No Gein II: A Second Helping Part Twelve

Posted: October 23, 2021 in No Gein II: A Second Helping, No Gein Stories
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No Gein II: A Second Helping

Chapter Twelve. Campfire Stories

Carcasses of their victims hung from a spit over the fire as the family camped out in a secluded area of forest just off the highway. Milton was grateful his mother packed bread in their cooler so he could made himself a nice little sandwich. “Oh my god, this is the best meal I’ve had in years!” he said, taking a bite of the freshly cooked flesh packed between the two wheat slices. Looking at his niece he said through a mouth full of food, “I’m telling you; don’t you ever go to prison. The food there is awful!”

“Don’t worry Uncle Milton,” Clarice giggled while using her fingers to eat a piece of meat off a paper plate, “they’ll never take me alive!”

“They’d better not. By the time you’d get out I’d be dead.” Clarice’s grandmother cackled.

“You’ll be dead a lot sooner if you don’t stop using so much salt!” Clarice’s grandfather said as he ate his freshly made stew.

“Whitman, I’ve been making it that way since before I even met you and don’t you forget it.” Emily barked back.

“Wait,” Clarice said, “I thought the family recipe was from Grandpa’s side?”

Pointing to the old metal pot in which chunks of flesh floated from their latest victims, Clarice’s grandmother, Emily, explained, “The meat stew is from Whitman’s side.” Then holding up her own sandwich she said, “I’ve been eating this since the Great Depression.” Watching the flames dance around the remains of their victims she recalled “Daddy went and died, and mom and I could barely survive on the farm in Oklahoma. I remember being so hungry, so hungry it brought me to tears. Must have drove my poor mother mad, how I couldn’t stop crying.” Her voice shook from the sting of that pain she still felt decades later. “We had a loaf of bread, but not even a lousy vegetable to put between two slices. One night a straggler came by, tried to take advantage of my mom. She killed the bastard dead.” Emily had the full attention of her audience as she finished her tale. “We were starving, but, next thing you know,” Her face changed from an expression of sorrow to triumph as she proudly held up her sandwich and proclaimed. “Bon appetite!” 

“Wow.” Clarice marveled at the story. “So did you introduce the appetite to grandpa?””

“No, I already had it.” Whitman answered his spouse’s question. “In fact, when we first met, I kept it a secret!”

“So how did you find out?” Clarice asked.

“Well, actually he caught me!” Emily laughed. “I kept the appetite to myself when we’d first met. One day he was away on business, and I was at home starving. We had plenty of food mind you, but the appetite was overpowering. I went and out and got somebody tasty, but Loe and behold he came home early, I thought I might have to kill him!”

“I almost killed you when I saw how much salt you were using!” Whitman reminisced.

Looking at his niece, Milton laughed, “They’ve been fighting about that all my life.”

“Aww,” Clarice fawned, “So the appetite kept you together. That’s so sweet.” 

“Yeah, my first wife couldn’t take the heat,” Whitman recalled. “so she got out of the kitchen so to speak.” he said laughing.

“Wait” Clarice was shocked at this truth her grandfather just dropped. “You had another wife?”

“Yeah, her name was Mary, tough old broad, just like your grandmother, but she didn’t like our family’s peculiar, uh appetite, as we say.” Grandpa explained before eating another mouthful of his stew. 

“What happened to her? Clarice asked.

“Actually, this is why we’re heading out west.” Whitman revealed. “I had this old set of jewelry; it belonged my mother, bunch of diamonds and shit. That bitch took it all along with some cash and took off. Never saw Mary again.”

“Wait,” Clarice asked, “so did you just find her?” 

“Well someone did!” Whitman laughed. “You see the news about those bodies that turned up in the plain states?

“No, really?” Clarice answered.

“Too busy on that internet shit!” Her grandmother complained.

“Hey,” Clarice protested, “rotten.com is an awesome site! I’m telling you, you’d love it.”

“Look I don’t give a dam about gotten.com or whatever the fuck you’re talking about!” Clarice’s grandfather said, agitated. “Those jewels belonged to my mother, and I always wanted to kill that bitch for running off with them. Well, it turned out some Psycho beat me to it like 50 years ago. Apparently she had a home out in Wisconsin.”

“And you think you’re going to find these jewels 50 years later?” Clarice wondered out loud.” She probably pawned them off.”

“Maybe, but I just gotta know. Mary always hid shit in that space under the floorboards some old houses had.” Grandfather laughed as he recalled. “Actually, Mary saved my ass one time during a police raid. If her old house is still standing. I bet that at least some of that shit is still in there.”

“And if there’s any people in that house?” Clarice asked out loud, knowing full well it was a rhetorical question.

Grandmother ate the last bit of her sandwich before answering. “Well, we’ll get hungry again I’m sure!”

Then Clarice wondered, “So how did you get the appetite Grandpa?”

“It was the war.” Grandpa remembered. “We were on a fishing boat off the coast of Iceland. One night a German U-boat took us out. Our boat was partially afloat, and me and a few other gus clung to the wreckage.” Taking a sniff of the night air he could recall that peculiar aroma from so long ago. “I remember the smell of the ocean mixed with that distinct smell. It was the smell of cooked meat. A few bodies floated by. I remember one in particular, part of it was blown off, and the heat from the explosion burnt some of the flesh. We could all smell the meat. I’m sure we were all thinking it, but I was the first one to say it out loud. Of course, the other survivors thought I was mad.”

Grandfather finished off his meal as he came to the conclusion of his story. “As the night passed, one by one the other survivors faded one by one. By the time the sun came up the next morning, I was the only one left, all the others sank into the sea. I could feel something, something in my whole body. I can’t describe it, but it was almost like I could feel my soul about to leave. As the sun was coming up, I looked out at the surface of the water kissing the horizon, and I could see my parents. They were at their old home in the highlands, sitting on the porch waiting for me. I knew what was about to happen, but I didn’t want to go. I turned away to see one of the bodies floating past me, big burly guy, his frame could have filled up a whole doorway. His arm was blown off from the night’s explosion, and parts of his flesh looked like they were partially cooked. Looking down at the flesh, I bit in, and I stayed alive.”

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