Kramer cackled like a loon, and Jones growled like an animal as they were dragged away to separate vehicles. They both had their hands tied behind their back and Kramer was dragged by two men and thrown into the back of a truck. Jones was dragged by his long hair, feeling strands ripping out of the scalp. The dragger stopped to look down at Jones with his dark blue eyes. He studied Jones like he was a fish in a bowl. Jones only noticed that the dragger had taken his knife and was wearing it in his belt.
“You sure are pretty, boy. Hair like this makes my marbles jump a throb. Yes sir! Yes sir!” The man said, blowing his dragon breath in Jones’s face. The yellowed teeth were picks in his mouth, but his eyes were dark blue and seemed to vibrate in the pupils. Jones had heard of these types before. A sickening breed of cannibal that made Head Hunters look like saints.
The cannibal began to smell Jones’s hair, and Jones let him get lost in his locks, so he could sink his teeth into the cannibal’s ear and rip it off. “YOU FUCK!” The man screamed, falling away from Jones in the dirt. Blood poured down his head and collected in the white of his shirt. Jones spat the ear from his mouth, blood worn on his lips, grinning. The beating Jones would receive from the man was worth it.
As the cannibal beat him, another man shouted at him. “Quit it! If you bring him all bloody to Ivy she might have the same thing done to you!”
The dragger looked down at Jones, with distance. “I’ll skull fuck you before I scrape your brains!”
“I look forward to it.”
Meanwhile, in the other truck, Kramer was laid flat on his back, with all his weapons removed. An oily muscled man stood over him. His skin was colored like cinnamon and Kramer bet his scalp would look beautiful drying from his window. He would be sure to keep it later. “Your fat friend was stuck under the car. We unfortunately had to cut him out, piece by piece. As he said this, Kramer saw Spencer’s severed head being carried into the truck.
“Well, I guess ginger prick got what he deserved. What are you going to do with us?”
The muscled man smiled as he cracked his knuckles. “Well, your fat friend will be made into soap, and the meat will be fed to the dogs. You and your friend will be featured at our feast this afternoon. We needed two more to appease our Goddess. All our followers will be there. It will be a bigger feast than last year. Your skulls will probably be used as sex toys or bowls. We will probably make canvas out of your back skin.”
The muscled man explained this without a flinch. He has said this before, maybe a thousand times and has performed it just as much. Kramer knew he wasn’t joking, but he didn’t so much care, for he was more distracted by the girl standing to the side of him. As the muscled man was talking, she walked over and began sucking on his left nipple. She was a short girl with a skeleton like body and short strawberry blonde hair.
As the truck began rolling, all the other cannibal hunters packed into the trucks. Kramer watched as this muscled man and girl started going at it. It wasn’t hard to miss since they decided to use Kramer as a mattress. As the muscled man yanked his pants off, Kramer witnessed a man who had mutilated his own penis. It looked he had sawed the head down the middle, giving the appearance of two heads.
As he began to thrust into the girl Kramer said, “Hey girl. If you reach back, you can unzip my zipper and I can slide into your other hole”
“Don’t talk to her!” The muscled man said, and struck Kramer across the face and bloodied his nose.
“Blood play! My favorite!” Kramer said, and used his head to rub blood across the girl’s back.
The muscled man struck Kramer multiple times and of course he spoke again. “Oh, shit! I forgot the safe word!” He felt the man’s fists hit him several more times. “Was it beach? Was it skunk? Maybe ravioli? Maybe monkey balls? Bacon strips?” This went on for several minutes, till Kramer could no longer speak, but he still cackled through a mouth full of blood.
