The Taylight Zone - Anthology Eight

04 - Happy Together - Rebecca, Melanie & Sheena

This is our first attempt at serious and dramatic writing. Enjoy...


The scene opens: A brick one story house, very innocent-looking. In the front yard a stoic sign with a simple message: NO TRESPASSING. Very un-suspicious to the regular human, but behind that sign hid years of sin and torture.

In the house reposes Isaac Hanson and the lone reporter, a thirty-something year old Filipino man we'll call Epoy Fudernanan.. Epoy (pronounced ee-poi) is there to interview the long reclusive Isaac, who was thought of as the J.D. Salinger of the musical world. And it's obvious that he basically lived up to that standard. The house is dimly lit and dingy from years of neglect.

Neglect, you see, born of the screams that Isaac heard---screams that sounded from the walls day and night.

***
Epoy: So, Mr. Hanson, you uh, wanted to tell the world your story?

Isaac: Anything to stop the screaming.

Epoy: Screaming?

Isaac: You can't hear the screaming. NO ONE hears the screaming. I don't blame them. If I could, I'd ignore them too. But that's not the point.

Epoy: Okay then…please, Mr. Hanson, begin.

Isaac: Okay, but you might want to plug your ears during the nasty parts.

***
The Hanson family seemed like a normal, God-fearing family by anybody's standards. The parents were hard-working and supported their children no matter what crazy ideas they came up with. The children were normal, rowdy children. They had their odd points, but who doesn't? However, under the fašade of this apple-pie, white bread family lay the secret of a genetic and psychological disorder caused by…incestual tendencies in the past. This disorder had hit all the children in the family, except one; Taylor. Taylor was perfect in every way; silky blond hair, "cornflower" blue eyes, a healthy rosy glow, an ass that wouldn't quit, an upturned nose and full, pouty lips. In other words, the epitome of a sex symbol for any young girl under the age of fourteen.

His brother Isaac, however, bore the scars of this disorder: cavernous beady eyes, elongated cheekbones, sloping forehead, thin pale chapped lips, crooked teeth, straw-like hair, and all around Mongoloid features. It was these features that caused many people to compare Isaac to a horse or a giraffe.

But dear reader, you know that outward features often are meant to deceive. And in this case, it is no different.

Isaac was kind-hearted; a bit simple in the head -in other words, soft- and was the family martyr. Taylor, on the other hand, was kind but arrogance was his forte. After several years, it was apparent that fame had seduced Taylor so that he was ruled more by the head below his waist. At least, until he was about 20. Because of this, Isaac's mental deterioration took shape prematurely and began to take precedence in his life.

And before the brothers knew it, fame was fleeting and they were unknown to all. To add insult to injury, the mental problems and a scorching case of herpes (due to the "disorder" they were susceptible to various diseases) had exterminated all but Zachary, Taylor, and Isaac. They were penniless and destitute, and after a day of brainstorming, the only job they could think of that could possibly provide a steady income would be male prostitution. This was quickly dismissed by Taylor, who could not possibly bear the thought of giving up his ass that wouldn't quit.

Zac succumbed to the disorder after a year, becoming permanently catatonic. This left the final two brothers, Isaac and Taylor, living alone in the house that was formerly filled with children's laughter and happy times, before the "disorder" took precedence. Good times. Joyful times. Of course, this is a Hanson story…nothing is ever happy in the end.

Several months after Zac became a human vegetable, Isaac received the call for an interview with the aforementioned Epoy. How Mr. Fudernanan got a hold of their number was a mystery -at least to Isaac; we told you he was simple- but he was quite persistive about the interview. Isaac would have kept refusing the interview offer, but he smelled the rancid smoke that was slowly seeping from the adjoining garage, so he quickly accepted. Fearing the worst -that Taylor had burnt himself again- he hung the phone up and proceeded down the corridor to the garage.

Indeed there was smoke- thick and cloying, forming a thick fog around the ceiling. It smelled like dead decaying flowers and potato chips.

Opening the door to the garage, Isaac immediately spotted the source of the fumes. Hundreds, perhaps thousands of lit candles were scattered loosely around the room. Taylor was busy painting trickles of water on the wall, taking great pains in forming abstract figures with his brush. He looked like an addict having a bad acid trip. Of course, Taylor never did anything like that. Out of the dilapidated CD player sitting in the corner of the garage blasted "Happy Together" by the Turtles. It seemed to compliment the mood of the room.

