Salting Slugs


Wendy Ashlee Coleman

Originally published in The Evergreen Review Issue 124 in September, 2010.

They say it’s what’s on the inside that counts. After reading this you’ll be longing for my outside.
One of my favorite things to do is salt slugs. I stand out on my front porch where, for some reason they gather almost year around, and with my big cup of coffee and my egg shaped shaker, I carefully rain salt down on those nasty little creatures. Watching them convulse until they finally spasm so hard they actually flip up off the ground brings a smile to my face every morning.
I’ve always been a little different and I don’t mean in a unique snowflake sort of way. You know the kind of person who makes the world a better place? I’m the opposite of that. Even my very conception is proof that, not only was I never destined to bring any joy to this world but that I really wasn’t invited in the first place.
My mother recalls having a drink at a shady night club with this tall, handsome man with a dragon tattoo on his right forearm. She next remembers waking up in a Motel 6 with a sore crotch and a groggy head. Police said it was probably Gamma Hydroxybutyric Acid, Ketamine or Rohypnol. Commonly known on the street as Liquid Ecstasy, Cherry Meth or Easy Lay, depending on what neighborhood you’re in when you buy it. The only thing dad left her was about ten black pubic hairs and yours truly.
She should have terminated the pregnancy immediately. I know she wanted to and I don’t blame her for that. Hell, if it was me, I’d have been bending hangers on the way to the clinic just in case I got stuck in traffic. But the fear of eternal damnation is a powerful one, especially around here. So she did what everyone told her she should do: she went on with the pregnancy and according to them, she was a strong, brave woman because of it. A woman who was following God’s will. I guess if God can make the Earth in Seven days, He can probably pull off possessing a crazed date rapist to impregnate mom. But maybe He should have thought it through a bit more or, at least, had me take after her.
The older I got the more my father’s genetics started surfacing. I was the type of girl who, by the time I was fourteen, had my leg propped up on the toilet and was masturbating to some early eighties playgirl magazine. I’d smuggle smut from my friend’s parent’s house and lust over them like a teenage boy. By fifteen, I had given more blow jobs than a catholic school girl and was already the proud owner of a high powered vibrator.
I’d go to parties and hang around all the big, drunk football players just waiting for one of them to take advantage of me. But I learned my lesson early on; when you look at a high school kid dead in the eye and say, “Fuck me”, they’ll usually lose their nerve and turn into a shaking little virgin with a semi. What a let down. That’s when I figured out that if you act more timid and lady-like, you get fucked more. Funny how that is.
Just so we’re clear here, I wasn’t acting like some ho just to get the guys to like me. This was no cry for help. I just love sex. It’s that simple. There’s a difference between fucking to get a guy to like you and then fucking because your pussy’s been wet for so long you fear dehydration will set if you don’t plug the hole. I just wish I attracted more of the shallow, horny types. These days, it seems like most men are mentally prepared to go two or three dates before trying to get in your pants, so if I want to get pounded, I have to embrace being a ho in order to re-program guys into accepting the fact that, yes, this is our first date and yes, I am sucking on your balls.
The other day this guy took me out to dinner and a movie. He was pretty hot, having the whole Mark Walberg thing going on, but he was a little taller. I hate short men. Big, plump, veins pushed up against his skin and wrapped around his muscular, meaty forearms like grayish-blue ropes. He was nice, he was sweet and he was very gentlemanly. But I knew from the way he was looking at me that all he really wanted was to fuck my brains out and that was exactly what I wanted him to do. I just wish he didn’t feel the need to put on that “good boy” act. God knows what uppity bitch he was dating before. Too many women believe that their pussies are so special that they’ve created an elaborate screening process just to get a sneak preview. It’s almost like they don’t even like cock. But that’s fine. Leaves more for me. I guess I’m just too horny to put my pussy on a pedestal. Hell, just watching his big, thick fingers being lubricated from the handfuls of buttery popcorn made me wish he was more of a presumptuous asshole. It made me regret not being back in high school when the boys were so unabashedly horny and impatient they were trying to get inside you before the previews were over.
I know they say chivalry is already dead but would someone please, go outside, dig it up and shoot it again for me and quickly, because I’m losing fluids.
