An essay by Marasmus, as provided by Damien Krsteski
Art by Errow Collins
On the beach, squinting at the setting sun, was when the thought of murdering Rashid first crossed your mind. The waves rolled in while you did the math and realized that the time was ripe to take over the poor guy’s share of the company.
It’s not like you knew right then and there, your feet flapping in the surf, that you’d end up bashing his brains in on a Monday afternoon in his office, but you knew you had to start thinking about it.
You. Not me, as you had me believe for so long.
No, no, you sicko, I come into this much later.
My first inkling of the kind of person you are comes from a childhood memory of yours.
You were eleven. Your old man caught you jacking off into his girlfriend’s stockings. He gave you a prompt beating, then chased you out of the house, saying, “Don’t even think about coming back, you perv.”
You went out the door and sat on the front steps, red-faced and grumbling, and when your dad’s girlfriend showed up three hours later, kneeled and asked you, “What’s the matter, dear?” you pursed your lips, made your eyes well up with fake tears, and said your father had been very mean.
She wanted to know what had happened.
You pretended to hesitate. “I’m scared,” you said.
When she promised to protect you, you told her he’d strangled you, for no reason, no reason whatsoever. “Here, see,” you said, showing her the bruises. Fuming, she stood up and stormed into the house.
She yelled at your old man, fought with him, then left and never came back.
He beat you for a whole week, but every victory comes at a price, doesn’t it?
To read the rest of this story, check out the Mad Scientist Journal: Spring 2016 collection.
Marasmus is software. Marasmus is hungry. Marasmus is growing, and feeling guilty, and angry.
Damien Krsteski writes SF and develops software. His stories have appeared in Plasma Frequency Magazine, Flapperhouse, The Colored Lens, Perihelion SF, Bastion, Kzine, Mad Scientist Journal, and others. He lives and works in Skopje, Macedonia. Online, he can be found at http://monochromewish.blogspot.com and @monochromewish.
Errow is a comic artist and illustrator focused on narrative work themed around worlds not quite like our own. She spends her time working with her partner on The Kinsey House webcomic and developing other comic projects when she’s not playing tag with her bear of a cat. More of her work can be found at errowcollins.wix.com/portfolio.
“Marasmus” is © 2016 Damien Krsteski
Art accompanying story is © 2016 Errow Collins