This Little Piggy…
By Paul A Rudd
Repressed memory syndrome, the clinical term used to describe repressed memories. Repressed memories may sometimes be recovered years or decades after the event, most often spontaneously triggered by a particular smell, taste, or other identifiers triggered by a severe bout of pain and suffering….
“…Went to market.”
The pain ripped inside my soul and yanked it from my mouth inch by inch. I bolted upright, eyes adjusting to the darkness one second and the next second not believing that such pain exists in this reality.
Every single painstaking grind of the hacksaw cut through flesh, sinew and bone. It bore a horrific resemblance to a barbarian carving a sizzling hog at a campfire. I looked down just as my toe was torn from my foot. Viscera clung to the bone with a false hope that it wasn’t being amputated, only to come loose a moment later. I wriggled my feet but they were taped to the foot rest of the wheelchair. Insanely wrapped parcel tape, like a child in a rush, ensured my feet wouldn’t budge an inch and then I looked in the eyes of my tormentor…Pig Face.
Pig Face dropped my toe in a clear plastic glass jar, the sort used for sweets in a local sweetshop. He rattled it like a spider trapped inside and then carefully rested it on the floor. For a moment the pain subsided, my foot knew the toe had gone but it still felt attached.
Pig Face stared me down with sunken eyes. There was no warning as he fused the wound with a soldering iron. Making sure he kept eye contact the entire time, I expected a sadistic smile from the fucker at my feet as my skin hissed and burned, but it didn’t come.
The lack of emotion as he replaced the hacksaw on the metal tray and took off a scalpel simply reminded me I was in the wrong place, at the wrong time. Pig Face had done this before, it wasn’t clear how many times, but he showed no remorse, no expression in his eyes under that mask. What could propel someone to do such sadistic things?
My bound hands refused to break the constraints. Moving the chair was pointless, I had nowhere to run. Every corner of the warehouse dripped with menace and the damp conditions just added to the intimidation. A fine rain sheeted through the splits in the tin roofing, it allowed a speckling of moonlight inside. It gave me hope that the outside world still existed.
Hope remained for me somewhere, but hope couldn’t tell me why am I here right now?
“I haven’t done anything wrong…”
I begged knowing full well it would fell on deaf ears. I struggled against the binds but stopped the moment he gripped my foot with his gloved hand. The smooth feel of the medical glove added Vaseline like smoothness to my skin. It mixed with the blood turning into a gooey paste.
“Please, you’ve got the wrong person…”
“This little piggy stayed at home…”
The second time round it took my breath away. The hacksaw was mercurial, the scalpel precise, each incision patient, the pain prolonged on purpose.
Grinding my teeth did little more than delay the inevitable as another toe was dropped into the jar. Tears blinded my vision, even more so when I heard the sizzling sound of burning flesh. He was using the soldering iron, again.
He reached for the metal tray and took off a ball of wire.
“Wire? Wire? Oh shit!!! Please, no, no…”
He wound the wire around both blue gloves and pulled it taut. It bounced as he tested the strength.
“This little piggy had roast beef…”
In one breath the chicken wire bit through my skin with ease, slicing my middle toe clean off. Blood spurted from the wound. It ceased once the iron sealed it shut. This time the pain ripped through me, all three missing digits hitting home, all at once. I barely had time to recover when he reached for the pincers, no not pincers, pliers? The ribbed metal tips used for stripping wire conduits, sometimes took an eternity to task if blunt.
“This little piggy had none…”
The pliers gripped my inner toe at the knuckle and squeezed. I bit my tongue but it was useless.
The yell echoed as the pliers locked and he pulled. He pulled harder and harder than I ever thought possible, then he twisted and yanked. My bone cracked and I screamed like I’ve never screamed before. He acknowledged my pain by releasing the grip and reaching for a hammer.
I begged, the tears streaking down my cheeks, but he ignored me.
