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Miss The Misery

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Break On Through to the Other Side

It’s not a decision she comes to rationally. Rational thinking has no place inside Murder House. There wasn’t a point A that lead Violet to point B, a thought process that made her see exactly why she wanted to do what she felt needed to be done. She didn’t have an epiphany in the middle of the night that illustrated a path to salvation, mainly because salvation wasn’t possible. After all, this is not a place where dreams come true. It’s a place where dreams come to die. Dreams of second chances and Hollywood stardom and escapes to colleges back East and of perfect little blonde-haired boys have no place here.

No. This is a place for nightmares.

This is a place where second chances end with the entire family in caskets. This is a place where perfect little blonde-haired boys turn into monsters that claw your eyes out.

There are many things she resents about the other women in the house - curved bodies with full breasts, the raw sexuality that only comes from genuine experience, and the fact that more than half had found a way to reproduce.

She’s the most jealous of Nora.

She wasn’t content with her own little monster in the basement and proceeded to make another. Not the rape by-product that lives next door.

Tate.

She wants him to be her monster. She wants him to belong to her.

Which is why she decides that, in spite of all the goodness she knows she’s inspired in him, the only way she can ever be happy in this house is if she drives him completely and totally insane.

She’s just as fucked up as Nora. She can make a monster, too.

A Filthy Goddamn Horror Show

A shift has been made, a slow one, a pole reversal or new alignment of the cosmos. Most people wouldn’t notice, but Tate’s the exception. He’s always been the exception when it comes to her. The only one she was willing to let in to her heart, her bed, her brain, her cunt. Naturally, he’d be the first to know when her day to day routine changes. He’s spent years watching Violet in the house. She used to spend time with her parents, smoke, read, stare blankly at the walls.

New Violet does much of the same, only now she does it partially clothed.

Gone are the cardigans, the floor length skirts. They’ve been replaced by tank tops with no bra and a pair of panties coupled with an oversized t-shirt. It’s like she simply decided it’s no longer worth getting dressed.

After she takes a bath she rubs herself dry with towels, longer than is strictly necessary, because she knows he is watching. She spends extra time pulling the pilled cotton over tender pink nipples and back and forth between her thighs, as if that area is particularly wet.

He knows it is - he can smell it - but that’s beyond the point.

When she comes back later the towels are still in a pile on the floor where she had left them, but now they’ve dried sticky and firm to the touch.

It’s his version of a love letter.

The day she abandons her clothes altogether and parades around the house naked, his dick finally does what it’s been threatening to do for months and he literally cums in his pants.

It’s not until later, when he’s tossing his jeans and boxers into Moira’s wash, that he starts to wonder what prompted this turn of events. He’s pretty sure it relates to him, in some way.

Or at least, he hopes it does.

Curiosity Killed the Cat

Chad’s bored.

He misses living. In life, he always had a bustling social calendar, filled with lunch dates and coffee klatches and hours spent sitting at restaurant tables while bottles of wine dwindled to nothing but the tannins left in the bottle. In the house, there’s nothing to do, nobody to talk to. He and Moira get along all right, he guesses, but she’s far from a friend. He’s got his “husband” too, of course, but Pat’s never been what you would call a sparkling conversationalist.

The house is empty, been that way for awhile. June and Ward Cleaver have long ceased giving a fuck about scaring away new residents, but the house’s reputation has preceded it and nobody’s looking to buy. Maybe things would be less dull if they had electricity and cable. Then he could watch TV, at least, or a movie. Porn maybe, he thinks with a grin. He’s got enough stored fantasies and memories that he’s never without material when he’s feeling horny and ready to jerk off, but it would be nice to add a few new images of cumshots into the mix.

He’s sitting at the table and nursing a glass of wine slowly (he’s forced to ration the stock he purchases every Halloween) when he hears moans drifting up the stairs from the basement.

He’s curious, and bored. A potentially deadly combination, but he goes anyway.

It’s the voice doing the moaning that he finds the most disarming. It’s Nora.

