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For The Tainted Ones

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  *Art by Ben Mauro* I’ve felt this way before.   The air growing thick with the scent of iron, the sound of clattering metal shackles, and the shattering of brittle bones as the flesh attached to them is torn off piece by piece always drills into me an overwhelming and sobering sensation.   Death is just around the corner, and yet every time that I try to reach it, the thing vanishes, almost like it never existed and leaving behind just traces of the body it had just gotten done dismembering.   It’s been like this down at the state penitentiary for months now.   One night out of the month, an other-worldly being will find its way into this building and claim a victim.   Almost all of the inmates here are set for either life without parole or are living their final days out on death row, but saying that I still don’t feel some lick of sympathy for the poor souls who end up being victim to this thing would mean that I’d lost all sense of my own humanity.   Chasing this thing was going t