Tuesday, March 13, 2012
Timed Writing: 3/13/2012
Time: 10 minutes
Source photo: hh1 slab by Beukiegirl
"Alright, pathologist, tell me me how he died." The person speaking to Ernest wore the body of a young woman in ragged jeans, a tank top, and sandals. Her hair clung to her head in matted braids of twisting multi-colored rope. The voice with which she spoke was that of an obese sixty-year-old man who had smoked two packs a day for most of his life.
"I will..." Ernest began. He was still reeling, dizzy, from the sudden change of scene. One moment he had been standing up from his desk to demand what this dirty, hippy was doing in his office, and the next, he was in a cold, dark room, looking down on the face of a dead man. "I will need..." he continued.
"Your instruments?" The possessed woman laughed, grunted, coughed, and spat. "Your tools of the trade -- your knives and saws?"
"Yes," Ernest said. "And more light."
The flashlight that the woman had been holding over the face of the deceased went out, but a moment later, several fluorescent tubes flickered to life overhead. They stood in a windowless square room, twenty feet to a side. White tiles, many of which were cracked and stained, covered the walls and the floor -- a floor that wasn't flat, but slightly depressed in the center, where a round metal grate allowed washings from the room to drain. Two massive concrete autopsy table stood to either side of the drain, each with its own spigots and hoses. Only one of the tables was occupied.
"These ought to do," said Ernest's abductor. She heaved a bundle onto the empty table and released its clasp. It rolled open to reveal several large kitchen knives, sewing scissors of multiple sizes, a pair of pruning shears, and an array of pliers, tweezers and exacto-knives that looked to have been acquired from a hobbyist's emporium.
"Who was he?" asked Ernest, turning back to the body. Well over six feet in length, well-muscled, with gray-brown skin, transitioning to dark cherry-red in the dependent areas. Black hair and several days of stubble growth. The facial features could not be ascribed definitively to any one racial clade. The nose was both broad and long, the eyes low and narrow, but the irides bright blue. Dark curly hair, almost thick enough to be called fur, carpeted the chest, abdomen, and groin, and the hair on the limbs was almost as dense.
"You haven't even asked who I am," said the woman. "Guess you must be pretty smart though. That it, doc? You smart enough to figure someone with the know-how to whisk you away like this'll decide what and what not to tell you about himself? Same goes for the stiff. No call for you to know anything about him. Less you know the better. You just tell me how he died and I'll have you and this pretty little wannabe witch back to your homes 'fore morning."
"Adequate information about the deceased and his habits, medical history, and family, may facilitate accurate determination of the cause of his death."
"Get started with the autopsy doc. I'll answer direct questions about the dead man as I see fit. Talk your thoughts as you go -- you know, dictate. I'm your recorder."
(about my timed writing exercises)
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