I awoke to the usual morning smell, cooked ham from the kitchen. My loving wife always woke thirty minutes before me, and making my favorite meal every single day. I often joked to her that the far in the bacon was the glue holding our marriage together. Although she would roll her eyes and scoff, her continued devotion to the ritual showed how seriously she took it. I kept my eyes shut. I wasn’t ready for the world, but I could do with some food.
I called out to my wife, “Good morning darling! Ham smells good today.”
I received no answer,.
I called out again.
Confused, I rolled onto my back, nestling the pillow into the crook of my neck. Suddenly, I became aware that the usual sizzling sound of frying that accompanied the smell was eerily absent. My eyes inched open to note the empty spot in the bed beside me. The smell was closer to me than it had ever been before. The smell of ham. Growing anxious, I frantically kicked the covers off. I recoiled in horror. The sickeningly sweet honey-smoked smell of pork wafted into my nose, but the sight that greeted me was grotesque. Instead of hands, my arms had two well-cooked hocks festooned upon them. My hands were ham.
Strangely enough, my first reaction was neither to scream nor call for help. I observed the new additions to my body in silent repulsion, twisting my arms to view every side. The only thing that broke my hypnotic trance was a rumbling stomach, which brought a new idea from the depths of my mind. Although I didn't know the obscene origins of my porcine appendages, I was compelled to consume; tear until there was no flesh left to strip.
I suckled at the sickeningly sweet honey ham horror. Moving it further into my mouth, I tore at my own flesh, relocating my outer being to my innards. The gelatinous gooey flesh cascaded into my open mouth, rending at my incisors and wrenching its way down my swollen throat. I hungered for more, shoveling in as much as possible, and ripping off larger chunks of meat. My ravaged limbs became shadows of their previous selves, only two porcelain hocks remaining. Saturated sheets and a dripping chin were the only proof of the succulent ham once bound to the bones before me. I had not created nor destroyed any of my flesh, but in a way, repurposed it, becoming ham reincarnate. I had committed the gravest act a man can bear: cannibalism. It was delicious.
- What my cousin said, when his head was stuck betwixt the bars of my venerable staircase. I, upon finding him, rubbed his neck and scalp with oily aliments, then, when prepared, pulled his cranium loose from its wooden prison
- What my cousin said, when I freed him. He manifested as a devil, a beast of loathsome origin from beyond time itself, brimming with wings, spines, horns, and teeth. He charged towards me, impaling my stomach with his chitinous barbs. My intestines effused through my peritoneal lining, and he began to roar and shake violently, splintering my spine and jellifying my insides
- What I said, as I slew my cousin with a holy sword of pure alabaster marble, coated in divine fire. I was doubly upset at him, both for killing me, and disrespecting one of his elders. I had always thought his parents too easy on him, but it wasn’t their fault. He was beyond man, a being born of incarnate madness and destruction, covered in the amnion of all human sin.
“I LIVE ON”
- What I said, as I ascended to heaven, carried on Valkyie’s wings, prepared to face my bastard cousin over and over until Fenrir howls at Ragnarok, in this eternally spiralling battle that crawls wounded towards a desired oblivion.
I fell head over heels for this girl that hit me going 80 mph on the freeway. She had neck-length auburn hair that she wore with a perfect amount of premeditated carelessness, as if she woke each morning knowing she had enough time to roughly tousle and harangue her hair into contorted curls or utterly unbending jet-black follicles as black as the asphalt I now lay on but instead decided to trust the universe to fix it. It was abundantly clear she didn’t lack in confidence, eschewing the expectations of her friends with a demeanor that further endeared herself to them.
All of this was evident as I cartwheeled limply through the air, getting three hundred and sixty times a lot glances at her beauty. As I careened through the air with shattered ribs, concussed kidneys, contused liver, shattered knees, disentangled intestines, dislodged femurs, road-rashed eyeballs, the biggest injury I really sustained was a broken heart, vigorously throttled and strained by a newly-broken still-nascent love, faltering slowly as she crashed away, doppler-effecting like some bassy theremin, me sitting splayed spread-eagle-with-central- nervous-system-problems, limbs akimbo and head asplay, beared down on by successive automobiles that couldn’t hope to bear my ladylove, as I became chunk upon chunk of frivolous wet meat, my spirit escaping into the ether while I hoped to meet her again, under more fortuitous circumstances, of course.