's 2013 Horror Write-off:

" Pluck "

Submitted by Kiara Maher

One by one she pulls them out, using a motion she has practiced, and practiced, and practiced. They are anchored so firmly, and great care must be taken not to damage the skin too much.

It is somewhere between a tug and a twist that she finds her golden motion, and now, with a flourish, she has finally plucked out the last. She steps back to admire her work with a satisfied glow.

Her now-featherless guest slips in and out of consciousness, head lolling, slumped forward in the leather chair as much as the belts will allow. He is beyond the point of crying out; he passed it hours ago. “You are so beautiful…” she whispers, moving toward him.

“Please… please…”

Her face draws close to his. Her breath on his naked face. He has not so much as whimpered for hours, but he does so now.


She does not know what she is saying please for. What is she asking him for? She does not know what it is she needs but it’s him, it comes from him. It must come from him, oh gods, oh merciful, merciful gods.

She sinks down to her knees and looks up at him reverently, cups his face in her hand, brushes her thumb tenderly over the bruises in technicolor bloom on his cheek.

“I can see… I can see… no. No, stop, stop it. Don’t cry. Love, please…” She gently licks the tears off of his face, and his jagged, gasping sobs increase in pitch and frequency.

Although she worships him, he is by no means her first love, and he will not be her last.