Looking at FlapJack lying there in the casket was not an easy thing to do. Not easy for anybody really.
When he got up and started walking around was the best part.
Also the weirdest.
Then he dropped dead again as if he hadn't done it right the first time.
Should've seen the ole hag Robertha's dentures flop out of her mouth when FlapJack jumped out of his high-priced casket while the priest was delivering a few words.
He picked the casket out himself two weeks before he died.
Had it specially made and engraved with his name on the lid. He said he always wanted to go out in style. Give folks a little something extra to remember him by.
He was my best friend.
He was also a psychopath. But only I knew that.
FlapJack and I go way back.
Like way way back to when we were kids. He always had a penchant for whacking things up.
Loved to cut things.
Live things. Like rabbits and horses.
Chopped their heads off just to watch them squirm.
He chopped a horse's head off once and watched it galloping into the foggy night.
“Look. It's the Headless Horseman,” he said. He laughed.
He chopped off the heads of poor innocent frogs so he could watch them jumping around without their heads.
Sometimes it was a cat.
Or cats. Like the neighbor's cat. Since cats were the most common and easy to grasp onto they were chosen often.
I told him he'd better stop doing that cause somebody is gonna see him do it and report and he'll be sent away.
He shrugged his shoulders and said he didn't care. Cause he'd never had much of a life anyway. He says nobody really likes him except for me.
Honestly, at that time I didn't like him either. I just felt sorry for him and wanted to be his friend on count of him not having any.
Everybody needs a friend.
I was his only friend. Probably why I still have my head. Good thing he likes me, ha?
Once we were walking down the street and there was this tiny innocent dog that just wanted to be our friend. He walked up to us wagging his tail wanting nothing more than to lick on our faces.
Then FlapJack took out his machete and chopped off his head.
The head dropped to the ground and it was still barking. Eyes blinking rapidly as they realized this was going to be its last breath.
“Why'd yo u go and do that for?” I asked.
“Cause I'm a little irritated right now and was in the mood.”
“That's no reason to chop off a poor innocent dog's head.”
I ran away but he just stood there watching it. Like he was enjoying watching it take it's last breath.
“Ever watch something die?” He asked.
“Well you should.”
“Brings a whole new meaning to life. To watch something take it's last breath.” He gasped and inhaled deeply.
“Brings a whole new meaning to life. To watch something take it's last breath.” He gasped and inhaled deeply.
“C'mon let's get out of here,” I said.
He inhaled like my grandfather inhaled a fine cigar. “Wait a second?”
“What are you doing?”
“I'm inhaling it's soul.”
He claimed that inhaling the souls of the animals gave him special powers. But what it made him was nuts.
We went all through elementary school together. He'd chop off the head of just about anything that walked.
And he always said that one of these days eh was going to graduate.
“To what?” I said.
“Humans,” he said. Then he'd smile all demonic like.
I thought this was a joke thinking there's no way he would ever do such a thing. Sure animals was bad enough but a human being.
Naaaa. He wouldn't.
Then he chopped off Buck's head. Buck was the school bully. Everybody hated Buck. And everybody would run when they saw him cause he'd always want to take their lunch money or their lunch. He didn't care.
Buck got to messin' with him real good one day and started pushing FlapJack around. “What kind of name is FlapJack anyway?”
FlapJack said it was just a nickname cause he liked pancakes. He was known to eat sixty pancakes in one sitting and would never gain a pound.
“That's cracker jack of a name,” Buck said. “Now, give me your lunch money.”
Buck thought that Flapjack would be scare of him cause everybody else was. He didn't know Flapjack too well though.
He started pushing back at him poking FlapJack in the chest.
FlapJack grinned and whipped out his machete and sliced Buck's head off in one clean sweep.
“Awesome sauce,” FlapJack said.
Bucks' eyes were still blinking when his head was falling to the ground. His mouth puckering like a fish out of the water.
“Did you see how big his eyes got?” FlapJack said.
“I did. And this ain't cool.”
“Oh, c'mon. You know he had it commin' to him.”
“Yeah, but you kilt him.”
“I know. Isn't that awesome. Now he'll never screw with anybody again.”
I had to admit he was right about that. Buck sure did have it coming to him. My concern was now I was with him while he did it which makes me guilty on count of I didn't try to stop him.
FlapJack said not to worry cause nothing is going to happen.
“His parents are going to file a missing person's report when he doesn't come home this evening. Then they're going to send out a search team. Then they're going to find his body and the whole investigation is going to go on.”
Flapjack scratched the stubble on his chin. “You worry too much.”
“Only cause you kilt somebody,” I said.
“Ain't nothin' goin' to happin'. Ain't got no parents.”
“He ain't got no parents?”
“No grandma or grandpa?”
“Nope. He lives in that trailer over on Deer Creek by himself.”
I couldn't help but to feel sad. To think that he was living all by himself out here in the middle of these woods. Trying to go to school.
It also explained why he was demanding lunch money every day. The kid never ate.
“I feel really sad about all this,” I said.
Flapjack shrugged. “It's just a human being. Don't mean nothing. C'mon. Gimme me a hand here will ya?”
He took out a small handsaw from his jacket pocket and sawed off Buck's arms and legs so that all of what remained was a headless torso.
So smell was so bad it caused me to puke a couple times.
Flapjack just laughed and called me weak and said that I was never going to amount to anything if I didn't learn to get out of my comfort zone.
Sometimes he would say the craziest things that just proved all the more that he was a psycho.
FlapJack handed me the knife. “here. Slice'm right here so that we can take out his innards.”
