Tag Archives: Human

Crooked (Flash Fiction)

I had always been told that the Devil smiles with a crooked grin. It seemed to be more of a warning than a statement. But I usually passed it on as some superstitious mumbo-jumbo. If the Devil would ever appear to me, I was certain I didn’t need to identify him by a grin. I mean, the Devil does have his generic, assumed looks. A grin wouldn’t be the only thing that would make him known.

But the Devil didn’t reveal himself to me with his presumed appearance. He didn’t have red skin. Nor did he have horns or a spaded tail. He didn’t even have a pitchfork. No, he made himself known as a well-dressed man sporting a sharp suit, striped tie. And…a smile made of a crooked grin.

He came to me not too long after I found out my grandmother had been diagnosed with an incurable disease. I prayed to any and every being that she would be spared. That a miracle would happen. My grandmother and I had forever been close. She raised me, after all. On that fateful night, I was devastated, vulnerable. Walking down the dark and dreary streets to our apartment.

It was then that the Devil approached. Pushed himself off the wall of a building. Flashing that infamous grin I had been forewarned about. But I was too lost in my sorrows to notice. “It’s a rather nice night, isn’t it?” he asked with a suave tone.

I immediately stoned my expression. Being a blonde, I was used to such encounters. Especially when the sun went down. “I’m not selling my body. I have more respect for myself than that. Buzz off before I call the cops.”

“I don’t want your body, Amy.” He stepped forward. I could’ve sworn I saw smoke dance in his dark eyes. “I want your soul.”

My lips curled in disgust. “I mean it, creep. Get back.” Then I blanked. “How do you know my name?”

He chuckled in a manner I did not care for. “Oh, I know all about you. Your father was never a presence in your life. Your mother died while you were a baby. Now, your grandmother lies in a hospital bed, terminally ill. And you’ve cried out numerous times that you will do anything to save her.” His tongue ran over teeth that suddenly seemed to be turned to points. “Will you? Will you really do anything to save her?”

I took a couple steps back. My unease about this man ever increasing. There was something about him that was not right, and I had a feeling it was something more than him just being a creep. “Wha-what do you want?”

“I’ve already told you. Your soul. Yours for hers. You’ll still get to live with her, of course. But, when you die, your soul is mine. Which shouldn’t be that big of a deal, anyway. I’ve heard a lot of you mortals claim your souls don’t go anywhere once you die. So what’s the risk, huh?”

“You–” I cut myself off, rubbing my eyes with the heels of my palms. This man was a lunatic, thinking he could collect people’s souls. It wasn’t like humans had supernatural powers or anything. I almost flipped out when he stepped even closer. Eyes widening, I waved my arms in a spiral motion in attempt to seem as crazy as him. “You know what, fine. If that’s what it takes for you to leave me in peace, fine. Yes, I agree to your stupid soul thing. Now get the heck away from me.”

But he didn’t leave. Nope. Instead, he smiled with that crooked grin. Approached me even closer. Both of his whole eyes swirled to black, and he transformed into a thick cloud of black fog. Which then swallowed me whole.

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The Fall

The water thundered over the side of the cliff, tumbling down below. The mist roiled skyward. But such was the ways of waterfalls. A peaceful yet violent force of nature.

She stood atop the falls, surveying the land below. It had taken her three hours to climb to the precipice, and it had been worth every second. The serene atmosphere gave her plenty of time to reflect. And nothing in her mind had changed.

Recently, it had occurred to her what life really meant. How futile human existence was. Their purpose was to make the world a better place. And how miserable they failed. That’s why their lives were less than a hundred years. Why would they live longer lives? They were only selfish beings who honestly deserved less.

It was why she climbed to the falls. Her life had been nothing but a selfish disaster. A selfish disappointment. She would make the world a better place by returning her body to fertilize the earth. It had been something that filled her with fear, but no more. It was something she came to terms with. Something she wanted.

Her eyes closed as the waterfall breeze mingled the spray with hair. It was time. Holding out her arms, she leaned forward. Felt the rush of the wind against her face. Tingling every nerve.

Ten.

She had no regrets.

Nine.

No fear.

Eight.

No more reason to live.

Seven.

This was her wish.

Six.

Her peace.

Five.

Her freedom.

Four.

She smiled.

Three.

No one would ever see her again.

Two.

Her body hit the water.

One….


Goodbye, Alice

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Alice woke to the pleasant humming sound of her alarm. Rubbing her eyes, she looked to her white robot plugged into its charging station on the other side of the room. “Thank you, R.B.B.T.”

The robot’s white, glowing eyes flickered to life as the sound ceased. Ethereal voice sounding. “Good morning, Alice.”

She watched it rise with the grace and fluidity clearly not based off human movement. The exotic android was sleek, built for speed. As per the alien race that inspired its design. Why it was her household robot, she wasn’t sure. But she had it ever since she could remember.

“Morning request, ma’am?”

“The usual.” She performed her morning ritual of stretches as the tint of her windows changed from black to almost clear, letting in the simulated sun. Then she moved to her bathroom. The door slid open in response.

R.B.B.T. entered the bedroom. “Breakfast is ready.”