He’s never heard that bitch say anything outside of: “Where’s my baby?” so he’s seriously intrigued. He tiptoes down the stairs, issuing a hushed “Go away” to her demon offspring as he passes, and heads towards one of the sequestered corners of the basement, walled in with a door-shaped opening that he leans next to so he can listen in.

“My word, I really don’t.. I mean, this is hardly appropriate but I’ve simply been alone a very long time and I simply cannot go without companionship any longer. There are names for this, you know. They’ll call me a slut. Strumpet. Lady of the night.”

Chad grins and tries to stifle his laughter at Nora’s babbling. He’s surprised. He’s never seen Charles and Nora fuck but he assumed they did - they were married, after all - but by the way she was talking it sounded like she’d sought the comfort of another dick in the house.

“I really shouldn’t but oh, God, please, right there...”

Who’s she with? Travis? Hugo? Ben? He doubts it’s Tate, he knows all about the little psycho’s Mommy issues. He wishes whoever it was would moan, or grunt, or something - not only so he could figure out who was screwing “the lady of the house,” but because the woman’s moans weren’t enough for him to get it up. A few deep growls would be enough to provide the new masturbatory material he’d been looking for.

“Please... please, don’t stop. Oh God, please...”

He hears the faint rustle of Nora’s pearls mingle with a breathless gasp and he figures afternoon delight is over. He considers disappearing and finding another room but decides against it - he’s too damn curious to learn the identity of Nora’s partner.

When he finds the answer to his question, he’s too shocked to do more than stare.

“Close your mouth, Chad, there’s too many people in this house that will take it as in invitation.”

“Violet,” he stammers. “What... who...”

“Pick a pronoun and go with it.”

He shakes his head. “Fine. Why?

She looks over his shoulder and deliberately sticks her fingers in her mouth, licking them clean. “Because,” she says, eyes fixed on a point across the basement, “now he’s not the only motherfucker in the house.”

He can’t see the person this little display is for, but he knows he’s there.

He waits until she’s gone and Nora’s blustered past him and up the stairs before he sinks to the floor, head buried in his hands.

Fuck. This house is full of fucking surprises.

Tricky Dick

“Jesus fucking Christ, you’re really good at that.”

Pat rolls his eyes but keeps sucking, his tongue rolling underneath the head of Ben’s cock. Ben’s lucky Pat loves dick so much. He’s one of the few that genuinely enjoys giving blowjobs. There’s just something about dick, man. The feel, the taste - it fucking does things to him. When he was younger, he’d fucked chicks, but he’d always noticed if a hot guy was in the periphery. First, he’d tried to convince himself that he was just really comfortable in his sexuality. When he’d searched for gay porn on the internet, he was curious. When he’d cum harder than he ever thought possible while he was watching a guy get his ass pounded on his computer screen, he thought maybe, maybe, he was bi, if anything. It wasn’t until he satisfied his curiosities by sucking off a gay friend in college that he absolutely knew there was no going back.

He’s gay. Without a doubt.

And as much as he loved Chad, and loves him still, he loves the feeling of a dick in his mouth. He’s never been built for fidelity. That’s the fucking joke, trapped in this goddamn house with his bitchy husband trying to make it work and find some sort of happily ever after at every fucking turn but being thwarted by the fact that all he really wants to do is fuck anybody and everybody’s brains out. This house makes you so goddamn horny, and Pat was a sex addict long before he’d taken his last breath.

When Ben had come to find him after he’d downed a bottle of wine, Pat didn’t complain. He didn’t tease him or go for humor. This was his chance, and the only thing he was going to blow was Ben. He’d sucked him dry with minimal effort and the moans and groans and hair tugging from Ben Harmon lead to scheduling “appointments” for Pat in his former study that have way more to do with getting off than dealing with Pat’s sex addiction.

Still, Pat thinks as he smirks around Ben’s cock, he’d rather engage in therapy of this kind any day of the week.

