn’t working.
“Well, Trisha saw the back of his SUV and it had tarps, a shovel, bleach and rubber gloves. That’s the s
“That’s a little alarming, but it’s not like anyone has gone missing lately or anything.” I bit my lip and looked at Dongy’s hulking form. He was pretty jacked. Obviously under the sweatshirt and jeans he was rocking some sort of body builder physique. He hadn’t met my eyes yet. And I couldn’t see his face.
“Fine, if that’s not enough he does the reverse stalking.” Becca took a sip from her glass.
“What the hell is that?” I started polishing glasses as I listened.
“Well, he tells girls he’s protecting them from his sexiness. He puts his number in their phones. It’s creepy. And then, of course, what’s under his hood there is the real reason he gives girls the shivers.” Becca did a lot of knowing eyeball gymnastics before filling in the obvious answer I needed. “He’s got like, abs. Everywhere. Like abs for days. Abs on his face. Abs on his arms. Abs. And somehow he thinks this makes him irresistible. He’s a beast that thinks he’s a beauty.” Becca clucked her tongue.
I considered Dongy again and I felt a little bad for him. All these preconceived notions and all he’d done was ask me for a drink. The lights flashed as the bar was readying to close --signaling last rounds.
“Isn’t that your phone?” Becca piped up.
Sure enough, my liquid gold case was sparkling away as Dongy appeared to talk to the robot Siri in my phone.
I booked it over to the other end of the bar as fast as my Crocs could take me. I snatched my phone away from him and Dongy put his hands in the air like he was being arrested.
“What are you doing?” I tried to figure out what he had done, but my lock screen of Jared Leto picture as the Joker was glowing back at me.
“Saving you some time.” Dongy’s voice was deep. A little too deep. Like a guy pretending-to-be-Batman kind of deep.
“Is that so?” I slid my phone under the bar, hopefully out of Mr. Grabby Hands’ reach. “How’s that?”
“Well, you’re going to want to research me. It’s just going to happen to you. I’m sorry. So to save you time, I programed my number in your phone. Under Dick Dongy.” He twirled the umbrella in his fingers like this was a normal conversation.
“Do you think there’ll be more than one Dick in my contact list? You felt you had to clarify with your last name?” I stepped back. This guy was too much. And now I had to remember to delete him from my phone.
I saw him smirk.
“I guess I’m probably the only one. Listen, I’m going to be back tomorrow.” He pushed away from the bar while getting off his stool.
“Okay…” I watched him like I might a spider on the ceiling of my shower. Cautiously.
And then we made eye contact. His eyes were a green/blue/grey that resembled photoshop of a galaxy or dark tropical waters. The look in his gaze was almost pity. Like he felt sorry for me.
“Hold on to what it felt like before you met me, it will help you with the pain of the loss of my presence tonight now that you know I exist.”
After he turned his broad shoulders, I responded with a sarcastic, “Will do.”
I had met the one and only Dick Dongy. And I had more questions than answers now.
Watching the side of the road was not even a habit for me, it was an active search. I was looking for victims. On dark nights like this I kept my brights on, even if there was traffic coming in the opposite direction. In the sanctity of my Mountaineer, I could leave my hood down. It was best to have full range of vision as I made my way to my house. I was happiest when I could take a victim home, but sometimes fate required me to handle my business next to the road.
The lump on the shoulder made my heart speed up, but the positioning of the legs made me frown. Too much experience gave me a very real ability to assess a victim before I was even out of the truck.
I put on my four way flashers and tossed the car in park. I moved quickly, because sometimes time mattered. Life and death were manufactured in seconds. I popped the trunk and headed at the lump with my flashlight on before most people could change a radio station.
I was too late. But still I gave the victim the once over. Sometimes I found that they were pregnant, and that there might be a baby on board, but that was not the case.
The possum was truly dead. Not even playing possum, which had been my last hope. Instead all I could offer for this victim was a sigh. It was time for the shovel.
I went to the nearest bit of earth that I could make a decent hole and started my macabre routine. I hated this part. I always imagined how many times an animal made it across the road before their last trip got them. Once the hole was deep enough, I’d take the body over to its new grave. Each animal got a few words of prayer from me before I covered them up. The last part of the burial was a little marker that would signify this spot for any of her little possum babies, if they were out there wondering where she went. It was probably stupid, but it seemed to be a little respectful, so I went with it. I carved the little crosses myself. On this one I inscribed POSSUM with my pocketknife before hammering it into the ground.
