Betty in Accounting wakes at 2:15pm. Spittle splatters her forearm
pillow. The office busies with clock-watching coworkers. No one
notices. No one even cares.
Betty in Accounting takes a long swig of curdled coffee and licks at
her lips until her tongue is plum. Across from her is a vacant desk.
Papers pile high from missing breath. The papers never sleep.
Betty in Accounting opens her middle drawer and retrieves a ball of
her black hair. She sets it on her keyboard. The tightly wound weave
measures from Shift to Shift. She pets the bundle and smiles. Her
eyes return to the empty desk across from her. A speck of a spider
builds her web from the paper pile to the calculator. No one notices.
No one even cares.
Betty in Accounting reaches raw fingertips inside her mouth and grabs
at a lower molar. She pulls until the reverb of tooth roots
ripping–mouth warming with a soup of gore. Just before the final
twist, her thumbnail bends back until the flesh tears; but she does
not stop until the tooth is free. She slips the treasure inside an
Altoids tin with six other Chiclets. The blood sweetens her coffee to
Betty in Receiving is back at her desk now, throat oozing with the
fourteen wounds of a week ago. She snarls behind the plastic bag that
suffocated her before, during, and after the violence. Stabbed-out
eye sockets drain black. No one notices. No one even cares.
Betty in Accounting smiles at Betty in Receiving. She pulls out the
letter opener murder weapon and breaks the skin at the bend of the
upturned thumbnail. The flesh pops and spurts nastiness across the
bundle of hair on the keyboard.
Betty in Accounting laughs to a gasp.
Betty in Receiving gasps to a laugh.
There’s only room for one Betty in this world.
And no one notices. No one even cares.