Chapter 32: The Big Fat Belly

Episode 32: The Big Fat Belly

Somewhere deep inside, she slept.

Kodek crept quietly through the house, barefoot down the carpeted hallway. Not only were his feet bare, the rest of him was, as well. He could feel the night inside the house curling around his testicles, but couldn’t remember for the life of him where or when he’d undressed. The memory of taking his clothes off simply ceased to exist in his mind any longer, if it was even there in the first place at all.

That was a strange conception, Kodek at least understood that aspect of his abstract train of thought, if nothing else.

That train dissipated as he crept past the bathroom and the bedroom door ahead, only slightly ajar, came into clearer focus. Then his only thoughts were of the door, the doorknob, the crack between the edge that angled open, just slightly, and the doorjamb. Like the crack in the universe.

When he got to the door, his fingers brushed it, he was acutely aware of the feel of the brushed paint, not new by any means, he was only as aware of it as he was the air around him, breathing it into his mouth and lungs, the feel of the carpet under his toes as he crept soundlessly towards the bed, towards

Anna

lying there on her side, her back to him, out of the covers, and even and this disadvantageous angle, he could see her pregnant belly rolled out in front of her.

He slipped into bed, which was easy to do without waking her because he (was light as smoke) did not need to go under the covers, either. It was too warm. He could hear her sweat. He could hear the pores in the flesh at her temples expanding to allow the forming droplettes to escape, half-evaporate before the remainder of the droplettes pooled together into a line, the thinnest of streams, that would roll along the nearly invisible contours of her skin and pat down on the bedding near where her neck rested at the edge of the pillow.

Kodek heard all this in his head, and he wondered if he’d actually be able to withstand the deafening cacophony of trying to reach around her body and place his hand on her inflated torso, where his would be that much more connected to the beating and kicking and liquid-breathing of that life inside of her skin.

He touched her anyway.

The cacophony was enormous, horrendous, the beating was like the breaking down of a door,the breathing of the foetus was like sirens wailing in his own mind.

And then the screeching of flesh across the sheets – as Anna turned around, not only awake, but wide-eyed with (fear)

complete incomprehension her stare bore holes into his soul, and she screamed (whispered, barely)

What the fuck are you doing here?

And then something focused, and Kodek could see that her belly was flat. She was lovely, but she was only a single life, and as his fingers pulled away from her torso, even through the nightgown, he could feel the double-scar

in and out

and he realized, far too late, that the door, the front door, across the entire length of the house, had been broken down and those sirens were for him

They came for HIM

and they, the two men, they looked like B.B. and Petersen but he knew they weren’t because that would be just madness, B.B. was a German hitman and Petersen ran the MetRag, was the editor-in-chief, and head of Morimoto’s propaganda department, for Christ’s sake, neither one of these cats should be wearing white uniforms and acting like the mental health police, grabbing him, pulling him away (at least not kicking and screaming) from his bed, his lover, from Anna

bazooka warrior, hell-creature, devil

the sirens outside were for him, too, and as the two white-clad men dragged him out (he knew why, somehow)

Brain, his face in a bandage and almost looking like a parody of The Invisible Man with sunglasses and a smoke hanging from his fingers, lifting up to his lips, watching as Kodek was loaded into the ambulance

(not an emergency services ambulance, no, rather the sort of ambulance that would take one to Bedlam)

And since when did Brain take up smoking-?

But he knew why, of course. Sleeve-strapped to a wheeled gurney in the back of the ambulance with it’s double-locked doors, the two men in the front as it sped off, so smoothly and quietly now that the sirens had been killed, leaving Brain and his bandage-wrapped face smoking in the rain that had only just now begun to fall, he knew because he could see. As the van rocked through the streets, rocking Kodek’s not-strapped-down head from side to side, he could see the whole picture:

It was Lizzie. Lizzie was there, her gun on Anna’s pregnant belly. Lizzy pulled the trigger, shooting Anna in the gun from top to bottom, like shooting through a basket ball, as they both stood in the hallway

he could recall the feel of the blood-stained carpet under his bare feet only moments (miles) ago

the abortion crashing through the cracked flesh on the underside of her belly, splashing over Anna’s feet, the hallway carpet, splattering up and back-splashing on Lizzie’s legs and the hem of her already-bloodstained yellow waitress outfit (that still had Anna’s nametag on it) and the bottom moulding of the white wall

and something, later, cooking on the stove

but somehow Kodek was there, and he knew he’d been there because he grabbed Lizzie by the wrist (too late) and twisted, making her drop her gun

(way too late)

and he had her back against the wall and he started, punching once, twice, three times, four times, five times, he stooped counting when his fist was no longer hitting face or even smashed skull/bone, but the red-and-grey-stained wall just above the ragged stump of her neck after the jaw bone, with nothing else to hold it onto her body, fell to the floor, and he stomped on that, too. The neck, with no face or jaw over it anymore, slipped through Kodek’s slick grip and the corpse thumped

there was more thumping at the door, later (not to far later) and that’s when he first saw the men (different men, same white suits) and they came for him (not much later) he was sitting calmly, holding his wrist and not thinking about his broken gore-soaked fist.

They took him away that time, too.

And nobody at the hospital (clinic) Bedlam, as they called the popular one in England, no doctors, anyway, would believe the things that he’d seen and knew he could reach through the crack in the universe.

===

Outside the house, Brain exhaled his smoke through the thickening mist and he watched as Anna dimmed the inside light, and disappeared from the front window.

He hated smoking, but the cigarette was not a cigarette. It was something to help heal.

He could taste the black hell resting on his tongue, until it grew and crawled down inside his through, and it was all he could do to keep from coughing, to keep from dislodging the thing before it reached the depths of his innards where it could really start to work.

Brain’s face hurt. He reached into his pocket and popped two Vicodin, as well, chewing them first, killing the pain, killing the feeling, but somehow, powdering that tiny hell-thing born of rotten smoke inside his throat when he swallowed and the mixing of the two opening up a lightning-bolt of perception/cracks in his mind. Brain Damage on steroids.

Opening so many possibilities…

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