As the trucks pulled the separate scalp collectors to the same destination, they both had secrets on how to get free. At any given moment, they could free themselves and possible escape the truck. The thought was provoking, and the common person would attempt it. They were Scalp Collectors and were above average at their skills. They knew patience was the safest route, because it was best not to panic. One of the largest tests from their training was about patience. Their teacher was a retired old Scalp Collector who went by the code name, Crook Shaw. During his prime, Crook and his late partner were the best Scalp Collectors that had ever lived. After his partner was killed when he stepped on a land mine, Shaw began to teach the up and comers. He was a rough teacher who would beat mistakes out of you, whip your back bare and force you to go days without sleeping. He was the weapons trainer and a survivalist master. His survival skills were the keys to his passing, his training, and his biggest test was his patience test.
He stated, “One day, some men are going to come and take you away. When they do, they will torture you, using any method. Normally, in these situations you would escape and kill everyone. This is not a killing test. Your test is to find a means to escape them and report back to me. If you escape the proper way, you are well on your way to being Scalp Collectors. If you use the wrong ways, then you will be punished. The right way to accomplish this, is with patience. If you do not escape, you will be expelled from the school. Now, these men, may not get you tonight, maybe not tomorrow, or hell, a month from now, but they know who you are, and they are coming. I wish you the best of luck.”
Most victims of the test were dragged through the dirt with wire wrapped around their toes. The easiest way to escape was simple. Rip your toes off. These people were crippled and never became Scalp Collectors. Jones and Kramer used patience and found a proper way to escape.
The trucks arrived in front of a church. Jones was kicked out of the back, “Shit, another church. Be more creative next time!”
The one eared cannibal dragged Jones be his hair again, towards the front door. Kramer followed him, his face a bloody mess, cackling as the pulled. “You people think you are savages, fuck, we are the real savages. Leading us to your leader is the worse fucking thing you could ever do. Most of you will die….and you have no idea!”
“Shut up!” The short hair girl yelled and stomped Kramer in the balls. “I will feed you your guts like spaghetti.
“I only eat tangerines with my sghetti!” Kramer yelled and spat his blood into her mouth. She screamed and spat the blood on the ground.
“Bitch be drinking blood but is afraid of my spit.”
Both Scalp Collectors were dropped at the back of the church. They were surprised to see that the church was filled. Every seat was taken by different people, not dressed like savages but in their normal every day garments, some were even in suits and dresses. They turned to look at the commotion at the back of the church. Someone called out, “Dinner is served. The audience clapped their hands and cheered. A couple of the cannibal hunters placed their weapons on a steal table to the left of Jones. One was carrying Kramer’s lightning bolt shaped knife and seemed memorized by the blade. On his back, he was carrying Spencer’s bag of credits. Jones and Kramer both eyed this with pleasure. The one eared hunter stood in front of Jones. His scalping blade was in the front of his belt. It should be too close for comfort, but the dumb hunter felt safe because he personally tied Jones’s hands behind his back. This is the biggest mistake they did that day. Since both collectors were forced on their knees, they had access to their escape.
“I’m going to bite your ear off first, boy!”
“Is that going to be before I bite your nose off and escape. You are running out of time!”
The hunter all stood in front of them and laughed. The Scalp Collectors counted twelve armed hunters and two more standing at the front of the church. Easy.
“Order!” A man yelled walking to church podium. “It looks that our Hunters have brought us the rest of our dinner for us. They were tipped off that some foolish men were traveling the Devil’s Alley. Our trusty friend Allocer and his lovely friend tipped us off! The rest of our pigs have been slaughtered and are currently being cooked in the basement below. These two will be ceremonially eaten to welcome out feast. Our Goddess Ivy will feast on their hearts like tradition has shown. They are Scalp Collectors, so their meat might be a little tough, but we will make screamers out of them no doubt.”
“I am a moaner!” Kramer yelled back.
“We shall see Pig!” Allocer said, walking down the aisle. His silver hair hanging on his shoulders. His smile made the blue crosses on his cheeks appear awkward, almost how awkward it was for Jones to see Amaryllis following him, flexing her razor fingers as she did.
“Pig!” Allocer said walking over to Kramer. “You have no idea it is for me to see you like this, all bloody and broken. It’s good to see you so filled of pride.”
