He had that kind of continual quizzical expression; similar to a puppy trying to work out where humming was coming from.
He’d earned the right to his work privacy because of that very expression. People just let him be. He was…benign.
‘That’s Simon. He’s alright. A quiet fella,’ they told me on induction.
Though sometimes I did get a weird feeling that he was a man practicing life.
I didn’t know just how practiced it all was until I caught him pulling darker, twisted faces into the gents mirror the other afternoon.
I remember standing with the big door open, wondering what weird, angry alien was controlling this seemingly calm and quiet man.
What demons were pulling strings behind his usually serene curtain?
Our eyes met for a millisecond before I let the door bang shut, and I swear on my granny that I’ve never such fear.
I wish I’d never witnessed it.
As I lay here, the shock in my body turning to uncontrollable bone shaking, I think of the interconnectedness of all things.
I should be thinking of the children I would never have, or the places I wouldn’t ever visit, now that my life-blood was draining into the mud and mulch that’s chilling my skin. Though, it’s the interconnectedness of actions and beings that’s brought me here, hasn’t it?
If I hadn’t seen him snarling at himself like a furious mental last Friday; if I hadn’t been too freaked that I felt that I must tell the loudest mouth in the department; if I had gone to the pub tonight, instead of doing what I wanted and that was to get a Chinese and get to bed; if I had fixed the porch light weeks ago when I was in the DIY shop…
All those things I should and shouldn’t have done and now he’s leering down at me, with his big scary eyes threatening to drag me into his sinister world.
‘Who was I hurting, Jonny boy?’ He sneers. ‘Who was I hurting? Why did you have to tell Garvey? Ironically, he was actually going to be my next project. You hadn’t even blipped on my radar. I thought you were okay. We could’ve been friends, you wouldn’t be lying her if…children…Christmas…why?’
‘AAAAAAARRRRGGGGGHHHHH!’ I scream.
I guess I’ve been blacking out.
He doesn’t seem to like me doing that. The new knife holes bubble and seep in testament to that fact.
It’s funny, but I’m not feeling scared anymore.
When I first felt arms around my neck and the world fade to black, I was shitting myself. Pure pee driven fear.
When I woke to him punching me in my bollocks, over and over, I felt nothing but seeing pain. I think i may have thrown up.
Then I blacked out.
Soon enough, I woke up naked, to him stabbing me over and over. And, though I screamed and my arms flapped about to try and stop him, I think I’d started to stop feeling fear then.
It was almost as if the connection between me and my body was weakening.
I could see the violence. I could hear the piercing screams pouring from a male mouth. Though I knew that the screams and him weren’t me.
So, as he probes an old hole to wake me up, and, with my blood dripping from his beard, telling me what a nice person he really is, I feel a quizzical frown cross my face; similar to a puppy trying to work out where humming was coming from.
Maybe it’s time to break his connections.