Pat could feel Ben’s ass tensing underneath his fingertips and swallowed him down to the base, resisting the urge to gag as the head of Ben’s dick made contact with his uvula. Three seconds of enthusiastic sucking later, Ben’s coming with choked gasps and shaking legs.

“Jesus Christ,” Ben pants, trying to steady his breath. “I... I don’t even know what to say.”

“You could start with thank you,” Pat says slyly, standing. He leans in closer, inches away from Ben’s mouth. Ben’s clearly growing way more comfortable with his new sexual proclivities because he doesn’t even flinch as Pat’s breath drifts over his lips. “Or you could think about returning the favor.”

And then, as she always does right when Pat finally thinks he’s going to find out if the good doctor’s mouth is as sweet as it looks, Vivian’s voice echoes from upstairs. “Ben! I need you!”

Like a fucking psychic.

Ben sighs and smiles, threading his hands through Pat’s hair. “Later?” he asks quietly. Pat nods and attempts what he hopes is a sympathetic smile before Ben vanishes from the room.

The second he’s gone, Pat exhales a breathy “fuck” before falling into the leather chair and burying his head in his hands.

“She does it on purpose, you know.”

Pat lazily opens his eyes and sits up, pulling a cigarette from the pack Violet’s offering. “I kinda figured.”

Violet exhales a cloud of smoke and tosses him her lighter. “She’s not stupid. She smells you on him. She tries to call him before you guys get a chance to get out of the blow job stage. Knowing he’s getting blown is one thing, knowing he’s doing the blowing is another.”

Pat shrugs. “Not a hell of a lot I can do about it.”

“No. But I can.”

Pat sits up. “And why would you help me?” he asks, looking at her through narrowed eyes. “You’ve suddenly got an interest in helping your father uncover his buried sexuality?”

“Of course not,” she says, looking disgusted. “But I’d do it for a favor.”

He’s instantly suspicious. Violet’s an okay kid, but she’s dead and in the house, meaning she’s definitely got a layer of fucked up somewhere. The house likes broken toys, not whole ones. It only keeps the ones it likes. “What kind of favor?” he asks warily.

“I need you to fuck Tate.”

Pat snorts. “No deal, princess. Unlike your little loverboy, I don’t get off on rape.”

“It wouldn’t be rape. He’d be willing.”

“Bullshit.”

She sighs. “Listen, I’m not going to get into the whole thing with you,” she says irritably, taking another drag from her cigarette. “You’re just going to have to trust me. Tate’s going to come to you, sooner rather than later, and proposition you. He’s not going to be playing a trick or anything, he’s going to be serious. When he does, you do it. And if you do, I’ll make sure that Vivian is completely and totally occupied during your next session with Ben.”

He considers this. Truth is, he’s dying to fuck somebody in the house. It’s been a decade since he’d had sex with Chad and Halloween only comes once a year. And Tate’s far from hideous. He’s a pretty boy, twink-like. Pat always did have a type.

“If I find out you’re fucking with me...” he warns, shaking his head.

“I’m not,” she says, hopping off the desk. She walks towards the door, pausing before she reaches for the handle, the conversation evidently over now that she knows she’s going to get what she wants.

“And Pat?” she asks, looking over her shoulder at him. He cocks his head to the side, listening.

“Make it hurt.”

And with that, she’s gone.

Between An Incubus And A Hard Place

It’s not that she’s a meddler in the affairs of others - she’s not. Overall, Hayden doesn’t give a fuck about 90% of the shit that happens in this goddamn hellhole on a daily basis. She ignores Nora and Charles, because why fucking bother, she talks to Elizabeth because she thinks she’s kind of sweet, she fucks Dallas and Hugo because she can and she’s bored and because there’s nothing else to do. Everyone else mostly exists in the periphery for her. There are only a handful of people she actually pays attention to.

Ben, because she still loves him.

Vivian, because she still wants to get rid of her.

Violet, because she’s one of the ways to get to Ben.

And Tate, because he’s the way to get to Violet.