The pliers strengthened, squeezed and he slammed the hammer across my knuckle. I screamed even louder and I felt it go. The bone, it popped, my toe was loose. With the pliers in both hands, he yanked and skin shredded from bone, as if unsheathing a tent from its cover. Broken and slack, he gripped the tip in his pliers and pulled, he pulled with all his might. So strong, such rage. He contorted as the bone refused to budge and then he let go of the pliers and stood up.
Was it over? Was it fuck! Pig Face stood at a workbench admiring his tools of torture. How did I not see that? The maniac stood at the table masked by the shadows. The contents, now illuminated by the lights either side of the pig mask were brutal. Drills were scattered along the top, all plugged into an extension socket underneath and drill bits a plenty packed into tubs. Alongside lay shanks, barbaric metal coshes, all jagged edged and as brutal as hell. He reverted to a screwdriver, a flatbed, no more than a centimetre in width, only to replace it and pick up the big bertha of drivers. The flatbed had at least a two inch head and it was heading my way.
He knelt, only to pick up a timber mallet from a rusted tool box. I wished I’d overlooked the brute of a head. The driver weighed his hand down as he tested the strength by thumping it against the table top. Such was the power, drill bits leapt from the tubs, nails and screws rolling to the damp floor.
“Can you not at least talk to me, tell me what I’ve done?”
Again I may as well have been talking to myself. The driver head rested where the bone and skin met and the hammer reared overhead. I recoiled, fearing the hammer was heading for my skull, when…
“This little piggy had none…”
The hammer hit home.
My scream ripped my throat to shreds, the searing agony sending my senses haywire. By the time I realised it was over I could smell the fresh pork? I looked down, the bone had gone and the soldering iron was fusing my skin once again. My head lolled, my brain beating itself up as I tried to recollect past transgressions? I couldn’t remember, even if I could it didn’t matter as he was reaching for the instrument tray.
I spoke but only drool and spittle fell from my gaping lips. I had no energy to fight, no more energy to beg or plead. I’d been stripped naked, tied up and all before I even knew what hit me. I was shopping at the convenience store, there was just me, the kid behind the counter and the young girl, no more than seventeen. I remember she had a short skirt on, a blur of legs and arse on roller blades. She didn’t have a bra on – it was plain for all to see. She kept edging past, her eyes trying to undress me. Did she stop? Did I speak to her? She did stop. She spoke to me. She whispered in my ear. I followed.
The instrument tray rattled as the maniacs hand slipped from an arched saw with a jagged blade. A bone saw, it looked like the type of tool used to amputate a leg on the battlefield in a historic battle but not in the year 2011 and not here.
“Please no more.”
It mattered not what I thought or said as the maniac removed his blue gloves and replaced them with a white pair. The rubber slapped against his wrist on purpose. It just escalated my fear. I tried not to show it but Pig Face looked possessed, his eyes elsewhere, even under the pink kids mask. It was hard not to feel that my life was going to end right now. Then I overheard a scream, a scream of a young girl? Was it her, the one on the roller blades? Did I drag her into this?
I begged again, but nothing, not even a flicker of emotion.
“This little piggy went…”
“The girl? Where is the girl?”
“…” The maniac stopped.
At last I made contact, some connection, even if he said nothing in return.
“The girl. She has nothing to do with this?”
“…” Pig Face paused but only to readjust the saw in his grip.
I felt a nick on my big toe and the sway as he readied it for action.
“This little piggy went…”
I begged with all I had and he lowered the saw.
“The girl, can I see her?”
Pig Face stood up, slammed the saw on the tray and walked away. He moved like the wind, disappearing into the shadows and returning with a chair and the same roller blade girl that led me to the alleyway. Tied at the wrists and ankles, she looked at me with dread. Not like the way she looked at me in the convenience store. Back then she said she wanted me, she said she needed to have me, right there and then, she’d do anything for fifty bucks.
