Chris Rice Cooper

Chris Rice Cooper

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

A violently delicious short story for those who try to lose weight & are bullied by the skinny people - "HOLIDAY" by C.S. Nelson


Christal Cooper

SHORT STORY:  “HOLIDAY!” by C.S. Nelson
“I tend to gravitate toward the darker side of my characters.  We probably all have a Zoe in our pasts we wish we could take a laptop to.”
C.S. Nelson


HOLIDAY!
       A-holla-holla-ho and a-holla-holla-hey!” Melanie sang the words to The Other Ones’ hit, “Holiday,” in a melodic whisper for the sake of Ladies Room etiquette. Loose lips and wide hips make for über embarrassing Metabofit Weigh-Days. No point in giving the Skinny Bitches ammo, right?
       She plunged a neat fold of TP behind her, then wiggled and wiped before sentencing the soft Cottonelle to glow-in-the-dark, vitamin green depths.
       Dis-tant lands are not-so-far-away…”
She sang with eyes closed tight, rolling her shoulders as she shimmied her panties back into place, then air drumming the rest of the pre-chorus through duck lips.
       “Everything okay in there, Mel?”
       “Ohp!” Melanie jumped at Zoe’s voice, a super-sexy slink that could sell fat girls thongs for a beach party. It was hard to not love Zoe McMasters, her Life Choice Coach.
       “I’m fine!” she called mid-flush.
       “Super. We’ll be in the Hotbod Zone. Ready to tape when you’re done, hon.”
       “Okee-doke.”
       This was it. Moment of truth. Two months of the Metabofit Burn Phase down and the goal right there in tasting distance. Tasting. Mmm. Richard’s lips. His flat, salty stomach. Those translucent golden eyes smiling up at her over a ring box—she squealed with clenched victory fists. Paradise was but a few hours away. This weekend she would become the newly engaged, Future Mrs. Richard P. Rodriguez.
       “Come on, Mel. I’ve got four other girls to do today, hon.” Zoe’s voice echoed tinny from outside the bathroom door.
       Melanie moved quickly to the sink, pulling her shirt up over her shrinking muffin top, turning left then right with her hand pressing against her tummy to inspect the hard work she’d put into chiseling away thirty years of aged baby fat. Yep. Goodbye, Size 16! Her ladies-M ski pants might be a little snug this weekend at Big Bear, but Richard would go googoo over the tight package if she pulled this off.
       The bathroom door cracked open and Zoe’s red storm of hair erupted through, green eyes blazing. Melanie held her breath and froze three steps away. Zoe’s face slipped into a beaming smile.
       “Well? Come on, gorgeous. Don’t be shy.”
       Melanie released her air and hurried for the door.
       A-holla-holla-hey, another holiday!”
***
       “But… I don’t understand?” Hot tears welled in her eyes.
       “What’s there to not understand, hon? You didn’t stick with the plan.”
       “But…”
       “No buts. Big buts make big butts, remember?” Zoe slapped Melanie’s naked one for emphasis. Something was happening to her, though. She seemed more deliberate than sweet and encouraging. Sharky, maybe? Melanie shivered.
       Numbers flashed in red from Zoe’s laptop, blinking blinking blinking, 156lbs 156lbs 156lbs, OVER. OVER. OVER. Melanie’s eyes crawled from the scale to the laptop to the measuring tape. Clipboard of truth. Numbers don’t lie. Bust-Waist-Hips-Thighs. Shoulders, knees, and toes. She gained an inch in her south pole and lost a half for all of her topside assets. Melanie sniffed back the deluge.
       “I’m bowling pin shaped.”
       “Oh, hon. Don’t think of it like that. Be positive.”
       She swiped at her eyes.
       “Think of yourself as something delicious. Like a pudding pop!” Melanie’s vision blurred and she tried to focus on a nowhere spot above Zoe’s head. Zoe continued with the pep talk, though her voice took on this no-nonsense business tone. “After this weekend, you’ll start the Metabofit Fire phase. We’re gonna crank the heat with plenty of Zumba-fit and Spin-fit and Ladies of Power Hour weight training. And what does a pudding pop do when you turn up the heat?”
       “Melts.”
       “It melts, Mel. You hear me? It,” Zoe said, palms striking out with a WHAMP! to smack both sides of Melanie’s naked thighs on the clinic exam table, “fucking melts.” She vibrated with energy. “And this time,” she said pushing her lips within kissing distance, “you’re going to stick”—WHAMP!—“with the fucking plan.”
       Melanie froze. Goosebumps popped from beneath her panties and bra, down her arms. Her bottom lip quivered in the shadow of Zoe’s ire.
       “Well?” Zoe said it in a breathy murmur, one word holding back a nuclear warhead.
       “Okay,” she squeaked.
       “Good.” Zoe pushed off the table and spun to her laptop, her voice taking on the same sexy purr Melanie was used to. Only now it felt like she was in a cage with a hormonally raging tigress. “Get dressed and we’ll start your weekend plans—”