She watches Ben and waits for something interesting to happen. She’s got almost a sixth sense about it, she knows when major shit is going down because she’ll be staring at the love of her life and her spidey sense will tingle and she’ll find herself drawn to the basement, the attic, or Violet’s room.

It’s the latter she’s pulled to today, materializing invisibly in the corner while Tate grovels at his little nightingale’s feet. It’s so sweet she wants to puke.

“But I’m sorry,” he moans, tears cascading down his cheeks. Hayden snorts. What a fucking pussy.

“You don’t fucking get it,” Violet spits hatefully at him. “You raped my mother. Do you have any idea what that means? Do you know what it’s like to have someone fuck you against your will?”

“Violet, I -”

“Shut the fuck up,” she says, her voice breaking in a sob. “You don’t know. You can’t know what that’s like. And you’ll never fucking know why it’s horrible or why I can’t forgive you because you’re a fucking boy. Who’s going to rape you?”

Hayden rolls her eyes at the melodrama. Boring. She disappears and materializes back on the stairs to watch Ben. Fucking Christ. She’s over Violet and Tate’s shit. Why the fuck was she pulled into the twisted soap opera playing out in Violet’s room? They’re never going to get anywhere, never going to resolve anything. It’s listening to a goddamn broken record.

She learns why a few days later, after watching Ben receive his weekly blowjob. Like clockwork, Vivien calls Ben, leaving Pat with a hard-on in Ben’s office. Hayden’s about to disappear when Tate’s silky voice gets her attention.

“How are you not sick of jerking off yet?”

Pat sighs and unsnaps his jeans, sliding them lower on his hips before pulling his cock out and wrapping his fist around it. “Better than being sexually frustrated,” he sighs, stroking languidly. “It’s not like you’re not doing the same thing. You should throw your little cum rag in the basement out, it’s fucking filthy.”

Tate’s eyes harden for a minute. “It’s Violet’s dress,” he says in a low voice, dangerously. Hayden doesn’t know if Pat doesn’t hear the warning in his tone or if he’s ignoring it but he says nothing, closing his eyes and trailing his hand over his dick.

“Anyway,” Tate says, the fury in his eyes passing. “I was thinking that maybe I could help you out.”

Pat snorts. “Sure. Right.”

“I’m serious.”

Pat opens his eyes and stares at him. “And I should trust you because...?”

Tate sighs. “It’s a long fucking story,” he says, rolling his eyes. “Basically, it has to do with Violet. And I do not fuck around when it comes to Violet.”

Pat’s eyes flicker to the corner for a moment and, in a miniscule motion so swift she could have imagined it, he nods.

And Hayden realizes she’s not the only invisible ghost in the room.

“You really want me to fuck you,” Pat says, standing, his hand lazily around his dick, holding it like the gift it is - or should be, if Tate was gay. Hayden’s not so hung up on Ben that she can’t admit that Pat’s got a really beautiful cock.

“No, but I’m going to let you,” Tate says lazily, indifference written all over his face. “Here’s the thing,” he says, fumbling with his belt buckle. “I’m gonna act like I’m fighting it, like you’re raping me or whatever,” he says. “But it’s cool, okay? Keep going.”

For a moment, understanding flashes across Pat’s face and the corners of his mouth quirk up, but by the time Tate looks back at him his expression has fallen back into a passive neutral. “Whatever man, I don’t want to know what little fucking game you’re playing this time.”

Tate’s jeans slide over his hips, taking his boxers with them. He’s hard. Hayden grins. Apparently Ben’s not the only dude in the house with repressed homosexual issues. He turns around and bends over, hands gripping the arms of the chair in front of him. “I’m gonna scream,” he warns. “It’s the only way Violet will know what’s going on. She’s gotta come, she’s gotta see you doing it.”

Pat’s eyes drift to the corner of the room again. “Yeah,” Pat agrees, reaching out and gripping Tate’s bare hips. “Sure. Whatever. And yeah, you are going to scream, but it’s not going to be to get Violet’s attention.”

And with that, Pat buries his dick in Tate’s ass, dry. Tate shrieks in pain.

