Reaping What Grows

Discussion in 'The Queen of Cups' started by mek, Aug 22, 2016.

  1. Vivi

    Vivi Proud Member of the "Break Katters' Nose" Club

    Vivi reaches over with her free hand to try and unstrap her other arm, but it's too far away. She keeps reaching for it desperately, tears starting to roll down her cheeks, knowing she only has a handful of seconds before the doctor takes her arm back again.
    • Like x 1
  2. Katters

    Katters Has never made a candle

    Katters pokes something against the girl’s back, and there’s more give to her skin than there should be. With a thoughtful hum, Katters comes back around to the front of the chair, and sits.
    Her stool slides a little, and Katters stops it by grabbing the girl’s hand to anchor herself. She grins, tearing the package off a new scalpel with her teeth.
  3. Vivi

    Vivi Proud Member of the "Break Katters' Nose" Club

    Vivi flinches a little and tries again to pull away, but there isn't anywhere for her to go.
  4. Katters

    Katters Has never made a candle

    Katters holds the girl’s hand like she’s challenging her to an arm wrestling match, but pulls her arm straight and still — as still as she can, at any rate.
    With the scalpel, she draws a quick line down the girl’s forearm, starting at the initial incision, and ultimately trailing down her thumb, the blade catching on her thumbnail.
    She sets the scalpel down, and twists the girl’s arm to get a look at the results.
  5. Vivi

    Vivi Proud Member of the "Break Katters' Nose" Club

    Vivi makes a small noise but doesn't resist.
  6. Katters

    Katters Has never made a candle

    Katters runs her thumb down the new incision. The tourniquet is doing its job — while there is blood, and it smears over the girl’s skin as Katters goes, it’s not at all what one would expect from such a severe wound.
    Her thumb presses into the cut, burying itself into the girl’s flesh, blood flooding over the tip as it passes. At the first incision, Katters twists her hand, jerking her thumb up and under the girl’s skin, there, separating it from muscle.
  7. Vivi

    Vivi Proud Member of the "Break Katters' Nose" Club

    Vivi struggles against the straps, trying to pull her arm away. She's still managing not to scream, but the effort it's taking shows on her face.
  8. Katters

    Katters Has never made a candle

    Katters peels more skin away, curling all of her fingers underneath and inside.

    She looks up, and examines the girl’s face while she circles the forearm.

    “I’ve never done this before,” she says. “Always kind of wanted to.”
  9. Vivi

    Vivi Proud Member of the "Break Katters' Nose" Club

    Vivi screams, tears streaming down her face as she tries not to look, not to think about it, not to feel it.
  10. Katters

    Katters Has never made a candle

    Katters has a hank of the girl’s skin in her fist, now, and she pulls even more of it loose — slowly, so it comes away in one piece.

    “Are you ready?” she asks, standing over the stool. She sweeps it away from herself with her leg, giving herself room.

    She doesn’t wait for a response — or, she takes the girl’s screams as acceptance. She positions the girl’s arm straight out and takes the other side of the flap of skin in her other hand. And she yanks.

    The girl’s skin tears down her arm like an opera glove.
  11. Vivi

    Vivi Proud Member of the "Break Katters' Nose" Club

    Vivi's not even trying to get her arm away anymore, her whole body tense and still as she continues to scream.
  12. Katters

    Katters Has never made a candle

    The skin stops at the girl’s wrist with a tug. It’s wrapped, inside-out, around her hand.

    There’s a lot of blood.

    Katters clutches the free end of the grotesque sleeve, pulling at it experimentally. It gives, a little, exposing another inch of bone and tendon.

    She takes a breath, then yanks again, throwing herself back and away from the girl. She slips, falls into a counter, a corner jabbing between her ribs, but she’s left holding the girl’s hand from across the room. Part of it, anyway.

    The skin came away in almost one piece. A strip of skin is still covering half of the girl's thumb, and much of her middle finger is in place. But the rest of her hand is red and bleeding, twitching tendons, missing fingertips.

    Katters drops the skin and walks back over to the girl’s chair. She sits down next to her.
  13. Vivi

    Vivi Proud Member of the "Break Katters' Nose" Club

    Vivi stops screaming, keeping her face turned away so she can't look at what's left of her hand.
  14. Katters

    Katters Has never made a candle

    Katters reaches out to the girl’s arm, hesitant, her hand hovering over the exposed flesh. She reconsiders and pulls back, before reaching out with her other hand.

    She slips her fingers around the girl’s hand, taking it in a loose handshake grip, and twists her arm until the girl’s hand is facing palm-up.

    “Flexors,” she says, outlining a group of muscles in the girl’s forearm, tracing them in the air with her finger. “Carpi radialis,” she continues, her finger running from near the girl’s elbow, where she still has skin, down to her wrist, where she doesn’t. Then back up the side of her arm. “Carpi ulnaris. Digitorum profundus,” she finishes, waving her hand at the other side of the arm.
    • Like x 1
  15. Vivi

    Vivi Proud Member of the "Break Katters' Nose" Club

    Vivi doesn't have the energy to scream anymore. She doesn't hear the doctor talking; she's barely aware the doctor is even still there.
  16. Katters

    Katters Has never made a candle

    “That’s how your hand moves,” Katters says. Her tone has a friendly, but professional quality to it, like she’s the host of a show on PBS. “For the most part, everything your hand does is controlled by something outside of it — your brain, your nerves, your arm.”

    She shifts her grip, letting the girl’s palm see light. “The thenar and hypothenar muscles are in your hand, of course. And I don’t want to downplay their importance, but they couldn’t do their job without the aforementioned. They need the muscles, and the nerves, and the tendons in your arm to work.”

    She pauses, admiring the gore on display. When she speaks again, her voice is quieter, more serious. “We put so much of ourselves in our hands. They’re so important. They’re how we interact with the world, how we shape it, turn it into whatever it is we need it to be. Whatever suits us.”

    She lets the girl’s hand go.
  17. Vivi

    Vivi Proud Member of the "Break Katters' Nose" Club

    It falls limply down to where it had been before the doctor unstrapped it.
  18. Katters

    Katters Has never made a candle

    Katters sits for a moment before standing suddenly, slapping her palms against her thighs and leaving dark red handprints on her pants.

    “Shit!” she says, rushing around behind the girl.

    There’s a racket as she rummages through the chest she’d brought in with her, and then she pokes at the girl’s back with something. The salve has left the area too soft, too pliable.

    “I think this is fine,” she says to herself. “Yeah, this is fine.”

    The poking becomes more invasive, the skin separating around the instrument as Katters pushes it into the girl’s back.

    “I can work with this.”
  19. Vivi

    Vivi Proud Member of the "Break Katters' Nose" Club

    Vivi doesn't react.
  20. Katters

    Katters Has never made a candle

    When she’s finished, Katters comes back around to the girl’s side. She’s replaced her gloves, though her sleeves still bear signs of her macabre activities, and she’s carrying a new tray stocked with dressing tools.

    She bandages the girl’s arm. As she finishes, there’s a knock at the door, and the guard pokes his head in.

    “Hey,” he says, “I got you some chips.”

    “Watch your step,” Katters says, putting the trays away. “And great, I’m famished.”

    Phelan steps around the girl’s discarded skin. “Oh, wow. What’s that for?”


    “Should it be on the ground?”

    “No, there was something of an emergency, and I dropped it.”


    Katters retrieves the “sample” and puts it in the crate, before removing her gloves and washing her hands.

    “So, are you done?” Phelan asks.

    “Yeah, you can take it back to its room. Make sure it eats, it’ll need the energy.”
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