CRACK

“The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.”

I’ve descended into a frenzy of hunger and thirst. I didn’t know a human could be this thirsty. It’s been at least a week since I was stricken in this bed. My roommate left for a week long family vacation the night it happened. He’s come home since but suspected nothing. He doesn’t know I haven’t left this bed all that time. My spine was in a particularly agitated state that fateful morning. I twisted and turned to alleviate that gnawing sensation between my shoulder blades but to no avail. All day I worked and went about my business with it slowly building in intensity. Like a sticky spiderweb creeping its way from the middle of my back outwards until I couldn’t stand it anymore. That evening as I laid in bed I contorted in every conceivable way to get one glorious crack. Just a solitary ecstatic pop to release the pain and melt my skeletal grief into blissful oblivion. It finally came! I had set a tennis ball right on the spot that ached most and forced my spine down upon it with all my might. My back protested in agony but I persisted until *CRACK*… ahhhh sweet relief. I lay there for a few minutes before deciding to move off the ball and get to sleep but as I turned my head the rest of me wouldn’t follow. I strained and strained but the legs, the arms, the shoulders, nothing except my neck and head could do anything! I lay there, a living head on top of a dead man’s body. I yelled and screamed but in vain. My roommate was already gone and I was in my room locked from the inside. I descended into a panicked maelstrom, yelling and screaming until my voice gave out with the rest of my body. All the mental and physical straining caused me to pour sweat. One week later I still lay, so thirsty. I can see a cup of water on my night stand a mere 2 feet away. I’ve begged God to make it tip over and spill onto my face. It is an insurmountable task. I could no sooner reach for that cup than pull the titanic with a rope. I’ve seen 2 or 3 roaches come out of hiding as I lay here day after day. They’re rather large. Glossy brown with antennae pattering the floor and wall as they scurry here and there. I would give away my wallet and credit card if one would mercifully crawl into my mouth.

Suddenly a glimpse of hope shone through my darkness as I heard from a short distance someone turning a key in the front door and entering the house. My roommate! Had it really been a whole week since I lay here?? I heard him walking heavily to his room. He must be carrying his bags in. I strained to call out but my throat was parched and already hoarse from screaming for days. A barely audible groan weakly seeped out. He heard nothing and I could tell he had turned in for the night. I silently wept but held onto hope that he would come to check on me in the morning.

Morning came as I lay there sleeplessly watching with my weary eyes the daylight chase the night away. I heard him moving about in his room and as he exited his room he knocked quietly to tell me he was heading to work and would be going straight to a friend’s afterward to spend the evening there. My throat and neck muscles contorted in agony! Pure desperation to try and move something, anything! I breathlessly screamed and screamed but all for naught. My dehydrated and starving body wasn’t capable of even a whimper at this point. He hesitated as if waiting for a response but then left closing and locking the front door behind him. I wept until my body could no longer produce any tears. Why has this happened…..

That very night as I went in and out of consciousness from pure exhaustion and malnutrition I thought I heard a rustling and clicking across the hardwood floor. It sounded too large to be a roach. Was it coming from my room or outside? I was hard to be completely sure in the pitch blackness of whatever late hour it was. I slowly slipped back into sleep like it was a warm bath. I don’t know how long I was out until I was suddenly awoken by a crunching then a loud crack followed by moist and mushy squelching. Something was in my room. I could smell something definite. Blood. That iron smell. It was presumably mine but I couldn’t do anything about it. It went on and on until the daylight slowly crept in and I summoned what little strength I had to peer down at the edge of my bed. At least two rats had made their way into my room. Large ones. I’ve never seen a proper rat before. Just mice. Are they always this large? The sheets were soaked in blood. Much of my bones were expose with raw flesh hanging off in strips. I would’ve puked but there was nothing left. Nothing besides blood which was quickly on its way out.

*Knock knock*

Knock at the door

*Knock knock*

“Who’s there?”

That’s funny….

-CL Fuqua

Published by clfuqua87

Old soul with stories to tell.

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