As my sexual habits have developed over the years, I’ve realized that I am definitely a daddy’s girl. I’m just lucky guys are willing to give it up easy enough that I don’t have to drug them. Besides, I don’t know what a slip of Mexican Valium would do to a perfectly stiff cock. I don’t want to be on top of an unconscious guy trying to stuff a marshmallow in a piggy bank, if you know what I mean.

About ten years ago I got a call from a detective claiming that a man in Albuquerque admitted to the drugging and rape of my mother in Texas. He said they could confirm this if I’d be willing to do a DNA test. They were right. He was my biological father. I asked for a picture of him, which the police gave me. He was older than I imagined but he had my same colorings, and we shared the same large black eyes that have become my trademark.
I went to his trial and sat in the crowd. I don’t really know why. I guess I just wanted to see him in person. I wanted to hear him talk and walk and learn more about him. Turns out, he wasn’t just a rapist. He was also a mass murderer with killings of both men and women stretching all the way from Illinois down to Oklahoma. If I said his name, you’d know it.
I watched him like I watch porn. Not even blinking. I memorized everything I could during the week-long trial from how he scratched his nose to how uncomfortable he felt in that rented three piece suit. I listened to the families of the victims as they verbally battered him while holding up pictures of their loved ones. I couldn’t help but roll my eyes because they were wasting their time. That familiar, hollow look paired with that chilling and relaxed swagger, even as the judge sentenced my father to death, showed a man who was not the least bit remorseful. I hope the victims emotional venting helped them personally because all he did was casually smirk when they condemned him to Hell.
Out of all my father’s characteristics, it was that complete indifference that rang very familiar to me. When I was a little girl, the neighbor’s pit bull killed my new kitten right in front of my eyes. I mean, completely mutilated the thing. Instead of crying for my step daddy, I calmly walked in the garage, got a bottle of lighter fluid and grabbed the bar matches from the mantel. I shook the flimsy, chain link fence until that stupid dog ran over barking and snapping like he always did. While standing on my tip toes and balancing on an old wooden carpentry stool, I leaned over the fence and drenched that dog with so much lighter fluid that he thought it was a game. He was jumping up and trying to bite the stream giving me ample time to douse him from head to tail. The first match didn’t work. I was surprised. But I threw a second one and, in an instant I had a walking, crying, four legged bonfire. I didn’t know dogs could scream until that day. He ran around the yard for several seconds until he finally slowed down and fell over. I sat there with a grin on my face and watched that canine burn. The only thing that really bothered me about the whole ordeal was the nasty smell of burnt dog hair. Other than that, the only thing I felt was complete and total satisfaction. I believed that I did my kitten justice. But, still, I never remember missing or even mourning for my furry little pussy cat, even at that young age. In fact, I clearly remember being happy that I wouldn’t have to clean the kitty litter anymore.
After that day, my step dad was pretty convinced I was the anti Christ with a vagina and my mom didn’t know whether to shit or go blind. Again, I can’t blame them. That’s a lot of premeditation for an eight year old.
“Now what’d you do this summer, young lady?”
Yeah. Answering that question honestly to my third grade teacher wasn’t a smart move either. Consequently, I never got student of the month.
What makes matters worse is that, as I got older, not only did I become more comfortable with violence but when puberty hit, I discovered a real organic attraction to it. I mean violence itself made me so freakin’ hot.
When I was sixteen, I watched this stocky, quiet, dark eyed kid named Eli beat the shit out of my boyfriend in the bowling alley parking lot. My big, handsome, captain of the football team date looked like a soggy piece of bread out there fighting that crazy animal. That night, after leaving the emergency room, I vividly remember being so turned on I couldn’t think straight. I wanted to hate Eli but the truth was that I couldn’t shake those images of his muscular body pinning my boyfriend’s arms down with his knees and pounding his face in, staining his knuckles red.
As I walked to my car, a beam of light in the dark ER parking lot caught my eye. I noticed an old frayed Yellow Pages through the dirty window of a well lit phone booth several yards away. I don’t even remember looking his address up or writing it down. All I remember is jetting past the exit to my house with his address so burned into my memory I can still recall it to this day.
