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The Cruel Face by James Eveleth

They dragged me in from the dusty prision cell of my own to an even more disgusting cell. They had dragged me by shirt collar down the granite stone steps with my feet rhythmically and painfully bouncing the whole way. The air had gotten progressively damper and mustier the further we had gone and just as the last flickers of barred daylight from my previous wing had disappeared, we had arrived at this new cell.

As I sat in the dark on the muddy floor, I heard the scurrying sound of rats disturbed by this intruder into their gloomy sanctum. One that felt the size of a small house cat brushed up against my leg and I pressed myself closer to the wall. As I did so, I felt the dampness on my back as the moss and water penetrated my shirt. A shiver shot through me and then I heard the clank of keys on my metal cell door.

The door swung open and a man stood silhouetted in the doorway. As he turned to talk to one of the guards, the single light outside the doorway illuminated enough of his face that I could see the scar that ran down the right side of his face. It jaggedly stretched from just below his ear down to the corner of his mouth. He turned and stared down at me with dark, cold eyes. He smiled and his scar and mouth ran together into one menacing scowl. It was a cruel smile, like that of a man who was about to do something he really enjoyed. He walked in and reached down for me...

Copyright 1999-2000 James Eveleth. All rights reserved.