The Five Holy Wounds of a Second Coming
Presenter is alone in his world; until he isn't anymore.
9:00 am –– Thursday, April 14th 2033
There wasn't any room for the light. It could echo and bounce with no destination beyond entropic, move along little light. Presenter understood this, he felt most at home in the shadows, and their molesting reach dimming the flesh, dimming the speckled reminders. Pushing his sweat damaged linens off his gaunt frame, Presenter’s now upright body took aim at its beckoning stage. Joints cracked, or were they bones? Doesn't matter. He moved onwards, rising from the bed. The cracked and crusted eye sockets of his pale face were wiped and cleared, christened with the softness of the escaping sunlight. He wet his eyes with a yawn and unburdened himself with a throat clearing cough; reluctant to focus his sight, the parabolic flight of expulsion went unknown. Firmly composed, a blasé pace took Presenter over the refuse and across the threshold; entering the open concept kitchen, obeying his mandate.
The kitchen was still, as empty as Presenter's stomach. It lay in abandon ruin, the non-working sink now a cabinet. Pushing some dishes aside, he turned the rusty faucet to working and snuck his chapped lips underneath the trickling warm water. The hidden forces in the wall screeched and vibrated, a gasp of rust and tepid water splashed into Presenter's throat, he swallowed all the same. No more water escaped the faucet, the refuse would win this land grab battle.
The yellow linoleum cracked beneath his flat feet and padding his soles ––a soft-shoe cue –– step by step. Long since forgotten shoes left a trail into the living room, a treasure map to the stage where he’d soon embody a holiness most akin to the Holy Grail. Laying before him were nails, boards, and other miscellaneous supplies gathered during yesterday's foraging. Betraying his final approach, Presenter’s flat feet, combined with the tacky surface, the final piece of linoleum that lain in defiance of its slightly less dilapidated cousins gave way to gravity. His descent brought him to the carpet, his testicles not stopping as gracefully. He winced but swung his arm to the hammer before him. He assembled the wood and etched “INRI” onto a single board. The nails began to bounce and dance, their own descent into their graves of wood. No wood remained, but a cross was made.
His achievement before him aroused his final force of excitement. His recovering testicles tightened and his shaft expanded. Presenter's dry, cracked hands worked their way around his elongated member, each crack clung and scraped the unfolding skin. Unfurling his foreskin, Presenter tucked his pre-ejaculate fluid into his palm and re-applied to his aching member. With sin he stroked, the dryness returned but the momentum could not be contained. The testicular highway opened, seminal fluid worked its way through, approaching his vas deferens; now filled with Presenter's heirs. His sinful gift came bursting out of his shameful head. A foot before him it now pooled and gathered in the trenches of “INRI.”
As he grew limp, Presenter sat down on the aging carpet. Dust and dirt clung to the remaining ejaculate on the folds and skin of his penis. He erased the deed off his hand, exchanging it for crumbs and promised salvation. Scooting towards his creation, Presenter found the remainder of the nails and poured them out of their mason-jar home. Positioning it in his crotch, he expelled his traffic stuck urine from its delay. Soon after, the restless light found the mason-jar, dazzling Presenter in its show of golden light. It marked the head of the cross, beside the “INRI” and in line with Presenter's kind offering.
After one final spasm of relief, Presenter dropped his head at the head of the cross. Imperfect wood marked the impact with a slight toll of blood. While only a small volume of blood, and most leaving the group to seep into the wood, its plunge into the notched pools of semen was a mere toe-dip but its effect much greater. INRI now glistened pink, differentiating its intent from other imperfections.
Through the agency of his rust-stricken hammer, Presenter used the claw end to intersect his gaunt ankles. His slightly moisturized hand wrapped and tightened around the hammer, extending his capacity. Cracking bone echoed off the stucco ceiling, its hollowed echo silencing the exchange between metals. Each nail pierced its respective foot just under the row of toes. The nail's journey married skin and bone with wood and carpet in holy matrimony. Leaking blood quickly seeped from intersections of material, further cementing the mixed-material presentation. Concrete foundation prevented a flush pairing of materials, leaving each nail head hovering on a vertical trail of blood. Satisfaction, or perhaps earthly adrenaline, overtook pain, the second sign of his father was complete.
The dry palm of his left hand gazed upward, facing the off-white ceiling of the living room; warm knuckles resting on the cool wood. After selecting a location, Presenter marked where the center of his left hand would be laid and bore a nail through the spot. He notched the nail out and re-bore, mimicking this several times. Setting the hammer down, Presenter pressed the tip of another nail into the dry palm. Left hand fingers extended from their wooden sleep towards the shaft of the nail, preserving the nail's intended trajectory. With confidence in alignment of hand and hole, Presenter picked up the hammer once more. Flesh gave way, the Trinity near its completion.
A stretched and loose home for this second nail allowed for an easy, one handed removal of hand and nail. With an unsure and now, greatly weakened left hand, Presenter took the hammer once more. His right hand, now free of the scratchy hammer grip, selected the fifth nail. Parted from concerns of trajectory, and expected finality overtaking scattered pain, Presenter negotiated metallic contact. Crippled by a torn muscles, it took several calculated blows to maneuver the nail into place. Torn skin from these extra blows, caught between nail and wood, secured a snug rest. By order of operations, Presenter's task of unified Trinity reposed in harmony.
Clutching and holding the nail of step three centered, Presenter swiftly rejoined this affectation of the Holy Spirit back into its cavern. This final act of momentum toppled the golden light atop the pinkish hue of INRI; consummating the fecundity of Presenter's consumable offering.
3:00 pm –– Thursday, April 14th 2033
Inexplicably, a vinegar laden stench wafted into the olfactory of Presenter's consciousness. Vague appetite lifted Presenter's fixed stare towards the once-source of illumination of his golden offering. Pupils prepared for intense sunlight were instead met with muted shades of red, streaked light. Momentarily mistaking this as a solar eclipse, Presenter devoured the true nature of this blacked out sky upon the realization of the moon's impossible speed. Relishing this light-born shadow maker, Presenter once again set his head down, taking his final breath.
Shallow understanding of lungs and breath drove the progenitor of the curious vinegar scent towards Presenter's offering. An unforeseen ambivalence towards the targeted canned goods overtook this witness of Presenter's final moment. Fear of having to abandon this haul of future meals governed this witness to poke the side of Presenter for affirmation of death. Effectively perforating Presenter's thin, frail skin without a convulsion of reaction, Witness withdrew, leaving behind the fifth, and final puncture wound on Presenter's body.
As if appeased by the dissolution of spirit and body, the sky gave way to blinding light, freezing Witness, entranced by this nourishing light. As if fulfilled beyond the capacity of canned peaches or beans, Witness stood silent as the object Presenter once mistook for the new moon eclipsed Sun slammed into being.
Ensuing quakes and tectonic shift instantaneously entombed Presenter with crumbling foundation. Witness was propelled backward, shock-waves tearing limb from limb, depositing the remains amongst the food stuffs Witness had planned to pilfer.
6:00 pm –– Sunday April 17th 2033
The great fallen object had taken shape over the last three days. Scorched limbs emerged and muscle structure coalesced around its great frame. Inertia of the impact still reverberated throughout the many layers of Earth. Navigating the cracks as a raft does over a deep-sea tsunami wave, the cooled limbs found the presentation that unlocked its fate. Relishing the taste of the air as a child does when free from grounding, the great scorched beast scooped Presenter into its greedy hands.
Presenter opened his eyes with great haste. He was alone no more.