Shut The Fuck Up And Die!
minutes and . . . “
    “ You want dry pants or not?”
    Daryl nodded his head and snapped his mouth
    “ Okay, then . . . as far as Mama knows
we went the whole twenty minutes, okay?”
    Rather than waiting for a reply, the man
grasped one end of the blue canvass in his meaty mists and, without
hesitation or ceremony, gave it a sharp pull. The rolled up canvas
spun away from him like toilet paper across the bathroom floor,
growing smaller with each revolution, until it was laid out flat
against the forest floor.
    Now that it had been unfurled, the body that
had been wrapped tightly within its confines stared up at clouds
the color of dirty cotton with eyes that would never see again. Its
flesh was pale and bruised and sections hung from the carcass like
tattered ribbons. The thing's mouth was opened in a silent scream
and barbed wire coiled around the skull like some sort of grisly
gag. The little twists of metal dimpled the skin around the cheeks
and the corners of the lips and dried trickles of blood surrounded
the punctures like rust stains. Constellations of stab wounds
dotted the torso and a wide gash curved across the stomach as if
someone had attempted to carve a smile into the thing's gut. Below
this was the severed stump of a penis, cut so cleanly that it
looked as if the organ had been cleaved off near the base of the
pale and wrinkled sacks that hung just below.
    “ You sure this is far enough, Earl? I
mean, if someone finds him, we . . . .”
    Earl grunted in disgust and rubbed his
stomach as he looked over the body.
    “ Ain't like nobody's gonna smell him or
nothing. Not as cold as it's been. And Hell . . . you see them
tracks. This time tomorrow and it's gonna be picked clean. We come
back in a week's time, gather what's left of the bones, and nobody
will be none the wiser.”
    “ Sure died hard, didn't he? Glad we
still got the bitch, though . . . .”
    Earl ignored the grin that spread
across his brother's face and began freeing the tarp from the
weight of the corpse. It'd been nearly forty minutes since he'd had
an opportunity to relieve himself and his bladder felt as if he
were about to pass shards of ice; he wanted nothing more than to be
done with the work at hand, back in the truck, and heading toward
the warmth and comfort of home. Mama would have a fire crackling in
the hearth, hot coffee, and maybe even soup if they were lucky: she
tended to reward the boys when they'd been exceptionally good and,
in Earl's mind, going out on a night like this counted as above and beyond . Maybe she'd even
let him have a go at the woman after his numb skin had a chance to
    “ How much life you reckon she got left
in her? She's been lookin' pale lately. Probably have to find
another before long.”
    The sound of Daryl's prattling buzzed in
Earl's head like an annoying gnat that had become lodged somewhere
between his eardrum and skull. Each syllable caused him to inwardly
cringe as his muscles tensed in response: couldn't the fool ever
just shut the fuck up? Even for a minute?
    “ Hope the next one's just as pretty.
And brunette. I loves me some brunettes . . . .”
    Earl took a deep breath as he rolled the tarp
back up and tried mentally counting to ten. A wind had picked up
and between its chill and the barely suppressed urge to beat the
mortal fuck out of his little brother, he'd begun to tremble. The
quivering caused his already stressed bladder to tingle and ache,
as if the flow were building pressure within his body and would
soon burst free.
    “ Remember that one brunette, Earl? Had
the tattoo of the little stick figure and lawnmower right above her
bush? 'Bout the cutest damn thing I ever did see. Wonder if Mama
would let me draw one of them on the next one?
    Earl would be damned if he was going to stand
out there in the cold and piss himself like his sorry excuse for a
brother had.. Kicking the tarp to the side, he unzipped his fly and
closed his eyes as the warm liquid surged out. The

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