Two stand out. White shrouds, not black. First and last in line. 1 and 36. 1's mask is gone. Burned in a fire. Early job. Nearly botched. Nearly deadly. Nearly. 36's mask is on my face. Light. Papery. But there. Always there.
Father isn't there. Can't See Him. Can't feel Him. Solitude. Isolation. Loneliness. I can't stand it. I want to cut something. I don't have my knife. I can't move.
37 is there. Walking the rows. Head down. Hands clasped at her chest. Eyes closed. Looks like she's praying. Starts at 1, ends at 36. Stops. Looks up. Opens her eyes. Stares at me. Cuts into me with her eyes. Dissects me. Just a child. I'm pitiful. Weak.
"You kill for something that sees you as little more than an insect."
She doesn't understand. Never will. Never. She's the insect.
"When he is finished with you, you will die, too."
I know this. I do not care. Father's Will is my Will. If I must die, so be it. Life is just another disease. Another terminal illness. Father is the cure.
"You'll have nothing to show for your life but the red on your hands."
I relish the blood, child. No, not a child. Changing. Shifting. Becoming...something else. Larger. Darker. Snarling.
"Not a fucking soul would miss you the way people miss Moral!"
Back in Antithesis. World falling away. Just me and that...thing. Glorified hallucination. But powerful. Stronger than I. Far stronger.
"Are we hypocritical, or are you just that vile?"
Shifting again. In my home. 36 beneath me. Reliving the kill. Drawing my knife across his chest. Bare. Reeking of blood and sweat. Redfaced. Thrust in quick. Doesn't scream. Stab him again. Doesn't scream. Again. Again. Again. AgainagainagainWHY WON'T YOU SCREAMagainagainagainagainagain... No screaming. Just smiles. Bloody grin. Final gasp.
"What a pitiful little bitch..."
Vision fades to red. Stabbing. Slashing. Hacking. Drop the knife. Tearing with bare hands. Organs come out. Hair. Skin beneath my nails. He's already dead. Don't care. Keep tearing.
Finally stop to catch breath. Body beneath me unrecognizeable. Still talking.
Back with the bodies. All of them repeating the same thing. Over and over. Pitiful. Pitiful. They stand. Cast away their shrouds. Circle around me. Chanting. Pitiful. Can't wake up. Need to wake up. Can't take it. Need to escape. Why can't I wake up? WHY CAN'T I WAKE UP? WHYWHYWHYWHYWHYWHYWHYWHY
"Memorias defunctorum, child, for they will certainly remember you."