The Garden

Wrote this strange story in a strange format and thought I'd share it with you. Not as long as it looks.

Comments are welcome. I hardly ever get any – yours would make me so very happy.

Please enjoy.


There was once a girl.

Who lived in a cold house, which was leaky.

Who wandered a dodgy neighbourhood, albeit very rarely.

Who'd learnt first how to spell her own name, and after that, ruder words.

She was nothing extraordinary.

Just another.

Like the rest of them.

Not too pretty.

Not too innocent.

Not too loved.

If asked, she'd tell you she was loved very little.

Maybe she'd tell you she was not loved at all.

Ever.

She was also a chronic liar, so you wouldn't really know whether to believe her or not.

But nobody questions the assurances of a child.

She was an angry, lonely girl, who had to entertain herself while her father was at the office, merrily fucking strange women, and her mother was drunk, lying on the carpet, somewhere.

And that was most of the time.

So, she mostly kept herself busy.

She was a child who wasn't afraid to get rained on, or smear mud in her hair, or have her girly dresses torn whilst at play.

She spent much of her time in the garden.

She liked the garden.

There, she'd sit, or kneel, or stand facing a wall, pulling the wings and legs off of insects she'd found scuttling about.

She did this because she felt so very helpless.

Her life was sad.

She was sad.

She was also filled with desire.

Her body was changing.

As was her mind.

Her soul was slowly taking a new shape.

She desired to dominate something, and there came the insects.

Insects were easily dominated.

Because they were defenceless against her.

Helpless.

She liked making things helpless, like when she had cut the cat's tummy open with her mother's favourite kitchen knife.

The big silvery one with the engraved handle.

A gift from a friend.

Long ago.

Kitty had gotten pregnant earlier, and kitty was not married, so the kittens were all bastards.

They had to die.

It's god's law, you know.

Like what her father read to her in the bible.

Or, at least, she guessed he'd read something like that to her, from the bible.

It was a big, heavy, ominous looking book.

She'd never really paged through it herself.

Picked it up one day.

Stared at the black cover with vengeful golden text.

BIBLE

HOLY

HOLY BIBLE

She'd put it down again shortly after that.

But that was all in the past.

So, this girl liked to play in the garden.

She liked to sit, or kneel, or stand facing a wall whilst she played.

Mutilating insects.

The ones that bit, she destroyed.

Or let go.

It depended on whether she felt merciful or not.

See, her garden was her world.

In it, all the little creatures were her children.

She was their god.

Sometimes she even called herself something silly, like Bug Mother.

Just like god was the holy father.

It had made her laugh.

But one day, whilst sitting in her garden, she heard a voice.

A pretty voice, like the ringing of church bells.

She looked up.

She saw a boy, peering over the fence.

Peering at her.

He smiled.

He waved.

She frowned.

She was suspicious.

"Hi!" called the boy. "Who are you?"

"I'm…" She thought about that for a moment. "I am god."

He blinked. "You are?"

"Yes. I'm the god of this garden."

He broke into a broad grin.

Almost split his face in half.

It was brighter than the sun, and it made her heart quicken its drumming.

He told her his name, but she never could remember it.

So she just called him Snail.

She never hurt the snails.

She never hurt them because they had no legs, no wings.

They did have that shell thing, she supposed.

She should've thought of that sooner, when it was raining, and there were snails about.

Anyway.

So Snail and the malevolent god of the garden became fast friends.

Best friends.

The only two people in the world worth noting.

Father kept walking out the door.

Mother kept her lips pressed to any bottle and always swallowed.

So it was just them.

The boy and the girl.

Together, and happy.

But their bodies were changing.

As were their minds.

Their souls, taking on new shapes.

And it didn't take long before they realised something important.

He was a boy, becoming a man.

She was a girl, becoming a woman.

Men and women fuck.

Would they fuck?

Might as well try it.

So that's what they did.

They fucked one night in the shed in the garden.

It was late.

It was cold.

It stank.

It tasted strange.

There was something unglamorous about the act.

Not like it was in the movies.

It was awkward.

And painful.

They blushed and fumbled the whole way through.

A while later they went their separate ways, unwilling to play some more.

They promised to try that again sometime, next time.

A week passed before curiosity became arousal and the promise was fulfilled.

They went to the shed.

It was a little better that time.

And then…

One day, he brought something new to the garden.

Protection, he called it, when she asked.

What for?

What did they need protecting from?

Sin.

From a baby.

An unwanted pregnancy, outside of wedlock, like the church man had previously said from behind the pulpit.

A bastard.

That was wrong.

That was sinful.

You must always be married.

Or else.

Because bastard babies are a sin, and sin will make your soul sick as it grows in your tummy.

Sin is a habit.

One bastard leads to a second, then a third.

Another and another.

Until you break inside, and you can't make any more.

Sin is hard to lift, a great weight, and it is continuous.

It holds on tight.

It shackles the soul.

The holy sword must sever the chain.

His was the sword, covered with protection.

Hers were the willingly extended hands.

He'd cut her shackles.

Made up for the first two times that night.

The third time.

The third time was almost pleasant.

It was fulfilling, somehow.

But then the world turned, and so the sun and moon spun opposite each other in many dances.

In other words, some time passed.

Then

boy betrayed girl

and it was both sudden and brutal.

He said it was time they split apart.

That he'd

found

another

to fuck.

Or was it love?

She didn't care for the words he used.

This was a betrayal.

He was turning his back on her.

On god.

And so she seized him.

He let her drag him back to the shed.

The place where they'd sinned.

Father didn't notice.

He was out again.

Mother didn't care.

She was deeply asleep.

And so the god of the garden kissed Snail one last time.

And she locked the door whilst touching him down there.

He was so distracted, so confused, that he failed to notice her grab the garden shears in her spare hand.

She thought about all her pain.

All her loneliness, now back full force, sitting on her shoulder like a buzzard pecking at her head.

All her anger, bottled up inside, most of the time.

All her impurities, and there were many of them.

All her sin.

So much sinfulness.

She would cleanse it.

She remembered the cat.

The abortion.

And it made her remember.

Remember something scary and awful.

She found out she was pregnant that morning.

But they used

P
R
O
T
E
C
T
I
O
N

that one time.

She felt bad for kitty, now that she was in that position.

She thought…

She could be a mother.

But that was wrong.

So…

What now?

Would she have to have her baby cut out?

Was that how it happened?

Or would it wither away and die inside of her, immaculately?

And why did she call him Snail, anyway?

If he had arms?

That was silly.

So she cut them off.

One

by

One.

Onebyone.

She blessed the blades with his blood.

It was hard.

He struggled.

He screamed.

But the shed was locked.

The wooden door, sturdy.

She had enough time.

She was steadfast in her faith, she persevered.

She believed.

And to this day, she still does.

Locked away from the world.

Kept much like a bird in her little cage.

Locked up with a big woman she nicknamed Slug.

Back then, in her youth, she believed.

Nowadays, she still does.

She believes.

And she's relatively happy here.

Most of the time.

Slug is a lesbian.

Which is bad, isn't it?

But she is also the Bug Mother's friend.

She's nice to her.

She protects her from those bad insects.

The god of the garden is helpless out her garden.

Slug has become her guardian.

Of sorts.

A shoulder to lean against.

Swirling tattoos.

A body to cradle close at night.

And it's all right.

She's… almost like a man, Slug is.

That's why she was called Slug in the first place.

After all, whilst they are similar, a slug isn't quite like a snail, is it?

No.

It's got no

shell.


No offense intended.