The oily and translucent deep purple of the beast’s skin gives barely a dim reflection as it glistens in almost total darkness. A humid stillness of death and decay hangs in the damp warmth where the beast rests in its filthy lair at the largest part of its funnel-like cave dwelling. There are bones and curling dried sinew, bits of gristle and teeth-marked remnants of cartilage littering the floor of the lair, in hills and troughs of refuse generated over the course of eons. Not as much as might be expected, yet the sheer volume of human bone and human remains that mounds and scatters across the expanse of the funnel cave’s base is layers deep and enormous.

A slowly expelled breath comes belching from deep within the beast, delivering a new wave of tepid and putrefying rot stench into the malodorous cavern. The breath is in stereo from two gaping mouths, one on each side of the blunted crag of its skull. In the center of the beast’s anvil head, dozens of slitted eyes bore down the funnel to the spout entrance, every sense sharpened to the next victim’s arrival.

Voluntary prey– one of creation’s most unique dichotomies.

An intricate set of mechanisms line the narrowing walls of the funnel spout tunnel, exiting in progressively narrower archway rings to the bright sunlight of the cave’s mouth. These carefully and meticulously crafted works of engineering embedded into the thick and dripping walls of the beast’s funnelcave are a sight to behold. Gears and conveyors, rocker arms and worm gears, woven amongst actuators and other-worldly hydraulic lattices which spread like tarnished bronze spider webs reaching high overhead. Self lubricating and honed to precision from constant use, the entire engineered system of complexity manipulates an ultra lightweight but wickedly effective set of rail mounted barbed pincer hooks, which cycle continuously inward in a plodding and silently uninterrupted rhythm.

Rays of sunlight reveal a shaded opening at the funnel’s spout entrance, where a base instinct, a carnal drive, summons prey toward the snare of this savage cave. From outside, some type of ancient holographic deception gives the vicious hook tram system a playful and very attractive appearance.

Alluring, sweet, exotic, and of course deeply arousing are the sights, smells, and sensations that enchant these hooks as they beckon a passing soul to take a second look. Explosive colors and images swirl in welcoming four-dimensional tendrils, accompanied by artificially conjured sounds of rapture and delight, mastery in their mimic. Sacred shapes that had been crafted at the beginning of time to trigger and excite and beckon, appear to dance and glimmer in a symphonic array of endless pleasure as they parade past. The carefully formed hooks have been fashioned to closely map the surface appearance of these ancient shapes, perfectly imperfect decoys. Absolutely deadly decoys.

Upon stopping to admire, a hypnotic surge and longing at once begins in the very hormones and pre-historic genomes of each potential victim. And they voluntarily relinquish a first instant of control to the enchanted mechanism, for which they are rewarded with a quick burst of satisfaction. And then another. This for that. An exchange of control for a morsel of erotic bliss. Power for stupor.

And the mechanism draws them in.

And the mechanism moves them up the funnel.

And they willingly, occasionally hesitantly at first, allow themselves to be conveyed inside. Ever deeper, ever unsatisfied, but ever seeking satisfaction. As the outside light fades and inner darkness descends along the otherworldly rails deeper inside, pleasure starts to have a bitter taste.

And the mechanism becomes a fearsome trap, a biting and coldly effective torture manacle that locks and restrains and lays open any skin it touches. Once in the zenith of the funnel, prey to the left and right is snapped up viciously by the beast as the mechanism delivers up its prizes as it was designed to do. The beast rages with unquenchable anger as it tears into the victimized prey without mercy. Brutally shocking is the stark transformation of that which beckoned from the outside with such alarming allure, to that which is now in an instant so terrorizing and full of carnal menace.

The beast roars in livid fury, “LUSTUS IS MY NAME!”

And for the prey there is no escape. The only hope is rescue.


Concept artwork is an original painting done by my brother, envisioned after reading my short tale. -DD
 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5