When I knocked on his shady apartment door, the hollow sound echoed across the deathly silent complex. I had to quickly adjust my panties because they were sticking to my crotch like a wet t-shirt on fake tits. He opened the door suddenly; shirtless, standing there ripped and muscular, holding a bag of frozen corn on his swollen knuckles. He looked at me hard then gave me an evil grin as he scooted to the side to let me in. I noticed some of my boyfriend’s blood still on his muscular chest and I almost came right there. Shivers went down my spine when I heard him shut and lock the door, not from fear but from sexual excitement; the only feeling I really ever have.
I was well aware of his reputation. I knew he was older; way too old for me. I knew he was dangerous and very sexually aggressive to women, but he was exactly what I craved. We never said a word to each other. He never asked what I wanted or why I was there. He just grabbed my ninety-eight pound body and threw me on this ancient, squishy mattress. He didn’t just take my sleazy dress off, he ripped it off and he didn’t start slow either; he just spread my legs and ate my pussy like it was his first meal in days. He fucked like he fought, skillfully, fast, and mercilessly. He only briefly flinched at my willingness to hand my body over on a silver platter. He fucked me so hard I couldn’t walk normal for days but I never saw him again. I think I scared him away. It’s just as well. It’s not like I wanted a relationship or anything. Sadly, though, Eli wouldn’t be the last man I’d run off.
In college, I got pregnant by my professor and when he nervously suggested an abortion my response was, “Sure”. I was young and he was married. I may have been a slut but I had no desire to be some home-wrecking bitch. I didn’t want him to marry me; I didn’t want his kid or his money. I wanted his big cock and an A in Calculus. I got both. But getting pregnant, to me, wasn’t fate; it was a broken condom and a minor nuisance.
The nearest clinic was over 100 miles away. With my envelope of cash in hand, I was surprised at how friendly and kind everyone was. It was such a soothing and non judgmental environment that I jokingly asked if there was a discount for the second one. They didn’t laugh but I could tell one wanted to. Afterwards I must admit that I did have a really awful night. Not because of the abortion but because I decided to stop at this ghetto Chinese restaurant on the way home. I mean, Jesus fucking Christ, if the procedure didn’t kill the baby, the violent diarrhea would have. Other than that, I slept harder that night than a dead baby. And for all you pro-lifers out there, trust me, a child with my genetics wouldn’t have helped your cause. If she was anything like me she’d end up getting so many abortions that, by the time she was twenty, the walls of her uterus would have seen more death than a Nazi gas chamber.
That professor never talked to me again. In class, he pretended he didn’t even know me but I expected that. I think when you tell a guy you don’t want his offspring; it creates some kind of carnal hatred. I never told a soul about our fling and his marriage went on. Maybe he was a little surprised by my coldness but that’s just me. I never got depressed; I never shed a tear over it, because I never cry over anything. Ever. Not even when my parents died.
I was barely eighteen when they kicked me out and it wasn’t a lesson of tough love. It was them, especially my mother, giving up. It was her washing her hands of this spawn of an unnatural daughter; her own walking, talking by-product of rape and violence. With me gone, they could focus on my sister, the token light in their litter of darkness. She was sweet, kind and loving. She was a caring person, conceived inside the sanctity of a Christian marriage between two consenting adults, the perfect recipe for a perfect daughter. My mother now had a real child of her own; one she could look at in the eyes and not have to be reminded of the psycho who had defiled her so many years ago. I guess even God can be an asshole sometimes. He just had to give me all of dad’s colorings and features just to drive it home a bit more.
I didn’t blame them for what they did to me. They were the good old fashioned, God fearing type who were deathly afraid that my natural born evil would somehow rub off on them. So I guess they couldn’t love me. It wasn’t their fault. You can’t love me and believe in Hell because if you do, you’re going there. On the other hand, she had also forgotten the fact that half of me was her, but I guess even her own flesh and blood wasn’t enough to love me.
On the bright side though, it also meant that no one expected me to bawl hysterically at their funeral. Their plane turned into a comet in the sky and crashed down to earth at like a million miles an hour. There were no bodies. The caskets were empty. It’s like they went on vacation and never came back. The whole funeral reminded me of some big budget, Sci-Fi movie where the characters and robots look real and sound real, but for some reason your mind just doesn’t get involved in the story.
