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The Smell

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It's funny how easy it is to get lost in our thoughts-- in our past. The littlest of noises, sights and... smells can bring back a rush of nostalgia from our childhood. You may think about the first time your parents brought you to carnival when you hear a clown's laughter, or the faint memory of your first day of kindergarten when you wait patiently for the school children to cross the street, but maybe you chuckle to yourself when the scent of muffins reminds you of your mum's cooking. Oh, yes, as adults we treasure these moments.

Even as I stood discreetly in the crowded subway platform I relived my memories, though it wasn't the general environment of busy city goer that triggered my relapse, rather the smell of the man beside me. I'd been following him since he entered the station, while he of course was oblivious to my—let's call it, admiration. It was the suit and tie that caught my attention at first—typical black suit but clearly was too small near his gut, and a red tie with a silly cartoon character pin attached to it. Must've been some office shenanigan or something. However, my curiosity was locked when he passed by me.

The rush that filled me when I got a whiff of his cologne made me hold my breath for but a moment. I could remember that particular moment from my youth when that smell robbed me of my childhood... that disgusting smell.

I remembered the cold, hard floor against my stomach as the man held my arms back. I jerked and tried to pull away when my eyes locked with my baseball bat I dropped a few feet away, but he pulled my arms harder 'til I realized any hope of reaching it and escaping was futile. The sounds of my screams echoing throughout the men's bathroom as he forced himself inside me, only to reach no one in the empty park outside. I was alone with that man and the pain. When he had finally finished I merely laid there, broken, numb, while he cleaned himself before causally leaving. However, he left that smell.

No matter how much I showered after that incident, I couldn't get rid of that horrible, foul stench off my body. No amount of body wash, or chemical cleaner made it go away. Not even fire. Sure, I may have a few burns and scars now, but it's better than smelling him on my skin. It's not self mutilation when I'm just cleaning my tainted body.

Oh... you must think I'm crazy now.

The sensation of warm liquid brought my attention back to the man in front of me, or what used to be that man. The sounds of screams and shouting flooded the platform as the train came to a screeching halt.

Blood, and all sorts of human matter littered the sides of the train and the edge where we all stood. I realized my body was covered with it, when I lowered my stained hand. The sweet smell replaced that wretched stench, however I knew it would only be temporary like the last time.

I casually began to walk through the chaos, using the mass panic as my cloaking device to escape... I wonder when I'll have to get rid of that smell again.

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