Isaac walked down the few remaining steps, and placed his hand on the railing. "Taylor?"

"Working. Don't bother me."

A tear trickled from Isaac's eye. "Taylor," he repeated, his tone a little more urgent.

"NO," Taylor replied, continuing to work furiously.

The third try was a charm. "TAYLOR!"

Taylor threw down his brush in fury, knocking over his can of water. "DON'T BE MAD AT ME, BROTHER!" He tore at his hair and threw himself up against the wall, his skinny frame making a hard collision with the wooden floor.

Isaac scurried over to Taylor and lifted him up off the ground. "I'm sorry, brother," he murmured, as he patted Taylor on the head and gave him a little hug. Then Isaac stood up, like a proper soldier. "A man is coming---"

"Nooo…not now," Taylor softly whined, splashing the few remaining drops of water out of his water can onto the wall with his hand, like it was some time-tested Andy Warhol method.

Isaac cleared his throat. "A man is coming to interview me. I want you to stay down here."

Taylor seemed to pay no attention. He splashed water on the wall in cadence with the music, humming softly. "Imagine me and you, I do, I think about you day and night, it's only right…"

Isaac began to feel cloistered in the room that once had held so much fun for him and his brothers. He was hearing the song all right, but the words were echoing in his ears, making it seem like the words were being screamed out by Kurt Cobain himself. Before it could get any worse, Isaac turned on his heel and fled back up the stairs, hands firmly clamped over his ears to block out the screaming.

***
Epoy: So how do you think the music biz will react to an interview after so long?

Isaac: I don't know. I don't care.

Epoy: All right…so, how did you recover from the deaths of your family members?

Isaac: I didn't have time to think. I'm still recovering. I have my good days, I have my bad days.

***
"WHY CAN'T YOU BE BEAUTIFUL?!?!?!" Isaac screamed as he broke the mirror in the bathroom. The impact and the broken glass of the mirror split his knuckles. Watching the blood flow, his face turned white. He curled up on the floor in a fetal position and began to cry.

***
Epoy was hoping to get the interview of the decade. What was it like growing up in the Hanson family? He wanted the truth so bad he could taste it.

Epoy: So what was it like growing up as a Hanson, before and after fame?

Isaac: Before fame was as normal as you could get. Tulsa is a very family oriented community. After fame was….uh….not as happy.

***
Taylor lay on the floor of the kitchen, looking up at Isaac, who was cooking scrambled eggs. "Remember when we wrote that song, what…what was it called Ike?"

"We wrote a lot of songs, Tay."

"No, the special one! The famous one! The good one! WHAT WAS IT?"

"MMMBop?"

"NOOOOO!" Taylor smiled to himself. "Lucy." He giggled. "I sang that one real good."

Isaac put Taylor's food on the table. "Zac sang that one, remember? And it wasn't famous."

Taylor somersaulted and sat up at the table. "No. I sang it. I sang "A Minute Without You" too. All the women loved me."

"They weren't women, they were pre-adolescent teenies, and I sang "A Minute Without You"."

"NO! I SING THE FUCKING SONG!!! I AM RIGHT AND YOU ARE WRONG!!!"

Isaac continued eating his food. He hated upsetting his beautiful brother. "Yes, yes, yes…you sang the song. I'm wrong, you're right."

Taylor calmed down and resumed eating. "I like that song. But I like "Lucy" better." He reached over and grasped the errant steak knife sitting on the table. "I have to remember that song title." Rolling up his sleeve, he began carving the name of the song into his pale, thin, white arm. "L…"

Isaac looked up from his plate. His eyes grew immense. Tears were in Taylor's eyes, but a big sloppy grin that exuded pure ecstasy was plastered on his face. "NO, Tay!" He reached over and tried to wrestle the knife away from Taylor. Blood dripped on the eggs. Somehow Taylor remained holding the knife in a vice-like grip. One of Isaac's sweaty hands slipped off the knife handle, and Taylor sent it plunging into Isaac's thigh.

Isaac's eyes grew even wider when he saw the knife sticking erect from his leg. Taylor, likewise, was equally shocked. "I'm sorry brother," he rasped. Calmly, Taylor extracted the knife from Isaac's leg, making a goat-like sound as he did so. He then placed the knife in the sink and turned the cold water on. "Cold water removes blood stains, Ikey." Resuming his place on the floor, he sprawled out and quietly hummed "Lucy" to himself.