Her muffled cries brought me back. Her mascara had run, her skirt ripped, her legs bruised, battered, her hair hacked to pieces.
He forced her in the seat and tied her up with some rope. She cried out but he cracked her cheek with his hand. She slumped forwards and he turned and faced me. For the first time since I came too I could sense humanity and not just his desire to mutilate me, one piece at a time.
“She has nothing to do with this. Let her go.”
“No…” he spoke, his voice younger than I expected, so much younger.
“Clearly it’s me you want.”
“…” Pig Face remained silent. He merely walked to the instrument tray and swiped the bone saw and knelt at my feet.
“Why are you doing this to us?”
“Please answer him…” The girl begged.
With her hair hacked off, she no longer looked like a prostitute but a dirty skank. She was one, that’s why I followed her outside? I had a twenty. She cursed but she said she would blow me instead. I had money in my pocket, so why not? I unzipped, she knelt down and then I ended up here.
Pig Face looked at the girl and then at me. Was he smiling under that mask? Was he enjoying this, that sick fuck?
“Why are you doing this to us?”
“…This little piggy…”
“Answer me!!!” I yelled as he drew the saw back.
“…All the way home…”
I screamed louder than a banshee on acid. The jagged blade crunched through my skin, sluicing blood across his gloves and the floor. It slopped across the handle which shook as he mangled the jagged blade by forcing it through the bone. I felt the pressure release as the blade followed through, the metal chinking concrete as it hit the floor.
I could still hear the screams, mine and hers combined as Pig Face caught his breath. He stood and threw the saw onto the table and his gloves in a bin overflowing with soiled garments.
I looked at the girl.
It was all I could manage.
She cowered as Pig Face walked past, raising his hand. She turned away as he retracted it and once again disappeared into the shadows.
“What did you do?”
Tears filled her eyes.
Drool slurped from my lips, I couldn’t stop it. It just hung there on an unbreakable chord.
She screamed so loud it echoed back a moment later and just pinpointed the vastness of the warehouse and how much shit I was actually in right now.
“Why is he hacking your toes off if you did nothing wrong?”
I didn’t need this bitch riding my chains. I’m the one being tortured by this sick fuck.
“You led me outside the store on a promise?”
“I know what I did…”
“So, are you in on it?”
The girl’s cheeks burned with rage. She tried to jab a finger at her cheek, to pinpoint the bruising and the blood, but the restraints stopped her from doing so.
“Does it look like it?”
“Then shut the fuck up and let me get us out of this.”
“How? You’re tied up and you’re bleeding to death.”
“I’m working on it.”
Pig Face returned and slapped on another pair of gloves. The girl gasped as he hoisted an electric drill in the air and flipped through a tub of drills one by one. He found a bullet of a bit and tightened it off with a chuck key. He knelt next to me, making sure I took in every inch of the brutal drill.
“I’ll tell you anything.”
I pleaded. I had nothing left. I couldn’t take any more pain.
“You know what you did.”
Again, his voice was too young for such a brutal attack.
The girl looked at me, pleading for me to do something. I tried to recollect past transgressions, not just misdemeanours but the real dark shit. The type you lock away and never think of ever again but I couldn’t turn the key. What the hell did I do?
“Give me time…”
I roared, but it was no use.
“I need time, time to remember, please?”
Pig Face purposely held the drill in the air and revved it. It whizzed to a sudden stop and then the rhyme continued…
“…This little piggy went to market…”
The drill ate up skin and bone in seconds. Shredded pieces of toe flew in all directions. I could hear the sinew caught in the drill bit as it struggled to separate my toe from my foot. The girl recoiled and dry gagged over the side of her chair.
All I could do was roar…
…and he did.
Pig Face threw down the drill and walked away, dropping what was left of toe number six in the glass jar. Again the sick son of a bitch rattled them in my face as if showing off a bunch of fireflies.
The girl turned away as he soldered the wound closed. It felt like he purposely let it linger just to make her dry gag even more.
