Water for life.

gargoyle 1

From his position in the dock, Amus Deathwilder looked, first at the jury, then up at the gallery. It was filled with gawking morons, each and every one of which he would gladly have torn the eyes from. The desire to make this wish a reality caused Amus to shift his position, which in turn caused the shackles around his wrists and ankles to clink.

He looked down at his wrinkled, age worn hands and clenched them into fists. The only comfort he possessed now was the hundred and one years that enshrouded his body. He was an old man, so it didn’t matter what prison sentence they gave him, he wouldn’t be round long enough to see it out.

As the judge droned on, Amus allowed his mind to drift back in time, remembering his glorious “career”. How many lives had he taken? How many methods had he used to snuff out the existence of worthless pieces of human detritus? He’d always had an enquiring nature and enjoyed experimenting, seeking fresh, new ways to cause maximum pain. Each time he succeeded, he felt such elation that he thought nothing would ever beat it; but the next time he set out on another mission, the elation grew, spurring him on. That said, all good things come to an end, and he couldn’t complain, not really, not when he’d had such a good run.

The judge’s droning voice brought Amus back to the here and now. He fixed his gaze on the man, where he sat in his elevated seat. The jury had already delivered their guilty verdict; all that remained was the sentence.

‘Amus Deathwilder,’ the judge intoned, ‘I sentence you to life in prison,’

To the court’s horrified astonishment, Amus smiled and nodded. Fools! He had very little life left, the sentence was a joke.

‘Take him down!’ The judge almost shouted the words, as if he couldn’t wait to see the back of the prisoner.

On the way to the prison, Amus mused on what awaited him. Even though he was old, ancient even, he was still considered dangerous; he smirked, what a compliment! His high status category probably meant he’d be assigned a cell to himself. Well, he’d make the most of his “retirement”. They’d have to allow him access to books and writing materials. Perhaps he’d write his memoirs.

The first misgivings reared their ugly head, when the prison came into view. Set on a tall cliff, overlooking a grey sea, the castle loomed with forbidding grandeur. Amus tried to quell the uneasiness now rampaging through his thoughts, but failed.

Still in chains, he was marched along a long, gloomy passage, until he and his two guards reached a huge oak door; it creaked open, revealing the room beyond. It was empty, apart from a stone gargoyle, with water spewing from its mouth into a small brick walled pool.

One of the guards grinned at him. ‘Welcome to the pool of life,’ he said.

Amus gaped at him. ‘What d’you mean?’

The grin remained in place, as the guard replied, ‘One of your last victims was a Professor Donegal, right?’

‘That fool, yes. He was always spouting rubbish about how a man’s life could be extended, going on and on about reversing the aging process. What of it?’

‘He wasn’t the crackpot you thought.’ The guard gestured at the gargoyle. ‘He discovered the fountain of youth. Not just that, he was able to replicate its properties.’

Amus stared at the man, then realising what he meant, tried to back away; both guards seized his arms and then began to drag him towards the waiting gargoyle.

He screamed, begged, pleaded, all to no avail. The moment his head was forced under the water, Amus realised just what life in prison meant; in his case, it’d only just begun.

An old man had entered the room, a screaming, crying young man left it.

They didn’t even allow him to dry off his newly rejuvenated face, before shoving him into his cell. One small barred window, set high up in the wall, allowed what little light there was in. As Amus looked round, he noticed the shadows that dominated the room; his heart turned to ice in his chest, when he realised they were moving, crawling across the floor towards him.

Outside in the corridor, the guard who’d spoken to him turned the key in the lock. He grinned again, when he heard the whimpering start up from within the cell.

‘If you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime,’ he murmured and walked away.


http://goo.gl/qw64zu Land of Midnight Days

http://goo.gl/c0rR2K Through the Gloaming



4 Responses to “Water for life.”

  1. Great story Kate! 😀


  2. Ch-ch-ch-chilling, Kate! Is this part of a novel? Whatever it is, I love the surprise ending/beginning, a very fitting “ending” I might add. 🙂


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