From somewhere in the room, Hayden swears she can hear Violet laughing.

Polly Wanna Cracker?

Tate’s abomination of an offspring has been sneaking into Murder House for years, for company Moira suspects. (Lord knows if it wasn’t Michael’s conception that had damned him, being cooped up day in and day out with Constance would have done it.) As a boy, he would spend afternoons with Lorraine’s girls or having Travis teach him how to play catch out back. Nora would tell him old stories and pet his soft blond hair when he crawled up into her lap. Some of the ghosts adored him, others, such as Tate, stayed clear of him, but each and every being in the house was afraid of the boy next door. Michael was the only person who could come barrelling down the steps of the basement and not have to fear dismemberment by Thaddeus. They knew what he was, even if he didn’t yet. Evil had been weaved into his very DNA. He was born from it, his skin and bones by-products of what Tate had done to Violet’s mother.

By the time Michael reaches the tail end of adolescence, he has grown into his darkness. He is a walking black hole, sucking inside everything that dares to get close enough and twisting it into something horrible, unrecognizable. It should be obvious to steer clear of someone that is bone-deep dangerous, but in such a pretty wrapper, people are constantly throwing themselves into his orbit.

Michael looks like Tate, but without all the warning signs. He’s tall and blond, with broad shoulders like his father, but his wrists aren’t striped in scars and his eyes aren’t black on black; they’re a perfect pale blue. They match his smile, sparkling and innocent. He runs track just like Dad, and dominates a grab bag of other sports too. And when he isn’t busy handing out eternal damnation like ecstasy at a blacklight party, he’s in Murder House getting his freak on with resident nympho Hayden McClaine.

Until one day Violet finally lets him see her.

“Who are you?” he asks with effortless charm, standing just a little ways back from where she’s sitting on the stairs, but Violet isn’t scared. She never has been. She prances quickly down the stairs and takes hold of his hand to lead him back up, silent and smiling the smile of someone who’s just hit the motherfucking jackpot.

Moira stumbles upon them sometime later.

“We’re related you know,” Violet says, out of breath, and when the maid reaches the open doorway, she can see why. Michael’s got her folded down over Ben’s old desk. His jeans are pushed down over his ass and her panties are tangled around bare ankles, and he’s fucking her in long purposeful thrusts.

“Huh,” Michael says, disbelieving or unconcerned, and pushes Violet’s shirt further up her back to drop kisses down her spine.

She’s got her hands planted firm against the wall to keep from having her head bashed in with each sharp snap of his hips and is huffing wetly against the inside of her arm.

“I’m serious.”

Michael’s eyeroll is audible. “Okay,” he says on an exhale, and adjusts the angle of her hips to hit deeper, reaching between her legs to circle her clit when her breathing goes tellingly staccato.

That’s when Moira sees it, just before Violet seizes up with her release, the shimmer of air in the opposite corner of the room like the smoke above a campfire. She doesn’t need three guesses to know who else is perving in on this taboo encounter.

Shifting invisible, she’s able to confirm that things have just reached a new level of fucked up, even for Murder House. Tate is stuffed back against the wall, knees pulled tight against his chest like he wants to disappear right through the wall, but won’t. He spares Moira the barest of glances and then he’s back to watching his only son fuck through his ex-girfriend’s orgasm.

Moira can’t even stare at him head on. His expression is too raw, cut open and gushing like a fresh wound. Tate’s got both hands knotted into his hair and he’s bitten his lip bloody, but he can’t stop staring, devouring the sight of Michael closing one hand around Violet’s shoulder to pound into her brutally, chasing his own end. His face is absolutely wrecked, wet and flushed pink from the violence of his sobs, and Moira knows then that whatever it was Violet had been hoping to accomplish, she’d succeeded.

The redhead leaves the scene then, not wanting to see how it ends; three monsters trapped together in a haunted house. It sounds like the start of a bad joke.

Pinocchio Boy

He hates her.

He hates her.

