Daniel and the Rats

(Very Short Story)

Daniel had never seen so many rats before. Usually, he only saw one at a time, skulking along the subway tracks. Far away, standing on a platform, he never saw how greasy they were, how grotesque they were. He saw them differently now. Locked inside the small room with him with only a dim overhead light that hung still on a thin cord, he watched as they climbed over one another and through each other’s filth. Hundreds of them.

He was sitting on a concrete floor against a cracked wooden wall with his legs spread in front of him. He didn’t know how long he’d been there with the rats. He had no clue how he’d gotten there.

His pants were soiled and they smelled like piss, but he couldn’t tell if the piss was his or if it belonged to the rats. His lower calves burned hot like a match was rubbed against his skin. He lifted his jeans and saw bite marks, red and bloody, raw with pain.

He screamed. He tried to stand. He flung his arms against the wall. A chain was wrapped against his waist and bolted to the floor. He kicked his feet and screamed more, more than he thought he ever could.

The grimy wall across from him started to crack and swing open surprisingly. A man stood in the entryway, burly and familiar, but Daniel couldn’t place him exactly.

“You’re name reminds me of the Bible,” said the man, as he threw Daniel’s driver’s license down with the rats. Then he walked away and left the door ajar. Some of the rats scurried out, but most stayed put because they knew dinner was coming.

Daniel remembered when he saw him. It was at night on the road, on the way home after a late night at work. He cut the man off and, vividly at last, remembered the man pulling to the side of him crashing his truck into him, forcing Daniel off the road into a ditch.

The man returned holding an axe on his shoulder, gripping the bottom of the handle with both hands. “Difference is,” said the man, “God’s not gonna protect you.” He lifted the blade over his head and stepped through the piles of rats at his feet over towards Daniel. “Oh, and you’re not surrounded by lions. You’re surrounded by rats and they’re gonna eat the meat off your bones when you’re dead.” The he came down with the axe on the top of Daniel’s head.

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One Response to “Daniel and the Rats”

  1. Reblogged this on The Horrifically Horrifying Horror Blog and commented:
    A gory little short…

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