The smell of burning meat made me nauseous to the bone and yet I was still here, still fighting.
The prostitute turned and faced me, her cheeks whiter than snow fall.
“You must have done something.”
The girl asked but my sealed treasure chest of secrets refused to be prised open.
“He won’t even speak to me, how can I talk about something if I don’t know what he wants?”
Pig Face’s arms were folded, he was following our conversation and then he spoke again.
“Think of the deepest part of your brain and let the flood gates open.”
He said it but it meant very little.
I turned to him and again it looked like he was smiling underneath that mask.
“How can I think straight when you keep hacking my toes off?”
“You are tougher than you look, you know you are. You still think you’re the victim?”
I could hear the girl fretting, even before she spoke.
“What is he talking about?”
“Will you shut the fuck up?”
I yelled. I needed too, the whiny little bitch.
“Fuck!!! I’m the one being tortured, I can’t think straight with you bitching in my fucking earhole.”
Pig Face turned to the girl, grabbed the back of her chair and pulled. She screamed as he lifted a pickaxe off the wooden table and dragged her towards the shadows. She turned to me, her hands struggling against the restraints and then she vanished along with Pig Face. She screamed for help and then I heard the dull thud as the chair hit the deck.
She yelled. I should help her if I could but fuck her. I’m all in for survival of the fittest. I wracked my brains for a way out of this mess when the girl’s pleas escalated.
“What are you doing? Please, I don’t even know this guy.”
I couldn’t see squat but I had the image of Pig Face standing over her filling my thoughts; pickaxe overhead, arms as still as the night, steel toe capped boots either side, his eyes fixed on hers and ensuring she witnessed every second of the terror right up until he buried the axe in her skull. She stopped screaming and pleading for mercy once the sound of metal chinked concrete but only after the squelch of bursting skin.
An unnatural hush fell over the warehouse and Pig Face emerged, his eyes still vacant and trousers layered in claret. His boots shimmered with the evidence of a fresh kill.
“There was no need to kill her.”
Pig Face turned.
“You said you couldn’t think with her screaming?”
“I didn’t tell you to kill her, you son of a bitch.”
Pig Face turned and raised his hand in proclamation.
“No, you are the son of a bitch. And until to repent, this will continue.”
“If you could tell me what I did, then maybe that would help?”
“Everything you ever did is locked away inside your mind. I am merely helping you to remember.”
Pig Face returned to the instrument tray and ran his hand across his implements of torment. He stopped at a lighter. Flipping it open, the flame dazzled in the gloom, the orange glow ruffling my feathers and turning his disguise into a pinkish red mask of death.
“This little piggy stayed at home…”
He said it while his finger depressed the flint. He knelt down and held the flame under my toe. I kicked out, the wheelchair rocking, my hand restraints refusing to budge. I tried everything not to scream, not to show this little piece of shit that he had me on the ropes but the pain endured. It endured for so long, it felt like hours before the flame finally died down and my toe was nothing more than nubbin.
Sweat poured from my brow, stinging my eyes. My throat felt shredded, red raw. My pain barrier was so close to collapsing I was closing to shitting myself and then what?
Pig Face displaced the lighter and hoisted a metal bag from the wooden table and let it clatter on the floor. He fished through for another tool of torture and hoisted out a nine inch Bowie knife. He wasted no time in prolonging my pain and went straight to work.
“This little piggy had roast beef…”
I didn’t have time to scream, the sharp blade nicked my toe off in one fell swoop and the soldering iron did the rest.
I had two toes left and no idea what would happen to me? Maybe my fingers would be next? My tongue perhaps or my balls? Please no, anything but my balls.
Pig Face grew more agitated as he stalked the shadows. I had nothing to repent for. Nothing to say to this piece of crap psycho, just to make him feel like he repaid some dutiful bullshit religion that he somehow did this for the better good. Nothing I have ever done deserves this much punishment, nothing.
