Weekly Exercise #14 (11/19/13)

Posted: November 19, 2013 in Scary Stuff, Weekly Exercises, Writing
Tags: , , , , ,

Time again for my Weekly Exercises! These flash-fiction pieces are part chance for me to practice my craft, part chance for the readers of my blog to let me know how I’m doing as a writer, and part shameless plug to get people interested in my published fiction. Remember that the Weekly Exercises are dependent on reader feedback, so if you have any thoughts, let me know.

If you would like to check out other Weekly Exercises, please check out their page. And if you have an idea for a Weekly Exercise, let me know. You might see one based on your idea here with your name on it.

That’s all right now. Enjoy.

~~~

Josef Mengele woke up with a start. He was strapped down to a metal chair in his kitchen and someone had placed a gag in his mouth. He tried to call out, but a voice said in his ear, “Nobody’s coming to save you.” From behind him appeared two men and a woman. Mengele didn’t recognize either of them.

“We’ve been looking a very long time for you, Josef Mengele.” said the woman, speaking German with a Polish accent tinged with some American. “Almost ten years, in fact.”

“Do you know who we are?” asked one of the men, whose voice sounded like the one Mengele had heard only a moment before. He was dark-eyed and he had a long, scraggly beard. Mengele shook his head, which made all three intruders smile humorlessly. “We guess you wouldn’t. After all, you caused so much pain for so many. How can you expect to remember three prisoners?”

Mengele’s eyes widened. His three captors pulled up their shirt-sleeves, revealing strings of numbers appearing on their arms. Survivors of the camps, and they had him tied up and at their mercy! How did this happen?

“We’ve been tracking you for a while, Mengele.” said the second man, young and curly-haired. “We and so many of your former patients. We formed a little group after the war, you know. All to find the killers who had escaped justice. You’re the latest find out of twenty-three former Nazis. Yes, twenty-three. We made sure they suffered before they all died too.”

“Do you have anything to say for yourself?” said the bearded man, removing the gag from Mengele’s mouth.

Mengele coughed and spluttered before speaking. “Look, I don’t know what you’re talking about.” he said. “I was an innocent lamb. I had no idea what I was doing, I was just following orders—!”

The woman slapped him. “No lies!” she hissed, her eyes ablaze with anger. “No more lies! You separated me from my husband and son! They died in the gas chambers and never received a grave. And you put me through hell, making me work and then cutting me open and then sewing me back up. And you had no problem with your lab assistants having fun with me! Don’t claim that you’re a little lamb! My husband and son were lambs! You’re a wolf!”

“The courts will vindicate me.” said Mengele. “You’ll be punished for this ludicrous behavior. But if you untie me now, I’ll forget this ever happened—”

The three captors laughed, shocking Mengele into silence. “You think we’ll give you to the courts?” said the curly-haired youth. “That’ll take too long. You’ll commit suicide before anyone can punish you. No, we’ve got something better planned for you.”

Suddenly a black shape appeared in the kitchen, floating just above the kitchen table. Mengele stared as a monstrous face emerged from the black shape, its eyes fiery red like hot coals. “What is that?” asked Mengele, terrified.

“The Angel of Death.” said the bearded man. “You know, the namesake for your nickname? He decided to help us punish the Nazis we track down. He gets your soul while you’re still alive, and we give him ourselves over to him ten years early.”

“You’d make such a deal?” said Mengele, not taking his eyes off the Angel of Death. “Why would you give up your lives after surviving the camps?”

“Because it’s worth it.” said the woman. “I’ve been only living a half-life since I left the camp anyways. Giving myself over to Death early makes the nightmares quiet, because I know I’m getting the retribution I seek. And whatever’s on the other side, it’s better than what you’ll ever get, even if I never see my husband and son again.

“Have fun in Hell.” said the bearded man. “It’s your turn to feel unending misery and terror.”

Mengele screamed as the Angel of Death wrapped itself around him. Then he was falling through a tunnel, before crashing on the shore of a sea of fire. In the sea of flames, being poked with pitchforks by ghastly monsters were Nazis of all ranks and branches and ages. Some of them Mengele even recognized. There was Goebbels and his wife, and there was his assistant at Auschwitz, and there was a corporal he’d known in Berlin, and—was that the Fuhrer being ripped apart by hooks in his skin as demons tried to reel him in from all sides like a fish?

Before he could even process that the same fate awaited him, something kicked him into the sea of flames.

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