***
Epoy sat, slack-jawed on the couch. He was shocked. The world would be shocked from this story.

Epoy: I'm sure that wasn't the only time stuff like that has happened.

Isaac: You are right in the least.

Epoy: Tell me, then.

***
It was 1999, the year of dreams. The second major release had gone over extremely well around the world, much to the delight of the boys and to the misery of naysayers everywhere. It was April, and the guys were scrambling to arrange the last-minute details of their tour later that year. Otherwise, things were going great.

The elder family members -mummy, daddy, Ike, Tay, and Zac- sat down at the kitchen table for the weekly rousing game of Scrabble. It was just as normal as normal could get. Every week for several years, the younger Hanson children went into the other rooms to play whilst the elders, as we shall call them, matched vocabulary wits with their parents. As the game progressed, Walker became increasingly irritated at Zac's attempts to use the name "Willard" in the game. "Dad, Willard Scott. Just like Santa Claus, only naked."

Taylor and Isaac launched into a fit of laughter. Even Diana had a good chuckle.

Walker held up the paper with the directions, face reddened. "It says right here, Zac, NO NAMES ALLOWED." Balling the paper up in one fist, he hurled the paper at Zac's face, striking Zac in the left eye. The act shocked the other family members into silence.

Walker stood up, shocked at his sudden act of violence. Slowly, he walked over, grabbed Zachary, and pulled him into the living room.

"Mom," Isaac asked, "what the hell is Dad doing?"

Diana paid no attention, she bolted from her chair to intervene.

Taylor and Isaac sat at the table, looking at each other. In unison they both stood up and went into the living room. What they saw was mortifying; Walker sitting in his easy chair, holding a squirming Zac in his lap like a three-year-old, patting Zac's head and chanting "My son-My son-My son-My son…" Diana was frantically trying to separate the two.

***
Isaac: Of course he snapped out of it after a while. Then Mom told us the story, of the family condition.

Epoy: Was it painful?

Isaac: Are enemas enjoyable things? Of COURSE it was painful!

Epoy: So…

Isaac: After that day everything fell apart. We just started dying. Jessica went first. That was a shocker; she fell down the stairs going to the garage, broke her neck, died just like that. We could never go back there without feeling creeped out about it. I still hate it. Mackie went next. It was his Power Wheels; the battery caught on fire, and it burned him bad enough to kill him. It cooked him.

Epoy: That doesn't have anything to do with the family disorder…does it?

Isaac: Not as far as I know but it would have killed him in the long run. Zoe…Zoe's death was the scariest one. Mom just let her die. She drowned in the sink. Mom didn't want the disease to get to her, but she never forgave herself and she shot herself a few days later.

Epoy: Why would you guys have a gun?

Isaac: I was getting to that. It wasn't a real gun, it was a paintball gun. And that's what made it so weird. It was mine, too. She got it in the temple.

Epoy: Oh…that's grisly. Isaac: Well, Dad went next-it finally got to him, and I guess he lost his will power after Mom killed herself. All those years they'd been together and now that they were finally apart, it killed him. Literally, I guess. He locked himself in his room, and when me and Taylor finally knocked the door off of the hinges, he was just…lying dead on the bed, holding one of the family albums. It was sad, you know, family pictures all over the bed. It's creepy seeing that kind of stuff, like your dead brothers and sisters eating ice cream on vacation or whatever. He knew it was his fault that we were all getting sick. I guess he just couldn't take it any more. But we're not really sure how he died.

Epoy: My god.

Isaac: So then it was Avie, Zac, Tay, and me. Four family members left out of the nine original. Kinda makes you think of Agatha Christie and the story And Then There Were None. Avery went vegetable about a year after that, and she died on Zac's birthday. I remember that real clear. Tay and I woke up early to make Zac breakfast in bed. Avie wanted to sing him Happy Birthday and give him a present, but when we went to wake her up, she was blue and stiff as a board. Heh. Zac always liked the color blue. But we didn't think that we should wrap her up and give her to him as a birthday present.

Epoy: So then it was just you three.

Isaac: Yeah. Zac was crushed; Avie and him had always been close. I think he went catatonic maybe….one year ago. We had a reprieve from the death for a while, 'cause Avie died two and a half years ago, but it started up full force when Zac died. We think it was the stress of the whole thing that accelerated Zac's symptoms. He'd always been a fighter throughout the whole thing…it was like a house of cards or dominoes; one of us is missing and boom, we all fall down. We can't be happy without each other.

