Titans and shadows…A short story…

“How many years have I languished in this prison?” The scorching rays of sunlight seemed to be beamed directly into my eyes. Why not?  It’s not like I don’t spend enough time being tormented in this place. Rock walls with jagged edges line my cell. My home away from home is dank, dimly lit, and filled with rats. Yeah, rats.

I have no bed, a dirty mattress is flung into the corner, and a bucket is given to us to relieve ourselves. Between the stench and the rat-chewed mattress, I gave up hope I would ever leave this place. I’ve carved the days I’ve spent in this sewer into the rock face.

Guards fractured my wrist when they last visited. It never healed correctly; the injuries seldom do. We are often bruised, battered, and left for dead. Escape is a fanciful daydream never realized. Outside my cell, screams of the tortured filled the hallways. “The sound of hatred pulsated within these walls. Fractured bones, fractured souls, death came for me from the darkness.”

The Keeper of this prison appeared outside of my cell. His blackened eyes, broken nose and gap-toothed smile are pressed against the bars of my cell. Words are not exchanged. My every move is observed and noted. After a prolonged period, he spun around and walked away. Two type of guards milled around my cell. The usual guards are lightly armed with tasers, and batons. They are replaced with black-suited, heavy-armored titans.

These behemoths are densely muscled, and heavily armed. “Why have the titans been deployed?” Usually, the juggernauts are released upon “high-valued” targets. These unfortunate souls are considered well-informed, hoarders of information, and of despicable character. I glanced at each guard and wondered who they were here to break. My question is answered by two titans as they arrived at my cell. One of the guards opened my cell door and gestured for me to come out.

“Prisoner Alpha 001 move forward to my location.”

 I moved forward until I stood before him. He raised his arms, and I followed suit. His partner stood behind me and searched me from head to toe. Satisfied with the results of his search, I am marched into the Keeper’s office.

“Stand here, prisoner.” One of the gigantic titans gestured at a place on the floor and I stood there, awaiting the torment I would endure. The door closed and I am left alone in the office. As I looked around the workplace, I noticed there are no rats. I am so mesmerized by the lack of rodents; I missed the door being opened. The Keeper appeared in front of me, before I realized his presence.

“Prisoner Alpha 001, you are charged with violations of disturbing the peace, felonious assault, and manslaughter. You’re sentenced to 35 years of torture provided by yours truly.”

“Yeah, that’s what the judge sentenced me to.”

“You’re judged, declared guilty, and shalt be pummeled into submission.”

“You’ve agitated me for the last time, Keeper.”

One of the titan’s walked up behind me and swept my legs out from under me. The Keeper kicked his steel toed boot into my solar plexus and the wind rushed out of me. Both titans grasped me by the arms and snatched me to my feet. The Keeper slammed his gauntlets into my ribs. The broken bones splintered and then he went to work on my face. My jaws snapped at the hinges, and shattered teeth fall out of my mouth.

“What inspired perspective do you have to share now, Alpha?”

Blood seeped out of my mouth; my breath comes in ragged gulps. I smiled through my busted lips. I mumbled a few words, but they are choked off in my larynx.

“What?”

“You shortened my sentence. Thank you, Keeper.”

With a frustrated shout, The Keeper whipped out a knife and slammed it repeatedly into my torso. The titans released me, and I crumbled to the floor. I laughed and The Keeper stormed out of the office. As my blood leaked out on the ground, and my life slowly drained from my body; I heard the scrambled footfalls of rodents.

“Aw, rats.”

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