*Nighteyes Like the Dogs We Are*
My name is Jonpui. I was arrested for crimes i do not remember and imprisoned. I think I was arrested by the military or before They came into power, I really cannot say.
I was to be left there, in prison, indefinitely.
It was a mixed prison and unlike other normal -i might add legal- prisons, the males and females were penned in the same building. It wasn’t all bars and metals as you might think, why I call it a prison is beyond me. But the feeling of being caged was so palpable you could taste it in the air.
We were free to roam about, not free as you might think though, just free enough to visit another cell, or to have little chat, or plot, or fight, or have sex.
The people, the wardens, that ran the place didn’t care much for how we lived. They would come in once in a while to check if none of us were trying to escape. I don’t think they brought us food, or clothes, or amenities with which to clean up the place.
I have the feeling that there were but weren’t children there. I think we reared them, like animals, and ate them when they came of age, such was the rate at which we were breeding uncontrollably.
I had my own mate. Her name was Preyina, or was it Preye? We had something that was akin to the love animals have for their temporary mates. I don’t remember how long we were together, I don’t even remember what she looked like but i think her skin was dark as the night whose light did not even reach the insides of the prison.
I tried escaping once, but failed. I was caught along with one of the other prisoners in a control room of sorts. The man in charge, he had a prominent mustache atop his deeply blue-almost black-suited uniform. He saw us and I made a joke that we both found funny, then he locked us back up.
Back in, I spent the rest of my time with Preye, I am not comfortable discussing the things we did, and though she said she did not have any diseases, I do not understand my apprehension.
I think she was or would have been pregnant at the time.
I tried escaping again and this time succeeded, I don’t know how, I don’t know why but I found myself on a road a ways from the prison. I tried walking carefully, thankful for the cover of night, I did not want anyone to see me. I feel like I was clothed or naked or that I was both and none at the same time.
Then I heard the train’s horn, blaring to life not too far from where I stood. It was a military train, although how I know this is beyond me, and I knew it did not bode well for the prison or the wardens or the land that the prison stood upon or anywhere that was anywhere around where I was standing.
I went into a panic and I started to run, searching for cover and trying to hide from the train before it caught wind of me.I jumped into the gutter that was beside a massive gate, I think it was painted in white and in red yet some parts of my mind register blue along the lines.
I hid in this gutter till the wee hours of dawn crept over the sky, when there is still enough dark out that I wouldn’t have been that easy to notice.Three men came out of this gate at some point, while I lay there shivering and panting like a caged animal, trying to control my noisy breathing.
They appeared to be searching for something. One of them went in the other direction whilst the other two, an old man and a youth, came around where I was, searching and chatting amiably.My memory starts to fail me here, but I remember it was not until broad daylight when they found me.
They did not look upon me as one would look upon a human being. The old man stood over me, while I huddled in the gutter trying to be as small as I could. He pulled at my skin, my hair and exclaimed that “it”, I invariably, was a rare type of weed with some exotic name I can hardly rap my thoughts around much less my tongue.
He called the other men and all three of them swaggered to the gate where they met with two other men whom the old man gave instructions before walking off with the first two.All of a sudden, the taller of the two left at the gate stared straight at me and pointed that I should come.
“The coast is clear”, he seemed to mouth. I was scared, I had a feeling that whether or not I went to him I was still an animal caught in the corner and so I went. I emerged from the gutter and walked timidly over to the man at the gate. He smiled, a satisfactory smile; the kind of smile when the rat whose been eating your crops finally trips the trap, the kind of smile that would look dashing on a wolf, the kind of smile I saw on the faces of my fellow prisoners when their children came of devouring age.
I knew something was wrong but I was resigned to whatever fate had put in store for me. I guess I was just tired, so tired that thinking of it now saps the strength from my consciousness. I knew nothing good would come from any of it, from whether I had stayed and lived the rest of my life under the supremacy of the wardens, or whether I was caught by the military in their passing, or whether or not I went to the man when he beckoned me.
The first three were behind me and efficiently surrounded me. They herded me inside, all along making comments and jokes, throwing remarks here there and everywhere while I followed them with my head bowed into their compound.
The old man pointed a sachet of something at me. I knew it was poison, he did not say it was poison. We stared at each other like men who knew that what was in the sachet was neither sugar nor salt. I took it from him and upended the contents into my mouth, I swallowed and I waited and waited for death to claim his lost sheep.
A boy came in, while the other men held their breaths in anticipation of my death. He was holding a ball, I do not remember having a fondness for ball games but I was overcome with the need to throw a ball one last time before I became the passenger of another ship.
And so I started to weep, crying for the boy to please pass me the ball so I could throw a thrown ball one last time. I wanted to be remembered as the one who threw the ball before he died. He assented and I accepted the ball and told him to stand some ways off, tried to tell him to stand some ways off but my body was getting weak and everything was cold and losing color.
He understood anyway and I made a pitiful throw that did not get anywhere near him before the blackness took me. He must have thought me a foolish pitiful creature because that was how I felt. I think I just wanted to remind myself that I used to be human before any of it happened.
I crawled blindly, and crawled and crawled and crawled till I hit a wall, maybe the fence, and I lay there like a kicked dog, waiting with night eyes as Death ripped me from the land of the living.
And so I died.
I wonder if Preye was pregnant, maybe my seed still walks the Earth, maybe he is freer than I was and happy in the hands of a woman he loves as a human being, or maybe he was just eaten like the rest of the children in the prison as Preye sought another mate.