“Wait till I get free.” Kramer said.
Amaryllis walked over to Jones. She looked stunning, her tanned skin covered in a long silver dress, her eyes bright with a sick love. She bent down in front of jones, close enough for him to smell her intoxicating scent. “This will hurt me, My Love. I asked to personally have your cock.”
“Maybe it will taste like what you remember. That’s only because you don’t get to eat my heart out like you tried before. Another girl gets that right.”
She whispered to him, “If they knew you like I do, they should have killed you when they had the chance. I am betting your heart will still be up for grabs before this day is over.” She kissed him on the tip of his nose and stood up.
“Fair well boys! It’s been a real pleasure knowing you. We are going to watch from the side!” Allocer said.
“Order!” The man at the podium cried. “It is time to introduce our Goddess! It is a real pleasure this year, for I Dokken, oversee bringing her forth!
“His name is Dokken?” Kramer said, confused.
“OUR GODDESS IVY, QUEEN OF THE CANNIBALS AND THE MEAT MEN, FOLLOWER OF THE WITCH GODS, TAKER OF SKULLS, DEVOURER OF HEARTS, MASTER OF THE HUNT AND SEX BEAST OF THE RED DESIRE! COME FORTH FOR US!”
The crowd cheered as if the anticipation brought forth a surge of an entrance, something they could tell people for years, but that is not what occurred. She simply walked out with her arms raised and took the podium. She was a brunette, but all the hair was pulled back into a single long braid, that went all the way down to the floor. The gold jewels that lined her ivory skin, gave her an Egyptian look, or based on what the Scalp Collectors knew of Egypt. The makeup was caked as if to make her a great beauty, but she lacked the interest or the raw power of a real woman. She wore an odd bikini top. It was made with the faces of skulls, and covered each breast except the nipples stuck out of the eye sockets. She was an interesting sight to the Scalp Collectors.
“Greetings my children! Welcome to our yearly feast!” Everyone cheered, children were raised in the air and she pointed to each one with a smile.
“This is your Goddess?” Kramer said. “Looks like someone brought a hem to the rooster house!”
Everyone froze in place.
“What?” Kramer asked within the silence.
Jones turned to him, “That is not a saying!”
“Yes, it is! It is what they used to say in the old days.”
“No, no one has ever said that!”
“Yes, they did! That is how we get chicken eggs!” Kramer screamed.
“How? A horny chicken walks into a rooster house and all the roosters take turns with her until she produces eggs?”
“No!” Jones screamed. “That’s not how it happens!
“Yes, it is!”
The muscled cannibal lost his temper. “Be quiet!” He slapped Kramer in the back of his head.
“Trust me, you can keep doing that to him and he will keep talking. He has the need to talk to everybody” It’s kinda annoying.” Jones said.
“Exactly!” Kramer said. “We have to talk about how I think your Goddess is the equivalent of a chicken, and how she is about to let everyone in this room how a go on her!”
This time Kramer took a several stomps to the stomach till he was on his back. He laughed through the whole experience.
“BE QUIET!” Dokken bellowed. “THIS IS OUR GODDESS IVY! QUUEN OF THE CANNIBALS AND THE ME- “
“We already heard this fucking part! Just get to the killing already!” These words were spoken by Jones, a surprise even to himself.
“Yeah, Bokken Dokken, whatever your fucking name is!” Kramer said, moving to his side to help himself up.
The confusing nature of this conversation the Scalp Collectors had was entirely intentional. For they were distracting their captors from what they were doing. While they spoke to each other, they were blinking in rapid unique fashion. They spoke in a language they constructed on their own with winks and blinks. During this, their bound hands laid motionless on the back of their boots, slowly pulling the razor blades they had hidden in the skin of the boots. They rubbed their bound wrists against this, freeing themselves. They both were free, just waiting, being patient, just like they were taught. The whole while they devised their plan of escape. It wasn’t a smart plan, but they could operate it.
