The kitchen cabinet opens like the curtains on a disgusting play, and inside she is chained up much the same way a rabid dog would be, sitting on her knees with a face covered in running mascara and food. Her moans are pitiful and haunting all at the same time. He closes the cabinet door with tears streaming down his face and turns and walks from the ragged house in the middle of the crooked wood, leaving behind the only thing he never wished to see.
The pistol feels cool and comfortable in the palm of his hand, almost as if it was invented and manufactured for this very purpose. He inhales softly and remembers the cold stone catacombs where he left his childhood wonder entombed. Chemical dreams and restless wandering took over the sandbox and toy soldiers that used to be enough. Medicated and halfway through the point of no return he realizes that he long ago forgot that magic was real and ghosts could kill. His temples are throbbing along to the beat of his weary heart as he places the cold steel against his forehead. The gun clicks upon an empty chamber and he surrenders to the fact that even this he can’t help but screw up.
The faces of long forgotten acquaintances stand in a row on either side of the pathway he finds himself walking down. They smile and greet him with as much empathy and excitement as a porn star would muster in an actual Hollywood production. He can feel the fakeness along with the anger as he finds the brick door and pushes it open slowly. Inside he sees a room adorned with crimson curtains around bricked up windows and a simple bed covered in blood splattered white sheets. Laying in the middle of it so still and gruesome is the one thing that finally holds some kind of emotion for him in this strange land. Her hair is black as the darkest night and her skin as pale as January snow. He moves next to the bed and presses his finger into her wrist. The pulse is faint but clearly there for one such as him to find. He lifts the limp woman into his arms and turns to the door only to find it gone. She is placed lovingly and oh so carefully back onto the bed where he found her and then he frantically searches the four brick walls for a way out. The bricks are as solid as the mortar used to hold them in place, still he punches and slams his body against them until blood coats his hands and bruises decorate his shoulders. Finally he moves back to the bed and the woman so still upon it. He tries to find a pulse, but he already knows there will be none.
Once the tears finally run dry and he is able to pull his face from hers, he turns and sees the doorknob that was not available to him when he so frantically and fanatically had searched for it. It was not available while it would have mattered. Once again he scoops her into his arms, only this time she feels so much heavier and also unbelievably cold. The door opens, and he sees a vast green meadow, stretching on for as far as his eyes can see. A concrete path mars the landscape and seems ridiculously out of place among the shin high grass and wildflowers sprinkled throughout. He follows it for what seems an eternity, with the corpse of the woman he never knew tucked lovingly against his chest, until off in the distance he makes out the faint shape of a tree. It grows as he closes the gap and he sees that the path will end at its base. He hits his knees when finally he reaches the end of the path and sits his precious cargo against the massive trunk. The tree seems to come alive in that moment and opens up to pull the cold corpse into itself. Where the woman once sat, only moments before, there is only bark. He rubs his hand lovingly against it and turns back to the path behind him. His footsteps are heavy and his hands shaky, and all the while he fights the urge to look back.