The Artifice of Insanity

Abhinandan Pal
9 min readMar 2, 2022

A JUMP! A PUSH! A JUMP! A PUSH! Was it a Jump? Or was it a push? A perfectly executed jump, a dive, for I would have found a way out of a push. Push maybe it was for I marched in sync with her soul crippling smile.

For a moment I looked around for a gasp of breath. But a breath is what you wish you have not found in while submerged in a green gooey fluid with taste sightly on the radioactive waste side. You would imagine from your plain ignorance to his origin that what you call ‘daddy issues’ would be enough for one to pour white paint onto one’s face, with symbols of pain, anguish, rage, revenge and a little mirth all sketched in blood and scars to go guns blazing into the city. And call oneself a leader while signing the sweet relief of more people in one’s own regiment than a communist leader during the…well anytime. But she differed with me on this she wanted me to be ‘original’, like her or even better like HIM. She wished, even better ‘needed’, for me to be him, do what he did, not rid the city of his reign but replace the hilarious overload. And that’s exactly what a cop destiny in this city is like considering he or she survives, to obtain power the kind of power that no stable government can provide you or cross.

I opened my eye for a split second for a confusing peep. I couldn’t do more for I most likely would lose my vision to this that surrounds me. Collecting from what I saw over me there was some sort of over bridge, must have been for factory workers to monitor the huge tanks of the fluid, one of which I was in right now. Right above me, a portion of the railing removed must have been where I jumped from; or was PUSHED. She was there holding on to the two ends from where the railing was removed. Leaning in to look at me to see if I turn as she imagined, or was it sleep that I would dissolve into.

The fluid around me made my vision greenish as if peeping through a night vision. But from memory, she had lush paperwhite pale skin for the same reasons In moments I would find myself covered in the same. Her Burnt skin paleness had restructured itself to be smooth with time. An observation I made as I caressed her hand with mine to comfort her in the asylum, with her in an induced state of sanity away from him. And if I were not to die from this I would soon get to touch her, caress her and feel her for then I too would have grown insane. While my skin burns I mirth upon the idea of tasting every drop of blood, from the throats of her victims, that paints her lush skin and gently lick on her cuts like a starving puppy. I plead to feel every bit of her flesh that one is allowed to feel through this newly bought skin of mine and through these lives of ours that led us to each other.

Come to her attire in her hand there was an almost ever attached wooden and scarred baseball bat, tattooed with recent blood. Her attire was what you would expect a gymnast turned doctor turned detective turned insane, girl in her early 30s to wear. Nettings from a Halloween nurse’s costume, with a gymnast outfit, an olympian! Sadly. It was painted not just by blood, but merry colours from his franchise. Which I was soon to rule upon.

I looked at my hand in a quick blink. To feel a painful zap with every sensory neuron in my eyelid sending an ultimatum to my now insane brain with the request not to open them again. But at that moment I did notice me turning pale and was inclined to reassure myself that I was not yet dead. The whiteness, the pale-whiteness, creeping into my skin like a gradient. Reminded me of moments back when we lay there on his table covered in blood from our long-awaited victory. Licking each other’s wounds off, preparing for my ceremonial journey to insanity. Women and their fantasy for those that kill their man.

Growing up being referred to as the handsome, charming son of a ‘playboy billionaire’ by the media, which had way too many deaths to report to get into it. I was not much into women. Maybe a bit like my billionaire father but I was yet to find my cat that lurked in the shadow of mystery. That girl when she comes, she will drive you insane, live until then, or so was I told not by my father that left me to death when I was a child, neither was it the billionaire that adopted me, but the man during the days of my adoption who treated me like a son the billionaire’s, one could say even my, butler.

It was around an hour before I found myself in this tank. We, me and her, had made it into the mansion of jokes. With its squeals and laughter and with murals of blood painted onto our skin and our battle-torn Halloween costumes, we had reached his office. Where he sat on his chair facing the other way from the desk. Laughing the loud laughter of insanity. Acting surprised to see that his love ‘sent away’ and I had made it this far. In order to entertain his guests, he started with a narrative of his boredom and how his death right at this very instance would be the best way for him to spread his chaos and insanity. I could see her smile in between in his bits of humour as he spoke in his anarchic train of thoughts where each compartment had its own engine and unique intent. I feared if her mind would flip back to being his and thus compromise the mission and my life and soon after her own. So, in the next pause for laughter as she switched her hand holding her infamous bat I grabbed it and with a shot cracked the skull of a joke. His smashed head lay on his desk with blood oozing all over his paper and keyboard and a big old smile on his face from the one last narcissistic laugh he had gifted himself.

“Ah! you are no fun. Puddin was telling us such an interesting story. Now how am I to know how it ends… Maybe I will drive you insane and see if you come up with something similar” She said while chuckling in between words.

