*Warning: Graphic content ahead*
The sound of a door slamming open startles me out of my sleep. My eyes go wide as I see him, standing in the doorway, small light that’s spilled into the room lighting up his features, showing us the true menace in all his glory. He laughs as he takes a step in and hears some of us gasp. There’s a flash of metal, and something else is dripping off his free hand. I swallow hard as the smell fills the room and close my eyes momentarily to keep myself from vomiting at the thought, blood.
His eyes scan the room, hungrily, “Who’s next?”
The room explodes with cries, and screams. Everyone begins scrambling, trying to move backward. A feat that’s near impossible because of the shear number of us. We’re stuffed pretty much wall to wall, barely enough space to turn around, let alone stretch out our legs, or run. I’m pretty far back from the door, but that won’t matter for long. Not with how quickly they’ve been taking us. In droves, it seems. Each time they take more and more, ripping us away from our family and friends, we scream at them not to, but they never listen. True evil.
He stalks slowly over to one corner of the room, I see a few duck, a last attempt to hide from his callous hands. The room goes silent as he bends down, I crane my neck fighting to see who he’s taking. I can barely see over everyone in front of me, but I’m able to make out the small cluster he’s in front of moves back as if they were one, leaving a child out in front of them. Like an offering. I fail to swallow the disgust I feel building in my throat.
He laughs again, features twisting up into a smirk as he bends down, picking the child up by the leg, “Guess it’s your lucky day.”
I watch helplessly as he turns back toward the door. He’s gonna take her. She twists in his grasp, fighting to get away. Her eyes sweep the room, pleading with us to help her. I take a deep breath and surge forward, enough is enough.
Leave her alone! I manage to squeeze myself a few feet forward, still too far to actually help.
He stops and turns back around at the noise, “What are you screaming for?”
He grabs his flashlight and turns it to where I am, fighting my way to the front. He raises an eyebrow in silent question as I continue to push past everyone, scanning their scared faces, what’s wrong with you? Why aren’t you helping her? He takes a few steps forward, and doesn’t even bother smirking as everyone in front of his feet moves away.
He squints into the darkness, eyes finally locking with mine, “You want to come to?”
I finally burst through to the front, and pointedly look to the kid he’s still holding. He follows my gaze to her before turning back to me and letting out a belly laugh, throwing his head back with the force of it.
“You’ve got to be kidding,” he lets the child fall from his hand, tucking his flashlight back into his pocket.
She lands on the floor with a deafening smack. I turn my eyes over to her, some others rush forward to help her up. I deflate a bit in relief as I see her breath. The relief in her eyes is all the thanks I need. I take another few steps forward, puffing out my chest as I stare him down.
He looks at me, head cocked to one side before shrugging, “Don’t matter to me.”
He kneels down, snatching my foot before dragging me upwards, body scraping against the hard gravel as I go before the cool air rushes over the fresh scratches. I look back over the room, grateful I was able to save everyone else. I can see the relief and fear that’s on their faces. They’re conflicted.
I’m walked through the door, and am forced to squint as harsh light floods my eyes. This room is so much brighter then where we’re kept, it’s hard to believe that they’re part of the same building. It’s so loud in here; my eyes don’t know where to look first. I see some of my friends are hanging upside down by their feet, just hanging there motionless. Why aren’t they fighting? My eyes follow the conveyer belt as they’re pulled underwater. I watch as water splashes up the sides of the tank before they remerge out the other side. I could see some of them twitching against the shackles around their feet, and something felt… wrong. I couldn’t place it, but they didn’t look well. More sickly then before, like they didn’t have any fight left. Their bodies weren’t moving, but I could see their eyes, they were screaming for help.
I fought, hoping maybe I’d get dropped, but he just tightened his grip around my leg. I felt my heart break as I continued following them with my eyes. My eyes swept a few feet in front of them, to see where they were going and I felt my blood run cold. They were headed right toward a saw blade. Oh my God, no! I turned back to my friends and started fighting harder against the monster holding me, why aren’t you fighting? Get out of there! The buzzing from the saw filled the air, and I watched, helpless as they were pulled through it, blood gushing from their necks. I couldn’t help but puke at the sight, the smell of fresh blood and feces filled the air.
He readjusted his grip and laughed again, “Aaawww, what’s a’ matter? You don’t like this ride, anymore?”
He lifted me over his head and I felt cold metal click around my legs, he was strapping me in! No! Please! I haven’t done anything! I squirmed and maneuvered every way I could think of, I heard a deafening snap before I felt a bolt of pain shoot through my leg. I cried out in agony as the bone snapped, effectively stopping me from fighting. I was panting from the effort, tears free-falling down my face.
He brought a finger up to my face, wiping a tear away as his features contorting back into that evil smile that made my blood run cold, “Your turn.”
Pretty gruesome, right? Well, what if I told you this is only scratching the service of what’s really happening. This is a POV short story about what happens to chickens in a slaughterhouse. If you’d like to learn more, I highly recommend you check out this documentary. It covers pretty much every important point there is.
If you’d like some advice on how to make a change, please check out my Veg Life page, that has recipes, tips and more on helping you make a change.
Check out more FULL short stories here!