The Taylight Zone - Anthology Seven

19 - Pink Sneakers - Stephanie

Taylor struggled to open his eyes. Sunlight was streaming through a dirty window, making him squint. He quickly shut his eyes again. His head pounded ferociously, repaying him for all the shit he’d so gladly swallowed the night before. He could still feel the lingering effects of strong marijuana, and the alcohol had left only a headache behind.

Where am I? Taylor thought vaguely, realising he did not recognise the slummy little apartment he was in. Of course, waking up in a strange apartment was nothing particularly new to him. He had always enjoyed the pleasures of the flesh, and found it particularly animalistic to enjoy them in the arms of someone he had never met before, andmight well never see again.

Nonetheless, he wanted to know where he was, and he squinted around the room, before noticing with mild surprise that someone was asleep beside him, curled on their side in the fetal position. He rolled over to face his bed-guest, trying the remember the events of the previous night. He could not recall whether or not he’d slept with anyone, but as he eyed the feral-faced boy asleep beside him, he surmised that he must have. The boy was pale and thin, with hair an artificial shake of midnight-blue. Black makeup ringed his eyes in a smeary bruise, and his eyelashes were long and golden-tipped, giving him an innocent look. Taylor was beginning to be pleased that he’d been fucking that boy, regardless of the fact that he could not remember it.

He shifted closer to the boy, wanting to feel his body heat, and just be next to him for a bit. To Taylor’s shock, the boy’s body was not at all warm. His entire body was freezing and unnaturally stiff. Taylor’s heart began to pound furiously in his chest. This gorgeous boy he had spent the night with, doing god only knew what, was dead.

Taylor took a deep breath, trying to collect himself. To his dismay, he didn’t feel particularly said. Sure, it was frightening to think that someone he’d obviously been partying with was dead, but there was no actual emotion. That is, there was no actual emotion until the paranoia set in. What if I killed him? What if someone thinks I killed him? What if what if what if?

Finally Taylor decided that he had to leave. That was all there was to it. He had just spent the night with a corpse, and he was more than a little freaked out. And, though he couldn’t remember having taken any drugs, other than smoking a joint or two, the previous night, he was fairly certain he could feel the psychadelic hum of acid still eatingquietly at his brain.

Taylor dully realised that he wasn’t dressed. Of course you’re not dressed. You were fucking a dead guy last night, you had to take your clothes off, a voice in his head screeched at him. “Shut up,” he said aloud, knowing his sounded insane, but not caring. Because who was there to hear him? The pretty, feral-faced boy in bed? Not likely.

His clothes were scattered around the room, a silent testimony to the passion that he must have shared with the boy. Taylor mechanically plucked them off the floor, pulling his shirt over his head quickly. He wanted nothing more than to escape from the apartment and go home, to try and erase this incident from his memory. As he was dressing, hewas thinking, despite his efforts not to do so. That boy. That body. How long would the body lie there? When would someone find it? Who was that boy? What had his lasthours of life been like? And wasn’t it awful that the boy had died in the presence ofsomeone who hadn’t even bothered to learn his name?

Somehow Taylor convinced himself to look at the body. he had to see it. He just had to. Just once more, to look at that pretty face. And maybe just to see a hint of his body. Just a hint. Just once. He sucked in his breath, trying to suck in some courage at the same time. He looked around the messy apartment, purposely avoiding the body. He wanted to know all he could about this beautiful boy he had been with the night he died. He felt it would be only proper to try to get to know the boy before he began to investigate his dead body. Unfortunately, the apartment didn’t give him many clues. Apparently, the boy was your typical mindless clubber, with an overabundance of drug paraphenalia but not a single book littering his home. But that didn’t do anything to quench Taylor’s thirst about the boy. If anything, it made it stronger. This was just a mindless clubber -- he shouldn’t have to feel guilty or sad about his death.

He crept into the bedroom, as if he were being silent so as not to wake him. Oh, God, if he wakes up right now I’ll just die, Taylor thought uneasily.