Epoy: So when did Zac go?

Isaac: A month ago.

Epoy: If you don't mind me asking, what do you do with the bodies?

Isaac: Me and Tay had them interred to a funeral home. They took care of the cremations, and we'd put the ashes in places relevant to each one when they were alive.
Epoy: Oh, I see. When did Tay go?

Isaac paused, and thought about that one. Did he want this reporter to know that Taylor was still alive, the perfect one still existed? Or did he want to be the lone Hanson? For once, he wouldn't have to live in his brother's shadow.

Isaac: Taylor? Well…see, Taylor…he went about a week after Zac did. Just went spastic and cut his wrists on a broken window. So now, it's just me, number one out of nine. I don't like to leave the house much. I know I'm going to die sooner or later and that's why I'm doing this interview with you today. Someone needs to know the truth.

The rancid smell of dead flowers and potato chips floated through the air.

Epoy: Do you smell that?

Isaac: Yeah. Something's burning. Hold on, I'll be right back.

Isaac scurried back down to the garage, where he could still hear music blasting. The same song Taylor had been listening to for the past three days was still blaring. Isaac threw the door open to see what Taylor was doing. He was sitting Indian-style in the middle of the room, new can of water, washing pieces of coal meticulously. "Taylor, don't mind me asking this, but what the hell are you doing?"

"Washing my coal. Don't you know, Ike, that if you keep coal long enough it turns into diamonds???" Taylor looked up, the flicker of the candle flames reflecting in his large, innocent blue eyes. "And if I get diamonds, I want pretty diamonds."

Isaac was exasperated. He thought Taylor was half-crocked already but this was bad. "Wha…I mean…come on…you're crazy."

But Taylor had already blocked him out. "Pretty pretty pretty…" The music blared, and the smell was getting to Isaac. It was also extremely hot down there, but Taylor didn't seem to be sweating at all. The guy would sweat buckets on stage, but now that he was surrounded by flames he didn't seem to be bothered by it at all.

Isaac heard footfalls coming down the steps and locked up. For a moment he actually thought it was someone in his family, but remembering Epoy, he began to panic. "Oh god…Taylor…hide."

"Brother?"

Too late. Epoy had seen the light of the candles and was now standing in the doorway, looking at Taylor and everything else in awe.

"BROTHER? WHO IS THAT?" Taylor's voice had risen to higher octaves, and he looked terrified. He crawled across the floor, and grabbed Isaac around the legs, much like a 3 year old would when they are shy.

Epoy: Well well well. You lied to me, Mr. Hanson. Isaac: You would too if you had a brother like this!

Taylor, meanwhile, had started crying. "My….DIAMONDS!"

Isaac: Great, you made him cry.

Epoy: It's not my fault.

Epoy pulled a business card out of his jacket pocket and handed it to Taylor. "Hi…my name's Epoy Fudernanan."

Taylor whined, drawing away. "Save me, Brother."

Isaac: Get away from him. You're scaring him.

Epoy: Nonsense.

Isaac: You don't know what you're doing! You could hurt him!

Epoy: Bullshit! I have the story of the decade! Both Hanson brothers and their deep, dark secret! It'll be great.

Isaac: Fuck you!

With the music blasting, Isaac made his attack, swinging wildly. Epoy punched him in the stomach, and Isaac fell to the floor, the wind knocked out him and his lungs screaming. Taylor let out an animal cry and began hurling his coal, no longer so precious, at Epoy. For a person who was supposed to have problems, he threw hard and fast, striking Epoy and drawing blood. "YOU KILLED MY BROTHER!" he screamed.

Isaac struggled to his feet.

Isaac: I'm calling the cops.

Taylor began throwing himself up against the wall, chanting "dead-alive-dead-alive" to himself. Stopping suddenly, he slumped down, back sliding down the wall, and finally rested in a fetal position, crying. All too suddenly, with a deathly silence, he stopped. The music faded out and died, leaving the combatants in total and utter silence. Isaac ran over to Taylor's side, knelt, and began poking at his shoulder. "Taylor? TAYLOR? TAYLOR?!?!"

Epoy stood, in shock at what was going on around and before him.

Isaac laid Taylor out on his back, in a horizontal position. He still wasn't moving. "No…no…no…Taylor, no…" Isaac began to hyperventilate, shaking Taylor by the shoulders.