Violet may be all moral high ground but Tate knows the truth - her soul is black, like his. After all, he can see her like nobody else can. It’s a talent he’s always known that he possessed but now it’s one he’s perfected. He saw the way Violet’s eyes went hungry the first time she watched Hayden aid Michael in his sexual experimentation, watched her furiously fuck her own fingers seconds after the door slammed behind him as he left. He didn’t want to believe she’d do it but he knew it was only a matter of time before she took him for her own.

She’s a hoarder of broken boys and it’s only fitting that the crown jewel of her collection is her own brother.

And he knows that she’ll do it again, and he’s right. She does. She fucks Michael again, and again, and again.

They have a standing appointment. Every day at three-thirty in the afternoon, Michael comes over, fucks his sister, and leaves. Violet’s always waiting, always ready. It makes Tate sick but he watches every time, because he can’t not watch. The only thing worse than watching would be leaving it up to his imagination. He’s in position today, waiting for his son to wander over from the house next door, when he watches Constance corral his son into her old Buick and rumble away down the street. He wanders in the house and up the stairs to her old room, thinking maybe he’ll get lucky and be able to watch Violet get herself off when Michael doesn’t show when he finds her lounging naked on her stomach on the bed.

“Michael?” she asks lazily, not bothering to turn around.

Tate’s silent, unwilling to tell the love of his life that his son isn’t available to fuck her brains out this afternoon.

She rests her head on folded arms and pulls her knees to her chest, arching her back until she’s perfectly in position, face down and ass up. He can already see the shine of her arousal on her thighs.

“Come on, I don’t have all fucking day,” she huffs into the sheets.

Fucking bitch. He hates her almost as much as he loves her, now.

And when her ass gives a little wiggle, she’s driven him so far past the point of “fuck it” that he can’t even think straight.

His belt hits the floor with a clunk. His jeans and boxers follow shortly after.

He fills her with a brutal thrust, relishing in her groan. There. There. He knows his son doesn’t fuck her like this, he can’t. This is angry, brutal, primal. Hate sex at its finest.

She moves to turn over but he’s faster, resting his palm on her back and shoving her into the mattress. Something prickles in the back of his mind, he knows how wrong this is, but it feels too fucking good for him to stop. He goes faster, pounding into her and tilting her hips in his hands so that he can hit the spot that he knows makes her go mad. Her mumbled expletives turn into moans when he reaches his hand between her thighs to wiggle his fingers against her clit. Her orgasm heralds his and he’s falling, falling, falling down the black hole she’s pulled him into.

When he pulls out, she rolls over and her eyes go wide. “T-Tate?” she stutters, her eyes filling with tears.

And he breaks.

The thread that tethered him to sanity was always thin, frayed, but it snaps completely as he looks down at Violet on the bed and realized what he’s done.

He’s raped her. He’s hurt her just like he hurt her mother, and he knew. He knew exactly what he was doing and how much it would kill her.

He always saw himself as a hero, a Byronic one, but he’s not. He’s the villain. And he can’t even look at her anymore.

Tate would have apologized, he would have begged forgiveness, but the Tate that Violet knew and loved once is already gone. The lights have turned off and there’s nobody home. He can only stare at her before he disappears, reappearing in the basement, where he stays for a very, very long time.

He doesn’t talk for a year.

Or for another after that.

And when he finally does speak, he’s not the same.

He goes to Charles and starts taking huffs of an ether soaked rag. He breathes it in until the room is spinning, spiraling, until he doesn’t even remember his own name anymore.

The doctor has taken a liking to him, it seems. He lets him thread needles and fetch supplies. One day, Charles surprises him with a spare lab coat of his very own.

“I need an assistant,” he says pompously. “We’re doing very important work here, and I need someone I can trust.”

“Of course,” Tate says gratefully. “Thank you so much for the opportunity.”

And now he spends his days in the basement, examining the corpses of cats and dogs obtained from the redheaded twins that always seem to be about and sewing on wings, adding gills, attempting to create something new and beautiful and unique. If he can do that, he can be important. He can be special. And while he can’t remember anything before the ether and the doctor, he can’t shake the feeling that there’s somebody he wants to impress.

