Cover Art by Mar Garcia-Amorena
What’s in a Name?
“All you have to do is say his name. Just speak his name and He will come. Then, fiend… it will finally be over”.
“Rishhh…Rshh”. The blind man lay naked, prone and broken across the large wheel, positioned horizontally face down and bound with all manner of restraints. His broken left hand, manacled in a rusted iron fetter, dangled limply over the rim. The right, equally mangled, held fast with dirty copper wire. His fingers, swollen and purple from deprivation of blood flow, had stiffened and now stretched helplessly toward some invisible salvation, as he unsuccessfully tried to give his torturer what he demanded.
The fact he was barely conscious, making it a struggle to form a coherent word, was compounded by the seven fish hooks attached to the wheel by short lengths of twine and roughly pierced through his lower lip. Countless times as he would begin to fade, his tormentor had pulled his head up by the fringe, ‘accidentally’ tearing a hook or two free. Soon, there would be no more lip to re-hook.
“His name,” the obese and foul reeking Merwin repeated patiently; this time, more tenderly lifting the head and bringing a flask to the dying man’s mouth. As he tipped it up to pour the liquid, his victim gagged and spluttered as the burning taste of Merwin’s disgusting piss spilled onto his tongue, immediately running back out over his hanging, disfigured lip. Merwin was taking great delight in this wretch’s suffering. He had spent months planning for this precious time with his captive. This deplorable creature who had left him without family. Who had walked free from the courts and from custody, acquitted of any charge.
This thing no longer had the dignity of a name. The man who lay bound and broken before him had once been a close and trusted friend to Merwin, his late wife and four year old son. That trust had been insidiously betrayed time and time again as Merwin and his dearly departed Marie lived the high life; frequenting parties where they would rub shoulders with the society elite, whilst their young boy was left at home in the sordid care of this filth.
“His NAME!” Merwin screamed. He slammed his flask down on top of the bastard’s head, driving his face into the wheel. Hooks tore through mashed gum flesh, already beginning to turn septic, and the sting of metal, faeces and urine drew a feeble attempt at a wail from the man’s swollen throat. Merwin hoped with all his being that this pathetic creature would continue to hang in there. He had to control his rage and the near insurmountable urge to simply beat him to bloody death. His prisoner’s suffering was paramount to Merwin and he would draw it out for as long as he could contain himself…