The Body Shop

Henry stumbled back in panic as the rotting stench of the grave wafted out from the open door and Henry now recognised it as the same smell from the Warehouse. He stared at the spectre before him in cold terror before blindly stepping backwards. His brain refused to accept what his eyes were telling him and he forgot about the step and fell landing hard on his back. The parcel fell on top of him preventing him from scrabbling to his feet and running. Henry struggled, panting out a scream but unable to find his breath. The impossible sight of the festering corpse took a shambling step through the doorway and onto the step narrowly avoiding a bottle of silver-top. Towering over Henry it reached out a grey decomposing hand towards the terrified clerk with an animated creak of joints.

“Watch it” the ill-tempered zombie snarled. His dry vocal chords sounded even dustier than they did on the phone. “I’ve waited long enough for that delivery and I don’t want to have to wait for another one if you break it, you clumsy oaf”. Henry could do nothing but gibber like an idiot.

“Here, open it for me” Mr McRood growled impatiently and Henry quickly worked at the tape on the parcel and opened the box with panicked fingers. When he saw what was inside the box he gagged and shoved it away, kicking the box towards Mr McRood and trying to put as much distance between it and himself. There, lying in a nest of bubble wrap and bags of ice was a human leg cut off just above the knee. Mr McRood carefully bent down and picked up the severed limb and for the first time Henry noticed the deceased customer had only one leg protruding from his mouldy burial clothes.

“Good, this is what I wanted” said Mr McRood nodding with a measure of satisfaction. “Now, take that rubbish away with you, I’ve no need for it”. As Henry hurried to gather up the empty box Mr McRood shuffled back inside but paused to look over his shoulder. “Oh, I understand your Mrs Mildred’s latest lodger” he wheezed. “She’s pleased you’ve moved in. She’s wanted a pair of young strong arms for some time now”.

Henry didn’t look back as he scurried down the path to the relative safety van. As he clambered inside and locked the doors he couldn’t help wondering just how unlucky one person could be!

 





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