Subcutaneous Magazine Fall 2016 - Page 97

He scrambled around the entrance, panting like a dehydrated and feral animal. His mouth was also dry due to the heat and rushing about from the extremities of the crash. Something didn’t feel right. The hissing sound was becoming louder and vibrations could now be felt underneath his feet. A creaking metallic noise emerged with the tremors. Startled, Jasmal tilted his head upward and noticed the supported constructed framework began to shake vigorously. Suddenly, an impact made him collapse like a rock towards the floor. The only image he had was a bright light that disguised the atmosphere around him. He was semi-unconscious and could barely move his arms or legs. The building framework was piled onto his body. Jasmal could only partially flicker his eyelids, but the surrounding building looked like nothing more than a thickening cloud of rubble and smoke. Only the sound of crackling fires and coughing could be heard. He was too late, he realized. The truck had exploded. Jasmal felt sudden pain erupt from the back of his head, but he couldn’t move to feel the area. He felt something streaming in circular motions on the back of his neck. He rotated his eyes downward and could see drops of blood. The sound of footsteps came closer; thankfully Jasmal’s hearing didn’t get affected from the blast. He panicked and he tried to wriggle himself free from the rubble on top of him. He couldn’t budge. The feet approached ever closer and the shadow of a strange being appeared through the dense ash-smoked mist. Jasmal flicked his eyes upwards. Terrified, he began to scream. “Who's there!?" he shouted repeatedly. A deep grunting tone emerged from the mist. He conjured up images of hell in his mind. He didn’t know what was going to happen or how to get out of the situation. A haunting, hallowing voice came out of the shadows. “Welcome to our carnal abode,” said the being. “I haven’t breathed the living air for many years. How it brings me great pleasure to hear your painful cries and begging. We were born from nightmares. The souls of your dead gave us a message and understanding that was far greater than anything the simple human or soul can dream.” The monstrous creature headed towards Jasmal as he lay under the rubble. He must have had incredible strength, because he was able to remove pieces of the damaged structure from him instantly. Jasmal, filled with unease, fright and pain, was relieved to be set free from that damage. In pain and dripping with blood in his shoes, he was too weak to run and cry for help. He had no other choice but to surrender. He stared hypnotically at this person... or thing. It looked human, but appeared to have blackened marble eyes and teeth which looked like an image of torture. The person began speaking more as it grabbed him by his neck like a scared puppy. He felt a sharp, deep, incised-like feeling in his wound. The thing slithered his two fingers into the fleshed open cut. A sound manifested, similar to a drinking straw. This creature-like person was draining his blood supply. Jasmal looked frail and lifeless in the grasp of this demonic being. He couldn’t remove himself from its clutches no matter how hard he tried, but he became weaker and more withdrawn. Jasmal wanted to jump and run to get out of there, but he couldn’t move. The skin of this creature-like person was withered in darkness. Inscriptions appeared on its face, heavily scarred by wrong-doing from an ancient past. He recognized a certain symbolic inscription embedded into the creature's right cheek. He remembered it was from the Makarian settlers who were once damned, alongside the Kahluan tribes-people for disobeying their leaders. The demon began to speak to Jasmal, well, what was left of him. He was slowly decomposing and lacking from the