I tightened my grip around the handle and put the tip of the blade to his chest. My hand shook something terrible.
I pressed the tip of the blade just enough that it poked the top layer of the skin.
“What are you doin'?” Flapjack said. “Grow a pair and jab the thing. Like this.” He grabbed the knife out of my hand and rammed it into Buck's chest. “Like that. Now, start cutting.”
“Sorry, I can't do it as good as you can.”
“That's cause you need to practice. The more you practice the better you get.”
I didn't want him to think I was a weak chicken so I started cutting through his chest. The sound of the flesh tearing like someone zipping up a dress was nauseating. But I grinned and beared it cause FlapJack woud've really given me a hard time if I upchucked one last time.
By the time we got done there was absolutely no way anybody was going to recognize Buck.
Gotta hand it to ole FlapJack there. He sure knew how to slice N' Diocem'.
Of course he should. Been doing it all his life.
As we got older his victims became far and few between. He didn't quit cause he still had that itch that needed some scratching.
He was right.
Nobody ever went looking for Buck. Which I always thought was pretty sad. I don't think Buck ever stood a chance.
In high school he started eating them.
Real pretty ones with blond hair. He said that pretty ones with blond hair tastes the sweetest.
Had a brunette before.
Didn't like'm. Said they tasted too starchy which gave him that bloated feeling when he finished.
Redhead were too hot. Like spicy. Reminded him of that cinnamon candy in the red wrapper from Brachs. Not to mention redheads tended to have tons of freckles which gave the flesh a bitter taste.
By the time he got through the senior year, he lost track of who all he'd ate. Said it was never important to keep score.
Records are for psychopaths.
At times I often wondered what he thought he was. But it seemed he thought everything he did was justified.
I never once thought about turning him in though. I couldn't.
I wanted to.
I was afraid.
Afraid that he would seek me out and eat me.
We were best friends. And we took the blood oath that everything we did would be a secret.
Actually, what he meant was everything he did. I was just simply the by-stander. He always said I was just as guilty as he was though. He claimed that he never ate anybody that didn't deserve it.
And he was right about that. He never did. The more I thought about it the more I realized that the people he ate were all a bunch of buttheads.
Cept for the pretty sweet blonds he liked to devour.
He got to the point where he'd knock off somebody maybe once a month then it went to every three to four months. As he got older his appetite wasn't quite what it used to be. They say your metabolism slow down with age.
He ended up getting me on as an exterminator at the company he was working for at the time.
He loved being an exterminator.
It was prime pickings. Being quite the social bug and the way he was with people was an excellent job for him.
Every once in a while I would get a call from him telling me he has another one. And this one looked like it was going to taste even better than the ones before.
He taught me a lot. And within time I was able to dismember any body or any thing in only a matter of thirty minutes. And that is good.
I was also starting to like it.
Especially since I started eating them.
“I knew you would,” he said. “The taste for human flesh kind of grows on ya a bit.”
“It sure does.”
He told me the human body contains approximately 100,000 calories.
“WOWZA. Trying to cut back on my intake.”
“It's all protein.”
I cut me off a sliver of the tasty blond and plopped her in my mouth. It felt rubbery, chewing and salty. He'd already shaved the hair off her before we sliced her up. The last time I had me a hairy arms the hairs got stuck in my throat and gave me a coughing spell for a week till finally I coughed up a golf ball sized hair ball.
We broke her arms over our knees and scraped the flesh off the bone. He showed me how to crack the bones with a nut cracker and how to suck the bone marrow. He said that bone marrow is loaded with vitamins which contain healing nutrients that are good for the body.
He also showed me how much they all tastes so much different.
Japs taste salty and sweet. Almost too salty really which I figured was from all the soy sauce they consume or Teryakai.
Mexicans taste hot. Like fiery hot. Depending on which part of Mexico they're from. The Chicano from East L.A. Are kind of in between.
Italians smell of garlic and parsley and to me are the tastiest of humans to consume. Of course that's of no surprise really considering they are about the only nationality that are really fussy about what they put in their bodies.
He also taught me that one doesn't always need vegetables to survive. You can survive on an all meat diet. Organ meat is the best because it's higher in protein and has more vitamins. There is enough meat on one human to last you an entire month.
His theory was, that if you can learn to eat people and know what parts are the best you will be way ahead over the rest of the world should things become so bad as to result in people eating each other.
Then it will become a fight to eat before you become the eaten.
I watch people as they make their way up to give their prayers and bid him a farewell. I must say I was quite surprised to see he had several friends that he hadn't eaten. But, I guess that was because they were old.
He would only eat people at a certain age,
Human flesh ain't like wine. It doesn't get better with age,.
And aged human flesh leaves a bad after taste like the smell of mothballs. The skin is like a rotten apple.
The priest says a final prayer as the choir sings Amazing Grace.
A young pretty blond walks in.
She smells flowery.
Her skin looks soft.
She sits beside me.
FlapJack taught me all the right things.
She smiles at me. Says hello.
I say HI.
She asks if I knew him well.
I says I did. I was his best friend.
“Oh. You must be Charlie.”
“I am. He spoke of me a lot I guess?”
“He did. He really liked you a lot.”
“How long have you known him?” I asked.
“I'm his daughter.”
I was shocked by this. I never knew. He never mentioned her.
I watch her slide closer to the young man beside her. She looks at him up and down and stares at his muscular thighs.
He looks at her and smiles.
She smiles back. I can tell she has him hooked. Then I hear her whisper to him. “Would you like to go out to lunch afterwards?”
And I thought wow. Is he going to be in for a real treat.