Flash Friday 28/06/2013: Killing Blow
“So,” Henry said, gesturing to his manuscript on the table. “What did you think of it?”
The editor gave a weighted breath, rubbing his temples as if he was having a migraine. Eventually, he managed to open his eyes, revealing pupils that looked like they had seen Death himself.
“Can you just…” the editor began, his voice crackling like a log fire. “Can you just go over what this story was about, again?”
“Certainly,” Henry said, perking up. “It’s the story about a werewolf who’s tasked to take the one ring to the fiery mountain of NoMor, while conflicted with a love interest who is a Tyrannosaurus Rex, who comes down from a spaceship in the second arc, and both of them get into really big fight scenes because the werewolf is a half-angel, half-demon, half-orc, half-elf, half-toast hybrid, allowing him to be pure, evil, powerful, graceful, and delicious with jam all at the same time. The story ends with him waking up, and it all being a dream.”
The editor gave a pitiful whining sound. “I thought so,” he finally managed to say.
“So? What did you think of it?”
“Frankly? It was awful. Absolute tripe. Total garbage. It was so bad, I don’t want to read another book ever again. In fact, you know what? Your book is so bad, it killed literature.”
“Now, please, I think that’s a little too harsh.”
“No.” The editors face was rock-solid with a frown. “I’m being deadly serious here, Henry. This manuscript, the very birth of it, has slain literature for eternity. Thousands of years has creative writing existed, and you managed to end it with…” the editor flicked through the manuscript, as if he thought his mind was playing tricks. “The scene where you tried to write a love scene between a wolf-man and a creature whose arms are too short for their bodies. I had to take a cold shower.”
“Oh, did you feel it was too steamy?”
“No,” the editor said, slamming the manuscript back into its default position. “It felt like I could never get the taint off of my body. Maybe if you ever read Macbeth, you’d know both of blood-stained hands and how to write a sentence that makes sense.”
“So it’s a rejection, is it?”
“Only because literature, as we know it, is now dead. Well done, kid,” the editor said, picking up his ‘EDITOR’ name plate and throwing it out the window. “You can be the one that tells all the authors about what you did.”
“Perhaps I will,” Henry said, taking his manuscript and standing up.
Henry approached the gravestone. He had finally done it.
Henry operated in an eye-for-an-eye system. When someone wronged him, he always ensured to exact revenge as equal as the blow that he took. When it comes down to a death, there was only one way to right that. Only one price that could be paid.
He looked at the gravestone proper, the rain dripping down its mossy face. On it, the words were still eligible:
R.I.P. THOMAS AND PATTY JONES
KILLED BY A ROGUE MURDER MYSTERY NOVEL
THE IRONY WAS NOT LOST ON YOU
Henry placed the manuscript down on the soil, as if proving to the dead that the deed had been done. It had been many years since his parents death, but he had finally achieved it. He had achieved the ultimate revenge on his murderers.
“It’s okay,” Henry said, as if the spirits of his parents were beside him. “Nobody has to be afraid of literature any more. The world is safe from their grasp. I had to go through hell, but I did it. For you. For you both.”
He kissed two fingers, placing them on the dirt where his family was buried. The evil reign of terror that books held over the world had been relinquished. It brought a smile to a grief-weary face, knowing that as long as he lived, nobody would have to go through the hell that he himself had to suffer.
At least until the movie adaptations came out.