Shaking his head and leaning over the table, he goes back to work.

We’re All A Little Mad Here

Michael had told her he wouldn’t be able to come over today - doctor’s appointment or some shit - and Violet decides that she has the perfect opportunity to find out if she’s finally accomplished what she set out to do years before - if she’s turned Tate into her own personal monster. If she’s broken him like he broke her. She wants to know how far fucking Nora, the gay sex she manipulated him into, and fucking his son have pushed him. She wants to know if he’s teetering on the very edge.

She hears Tate come into the room and resists the urge to turn around. “Michael?” she asks lazily, instinctually knowing that this is the line that he needs to push him into oblivion.

He says nothing. She grins into the sheets and pulls her knees up, sticking her ass out with a little wiggle.

When he fills her with a brutal thrust of his hips, she has to bite her lip to keep from moaning his name.

When she comes, and she does, it’s a whisper, to quiet for him to hear.

She rolls over and forces her face into a mask of confusion, saying his name in a choked sob. It’s worth it when she watches him crumble. She’s seeing something she never thought possible - the exact moment that Tate’s sanity shatters into a million pieces, the second that the ties binding him to reality are cut and he’s left floating, falling, turning into somebody else entirely. She now knows the face someone makes in the middle of a psychotic break - it’s a combination of coming and dying, both expressions she’s seen twist his features. He disappears and she squeezes her fist in triumph.

When she gets off the bed to find him, she passes a mirror tucked over the dresser and is shocked to realize she doesn’t recognize the person she’s become.

***

She’s won, but she’s not so sure she wants the spoils of her victory.

She checks in on him in his two years spent in the crawlspace. She says his name, but he doesn’t hear her - or can’t hear her, anymore. He just pulls at his hair and mumbles nonsense words as he stares at her final resting place, a pile of indiscriminate bones mingling among the dirt.

With every passing day, the truth gets clearer and clearer.

The “adam of his labours” wasn’t really the monster, it was Dr. Frankenstein for creating it in the first place.

When Tate finally comes out of the crawlspace she’s relieved until he walks past her and into Dr. Montgomery’s lair. His eyes don’t flicker in recognition when he sees her. She doesn’t even think he remembers who she is, anymore.

It hurts her more than anything else he’s done.

So when Dr. Montgomery asks her if she’s here for the procedure, she says yes.

There’s ether to soothe her, and then, release. A long, sharp metal object is shoved up her nasal cavity and there’s no memories, no pain, only oblivion in the form of a blinding white light.

****

She can’t remember how she got here or why she can’t leave. She does know that there’s somebody else’s shit in her room and she fucking hates it. It’s nobody’s bedroom, just one that the strangers in the house keep for guests, so at least she doesn’t have to fight anybody off when she wants to take a nap. The bed isn’t as comfortable as hers and the pink flowered comforter stretched over the mattress makes her want to puke.

Everything confuses her. Everything’s new. Faster, louder. She knows that everything is different even if she can’t seem to remember what came before.

What she does know is that she’s lonely. She’s cold when she sleeps. The family that lives here only has one child, an infant with curly blonde hair that Violet likes to wind her fingers in when nobody’s looking. She doesn’t understand who the other couple with the baby is, a man with dark hair and a tall woman with long reddish blonde hair that she frequently finds cuddling a newborn. She’s jealous. She wishes she had someone of her own to cuddle with, to love, to belong to her.

The dark-haired man and the tall woman talk to her sometimes and she feels like she knows them but she can’t remember from where. She thinks about taking their baby but they’re so protective, they never let it out of their sight.

Instead, she goes to the nursery down the hall and greedily watches the infant sleep, blonde hair swaying in the breeze from the open window.

There’s a boy in the basement that’s nice to her. He’s kind. He has blonde hair like this little girl. He would help her, if she asked.

She leans over the crib. “Soon,” she whispers. “Soon.”