I do wish I would have been able to talk to my biological father a little more before he died. He asked for a picture of me, which I gave him. They say he held onto it when they finally lethally injected him. What was I supposed to make out of that? Did this cold blooded, mass murdering rapist actually love me? Did knowing that he had a daughter give him a comforting sense of immortality, like a part of him would live on? I wasn’t with my mother when she died, but I can assure you she wasn’t thinking of me in her last few seconds. So maybe dad deserves some props.
Perhaps I am God’s will after all. Like my father, the result of life’s twisted balancing act and nothing more. I suppose it makes sense. It seems logical that every time a loving, caring person is born into this world, there has to be someone down the hall who’s giving birth to a living wrecking ball of society, someone whose destiny is destruction. I guess we’re the ones who make good people look so good. White always shows up better on a black background.
But I didn’t choose to be born. Sometimes I feel like a solitary, emotionless cyborg thrown smack in the middle of a bunch of normal people. Even so, I don’t hate what I am. I don’t know why I’m so different, and while I don’t lose too much sleep over it, I do have questions. I’ve often wondered why the sight of blood makes me hot. Or why, when I see a newborn baby, I feel absolutely nothing. Or why emotions like pity or remorse remain such a mystery to me. Also, what does crying feel like? Is it an overwhelming feeling of emotion that is uncontrollable and inevitable or could you stop if you wanted to? Does it feel good, like a release or something? Or is it painful? I meant it when I said I’ve never cried, ever. Even as a baby, my mother used to say I would just look at her with an empty gaze or shriek until I gave them nightmares. People would ask her if I was sick or something. Hell, even when the doctor smacked my ass at birth all I did was cough.
If you think you have any answers then I’m all ears. I’m also open to intelligent speculation. You won’t hurt my feelings. I haven’t any to hurt. Just don’t bother calling me a soulless, evil whore. It’s not that it would be an incorrect definition of who I am - in fact it is a correct one, but I already knew that and I’m a little too comfortable with it so trying to make me feel guilty would be like trying to keep the funk off of a stripper pole. And I’ve already gone down the therapy road. Unfortunately, the therapist was more interested in coming on my chest than in dealing with my mental issues. Not that I was complaining, it’s just that I didn’t need to pay two-fifty an hour for some PhD cock when I can get it a lot cheaper and a lot better by dressing like a slut at the local mega gym.
But you won’t have any answers. No one does. No one can help me. Sometimes you’re just born the way you are and nothing can change that. It doesn’t matter anyway. It’s not like I’m a danger to society. I have no plans on going “Charles Manson” on anyone and despite my father’s actions, I have never had that desire to kill or hurt a human being any more than you probably have casually fantasized about it. Maybe that was courtesy of my mother’s normal genes keeping me from completely crossing the line. But even if someday, homicidal fantasies slowly start to creep into my mind, they’d have to be pretty damn strong because I have absolutely no interest in living out the rest of my insignificant life in an eight by eight cell with no toilet privacy and biweekly anal rapings by some crusty old guard named Frank who hasn’t washed his cock since the Reagan administration. No thanks. My toilet privacy is just way too sacred to me and I like my cocks well groomed, with just a hint of Lever 2000.
Right now, I guess I’m content being only half evil. The other day I experienced a fabulous orgasm during one of the new Disney movies and I’ve taken up bunny killing with my new Sheridan pellet rifle. The little fuckers do a number on the neighbor’s garden so I have a socially acceptable excuse to murder them.
To be honest, for being a soulless bitch, things are going pretty great. As long as I can keep up the bubbly and compassionate alter ego that you normal people seem so charmed by, I completely fly under your radar. You’ll never think for a second that I’m the whore next door who let your “talented”, college bound, eighteen year old boy fuck me up the ass on your favorite bed spread. You’ll look at my cute, harmless appearance and never suspect that I’m the reason why your stupid, yippy Chihuahua, the one who used to shit in people’s backyards and mess up my rose bed, mysteriously never came home. Don’t worry; I’m sure he found a new, loving family. Denial can help you sleep at night. Just don’t dig too deep in my tomato garden.
But, you know, I’ve played the part of being normal for so long it just might be rubbing off on me. This morning during my usual routine, this major feeling of frustration and disappointment caused my bottom lip to quiver a bit. I didn’t cry but from what I’ve seen, this is a big precursor. Unfortunately, it was because I had run out of salt.