Jaws of Love (Prologue)

By Carter Tachikawa

Welcome to my first actual fiction piece! What's ironic is that I am primarily a fiction writer yet I have more poems and songs posted on this site, lol. I guess I've been afraid to post my fiction, that's all. But if I can have the guts to write and post original anime, why not post fiction as well?

(Pauses to take a drink out of ginger ale can. Yes, I like ginger ale.)

Well, I have to thank Tio Rank P for being so kind to draw me something. In return, I promised her I would start writing a story starring the people she's drawing. I struggled with a plot and finally came up with one. I've struggled even more with a title. (I always struggle with titles, it's something Carter *never* has an easy time with). And I hope that you, dear reader, would take a step into this lovely (and slightly grotesque) prologue. The characters are all mine as is everything else you see here.

(Ouch, fingers hurting. I'm typing too hard on the computer again-_-0)

I hope you come to enjoy the characters and their adventures. There is romance, violence, and weird stuff…this story has everything I'm famous for. If it's not your cup of tea, run far away! I do not tolerate reviewers who will leave me reviews saying they hate stuff like this.

(Keeps self from ranting once again)

So review afterwards. Do not flame please. It's not helpful at all. Any help for my story is more than welcome, gentle reader (please be gentle). So without further ado, I shall begin.

(I realize now that my muses are growing impatient and want me to shut the hell up so I will.)

"blah"- spoken word
*/blah/*- thought

* * *

Tuesday night bought rain once again.

It seemed like a routine now. Every Tuesday in North Carolina, the showers would come and leave by Wednesday morning. People were tired of having their plans delayed due to the horrible weather but not one of them had the power to control Mother Nature. The best they could do was not plan anything for Tuesdays.

In the midst of the downpour, a silver Honda Accord zoomed down the empty road and finally turned into an area filled with apartment buildings. It's headlights cut through the darkness until they rested on an empty parking space. There, the car slid into the space with ease and the engine stopped purring. The headlights died as well and a young man got out of his car. The rain and darkness did a good job of masking his handsome features such as his chestnut-brown hair, finely chiseled face, and deep green eyes. His clothes clung to his skin the way children cling onto their parents when they're scared. He swore and scolded himself for not bringing an umbrella. He locked the driver's side and went over to the passenger side. Resting in the passenger seat was a calculus book and a black schoolbag with his name "Michael Appleton" written in white print on the side. He shoved the book into his bag before taking it out and locking the passenger side of the car. Using his hands to cover his head, he ran over to the apartment building where he lived with Ashleigh, his girlfriend of three years.

*/I'm soaked. Ash is so going to kill me./* Michael realized as he opened the front door of the building and greeted some people who were hanging around. They commented on how soaked he was and that he needed to change his clothes before he caught pneumonia. He thanked them for their concern and headed up the stairs to where he lived. He could only imagine the horror on Ash's sweet pale face when she saw him standing in the doorway, drenched from head to toe. She'd probably wrap him in ten million towels and set him down on the sofa. After he changed, she'd kiss him and hold him. Then she'd yell at him for being an ass and not taking his umbrella with him. He'd wince and try to explain, knowing that no explanation he gave could keep him from being an ass.

*/Then again, I'm not perfect. Ash knows that./* He reminded himself as he climbed the stairs to the third floor. Why didn't their building have an elevator? Oh sure, it had only three floors but what was wrong with being lazy and tired to climb stairs? The handicapped people got privileges. Why couldn't anyone else?

Despite the way he felt, Michael did not complain. He finally made it to his apartment and fished through his pockets for the key. He decided against ringing the doorbell or knocking in fear of disturbing Ash. She told him that she wanted nothing but some peace and quiet to study. Tomorrow was going to be a big day for her and she had no plans of coming to class unprepared. Finally, after what felt like two hours, Michael found his key and opened the door. Once inside, he turned on the lights and got a good look at the place. Something wasn't right. Oh sure, Ash had vacuumed the living room and arranged the magazines on the glass table. The sofas were spotless and whiter than ever. The carpet had no stains or dirt. The pictures on the wall hadn't been messed with and the TV sat quietly in the corner, with videotapes and DVDs arranged in perfect order underneath. It still looked the way Michael last saw it as. But he had a nagging feeling chewing at his brain that told him something wasn't right.

"Ash? Ash, I'm home!" He yelled, dropping the bag on the sofa and pulling out his physics book. Like his girlfriend, he needed to study as well. The lights weren't on in the living room or the kitchen so he figured she was in her bedroom. Ash had been telling him about the organic chemistry exam that she had to take the next morning. Her professor was an ass and he spared no one when it came to tests. Evidently, he was notorious for failing more than 40% of his students. His grading system consisted of only 3 exams and a final, all of which would difficult to the students. Ash had done her part in keeping up with his lectures but even she hated him. Too bad she had to take that class in order to graduate.

*/Makes me glad I'm not a chemistry major. /* Michael told himself. He just needed two chemistry classes. And that professor taught neither one, lucky for him. He had been spared.

Ash didn't answer him so he called out to her again. She was probably buried into that 2000lb-chemistry book to answer. But Michael couldn't blame her. She hadn't had the chance to sit down and look over her notes last night. Michael had taken her out on their third- year anniversary and they partied 'til three o'clock in the morning. Ash had yelled at him for keeping her out but she didn't stay mad for long. Michael had promised to spend some time at the library so he could finish his paper and she could cram for the test. Ash accepted that and Michael did as he said. He had gone to the school library for a long time and had finished the paper only an hour ago. It was midnight when he left the place and he figured he wouldn't bother Ash anymore. He'd say goodnight and then go to bed.