“And you still believe that?”
Pig Face asked me the question, but I hadn’t spoken, or am I really losing my mind.
“Nothing I have ever done deserves this much punishment, nothing. You did just say that, am I correct?”
Maybe I did, either that or he could read my mind?
“I can’t read your mind. So yes, you did just say it.”
Am I losing my marbles, is that it? Are my past transgressions so extreme that they are making me speak my mind, just so I can repent for my actions?
“What is it you want me to remember?”
“I will mention one word, one word that will unlock a world of hurt.”
“Hurt, one word?”
I couldn’t think straight, the pain in each foot sending my nerve endings through the roof.
“You have two toes remaining, and I have two more tools to use, now THINK!!!!”
He yelled so loud it rocked the frail walls of the warehouse. Jesus, I’ve pissed this guy off.
Pig Face said the word and disappeared again, the shadows his second home.
“Wilberforce, Wilberforce, what the hell is Wilberforce…”
I kept repeating the word but my mind was so frazzled all I could think of was an old care home I used to work at; The Wilberforce Home for Boys; some cess pit for runaways and strays. It’s now full of vagrants, just another rundown crap hole used as a drug den by street bums and whores. The guys and I used to rule the roost back in the day. Back in the day when I drank more than I ate and slept. Back in the day when I used to neck half a bottle of JD before breakfast, before burying my nose in so much coke I had powder coming out of my ears and…JESUS!!!
I was so wiped out I failed to notice Pig Face return with a test tube and begin to pour the contents over my penultimate toe.
“…And this little piggy had none…”
His voice had changed to a throatier pitch, how the hell I noticed is beyond me. The acid melted skin, the hiss drowned out only by my screams. He showed some emotion, the coldness of the assault now changing to pleasure. I wished it away, the pain, every inch of it, but all I could think of was Wilberforce Home for Boys and then I blacked out.
I had no idea whether the acid stopped before or after I passed out. I came too and the pain remained relentless. I looked to the shadows and I saw Pig Face. He was standing by the wooden bench, rummaging through tools with haste. I felt bled out, the acid had moulded my toe with my foot, one mashed mound of skin bubbling at the seams.
“One more to go…”
Pig Face revelled in taunting me. I had no come back. Swearing didn’t work, reasoning didn’t work. Pleading for mercy simply fell on deaf ears. Pig Face, that wasn’t his name but I didn’t give a damn anymore, I needed to know why this sick son of a bitch was torturing me.
“I remember Wilberforce.”
I said it loud enough for Pig Face to stop rummaging and to face me.
It was all he said but it was a start. A start of what, I had no idea, but at least it was something.
“I used to be a guard, keep the house in order. Is that where you know me from?”
Pig Face nodded slowly, his eyes eating through mine and burrowing into my brain. My wrecked mind kept revealing things, awful things. Things so sick and twisted that I couldn’t believe I was even contemplating them.
Pig Face lifted up a jack hammer and thumped it into his gloved palm.
He yelled so loudly it made me jump.
I’d hit a nerve, at last. Probably not a good idea, but neither was revealing what was currently swirling around in my head.
Pig Face raced to my feet and yanked on my last toe.
“AND THIS LITTLE PIGGY HAD NONE…”
The Jack hammer rained down on my toe, blow after blow until there was nothing left but a pancake of skin, and dust in place of bone. He threw the jack hammer to the wayside and jumped to his feet. He grabbed my lapel and pulled me half out of my seat. The only things stopping me from crumbling to the floor were the restraints.
“You are Officer Barnes, are you not?”
I could smell his alcohol fuelled breath through the mouth slit, his fingers rich with tobacco. I nodded.
“You were in charge of the night watch of Wilberforce Home for Boys, were you not?”
I nodded again.
