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Father's Eden by Will Ucan, Long Road Sixth Form College

February 2022

Disclaimer: some people may find the content troubling or distressing as it contains reference to acts of violence.

Chapter 1: Heaven

He blinked a few times, his bloodshot eyes darting around the room attempting to understand where he was. The room was completely blank, its white stainless walls bought a sense of uncomfortable cleanliness. He then lay atop a smooth stainless-steel counter so clean that the Fluorescent lights chained to the ceiling swung in its clear reflection. A low hum of ventilation droned throughout the room, it felt as if a drill was boring its way through his skull into his very brain. Covering his eyes was his hair, it was nothing more than wiry strands barely hanging onto his scalp.

His thoughts gradually came to him as if it were a wave of nausea building a picture of the previous night like a demented puzzle; His name was Kristoff Wiessman, a Swedish born and English raised electrician who had a horrible time at work the previous day. His boss moaned at him during his break and the elderly woman with the broken oven had sneered at him on his way out.

Due to his father, he knew what the best ways to deal with all his problems were. Alcohol. Drowning your sorrows is a remarkably easier task than actually dealing with any of your issues, at least that was his father’s philosophy, God rest his damned soul. Kristoff had never liked his father and his father held a similar sentiment, proven by the hideous markings that laced his arms and legs. His father had mastered the art of corporal punishment. Using whatever item may have been in his possession at the time be it a lit cigarette or a sewing needle. Kristoff always preferred watching his grandmother’s crochet due to a lack of sharp objects.

With little warning, his head screamed as if its hardware had been melting. Bringing him out of his momentary lapse to the past. Recounting the majority of his night was no matter, He had gone drinking at one of his favourite pubs “The thankful worker”, and he drank and drank and drank and drank some more. Until he stumbled into a dark and rather dank alleyway and spewed the contents of his guts onto the pavement below him, creating a rather large splash zone, unfortunate for him and the single neatly-dressed passerby, anything beyond that was simply a foggy blur to him.

He had moved to brush his wiry hair out of his face a few minutes ago, yet his hair was still obscuring his view as if his hand was unable to locate his own face.

Was he still drunk? Obviously not as he felt as though he had never had a lick of whiskey last night. He tried again to no avail. Irritation washed over him, simply nothing wanted to go his way. After struggling for some time, he had knocked the counter over with a large crash smacking his temple into the hard stone floor that was spread across the floor, destroying the clandestine silence that previously had suffocated him. He lifted his head, flicking his hair away from his eyes with a heavy grunt. Kristoff lay on his back again, trying to shake off the pain of his tumble. It took him a few moments to see clearly and what he saw made him just as confused as before: Pairs of black shoes lined the skirting board. The leather of the shoes had been shined so meticulously that not a single place was left untouched. He felt as if he had seen such shoes recently but he just couldn’t draw out the memory.

He turned back towards the counter where he had been previously. It had a similar appearance to the Autopsy tables he had seen many times in the crime dramas he had watched at home; the small wheels attached to the bottom swung with little friction only leaving a minuscule squeak at the apex of its swing. Its polished surface gave him a clear and unobstructed view of himself and he began to understand why he could not sweep away his hair. His face contorted into an amalgamation of fear and despair. He couldn’t believe what he was seeing before him. He shut his eyes tightly, as tight as he could and threw them open again as if it were actually going to change anything. Whatever was being reflected in the disgustingly clean surface was not “Kristoff”. It was alien to him, a monster. Simply a hulking mass of flesh. Tears streamed down his face and chest. His arms and legs had been removed cleanly. So much so it felt like it had been done by the horrifically sanitized room he was slumped in.

He wanted to leave.