Isaac bolted up from his kneeling position, facing Epoy with hate in his eyes. "You did evil…bad….evil…" He pulled at his frizzy locks, then took two giant steps across the room, grabbed Epoy by the shoulders, and shook him violently.

Isaac: YOU DID THIS TO MY BROTHER! HE WAS ALL I HAD LEFT!!! AND YOU KILLED HIM!

Epoy: What do you mean by "I killed him'? What am I supposed to do, let him sit here?

Isaac considered his options. Did he want to bury his brother in haste or just leave him as he was?

Isaac: Well, we have to lay him to rest. The place that was most special to him was this….garage? His art studio-here.

Epoy: Why should I?

Isaac: He lived here and died here. This was HIS special place. He would want to spend eternity here, and YOU are going to help him.

Epoy: What the hell does that mean?

Isaac: We'll start digging.

Epoy: What about my interview?

Isaac: You'll get your flipping interview. Later.

Epoy grabbed a nearby shovel as Isaac picked up his limp brother, crying, chanting "I'm sorry" softly. Epoy was just beginning to pull up the wooden floorboards when Isaac stopped him.

Isaac: No, he wouldn't want to be buried there.

Epoy: What's the difference?

Isaac: Taylor doesn't want to be buried there. He likes the walls because they're warmer.

Epoy: What?

Isaac: The walls. They're warmer.

Epoy: Uh, whatever floats your boat, man.

Epoy carefully kicked down the partially risen floorboards and proceeded towards the wall. After three hours of continuous digging, the two sweaty, dirt-covered men had finally laid Taylor to rest. Isaac knelt against the wall and said, "Now you'll be warm."

Epoy looked in bewilderment at this grotesque but touching display of affection. As he watched in horror, Isaac stood up calmly and, without warning, began rocking back and forth, pulling at his hair, repeating gibberish and letting out primal screams. Spinning on one heel, he turned around and ran into the wall twice. After his fit, he stalked to the center of the room, brushing past Epoy, and sat Indian-style.

Epoy: So…what about my interview?

Isaac: SHH! I can't hear them.

Epoy: Huh?

Isaac jumped to his feet again, happy smile on his face.

Isaac: May I interest you in some dinner? I'm famished. Do you fancy some beets? Or perhaps some kippers?

Epoy: As long as I get my interview.

Epoy reluctantly followed Isaac through the long and winding corridors to the kitchen. Epoy began to feel regretful as the first fingers of guilt wrapped around his tainted and blackened soul.

Isaac seemed very at home in the kitchen as he contently danced around the room, grabbing frying pans, eggs, and knives.

Epoy: Do you need any help?

Isaac: Eggs will do just nicely.

Isaac picked up the eggs and threw them into the pan with great gusto, leaving the shells broken and frying with the melded yolks.

Epoy: Is that healthy?

Isaac: I like eggs very much.

Epoy: That doesn't answer my question.

Isaac: I like eggs on Sunday.

Epoy: What does that have to do with anything?

Isaac: Today's Sunday.

Epoy: No…today's Friday.

Isaac: I like you. You're special. I make you eggs anyday.

Isaac continued to cook, using a knife as a spatula, scraping the pan of the rotten, undercooked eggs. Epoy looked in disgust as a look washed over Isaac's face.

Isaac: Epoy, I could use your help now.

Epoy: What could I do?

Isaac: I could use a hand.

Epoy: Anything to help, I guess.

Epoy approached Isaac at the stove. Unexpectedly Isaac grabbed Epoy's arm, sliced it with the knife, and it over the eggs with his monstrous grip, allowing blood to freely drip onto the undercooked food. It bubbled and sizzled as it hit the pan, and the eggs became a nauseating shade of orange.

Epoy: WHAT THE HELL DID YOU DO THAT FOR?!?!?!?

Isaac: Taylor always liked his eggs that way.

Epoy withdrew his arm from Isaac's grip. Grabbing a rag off the fridge, he crawled into a corner, applying pressure to his seeping wound. Isaac, on the other hand, walked over to the sink, turned the cold water on, and immersed the knife.

Isaac: Cold water removes blood stains. You may want to climb into the sink and wash up, but careful-you don't want to wind up like Zoe.

Isaac smiled and brought the eggs over to the table, pan and all. He began to eat the eggs, motioning for Epoy to come and join him.

Epoy: You're crazy. I'm out of here.

Epoy stumbled into the living room, followed by an irate Isaac, who was pleading:

Isaac: What about my interview?

