Hell Hath No Fury

Vance was young and arrogant. He had never been in love. Never, that is until he met Allyse. Allyse was perfect, like a wisp of gossamer. She had an air of magic all about her. She was completely innocent and quite naive. She made him feel alive and fresh. He loved her for a full month. Then, the novelty began to wear off. He felt uncomfortable about the way she doted upon him.
Her face, so innocent, so beautiful, almost childlike, looked up at Vance, as a smile spread across it. How could he hurt such a face? He had to tell Allyse, or someone else would. As he spoke, her smile fell, a wilted rosebud, picked too soon. In spite of himself he felt better, now that she knew. They were never meant to be together. He had stopped loving her months ago. He no longer saw her as appealing and that was what he told her. She was too innocent, and there were other women out there for him. Why did Allyse have to be so damn beautiful? Why did her eyes have to be filled with hate? He left her alone.
The wind howled in the trees too much that night. His footfalls, sounded twice, as though echoed by his heartbeat. He couldn’t get Allyse out of his mind. He walked around town all night. When he found himself in a neighborhood he had never seen before, he turned a corner in the completely wrong direction. Not a single ray of light from the main street looked in on this back street, as though he had entered a black hole. The only source of any light was from a flashing neon sign at the end of the alley. “Fortune Teller” it read. The pulsing, buzzing, pink sign, beckoned him. He walked through the door.
All preconceptions of fortune tellers burned up at the sight of the hag that sat before him: no beads, no scarves, just a toothless, fat woman. Her blemished face peered up at him from her dingy card table. “Four dollars,” she rasped. She followed the demand with a spasm of coughing so wretched that his own throat ached. She picked up a filthy pack of menthol cigarettes from the floor and lit one. Then in a trance of some kind he pulled a wadded five dollar bill from his pocket and handed it to her. Her thick greasy fingers snatched it up hurriedly. “Sit down,” she grunted, each word letting out a puff of toxic smoke. He sat on the sooty metal chair she motioned toward. Her eyes, hardly more than slits, stared into his face, searching him, scanning him. A smile slowly split the folds of her face, and she began to laugh. Her laugh, reverberated in his head again and again. A wheezing, braying cackle. “You are in for trouble, pretty boy!” His face wrenched into an uncomprehending contortion. Suddenly, the hag quit laughing. She held his face with her probing eyes, “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.”
Halfway down the alley he could still hear her laughing at him. He ran until he thought his ribcage would explode. Then he stopped against an abandoned building, heaving until the feeling came back into his legs and the pain stopped in his chest. He had no clue as to where he was nor any place to stay since he had rejected Allyse. The emptiness of the building was a good sign. Through a broken window he gained admittance. Weary from the day’s activity, he fell asleep before he hit the carpet.
He woke two hours later, from a dreamless slumber, to a no longer deserted building. Milling around in the dusty darkness, thousands of tiny forms surrounded him. He tried to crawl backward out of the way but put his hand on one of them. It was slippery and cold, like a moving dead snake. He scrambled to his feet and found above him myriad, soft, whispery arms that entered his mouth, and grabbed his throat. He couldn’t scream. He tried to grab them, but the arms clenched around his wrists and held fast. Then he saw her. The snakes anchored his feet to the floor, but his fear had paralyzed him more than the various beasts enclosing him, for there, amidst the wraiths stood Allyse.
Her porcelain face glowed with not the previous innocence, but a fire of hate. A long white cape was draped around her shoulders, covering all but her snow white face and burgundy hair. “Va-ance,”her voice came out a taunting whisper, as though she were calling him over to her. As he watched, her immaculate robes began to soil from the inside as though her body was secreting a hideous black bile. Soon, her cloak was a thick veil of tar. She moved toward him, gliding along, sending snakes skittering off in different directions. She was close to him now, and he felt her formerly sweet breath, a sour pulse against his face. Her eyes were so filled with hate that they reflected nothing.
“Vance,” she whispered, “don’t you know the old saying?”
She placed her once soft, now clawlike fingers on his eyes, and pressed in. A rush of red filled his sight Then he saw nothing else; his optic nerve was severed. Shooting pain shocked his skull, centering around his now useless eyes. Vance struggled, trying to scream, but he was still helpless. The pain wracked through his whole body before returning to his eyes.
He still felt her breath cooling the blood gushing down his cheeks. She was speaking again,
“Hell hath no fury,” she put her fingers gently in his ears, “like a woman scorned.” He felt the fingers pierce. And Vance heard no more.


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