Tag Archives: free fiction

Once beautiful

31 Oct

He glanced at her once-beautiful face, and then turned the opposite direction to avoid her eyes. There was no sense in hurting her feelings even if he knew how this blind date was going to end for her. Not well.

She was etched with the passing of time. Not that she had lied about her age on her profile. But man was she the oldest looking forty-two year old he had ever set eyes on. It wasn’t the ageing process that had distorted her appearance. If anything, her wrinkles added an interesting dimension to her. The sun had done most of the irreparable damage. And the burning smoke of tobacco exiting her lips and bathing her face, day-in day-out, must have taken care of the rest.

Hers was a skin tone of lifeless grey. Just like the walls of his old prison cell. Blurred facial features contorted asymmetrically and drooped when they should have been elastic. As if her multiplying cells had decided to finally punish her for many years of disregard for the well being of her body.  Despite that, he mentally peeled off layers imparted by time, the elements and her own recklessness and could see with great clarity how she looked once upon a time when she really was fetching. To do that was his special talent. Or what singled him out as a freak. And ever since he was released on parole and started baiting women online only to butcher them at the end of the night, he had never once backed out for failing to see beauty in a victim.

Everyone is beautiful, somehow.

Except him. He was born hideous. Not necessarily on the outside, but on the inside. The bastard child of the devil and everything wretched in this world. Killing beautiful, or even once-beautiful women was the only way he knew to heal and feel cleansed on the inside. Even if just for a few fleeting hours in the dead of the night, lying naked in their pool of blood.

“Very beautiful,” he whispered now turned to look her straight in the eye.

She smiled, but seemed taken aback. Not by the odd tone of his voice or the unnatural, nonhuman pitch. Or the iciness of his deadened eyes. But as if it had been a long time since she heard these words from a man who really meant them.

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