Epoy: Forget the damn interview!

Isaac: Wait! Can't you hear the scratching???

Epoy: WHAT?

Isaac: Taylor's going to be upset that you didn't stay for dinner.

Epoy: Taylor's dead. Gone. Finito. And YOU are psycho.

Isaac: Taylor's going to be REALLY upset that you didn't want his favorite food.

Epoy: Tell Taylor to shove 'em up his ass!

Isaac: Taylor…? But Taylor's dead. You killed him. We buried him.

Epoy: That's the point! That's what I've been trying to tell you!

Isaac: THE SCRATCHING! STOP THE SCRATCHING! CAN'T YOU HEAR THE SCRATCHING?!?!?! NO ONE HEARS THE SCRATCHING!

Faintly, from the direction of the garage, "Happy Together" began blasting again.

Epoy:…What's that?

Isaac: Taylor's song…duh.

Epoy: But no one's down there.

Isaac: TAYLOR is, silly.

Epoy: But Taylor's dead!

Isaac: I KNOW THAT, you killed him! Duh! Now sit down, eat some eggs, and finish your interview.

Epoy: No way in hell-I'm out of here.

Isaac hastily ran to the front door, blocking Epoy's only escape route.

Isaac: Okay buddy, looka here; you came to interview me. Now you're gonna sit down, eat the eggs, and we're going to have a nice interview!

Epoy: Sorry, you're even too weird for me, and I'm Epoy Fudernanan!

For a long tense moment, the two men looked at each other in the eyes. Epoy could sense an intense fire burning behind Isaac's mahogany eyes. Epoy knew now that there was only one other way out, since he could not go through Isaac- he had already gotten a hint of his immense strength. Quickly he darted out of the back door and into the corridor that led to the garage. Of course, the garage door would be an alternate getaway, but he would have to be quick in order to ensure his safe escape. Isaac was steadfast on his heels, panting, knife in hand as he ran after the elusive Epoy.

Epoy pushed the door to the garage open as soon as he reached the bottom of the stairs. The sickening smell of dead flowers and potato chips filled his nostrils, making a horrible olfactory combination. Amidst the smoke and flickering lights from the candles Epoy noticed a rocking chair. "Happy Together" had reached a deafening tone; however, the sound of Isaac's panting rose above the noise. Epoy could feel Isaac's breath on his neck, making the hairs on his neck stand on end. The crescendo only heightened his senses, making him feel that the end was near. Out of fear, Epoy turned around to face what was following him. Taking in what he saw before him, he hitched in a breath and screamed.

Isaac came clambering down the stairs then, stood in the doorway for a second, and hollered, "Are we having fun yet?"

He paused, reflected, and moved closer to Epoy. Epoy stood white-faced as he gawked in terror. The smoke gave way and…

"Oh god, Taylor!"

Taylor briefly turned away, unable to look anybody in the eye. Isaac made his way down the rest of the stairs, dropping his knife on the floor in disbelief, and made a gesture, almost like he wanted to embrace his brother.

"You killed me, Brother."

"No, no, I didn't-"

"I wasn't dead, Brother. I was just catatonic, like Zac. Catatonic, like Jessie and Avie. Why did you do it, Brother?"

"I didn't-it-it was-I thought you were-"

"Why'd you do it? I hate you. It was you and me." Taylor's cerulean eyes shifted to an evil shade. A look of disgust replaced his normally sad expression. "I knew it. I knew you always hated me. I was perfect and you knew it. You knew it, Brother, and you hated it. You got rid of me as soon as it hit me. See, I couldn't escape it. I'm not perfect, Brother; doesn't that make you happy?"

Isaac began backing away up the stairs, as Epoy stood there, befuddled and not quite comprehending what was going on.

Taylor inched slowly closer to his brother. Getting down on his knees, he began to crawl towards Isaac. "We can happy, Brother, happy together."

Isaac knelt down on the floor and embraced his dusty and dirt-smeared brother. "I'm sorry, truly sorry. We're not perfect." He began to cry, tears welling up and falling from his sunken eyes.

It was at that moment that Epoy noticed that the knife was no longer on the floor. He was helpless and could not do anything but watch to see what would happen next.

As the brothers embraced, Isaac began screaming bloody murder. Taylor had taken the knife and had literally butchered Isaac's back. He made slashes and stabs anywhere he could-vertical lines, horizontal lines, in circles, anything he could do to make that satisfying squelching sound. Blood flowed angrily, dripping onto the floor, making splatters and small puddles.