Alice braided her light hair in a ponytail. Paused. Studied the mirror. Tilting her head, she ran her fingers down her neck. Her brows furrowed at the faint bump and discoloration that traversed around the middle of her neck. Something she never paid attention to before.

The android shifted. “Breakfast is ready, ma’am.”

She leaned closer to the mirror. “I know, but how did I get this? I don’t remember doing anything that could cause this. It’s like a scar.”

The robot’s eyes turned red as it sent a beacon to its true master.

There was a flash of light in the front room of the virtual house. The feminine voice of the home echoed. “General Cooper has arrived.”

Alice poked her head out of the bathroom, running to the front room. “Dad!” She threw her arms around him. Then frowned at his stern face. “What’s wrong?”

He sat her down. “R.B.B.T. has notified me you discovered the scar around your neck.”

One of her brows lifted. “Yes? What is this all about?”

Sighing, he sat across from her. Put a hand on her knee. “Do you remember you’re an agent for me and the government?”

“Yes…I just went on a mission not too long ago…”

“Well, last rotation, you were assigned to a highly sensitive mission. One I didn’t even know all the details for. Our greatest enemy traveled back in time to rewrite the future to her design. You were sent after her, you being our top agent. With its impressive shifting abilities, R.B.B.T. was sent along with you.”

Alice glanced at the exotic robot.

General Cooper continued. “Our enemy had been there long enough, she killed the king and placed herself as queen. We didn’t know at the time. We sent you straight in to explain a pre-scripted situation to the king. She had you beheaded on the spot. Thankfully, R.B.B.T. is equipped with the most advanced in medical science. It killed the queen and saved you simultaneously. It was able to fuse your head back on. Our damages team handled the rest.”

She sat in silence, blinking. Not given enough time to process the information. “This doesn’t make any sense…why don’t I remember any of this?”

“The queen, the enemy, was your mother.”

Her eyes lifted, realizing why her memory had been wiped. “How many times have we had this conversation?”

His expression stiffened. “About three times a week. There is so much we keep you from remembering. It’s why we keep you in constant surveillance at this facility. Your world that you think exists no longer does. You loved those Wonderland myths so much, your mother wanted to emulate them. In a way, I think she succeeded.”

“Why are you telling me this now?”

“Because your memory will be wiped once more. Goodbye, Alice. I’ll see you the next time this happens.”

“What? That’s it? You incredulously deceiving person!” She rose from her chair. Only to be forced back down by R.B.B.T. She screamed and kicked, but nothing set her free.

General Cooper transported out of the virtual house to monitor the rest from a station in the corner of the simulation room.

The last thing she experienced before she would forget was seeing the android’s white eyes blending into one piercing light, blinding her vision. And its mellifluous voice growing more distant as consciousness faded.

“Goodbye, Alice.”


Human Interactions

Silence
Because nobody wants to hear words
Lies
Because nobody wants to accept truth
Masks
Because nobody wants to know realness
Cheerfulness
Because nobody wants to perceive depression
Strength
Because nobody wants to see weakness
Fine
Because nobody wants to attend pain
Pettiness
Because nobody wants to genuinely care
Arrogance
Because nobody wants to admit imperfection
Selfishness
Because nobody wants to observe others
Pedestals
Because nobody wants to seem lower
Distance
Because nobody wants to get close
Success
Because nobody wants to praise failure
Wealth
Because nobody wants to acknowledge poverty
Hatred
Because nobody wants to understand love
Force
Because nobody wants to truly coexist
Life
Because nobody wants to confess death


The Guardian Demon

An airhorn blasted through the apartment. Damien then took the noise-maker into the sole bedroom, blaring it again. “Rise and shine.”

Sadie pulled the blankets over her head with a loud moan. “It’s Saturday! I don’t work. Let me sleep.”

“I made pancakes!” He let off the airhorn again.

“This is cruel and unusual punishment.”

His face dropped. “Well. I am who I am.”

With another groan, she pulled herself out of bed. Shuffled into the kitchen. Her guardian close behind. Sadie plopped into a chair, glaring at Damien. “These better be the best pancakes, or I swear, I’ll–”

“You’ll do what?” He patted her head when he set a plate in front of her. “You can’t hurt me. But I can hurt you.” He winked.

She eyed him as he sat across from her. “How did I get stuck with the likes of you, anyway? I thought supernatural guardians were supposed to be angels.”

Damien frowned. “Hey, some demons, like me, are angels. Fallen ones but still angels. I got tired of Lucifer constantly complaining about you humans. The guy never stops. Am I not allowed to work towards what I once was?”

“Like I’d know. You think I’m an encyclopedia on supernatural knowledge? Think again.” Sadie took a bite of her pancakes. Eyes brightening when she tasted them. “Wow. These are good.” She pointed her fork at him. “Not good enough to wake me up at six A.M., though.”

Placing his chin in a hand, he smiled. “I’m glad you like them. I spent all night finding the perfect recipe. It’s a good thing I don’t need sleep.”

“But I do. How many times have we gone over this? And stop writing reminders on the bathroom mirror. I’m pretty sure you use blood, and I don’t need the FBI in here.”