Ivy returned to her speech, completely unaffected by what had just occurred. “As I said, welcome to the yearly feast. We have many activities to attend to before the eating, mainly the sacrifice-.”
“The one eared cannibal lowered himself in front of Jones. The blood from his missing ear had dried down his neck, and browned in his shirt. He whispered carefully, his rotten breath was filling his nostrils with dread. “The killing starts real soon. Yes sir, yes sir. I think I will start with the ear.”
“Why not the nose?” Jones asked, headbutting him right in the spot with a satisfying crunch.
The cannibal fell back holding his nose, leaving Jones’s knife in his belt unattended. To everyone’s surprise, Jones stole the knife from the belt and slipped the tip across the cannibal’s throat. One of the other hunters ran at Jones and he stuck the blade through his belly, pulling him around and spilling his innards out.
Two armed guns from the stage fired at Jones, but he used the dying cannibal as a human shield as he back tracked to the steal table, flipping it on its side, spilling his weapons to the floor. Jones dropped the body and dove behind it to take cover.
Meanwhile, Kramer attacked too. He knew he couldn’t over power the muscled man with his own strength, so he took a note from Jones and bit him in the throat. His teeth tore through the skin as he pulled the neck open, like a wolf ripping apart a rabbit. Kramer threw the cannibal back and ran towards the opposite table, throwing down for cover, grabbing his hand gun and blunderbuss. The first cannibal tried to get him with Kramer’s own knife, but he jumps shot him through the head before he could use it. Kramer grabbed his knife and began firing.
Jones found his pistol and fired at the hunter’s dropping them where they stood. He fired one shot at Dokken, hitting him in the throat. Ivy was nowhere in sight. Jones ran from his side of the table, firing his shotgun as he did, drilling a few of the hunters down. He slides into the spot Kramer was. They circled into the corner of the church, hiding behind thick pillars. The towns people seemed to be armed as well, as they rained shots at the pillars, chips and dust breaking off the pillars. Clouds of dust were so thick no one could see. Kramer could make out several children all holding guns and firing wildly at them.
“Really wish I had my tommy gun right now.” Kramer said.
“Out gunned, out manned and back into a corner. This is not good for us.” Jones said, looking around. “You think Allocer is still around? I would love to end him right now.”
“Can’t tell. You think I could use my blunderbuss right now. Maybe blow like twenty of them down. Even the odds a bit?”
“How the fuck, do you think that is going to work?” Jones said.
“Watch and learn.” Kramer said, shouldering the gun and spinning around to fire around the pillar.
Before he could fire the gun, an explosion blew apart the side wall of the church. Anyone standing near that wall was killed instantly and several lifeless corpses flew across the building. The air turned to smoke, and the bright light of the sun shined into the church. Grenades were thrown through the hole and exploded into the crowd of people.
“Run for the hole!” Kramer said and took off into the smoke oh what could have been a suicidal approach to what was about to happen.
Jones followed, but was unsure. If they stayed they were easily killed and if they jumped through the hole they could also be killed. The idea did cut into his brain that this could very well be the day they die. Shots flew bouncing around as the Scalp Collectors found the wall and worked their way to the hole. Fire had ignited in the church and the screams and cries of the families inside were sickening.
When they approached the hole, they held their hands up, holding their dog tags in one hand. Several vehicles could be seen on the outside, mounted guns and armed soldiers stood on each end. A bald woman towered over them as she approached. She was wearing large black sunglasses and he facial expression went well with the muscled arms she had exposed. A large logo was patched over the front of her tan jacket, and all the other soldier matched as well. “Freedom Fighters.” Kramer said. “I guess we should be glad to see these guys.”
“You don’t think she is still mad at us?” Jones said.
The bald woman drew her katana at her side as she walked up to them.
“Well I had sex with her because we needed to distract her while you scalped her brother.” Kramer said.