By: Gabriella Balcom

Chad sat on the edge of the bed and reached for his phone, checking to see what time it was. He briefly checked his new messages, sneered, and didn't bother to answer them. The voicemails he ignored altogether.

When the naked woman behind him ran a finger down his back and nibbled at his ear, he turned and planted his mouth on hers.

A couple hours later, he pulled on his briefs, jeans and t-shirt. No one was outside when he peeked through the blinds, but he cautiously poked his head out of the hotel door and looked around. Still seeing nobody, he grinned at the woman who'd followed him, gave her a lingering kiss, then stepped outside and shut the door behind him. He walked down the sidewalk to the empty house a block away where he'd left his car, and climbed into the driver's seat. Smirking, Chad started the car, backed up, and drove down the street.

As soon as he saw the female thumbing for a ride on the side of the road, he slowed and licked his lips. Her tight tank top barely covered her breasts, and he thoroughly enjoyed the sight of her mini skirt and red stilettos.

"You're lucky I'm here," he told the beauty after lowering the passenger window. She studied him without comment, but when her eyes flashed and a small smile crossed her face, he took it as encouragement. "I'll be glad to help you get home. Do you live nearby?"

"Yes," came the low, husky reply as she slid into his car. "Right around the corner."

He drove in the direction she'd indicated, but saw nothing ahead of them but a thick forest. "This can't be right."

"Oh, my place isn't far," she assured him. "It's just through the trees."

Once he'd parked on the edge of the woods, the woman got out of his car, stumbled, and began to limp. "Let me help you," Chad offered, sliding his arm around her narrow waist. He was close enough to ogle her chest without being noticed. Together they walked into the forest and soon came upon a cottage.

"Come in." The woman opened the door, and Chad eagerly followed her inside. "How can I ever replay you," she cooed, fluttering her eyelids like an old-time movie starlet.

"Oh, I'm sure we'll think of something."

"Make yourself at home." She paused before adding, "You know, you haven't asked my name."

"Ah, what's your name?" Chad glanced at the large bed in the corner.

"Ria. But I've been called many names through the years, including Justice. Vengeance."

He heard her words but mentally shrugged them off. Truthfully, he couldn't have cared less about anything she might have said. His interest lay elsewhere.

As she kicked off her heels, his heartrate sped up. She unzipped her skirt and let it fall to the floor, and revealing a red thong underneath. Then she blew Chad a kiss, and he chuckled.

Ria left the room for a moment, and he was quick to disrobe in anticipation.

A soft footstep sounded from behind him, and he turned to see her standing there. She grinned, but her body slowly morphed, taking on the hard sharpness of stone and slicing edges. Chad found himself staring at what looked like a gargoyle.

"What the…?" He rubbed his eyes.

"You think women are only good for one thing," Ria said in a conversational tone. "You take advantage of your position at work to try and get what you want from them. You pursue them and pick them up every time you can, in every place you can, and there's no end to your callousness. One after another, you use them and discard them, all while making pretty promises. You even talk about love, which is something you know nothing about. Of course, you're usually careful to remove your wedding ring first."

He glanced down at his hand for a second. Hours before, he's removed his ring and stuck it in his pocket, and now he put his hand in there, too.

"While you were out cheating on your wife, she went into labor," Ria continued, her eyes never leaving his face. "She called your cell phone. Many times, in fact. Finally, she had to leave your one-year-old daughter with a neighbor, since she has no family and you weren't around. The hospital called you several times, too, when your wife had complications. I healed her and she and the baby are both fine—no thanks to you."

The gargoyle woman reached out with a long claw and swiftly cut an "A" into Chad's bare chest. Shock and confusion overwhelmed him, but he gasped when he saw the letter and felt the sting of the wound.

Speed blurred the woman's movement when she slashed out again and this time opened Chad's stomach. He choked, looking down at his own blood and intestines spilling from the open gash. A rising, shrieking moan escaped him.

Ria grabbed his intestines and bit one section in half. The remaining loops swayed back and forth between them. She chewed for a moment, then hummed. "This needs a bit of something." Grabbing the salt shaker off the table beside them, she sprinkled the contents on his entrails and took another bite. "Now that's just right." She smacked her lips.

Chad grabbed his stomach, trying to stuff his parts back inside and hold himself together. No matter how hard he tried, though, he was unable to move his feet. The gargoyle woman hissed and rammed her claws into his upper chest, filling him with agony. Ever-so-slowly, ignoring his screams, she cut down through his flesh and ribs to reveal his heart.

"Please," Chad begged. "Please don't."

"Don't what?" she asked, raising one eyebrow. "Don't cheat on you? Don't stab you through the heart? Don't kill you?"

"Please don't kill me. Please, please," he babbled. "I'll do whatever you want. I won't ever cheat on my wife again. I swear. Just let me go." When Ria grabbed between his legs and held his sex organs in one clawed hand, he screamed, "No! Please!"

He sighed with relief when she let go. But he wasn't expecting her to slash at his member before holding it up in front of his face. Chad's eyes bulged from their sockets, and he shrieked while the woman sneered.


Ria made no sound as she watched the blood run from Chad's open chest, stomach, and mutilated groin. His eyes had glazed in shock and pain, but he repeatedly mumbled pleas for help and pleas to be spared. It wasn't long till he slumped to the floor.

Popping what she knew Chad had considered his best feature into her mouth, she chewed and swallowed. "How disappointing. That really needed some garlic."

The End


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