"Ash? Honey, did you go to bed?" He whispered. Once again, no answer. Ash's car was still parked in front of the building so she couldn't have gone anywhere. Besides, she promised him she wouldn't leave the place and he knew she would keep it. The only reason she'd leave is if there was some emergency. But if that was the case, why wasn't there a note on the door? Ash would let him know she had gone somewhere.

*/Where is she? What the hell is going on?/* Michael asked himself, flipping the light switch and entering the kitchen. He sniffed the air and almost gagged. There was a strange smell of something. It wasn't a pleasant smell and it wasn't one he knew of. He looked in the fridge because he believed that something had spoiled in there. On further inspection, however, he saw that everything was fine. The fruits sitting in the fruit bowl were still fresh and good to eat. He even looked through the pantry and cabinets to see if there was something spoiled in there. But the food was fine. No meat had spoiled, no fruits were rotting...everything was fine.

*/Then what's that smell?/* He asked himself once again. The sink was making dripping sounds so he shut it off. Ash must have gotten some water and hadn't shut the tap completely. Giving up on trying to find the source of the smell, Michael decided it was time to find Ash. He shut the lights off in the kitchen and headed down the hallway. And he saw that Ash's bedroom light was on. He sighed with relief. So she was here after all.

"Ash?"

No answer yet again. Michael told himself that Ash was probably in the bathroom and couldn't hear him. But there were sounds from her bedroom. It sounded as if something was slurping and licking, like an animal was in that room. They didn't keep a pet for they weren't allowed to have one in their apartment. But there were moans and the stench was coming back. Slowly and filled with fear, Michael approached the door and called her once again.

"Ash?"

"You're home early." Ash said. But it didn't sound like her. This voice was raspy and cold. Michael was confused so he decided to see Ash himself. A strange smell entered his nostrils, stronger than the one that had been in the kitchen. Then all the breath left his body as if he had been socked hard in the stomach and he dropped the book to the ground. It took courage and fear to keep the screams from escaping.

He would never forget what he saw.

His girlfriend was sitting in the middle of her bedroom. Her hair had been tangled and knotted as if she hadn't combed it for days. Her hands, soft and white, were now stained with something scarlet. Right in front of her, the sight that was making Michael's stomach churn, was what looked like the remains of a person. Pink flesh, white tissue, and bones had been tossed around the room like confetti. There were a few limbs that Ash sat among, licking them clean. But Ash was the scariest sight of all. That scarlet liquid was obviously blood sticking to her body like a second skin. Her white kneecaps were also stained as was the white slip she was wearing. Blood was even caked in her hair.

"A…Ash?" A horrified Michael managed to say. It had to be a nightmare. His Ash would never kill another person. Once again, to his disgust, Ash licked up the remaining blood from her fingers. She turned to him, a look of sadness crossing her blood-covered face.

"Ash, what the…did you kill that guy?" Michael said in a voice that was barely above a whisper. Actually, he didn't even know if it was a guy or a girl. The body was dismembered and chewed up. Any hints of what the victim's sex was had disappeared. Michael wanted to scream but the sight was keeping him from doing so. Besides, that meant getting Ash in trouble. He had a feeling Ash wasn't responsible for this guy's murder.

"Ash, tell me the truth!" He begged. "You didn't kill him, did you?"

"Mike...sweetie…go away!" His girlfriend spat out, blood mixed in with those words of fear. He stood transfixed in the doorway because his legs felt like they had been super-glued to the ground. Ash, his beautiful Ash, was sitting on the once brown carpet and drinking blood from a human being! She looked up again, her blue eyes worried and the crimson liquid smeared around her mouth like some grotesque color of lipstick.

"Ash, what did you do?" He demanded in a whisper.

Ash lowered her head. "I can't tell you, Michael. You better leave. Please leave!"

"Ash…"

"LEAVE!"

The last command did not sound like Ash. It was demonic and cruel, not her sweet voice. Michael began stumbling backwards into the dark hallway, the picture of Ash sitting on the bed with a dead body never fading away. She had changed. Everything had changed. He didn't know why but he could not hang around here any longer. He found the strength in his legs once again and used it to run away from her. That wasn't his Ash. It couldn't have been. She was not a murderer.

*/I'm dreaming. I have to be dreaming/* He told himself. Then Ash let out a scream, more animalistic and painful than usual. Fearing for his own life, Michael decided now was the perfect time to run harder. If he didn't leave now, chances were high she'd kill him.

His muscles aching, he kept charging through the dark rooms of the apartment until he finally reached the front door. He tried turning the knob but his hands kept slipping due to his sweaty palms. With great difficulty, he managed to turn that knob and get out of his apartment. He made no attempt to turn back and get anything inside. Ash screamed again, this time causing Michael to run down the stairs and almost fly into his car. He locked every door shut and turned the ignition key. Hands gripping the steering wheel, he didn't bother looking behind him as he backed out of the parking space. He was fortunate no one was coming the other way. After he shifted gears, he pumped the gas pedal and zoomed away from the apartment. He had to get away from Ash. He had to get away from the scene.

Despite how far he drove down those dark streets that morning, Ash's screams seemed to keep following him. It was almost as if she was right there, bloody and wild, howling in his ear.

TBC...

* * *

Schoolwork + fanfics+ lack of sleep + piano practice = this prologue

Well, that was that. I promise the next chapter will be longer and hopefully better. Hopefully, I have not bored anyone in the process. It's only a prologue and there will be more.

Btw, anyone here a beta reader? I wouldn't mind if you were to look over the next chapter before I posted it^^. I think I caught every mechanical problem but my eyes may deceive me. If you see any, I'm sorry. I'll be more careful next time.

In the meantime, review! No flames please, gentle readers. Thanks a bunch.