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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Burner - A Short Story

Gary Dunning woke up to the alarm clock buzzing that annoying, drilling electronic noise. It was 7 am and Gary had to truck his ass on down to work.

Life is lived from one acid second to the next. Earlier that month, he had found a rusty car by searching the web for the cheapest piece of junk he could find. It only needed to run; it didn’t need to look pretty. The car had a strange gasoline smell coming up from the floor boards. He suspected that the exhaust was leaking and filling the cabin with the hideous stink. Gary feels sleepy sometimes when he’s cruising, as the carbon monoxide filters into his lungs. He hadn’t made the connection between the gas smell and his out-of-it mental state when he drives.

He had become addicted to pain. As he cruises the streets aimlessly drifting down random alleys, sluggish but euphoric, chasing shadows. He had the habit of putting cigarettes out on his arm, burning small, red holes.

His skin is pale and clammy, like that of a corpse. The scars turn blue from abnormal blood flow from his heart. He drifts the car to feed his adrenaline needs. He had replaced the license plate, so any witnesses couldn’t track him back to his doorstep. Trash cans led to sign posts which soon gave way to parked cars. Macabre medical photographs on the dashboard slip around and fall to the floor as the forces whip the car around.

Eventually he had hit a person and he found that that was the best feeling in the world. The screams and hilarious noises didn’t stop him from driving, sending him into a state of ecstasy which is unparalleled with any drug he had tried. He palms his penis through his unzipped jeans. He slowly masturbates—in his mind--rehearsing, rewinding a slow motion movie and hearing her torso hitting the right bumper and passenger door, making a metallic, thumping sound. His friend, a greasy auto mechanic he had met while changing the oil, rides shotgun. Gary jerks him off until the mechanic sprays cum all over the glove compartment and steamed up windshield.

He flashed back to the first person he had ever hit. She had a blue coat, white shirt, and tan skirt. He didn’t remember what her face looked like, or whether she had gloves on or not. The most salient point of the experience, the thing that burned in his memory the most, was how her umbrella had landed on the windshield and traveled with him for a few minutes before he turned on the windshield wipers and it slid off.

It’s 7 am and Gary still has to get to work. Driving all night made him drowsy. A dress shirt feels good and covers the mutilation. He puts on his slacks and business jacket, grabs his briefcase and locks the door behind him.


  1. I'm really not sure I see the point, but thanks for sharing all the same.

  2. Good story, you're a good writer!

  3. Welcome to the Muddy Mudskipper show!

    Good work, I bet you've read American Psycho (Bret Easton Ellis).

  4. To: Mudskipper
    Fr: The Frog
    Re: Your Recent Literary Endeavor

    To be frank, the prose sucked, but I'm tellin ya, that would make an awesome movie script. Start writing some screenplay.

    The plot begins with the little boy being raised by a domineering fundamentalist christian mother who drives fast and reckless and justifies it by saying she must hurry to do the Lord's work ***slap***
    "what did I do, mommy?"
    "Shut up you worthless sinner! And quit masturbating or you will end up in hell for eternity. If you play with that sacred area of your body you will end up as a sychopath......God sees you defiling yourself everytime you have any of those evil dirty thoughts."
    Fading to black, then, commercial...

    You feelin it man?

  5. I think Muddy just wrote this to traumatize any lurking Fundie from the Swamp that happened to blunder across it.

    If that is indeed the case, I wholeheartedly approve. c^_^ɔ

  6. Trip,

    I concur, and I love to traumatize fundies, but I am not sure that is our purpose here. But if it is, what the fuck, I'm in.

  7. I think there's probably better ways to traumatise fundies. I like logic, personally.

    I gotta say, Mudskippers posts kinda disturb me. No offence to MS, just not my thing.

  8. Kinda makes you wonder how many people just put on a dress shirt and go to work the night after.

    It's thought provoking. Thoroughly depressing thoughts, but thoughts none the less.

  9. Quasar,

    They disturb me too; I usually just browse the comments to get the main idea.

    Same deal, though; no offense, the dark stuff just isn't my thing.

  10. All I could think of was that I've wanted to see Crash for the longest time...

  11. I'm stumped.

    But the last picture is from the Mutter Museum, right?

  12. yeah, Crash was my main influence. You could tell I stole certain ideas from it, but WTF.
    It was just a short story, and I think I could make-it-my-own if I had time and really sat down with it. I could have used some literary tools which I neglected for brevity. I love the idea of cars and different elements as metaphor for some deep seated psychosis.
    I jerk-off to that movie sometimes.

    I've been having strange dreams as well, (accompanied by chronic headaches) which I have begun writing short stories about. One of them involves a girl I used to "know"(in the biblical sense) who was addicted to Meth.

    I want to read American Psycho, now that you recommended it.

  13. mudskipper,
    really, you haven't read it yet? Wow. It's so close to your piece I could have bet you had.
    When I wanted to get the book (about 14 years ago), I had to show my ID to prove I was an adult. :D


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