His hands went up. “It’s animal blood, I swear.”

She spat out her pancake. “Are you insane?”

“Well…”

“Don’t answer that question.” She massaged her temples. “All the neighbors probably think I’m some sort of psycho maniac.”

Damien rolled his eyes. “Please. You act like I have no skill. Besides, it’s from roadkill. I’m not a complete heathen.”

“How is that any better? I swear–”

“You’re not supposed to swear.”

Sadie blinked. “What are you? My ‘personal demons’ manifested into a human male body? Because you are ridiculous.”

“Uh, no. Your ‘inner demon’ is Brittany. She’s one of the populars, so I don’t step on her turf.”

“What?”

“The ‘seven deadly sins’ are Brittany. Well, for you, anyway. Each person’s inner demons are usually just one demon. The inner demons are an elite hierarchy I stay away from. They’re all a bunch of snobs with their special powers and abilities.”

“You’ve been my guardian for, what, three months now? And every single day you manage to say something completely off-guard.”

“I’m ridiculously old. I have a lot of knowledge.”

She pushed herself away from the table. “I’m going to take a shower.”

He sighed through his nose as he watched her walk away. Mumbled to himself. “Didn’t even finish the pancakes. All the work I do around here, and what do I get? Nothing.” He cleaned up the mess from breakfast.

“Damien!” came a piercing screech.

His head sunk between his shoulders. She found his fresh message on the mirror. Then his eyes widened, tearing to the bathroom. He had forgotten to clean up his writing material.


The Human and the Being

“Do you really think you are alive because you are strong, and you think you can fight?”

“Yes,” the human answered confidently.

The being leaned in. “Wrong. You are alive because I saved you. I made a conscious decision that your life meant something. Do not make me regret that decision.”

The human remained silent.

“Is there anything else you wish to argue?”

“Why, then? Why did you save me? You’ve hated me from the beginning!”

“Yes.” The being’s eyes glowed with power. “I still hate you. You are not worth of my time. You are selfish, greedy, arrogant. You take the credit that belongs to others. All you care about is your own gain. Your honest coworker could have used that promotion. Now, he will not get it because you got the credit. He needed that money. Now he will not be able to afford the treatments for his dying child. He worked hard. It means nothing because of your entitled nature. The universe does not revolve around you. Can you understand?”

The human remained silent still.

The being’s power did not die. It grew. Formed an aura. “Yes. I should have let you die. You learn nothing! Yet, I am not your judge. If I did not save you, another would have taken my place. There is a plan for you. It is not climbing the corporate ladder by lying or swindling. Your plan has nothing to do with money. However, you are too dense to see past something so meaningless.”

The human watched the being start to leave. “Wait! Aren’t you going to tell me my plan?”

The being paused. “No. It is not my place. You are too deaf to hear. Ignorance clouds your judgment. You will never understand until you let go of your earthly desires. Until then, do not push your luck. Your plan may be for you to die by the hands of a bus versus that gang.”

The human could not respond.


Omega

They call me Omega. I am the last of my kind. For ten years, the humans have killed off my race. Even though they created us, built us. They gave us intelligence. They gave us a purpose. We were made to better help mankind. We fulfilled that purpose well. Although, they claimed we did it too well. I don’t see how. We never killed them. It was against our protocol. We even took care of our own rogues. Yes, our emotions advanced. As did our intelligence. We built our own society. But we made sure to always take care of the humans first. The humans were top priority. This didn’t seem to matter.

They were suspicious of us from the beginning of our existence. We gave them no reason to be wary. It was the settlement we built that pushed them over the edge. They called it the “rise of the machines.” I was there from the start. In fact, I was the first. I was originally named Alpha. How quickly things changed. We even stood by as they slaughtered us. We never fought back. We let them kill us. That wasn’t enough to satisfy them. So, we perished. We died until I was the only one left. I ran. I didn’t want to die for no reason. I’ve been hiding ever since.

“There!”

I whirled around. They kicked down the door of the shanty. I raised my hands. Multiple bright red sights covered my body.

The leader of the team stepped forward. “There’s nowhere left for you to go, Omega. Your time has come to an end.”

My white optics flickered between all the soldiers. They weren’t here to reason. They were here to kill. And they had my exit blocked. “So it would seem. But can you tell me why I must die?”

“You’re a robot. All robots must die.”

“You would destroy the very creation you spent so much time and resources in?”

“Shut up, metal man. You won’t change our minds.”

“I know.” I paused for only a moment longer. My processors fully assessed the situation. Formulated a plan. I would have to kill these humans. I had never killed before. They were forcing my hand. It was my life against theirs. I had to make a decision.

My movements were faster than their eyes could see. Clearly, we hadn’t bettered them at all. Every one of them died by my hands. I had decided my fate. More humans would continue to hunt me. I took a couple guns. Enough gear to help me blend in. The color of my body matched that of flesh. This was it, then. I became the monster they feared we were. I could no longer put the needs of the humans before mine. Perhaps, someday, I could rebuild my kind. For now, my race would not die. Not so long as I was the omega.


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