|Patrick C. Crowell
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AN EXCERPT FROM
The young woman’s legs were long, lean and sinewy from hours
upon hours of aerobic repetition. Streamlined and tanned, sensuous
lines would appear in her smooth calves and thighs with every flirtatious
step that she would take, especially whenever she had worn a miniskirt
and high heels, sans stockings, driving men—even some women—totally
wild. She had known this, and had used it.
By now, she had lived twenty-eight years, growing up in Alabama under the Christian
tutelage of a father that she didn’t understand. He had always professed
his love for her, but his actions had never shown it. There had never been time
for her, especially through her gangly years; and each occasion when he had cheated
on her obsequious mother, she had internalized his infidelity as continued rejection
of herself from the very first member of the opposite sex whom she had ever loved.
She wasn’t good enough for daddy.
During her high school years, she had found alternative meaning through the sport
of rowing. She was tall—an attribute that, when combined with technique
and strength, makes a solid rower. Add intense desire to show someone something,
and the athlete becomes perfect. These traits had led to an athletic scholarship.
In college, she had blossomed when her complexion finally cleared and her five-foot,
ten-inch form finally matured; and she soon discovered that she could indeed
attract men, regardless of the deep implications of her father’s unfaithfulness.
She had learned that she didn’t have to be just an athlete, and that she
could be as stunning as a princess, or as sexy as a harlot.
But the cognition misguided her like an opiate, and it wasn’t enough to
attract a man, or even just men; through her twenties she had craved her own
attractiveness for any person, of any gender, who would notice.
Her healthful routines had not changed, however, after college, and she religiously
maintained her perfectly sculpted body through rowing and weight training. After
all, in her mind, it was what had created and nurtured her belated comeliness.
Those who beheld her, saw that her long, chestnut-brown hair was fine, straight
and shiny. With round, russet eyes, her modest, retiring demeanor contrasted
her well-known physical ferocity in a rowing boat; she was an intriguing mystery.
Those she allowed close enough had discovered that she was a follower; and during
this time, she had been led by differing persons down divergent paths, all, however,
with one thing in common—carnal desire for her extreme beauty.
But here and now, her model-like physique was no longer flawless. Though she
was adorned in a tight, lime-green mini-dress, and spiked heels that could stop
traffic, her lips were swollen and cut, and her ankle was snapped in two. As
she laid there in the dark—motionless—her contorted body was stiffening
within a puddle of rich, murky blood. The sanguine fluid had streamed from severed
muscle tissues about her now visible shoulder-bone, where her arm used to be.
It pooled with the vital fluids from her lifeless head, which had been impaled
through her temple by an unforgiving piece of pointed ride-steel.