“You used to unlock my door in the middle of the night and…”
My heart missed a beat as the box of secrets suddenly sprung open and the revelations hit me like an avalanche. The mask and the abuse, the guys and I wore masks and chanted sick rhymes as we beat those kids with truncheons. We beat them till they were black and blue, sometimes until they were unconscious. Sometimes, if outsiders paid us enough, we sneaked them in, gave them a tool and set them to work. Nobody caught us, nobody cared and the kids were too scared. The authorities never gave a shit, they were strays, dregs. They deserved to be there. Most had broken out of juvie or where dejected from society, the dregs.
Pig Face removed his mask. I knew the kid straightaway but he could be no more than thirteen years old?
“Hi Officer Barnes, I’m Tony ‘Sandpaper’. You remember me?”
He rubbed his cheek, the roughness was still evident. His skin would never grow back properly, not after what we put him through.
“You must remember me, you used to tie me up to my bed and sandpaper my cheek until I passed out. Just you and your ‘guys’.”
I couldn’t speak. Such terrible things plagued my thoughts. I locked them away. All I could think about was my life now, right now.
“I’m married, I have a kid. I have friends, family. I’ve changed.”
“Sick fucks like you don’t change, you just grow older.”
Drink, drugs, I’d forgotten. Memories repressed by drug fuelled rages, a release of aggression.
“Your guys, your night watch, can you name them.”
I just stared at Sandpaper. I didn’t even realise my pain had been replaced by guilt until I saw the rage in his eyes.
I stammered and then they came to me, all at once.
“Polsen, Marks, Jacobs, Cribbins and Grimwood.”
“No, no, that’s was it. I’m sure of it. Just let me go, I’ll turn myself in. I promise. Look I was a bum, a drunk and…”
Pig Face replaced his mask and clapped his hands, it stopped me mid flow. A circle of light came on to the left of me. I squinted and was sure my mind was playing games. Another Pig Face stood next to a wheelchair and another restrained man, his head lulling forwards and his body lifeless.
Pig Face Two lifted the man’s head.
“Meet ‘eyeless’ Polsen.”
Pig Face gestured to Polsen’s eye sockets. His eyes were plucked out. Deep grooves indenting his skin gave the impression they were probably removed by a barbaric hook of some kind. With his hands and feet dismembered, blood stained his shirt. It was Polsen, I recognised the snake tattoo on his chest.
Pig Face Three smiled as a second light came on.
The kid had one foot on the arm rest. He nudged the motionless body with his boot.
“I think you can guess what we did to him and his johnson?”
It continued until I was surrounded by five circles of light, each one accompanied by another Pig Face and another wheelchair bound man.
“‘Anus’ Jacobs, poor guy screamed like a baby when that acid tube rammed up his ass.”
“‘Crying’ Cribbins, pissed his pants when we cut out his tongue.”
“‘Grizzling’ Grimwood. Now that piece of puke, he stunk when we burnt him alive.”
All eyes turned to me as the boys removed their masks. The lights went off, just leaving the circle encasing me.
“You remember us now?”
The boys converged as they said it, laughing and throwing their masks to one side. I heard another sound, the noise of wheels? The prostitute who lured me outside came into view, smiling, twirling on the spot and laughing.
“You bitch, you set me up?”
The girl wiped the fake blood from her cheek and licked it from her fingers.
“You perverts are all the same.”
She skated past and slapped her behind.
“All after a cheap piece of ass. Well mister, this is the last piece of ass that you will ever see.”
I felt the walls closing in.
I felt a god I prayed too for years turning his back.
I felt my wife’s grief as she consoled my daughter.
I looked at each Pig Face, Tony Sandpaper, Billy Bolt, Peg Larry, Wooden Wilson and Beaten Baxter. They sounded like names of a kids television show, but what we did there is no running away from.
I cowered. I knew my time was up.
“What are you going to do to me?”
The boys laughed as they picked up their tools of the trade.
“We’re going to fuck you up, real good. And when we’re finished, the devil won’t even recognise you…”
Luckily for me he didn’t……