Sunday, August 9, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "Peel" by Mark Justice

Jim sat around, eating an orange.  He thought softly of an oil lamp burning, the thin smoke discoloring some greasy wood mantle while slowly licking his fingers, his short, sticky fingers.  That sour sensation of the taste of skin and orange delighted him, and he continued licking until his tongue was numb.  The numbness was good, and while Jim thought of spice and tea and rum somewhere warm and wet, he sucked his index finger to a red throb.


The throb on his tongue gave him the taste for another orange.  He rolled back from his cross-legged way and felt for the net of oranges.  Deftly, he grabbed a rather large one and rolled back to his sitting.  That was good, to be sitting, he thought, and with his finger still throbbing, cut into the orange. 


Jim slowly peeled a small section back, and was caught in a rapture of the smell and juicy mist.  He grabbed some salt, sprinkled some on the peel, and ate it.  The bitter and salt crashed in his mouth until he moaned.  He began to cut again with his white plastic serrated-edged knife, with a quick draw, there was a clean cut, and a sharp jab of pain in the throbbing finger.

 
Excited by the sensation, Jim quickly pulled the orange peel.  The mist spurted, with a tinge of blood, onto his face.  Jim smeared the sticky red all over his face then licked his fingers, carefully sucking the cut index.  His mouth leaped in excitement at the taste, a flash of cold to his stomach, heart quicken in his chest, the taste, the salt taste!

 
Jim dropped the orange and licked at his finger.  The open wound, drawn vertically, was slowly pouring the great taste away.  He began to play with the wound, fascinated at this mouth on his finger, mimicking words to music in his head, a song that had just been played by the instrument on the floor.
 

There was a pain, real sharp and stingy, the more Jim pulled the flaps of skin open.  What a sensation!  This wasn’t tea or sand or oil lamps; this was orange!
 

There was a sudden tear in the skin, down his finger to the second knuckle.  The blood began to wash down his hand and arm and collect between his legs. 


Jim gleefully smiled, brought the knife up to his finger and dug down along the cut, drawing it into his palm.  Slowly he rolled back the edges of his skin-peel, the gap widening each time his tongue caressed it.  The hot salt and juicy flesh bubbled in Jim’s brain. 


He couldn’t stop at the hand, good night, no!  There was so much more to unravel.  The knife slowly dug its way down his arm, stopping at the soft inbend just opposite the elbow.

 
The glorious red blood flowed evenly down both halves of Jim’s split skin.  He began dragging his finger along the flap, in galloping triplets.  It began to curl into itself and roll back.  That pain was unbearable, and Jim managed a smile.  He worked the gallop all along the freshly cut furrow until one side was rolled.  With a yellow smile, he began to pull. 


The tearing sounds of the separating flesh were pleasing, and the squirting of the blood all so delightfully for Jim.  He continued tugging, and stopped as he held in his left hand the skin of his right, which was a glittering red, and Jim sucked air for the intensity.  Looking at the still dripping skin, he picked up the knife, and contemplated his left arm…



Jim sat, happily, as he looked at the pile of hide at his knee. His red arms glistened, but not as bright as his legs, or his stomach, or his chest. 


The breath in his chest was slow and deliberate, so he could observe the new blood flows with every inhale. What sharp, piercing ecstasy! 


Jim thought for just a moment, and while looking at his flesh, picked up the salt. 

 

Mark Justice is the author of Gauge Black:  Hell's Revenge.  Check it out for more pulpy goodness!  That one's a Western.  Obviously, this Website does not recommend self-cannibalism, but it does recommend reading more Mark Justice.  I am pleased to run on his work on drinkdrankdrunk!

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