I couldn’t save her tonight. But at least she was at rest. I packed up my tools after pouring some bleach on my shovel. After the tailgate was in place my truck was lit up with approaching headlights. I prayed that the car would continue on, but luck was not on my side.
The car pulled to a stop behind me. I turned and folded my arms. I wished the hood on my sweatshirt was up, but it wasn’t.
“Hey freak!” An empty bottle shattered near my feet.
I felt a spike of fear but I wouldn’t show it. I was the strongest. My mother always told me that. I was the strongest man she ever knew.
“What’ya doing out here? Stalkin’ more girls? Freak!” Another bottle hit me in the leg.
I had to say something now. Let them know I wasn’t afraid. “Come out here and say it to my face.”
“We don’t want to look at your crazy face. Who has abs on their fucking cheeks?”
Another bottle was launched.
I took a few steps to the left. I pictured these guys squishing me between their front bumper and my Mountaineer’s tailgate.
I put my hand next to my mouth, “Come up with something more original. Freak is getting boring.”
Another car was coming down the road and slowly passed. I wondered if the guys in the car had called some friends in for back up. I was betting they were intimidated by my ab cheeks.
The car pulled over in front of my SUV, boxing me in. It was an ambush, alright. I tried to figure out if there was anyway to grab my shovel as a weapon.
“Caleb, what the hell?”
Henry from the bar was fire as she got out of her car. She was wearing high heels instead of Crocs now and she looked like she was entering a music video. One where she was seriously pissed.
She stood in front of me with her hands on her hips. She was wearing a leather jacket now. This woman was already stalking me, and just as I predicted, it was dangerous.
I stepped next to her and shuffled her behind me. “Go back to your car, I’ve got this.”
“The hell you do. Caleb you small-penised monkey fart! Get out of that damn car right now or I’ll tell everyone about your Booty Camp Dating Service audition tape.”
The driver jumped out of the car. “Henry! Get away from that guy, he’s a freak.”
“You throw bottles at an unarmed person now? How incredibly callus are you?” Henry pushed her way in front of me and met Caleb halfway. She began jabbing him in the chest with her pointer finger. I recognized Caleb from my first bar experiment. He was a loudmouth and a blowhard.
“Dating you was the stupidest thing I’ve ever done and I’ve stuck forks in electrical outlets.” Henry stepped back tossing her hands around like an angry, old Italian man.
“You know you’re going to change your mind, H. We were good toget
“I’d rather gargle toe cheese than have you ever do anything for me again. And I’m willing to bet that’s Chase and Barry in the car with you?” Henry backed up some more.
Caleb’s face was panic stricken like she was falling off a cliff. “That guy’s a monster. Think of your family.”
Henry turned and looked me in the face. I felt the need to cover up, the abs on my face were as clear as day in the headlights.
Henry addressed me directly, “Are you going to kill me?”
She didn’t seem stricken with the hopeless swoons as she saw my rippling face abs. They were, of course, my least potent abs, but still. I shook my head no.
Henry turned and faced Caleb. “Leave now. Or so help me God --I’ll shove all these broken bottles up your ass.”
Chase and Barry were heckling from the car, but their taunts were too blurry to hear.
Caleb ran his hands through his hair. “I think this is a mistake.”
Henry gave him both of her middle fingers. “I’ve had a long night. And I’m not going home until you bastards leave.”
Caleb grumbled before cursing his way back to the car. He squealed his tires and kicked up gravel, but the car left. And then I had Henry to myself.
I felt some regret when I faced Dongy again. The guy couldn’t be weirder. He had this horrible reputation, and damn it, maybe I’d spent too long at work but in the headlights of Caleb’s car it sure as hell looked like Dongy had a set of abs on each of his cheeks—just like Becca’s rumors. And that was the most questionable affliction I’d ever heard of.
He popped the trunk on his SUV and the interior lights sure as shit lit up a wet shovel as the scent of fresh bleach hit me. Oh shit.