       “Huh? Oh, no! I’ll have to start Monday because, see, this is mine and Richard’s big weekend, our holiday…” Her words petered out beneath Zoe’s gaze. There was no anger or joy, only a cold observation behind the look; one that said Melanie just became a specimen on a dissection tray.
       “Well, then I guess you should have thought about that before you decided to cheat.”
       “Cheat? But I didn’t—”
       “Big BUTTS!” WHAMP-WHAMP-WHAMP! “But-but-but-but. But oh, didn’t you? Hmmmmm. Let’s take a looksee.” She snatched Melanie’s cell phone from the pile of clothes in the chair and jerked her head back at the screen saver. “Who’s this?”
“Richard.” Melanie sounded tiny to her own ears.
“Delish.” Then, “Hmph.” Zoe eyed Melanie over the screen with a smirk and swiped her finger across Richard’s neck. She stabbed at the Metabofit App. Melanie’s .85 Waist-to-Hip ratio-ed hiney sank deeper into the cold paper of the exam table as her entire history, missed meals, lazy heartrate activity, and late night nosh sessions at the fridge, told on her.
       Zoe laughed. She snorted. She cocked her head and put a fist to her perfect hip, showing Melanie the guilty screen.
       “Cheating.” The screen blurred through a veil of tears.
       “Oh for fuck’s sake! You did this to yourself. Now get your fat ass in some clothes and meet me in my office so I can unfuck you. Again.” She moved for the door, but not before muttering, “I’m sure he wishes he could.”
       Melanie snapped straight, jeans halfway up her thighs. “What was that?”
       “Hm? What?”
       “What you just said.”
       “What did I say?”
       “It sounded like you said something about, ‘he wishes he could.’”
       Zoe scrunched her brow and then lightened into the same golden charm Melanie had trusted with when she first stumbled into Metabofit two weeks ago. “Oh that. I was saying how I’m sure Richard wishes he could unfuck you.” Melanie swallowed. “You know, because,” Zoe continued, leaning in close, “you’re not just fat.” She paused as if waiting for the tears to fall. “You’re a quitter. Not even worth his sloppy seconds at this point.”
       Melanie sniffed but did not cry. Heat creeped up her cheeks.
       “Okay, hon,” Zoe said, switching modes and heading for the door once again. “I’ll be waiting and we’ll get you all fixed up right.”
       Richard’s ringtone sang “Holiday” from her phone.
       Kiss me in the moo-oonlight,
       Zoe glanced back. Their eyes locked, then came to rest on Richard’s angel smile on Caller ID.
       “Close the door,” Melanie croaked. The words came from a dry well. Metabofit didn’t really seem to matter and she was all out of caring what Zoe the Body Goddess thought.
       Zoe wore bemused confusion poorly.
       “Now, skinny bitch.”
Distant lands from not so far away,
       “Ex-scuse m—”
       WHUMP!
       Zoe shrieked, catching Melanie’s wad of shirt, hoodie, purse, and shoes in the face. The door sprung closed behind her, shutting her in.
       “What is WRONG with—”
       “Unfuck me? Unfuck me?!
       Melanie moved on some other curvy girl’s legs, the distance between her and her Metabofit Coach closing with lightspeed.
I don’t kno-ow why we don’t go.
       “Mel? Stop? Mel, hon. Just, stop and put it down. Okay?”
       She did stop, and let her eyes fall on the laptop in her hands. When had she picked that up? She scrolled the screen and her face slackened.
       156lbs 156lbs 156lbs.
       “Come on, Mel. Be a sweetheart and let’s put the computer down.” Zoe moved a step closer.
       Take my hands, I’ll sho-ow you the way,
       OVER. OVER. OVER.
       “God, Mel! Please—”
       thwabp
       Zoe cut short a staccato cry. The wobbly laptop screen whip-snapped downward atop her crown. Her eyes dilated uneven and a rivulet of blood trickled across her forehead to pool in her eye. Deepening concussion sucked her to a null-set of Brainfit.
       Melanie’s eyes danced across the cracked screen, Zoe bobble-heading in the fuzzy background.
       156lbs. 156lbs. 156lbs.
       Zoe tilted her head, confused.
       Pack your bags and sail away!
       OVER. OVER. OVER.
       PHWACK! Zoe collapsed to sit back against the door.
PHWACK!
And Again.
       PHWACKETY-PHWACKETY-PHWACK!
       The third strike crumbled Zoe to a heap. Melanie stepped back and the laptop clattered to the floor, blood smearing the plastic, red hair growing from the casing. Zoe’s eyes remained uneven, staring blind in front of Melanie. Dark blood oozed into a puddle around her head. A wet, black fissure glistened four inches across her crown, like that next-to-fatal crack in an egg before it becomes a scramble. Melanie fought the urge to puke at the sight of Zoe’s pink head meat poking through.
“Oh man. Zoe.”
A-holla-holla-ho and a-holla-holla-hey!
Zoe’s chest suddenly heaved with a violent gasp. She sat up pressing hands to her head.  “What’d you’re done,” she slurred. Then louder, “Holy fuck, Mel. What did’re doodoo me, you fat—”
Another holiday!
THWACK!  
 