He was eventually standing directly beside the bed, looking down at the dead body. The boy’s feral face still peered out, a touch of androgynous beauty in a beautyless world. Taylor pulled the covers back gently, revealing the boy’s naked chest. It was smooth, pale, and hairless, with an ankh tattooed on his stomach, above his navel and to the left. Taylor ran his hand across the boy’s chest. He was cold to the touch, and it made Taylor shudder. Suddenly, acting on an impulse, he pulled the blanket down a little bit more. The boy’s cock stood at attention, surrounded by downy ginger hair. One last orgasm in death, Taylor thought. He’d heard that before, but always dismissed it as a stupid story.

Taylor realised with disgust that his own cock was somewhat hard against his jeans. God. He’s dead, and you’re getting off on looking at him? he asked himself mentally. Psycho!

But that didn’t change the fact that he was aroused. And the boy was there. Just laying there, alone. Would it be wrong to kiss the boy? To touch him? To touch him in death as he most-assuredly had done in life? Just didn’t seem wrong. But then, Taylor had long since abandoned any sense of morals he’d ever had.

Acting upon impulse, Taylor leaned down, letting his warm, wet lips graze the boy’s cold ones. A chill ran up and down his spine, the erotic thrill caused by the absolute morbidity of kissing that corpse. It wasn’t just taboo, like fucking any pretty boy you saw. It was necrophilia. It was immoral and wrong and illegal. And, somehow, it was hysterically sexy.

Taylor found himself sitting down beside the boy, leaning over him, dropping fluttery sugar-kisses on his eyelashes, his cheeks, his neck. Just as he began to relax, just as he began to feel comfortable, the acid in his brain began to make it’s strong presence heard. He began to feel very paranoid. What if someone were watching him? What if someone knew what he was doing? What was that noise? And why was the sould of that fly beating its wings against the window screen so fucking LOUD?

A cold sweat broke out across his forehead. Was that a stab of guilt he felt? No, of course not. Just the acid. You’re only guilty when you get caught, Taylor reminded himself. But that wasn’t enough to calm him. That didn’t make him feel better, even though he was next to one of the most beautiful creatures he had ever encountered. And that didn’t make the damnable buzzing noise in his ears go away. He shook his head violently. NO NO NO. He had to concentrate on the boy.

Suddenly, as he was staring at the corpse, he realised what he wanted to do. What he just had to see. One question he just had to answer. Did the dead bleed? He jumped to his feet, stumbling towards the kitchenette, in the next room. He pulled open a few drawers before spotting the shine of a stainless steel kitchen knife, dangerous and violent-looking. He grabbed it, brandishing it like a sword as he carried it back to his lover’s bed.

He grabbed the boy’s arm, holding the knife gently against the soft bluish skin of his wrist. He pushed it down, and watched in morbid fascination as the knife seemed to sink slowly into the cold flesh. Blood oozed slightly as he pushed the knife deeper, but it looked nothing like Taylor’s blood, whenever he chose to view it. This blood was dark, almost black, and think, as if with poison. It oozed like slime, clinging noxiously to the blade of the knife. Taylor slicked his forearm just to see the stark contrast between his wound and that of the boy. His blood dripped down is arm, hot and red and full of life. He let it splash onto the boy’s face, under his eyes, as if he were crying bloody tears.

Taylor admired those tears a moment before delicately licking them away, feeling his own life-essence on his tongue. He leaned back, staring at the boy. The longer he stared, the more beautiful the boy became, until he, in Taylor’s mind, was something like a perfect statue: strong yet fragile, beautiful and androgynous and infinitely cold. Taylor longed to touch him, but his acid-cluttered mind would not allow it, for every time he reached out, the room seemed to pulse with psychadelic waves of horror that washed over his body like a river. For a moment, it seemed the boy was covered in gore, a murder victim, still gushing blood and guts and worms. Taylor jumped up, suddenly terrified. He had to go. The dead, he found, was not something he wanted to fuck with.

He darted around the room, looking only for his boots, so he could get the fuck away from the madness of this corpse, get away from the cloying scent of this apartment. His heart thudded even louder as he thought despairingly of the 20 hole boots he had worn. He had no time to lace those. He would surely die of heart failure if he stayed with the erotic, cold, bloody corpse that long. Instead he shoved his feet into a pair of sneakers that had been kicked on the floor. They were a faded pink, battered from age and wear. They had clearly belonged to the boy, still curled so stiffly in the bed, but Taylor didn’t care. He ran out the door and out onto the street, the clomp of his new pink sneakers echoing loudly in his ears.