Xiphoid, Y-bone

A half picture of Cara naked on a bed

I want to make it to the end of this so I’m combining the last few missing letters.

He woke suddenly, going from blackness to bright clarity in seconds. The pain hit seconds after he opened his eyes. His head, his fucking head was killing him.


His attempts to rise were stymied by frozen limbs. No, not frozen limbs. The rattle of chains at his wrists and ankles, leather straps and thick bands about his waist and torso. Glancing down the line of his body, he was shirtless and filthy. Searching the stark room, searching his blank memory, he tried to figure out where he was. He’d been finishing a job, a hit when everything had gone black.



A low voice answered and he turned toward it. Him? Maybe, it was hard to tell. In a room so bright, the person was a dark splotch. No light touched the corner they sat in, blocking his ability to see.

“I’ve been waiting a while for you to wake up.”

There was something in that voice that chilled him. A certain familiarity that tickled at the back of his mind. He strained his eyes to see, just making out the outline of a figure. Even that glimpse triggered his hindbrain and the need to flee sent a rush of adrenaline through his blood.

“What do you want from me?” There was no disguising the tremble in his voice.

He heard the rub of fabric and the soft noise that he realized was laughter. “What do I want?”

There was movement, a shuffling and rustle of more fabric. After a moment, the darkness seemed to lighten and the man came into view. He gasped at the man’s appearance. The face was a puzzle scrambled and linked back together. Clothing hide what was also an amalgam of mismatched or missing parts. It was the dead eyes that caused fear to punch him in his gut. Bile rose up in his throat.

A hand missing the index and pinkie was on his chest, pressing into his sternum. “I want your bones. I’m missing a few and yours will do nicely.”

“Please.” He screamed when the man revealed a bone saw in his other hand. “You… you don’t really want to do this.”

Mashed lips formed a smile that revealed broken teeth. A black tongue darted out between the gaps to wet those dry lips.

“But I do want to.” The saw was at his breastbone, digging deep without moving. “I really really want to.”


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