C.S. Nelson on Writing “Holiday”
      “Holiday” came from a workshop into which I self-conscripted, The Art of Violence by John Skipp. It was without a doubt the most fun I’ve had in an online course, but much of that is attributed to Mr. Skipp’s personality.
      The assignment was to write a death scene, preferably a violent one, and I just happen to be in this weird American Psycho mood. Not so much the original movie (or book, and more about that in a bit), but the Weird Al and Huey Lewis spoof (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fk15H6PjBis).
      Now I don’t think I could ever pull off something as disturbing as Mr. B.E. Ellis’ masterpiece (book, not movie) but the concept of a kinetic murder committed to a hot 80s chart topper soundtrack is kinda sexy, if you think about it.
      Then I heard the song “Holiday” from the Other Ones and the idea formed. As for plot, I had just started using Advocare for weight-loss following two years of post-knee op rehab and, while I found great success with the product, the sales angle made me wonder if anyone had ever finally snapped when his or her Distributor/Mentor/whatever asked for progress in terms of measurements. Boom. There you go. Instant deadly satire!
       I get most of my ideas from weirdspace, though. I once wrote a story about how the earth is really on the back of a coiled up pillbug. Weirdspace. The only way to travel.”

Biography on CS Nelson
CS Nelson writes darker fiction and has appeared in North American anthologies and magazines, with upcoming releases in Ireland and the U.K. He lives in Fairbanks, Alaska with his wife, son, and Queensland Heeler, playing ice hockey, skiing, and chasing the Northern Lights. He is also a 17+ year veteran cavalry scout in the US Army and hopes to one day write his way back to sanity because of it. For a good time darkly, visit his website at http://nelsoncs.com.


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