Tight Places. 1Sep 202017
He dug the shovel into the ground. He watched keenly as its blade sank into the earth with very little resistance. Beads of perspiration had formed on his already moist forehead but he was done wiping them off. Sweat had begun to trickle into his eyes. The perspiration-soaked collar of his shirt clung to the nape of his neck. The discomforting feeling of grimy sticky sweat reminded him that he had gotten dirty. Very dirty. There was no redemption here.
It was a few minutes past midnight. The crickets taunted him with their shrill chirps. The owls booed him with their ominous hoots. The night mocked him as the moon hid behind gloomy clouds, refusing to beam down a respite of light into the darkness. The slim torch still clamped in his mouth, he kept digging. Sam and Sunday were at strategic points, looking out for intruders.
He was in a tight corner.
He wondered how he was the one who ended up with the shovel even though none of these was his idea. He wondered what would happen to him if he was ever caught. He felt a chill crawl up his spine and shook his head vigorously in a bid to shake the thoughts away.
He swore to God that he would never do this again. He would never walk this line. He would never hangout with this sort of friends. Not anymore. Never.
The hole had gotten deep enough.
He stopped to catch his breath. The next phase was the part he dreaded most. Taking a deep breath, he wiped his sweaty hands on his dirty shirt. He turned to look at the lifeless body. Rigor mortis had begun to set in. His stomach churned at the sight. He quickly grabbed the body by the legs. The thick body was heavier than he imagined. Bracing himself, he pulled with all the strength he could muster. The body moved about two feet and then wouldn’t budge. The body’s clothes must have gotten stuck in some undergrowth.
He dropped the legs and looked at his palms as he his hands quivered and tears clouded his eyes.
What had happened to him?
How did he become this thing?
He resolved to cut off his association with these fake friends that drew him deeper and deeper into the abyss of deranged evil. He would bury this body and this would be the last of it.
He pulled at the body again. It wouldn’t budge.
The crickets had stopped chirping. The moon peeped from behind the clouds, throwing a faint jab of light on the body.But the owls… the owls wouldn’t stop hooting.
Sick to his stomach and unable to take it any further, he pulled the body with everything he had.
That was when he slipped.
He hadn’t seen that coming.
It happened quickly. He heard a twig snap, some brush pulled from the roots, and he and the body plunged into the pit with a thud.
The hole was too tight.
The body was the right fit.
But he was below the body.
There was no room to struggle. His arms were clamped behind him. There was no room to push or heave. There was no room for any movement.
The thick hair of the corpse pressed his nose and mouth.
At first he panicked. Panic became trepidation.
He hoped with everything that his friends would return from the look out to yell at him or something. He hoped that someone would find him as he began to choke.
He could only hope.
He could not have known that his friends were not coming back.
He could not have known that they were never on the lookout.
He could not have known that they had fled the scene.
How could he have imagined that he would share his final moments in a pit that he dug; with the corpse of the person he had murdered?
The crickets had stopped chirping. The moon was shining in all its glory. But the damned owls!
The owls kept hooting.