“Shut up!”, I said, “A moment more and the agency would have blown our skulls apart…Remember the implants”.

“Oh about that”, she said and proceeded to a quick inspection of the room for a jar with some bluish liquid in it and splashed it on both our necks, “this should be enough to damage the transmitter”. In a moment’s pause, she continued “Cool! our brains are intact, must have been enough.”

She monitored the corpse. Bam! another hit with the bat, this time to crack open his skull. With her blood dripping long nails, she poked into the now visible portions of his brain. Looking onto me she said, “I had always wanted to look into his mind. And now there is no barrier between me and his thoughts.” Then to my relief moving her obsessive stare away from me and onto him, she continued to murmur in a soft and unnaturally calming voice like a therapist to her patent who claimed his head had just exploded from external pressure.

“Have you been a fan of his art?”, she asked me to find my disapproval. “I had always loved his dexterity to sculpt bloody parodies of renaissance art with his victims. Maybe…maybe he would want us to do the same with his.” She said as she scooped his brain with a spoon in a rather unprofessional fashion. In the end, she was a therapist and not someone who found himself dabbling into the art of surgery like he did. “Maybe we could do something with his brain and those spray cans over there and sneak into a museum later. He would love to be buried in the shock of his audience”

“What’s your plan?”, I exclaimed. “Seriously, have you not been listening we make some sculpture out of his brain and then sneak it into a museum”. “No, seriously what’s your plan the agency is soon going to send its agents to kill us.”

“Without the chip, you are free to go anywhere, by which I mean follow me.”, she said and grabbed me by the remains of my half torn belt and pulled to his desk, placing herself on the desk quite adjacent to his brainless corpse. Being made herself comfortable, she looked at me like an underage overly sexualized anime girl and in an awkwardly forced childlike voice she said, “I have ouchy on my finger won’t you fix it”. And forced her bleeding finger into my mouth. And licked his blood off my chin. I did not resist I could not resist for I needed a quick relief, a quick relief from reason. And drive myself into calming and unrestricted insanity. Licking the wounds of a gorgeous psychopath beside the corpse of her infamous dead ex-boyfriend as she played with the remains of his brain.

“Don’t you like the thrill of getting caught? In moments there can be hundreds of heavily armed agents surrounding us with orders of death.” She said as she removed the untorn portion of what was once an expensive suit, and held me in her control. “45 seconds,” she said. “What?” I gasped in confusion. “Would that be enough for you we dont really have more?” I did not respond to that. Pushing aside the contents of the table in exception to his body. She pulled me onto her. Laughed simultaneously like a mourning little girl too shocked to comprehend her life as everyone around her died and a comedian’s overly encouraging boyfriend in the first row. I would join her begging to let go in the faint laughter of a lady brought up with mannerism to be married off rich. Slowly to move to loud squeals, like him, the dead him, that was now me. It was a contest of insanity me and her. Until I was finally to erupt. She grabbed some documents from beside the desk and used them as tissue and offered me one like the gentle lady she was.

“It’s too torn. Dont waste your time trying to wear them. Anyway now it’s equal risk being seen and being seen naked. Follow me I know our next move” At this point the bursts of hormones and the plainness of the situation had stipped me off my free will. Even if I had any, I couldn’t have possibly come up with the plan to keep us together and if being greedy then also safe.

What happened after that was a blur. I remember running naked in a forest. Reaching a recently abandoned factory. And jumping or being PUSHED into the fluid that now surrounds me. His office painted in laughter was filled with imaginative substances and the mainstream drugs of entertainment, my body being covered with cuts and torn skin opened up drowsy possibilities. At the same time, I would not be surprised if it was her who drugged me into this.

In midst of recollection of today, I felt a darkness creep in. Rejecting all denial I opened my eyelids to see her close the lid of the tank. I wanted to shout. Shout that I was alive and we could fulfil her plans. But it was impossible to move and it soon was too late. Following which I must have gone unconscious or it was just the darkness and the immobility.

I woke up, an unknown time later. And in my puffed out state I exclaimed, “FATHER!”. Having opened my burning eyes to see my billionaire, merciful generous, inexorable and unwavering adopter in his silly black costume in front of me. He murmured in anguish, “I am disappointed… You didn’t have to kill him. That’s not how we do things”. Normally I would argue, argue on how through his methods he let the evil kill a thousand more, How I could never have come back from what I had become after he had left me to die, assuming I already was in his defence, just like my real father left me to his death. “You know I have no choice, but to hand you to the authorities. I am sorry son”, he added in remorse.

“Aww! what a cute reunion. I hate to ruin it for you puddin’. But now I must leave”, she said as she jumped off the driver seat of the truck with us, which she apparently was driving until now. From what I know of her, the truck was about to hit a speeding train or drive off some cliff or half-constructed bridge to our death. The truck did not provide us with a window to confirm which, but time will soon unscratch the sticker.