Isaac voicelessly began to shriek "Taylor….", but Taylor was oblivious to anything that Isaac was saying. He continued to intone "How's the weather, Brother? Do you still hate me, Brother?"

Epoy clamped his hands firmly over his ears, trying to cut out the chanting. He swore there was so much blood, it was seeping towards him in rivers.

Taylor ripped the knife out of Isaac's back, and watched pleasingly as Isaac's limp body fell to the floor with a satisfying meat thump.

He showed no sign of resistance, almost like he felt he deserved the onslaught.
Taylor looked around at the bloody mess surrounding them. "Well well. Look at this mess. Doesn't look like we have any cold water around here. Welcome to Hell, Brother," he chirped. He then took the knife and plunged it into Isaac's heart. He stood up, sweat, blood, and dirt covered, the evil glint still in his eyes as he admired his handiwork. A mere split second later, the glint disappeared as he realized what he had done.

He had killed his best friend, his brother. And Epoy feared that he was next.

Taylor stood and looked down at his brother, lifeless, lying in his own entrails. Rationalization returned to his once irrational mind and emotion poured into his festering soul. Taylor inhaled a deep breath and broke out into a fit of crying, his eyes restoring to that lovely shade of cerulean. He fell to his knees, took the knife handle in both his hands, and pulled it out, cringing at the squelching noise. He tossed the knife aside and noticed the blood still seeping from Isaac's chest wound and back wounds. "No, no, no, no, Brother!" Taylor screamed as he placed his hands over Isaac's wound as if to stop the bleeding. He scrambled for the water bucket, leftover from his coal-washing process, and brought it back to Isaac, mumbling "Cold water makes blood stains go away." He began to vigorously pour cold water on Isaac. He soon realized that it wasn't helping. Laying his head on Isaac's chest, his hair matted with bloody water, he closed his eyes like a child. Epoy noticed that it seemed like an act of comfort.

Sitting up again and rubbing his eyes, Taylor spotted the knife sitting in a puddle of blood, just an arm's length away. Compelled by sheer regret, he shakily reached over and grabbed it with a bloody hand.

"The only one for me is you, and you for me," he whispered, forcing the blade into his stomach, "…so happy together" he sang along with the still-blasting music.

Epoy groaned in the corner, eyes squinched shut, unable to watch the gory suicide pact.

Taylor began to uncontrollably cough up blood, tar-like and thick. He looked up at Epoy, blood dripping off of his chin, and declared one thing:

"I smell eggs, Isaac."

He keeled over at that moment, his skinny body connecting with the floor and sending a small splash of blood towards Epoy. Epoy yelped and jumped involuntarily.

The flames suddenly jumped and roared, sending spires of yellow and blue towards the low ceiling. There was nothing that Epoy could do; he was sure they were dead. The inferno spread to the ceiling and was burning the floor, which, luck by have it, was wooden. Epoy knew he had to get out of there. The door was blocked by a flaming piece of ceiling and the automatic door had been cemented shut for years already. Epoy was trapped and he knew it all too well. Laying down on the floor himself, he accepted his fate and succumbed to the flames, listening to the song:

"Imagine how the world would be so very fine, so happy together."

***

Cataclysmic Deaths of Pop Stars Confirmed, Shocks Music Industry

Associated Press

In what could be one of the most mysterious and shocking deaths in musical history, the Tulsa Sheriff's Office confirmed on Tuesday that the bodies of Isaac Hanson, 27, and Taylor Hanson, 25, were found after the ex-teen idols house burned to the ground on Friday night. Along with the musician's bodies was an unidentified male body believed to be that of a local freelance reporter, missing since Saturday.

Firefighters reported on the scene Friday night around 10:30, and were able to contain the flames by 1 AM Saturday. Mysteriously, investigators have also found what appears to be the remains of several humans, believed to be members of the Hanson family underneath the superstructure of the house. What really happened remains a mystery. Arson remains a possibility but at the current moment officials have not given an official statement as to the cause of the blaze.

All of the mainstream music industry was shocked and disturbed by the news of the deaths. Reportedly, several artists are already scheduling a memorial for the brothers to mourn and share memories to alleviate the shock of the tragedy.

Hanson had remained stagnant since the death of Zachary Hanson, youngest brother and drummer.

Officials plan to launch a large-scale investigation at the end of the month.

  
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