Fiction Mania | The Book of Judith

The Book Fiction Mania, changed her life .
Judy sat crouched in the corner, tears rolling down her face as her blood swollen lip, and bruises ached with intensity. A nightly ritual for her as her husband, Fernando, came home. This attack however was one of the worst. After finding out she had recently became impregnated by her drunkard of a spouse, Judith as her mother called her, endeavoured to escape without Fernando knowing, but ultimately, was caught mid-act, and wrestled back into capitulation. Judith knew she couldn't bring a child into this nightmare, so each morning when Fernando left for work, Judith would prepare for her escape. The instructions for her departure came by way of a single book, a 17th century leather bound novel called "gwallgofrwyd: tynged newid", or in English, "Fiction Mania: Destiny Changed.", that she had found in the attic by chance. It was an Welsh childrens' book, or so she believed, an epic about two children who use a device known as the Antithesis Machine, an ancient Welsh relic, washed upon the shores of Wales to change history. Oddly enough, the author included an unusually detailed description of how to build this device. For months Judith sat in the kitchen floor fashioning her hopes into a single cog, clock-work apparatus, born from sacrificial parts of the toaster, blender and other appliances.

During the next nine months Judith continued to endure Fernando's feverish assaults. She'd do her best to lessen his anger as she attempted to shield her womb and unborn child. Upon one occasion, gumption arrived at Judith's tongue and she bravely announced, "Can you see yourself? Who you've become? This isn't who I fell in love with, and I want out!" Fernando responded to his fears and to his wife's strengthening mentality by screaming "Shut your mouth trollop! You ever try to leave and I'll cut you into a million bits."

I can see myself, for who I really am.
Eventually child was born, named Hope, and Judith for the sake of that child became the savior against the Grendel to which Fernando had become. In the end, Judith and Hope would try to make one last attempt to escape. For one week a month, Fernando would refuse to sleep in her bed, "unclean" he would tell her, as he laid in the living room chair hairy chested without a shirt, a burnt-out cigarette still between his fingers, and half-drunken beer bottles at his feet. "Quiet, sweetheart" she whispered to little baby Hope as she walked down the hall hoping the infant did not sense the fear and cry. Swaddled in a blanket, Judith reached into the hallway closet for her invention and her coat. A golden bronze box, with a small mechanical number-counter on the side. As she did, she made her fatal mistake. On top was the book, Fiction Mania, as it flew to the floor with a thud, stirring dust as it did; its pages sprung open by the wind of the awakening adjacent giant. Fernando was lucid. He thundered towards Judith and the baby spewing atrocities into their ears, grabbing them like a rotten tree, throwing them to the ground. The baby now screaming, as Fernando in his madness reached for his axe that sat in the closet. Judith, more clever than ever, slid the child into the safety of the far corner of the room, knowing the impending battle which must be fought. She kicked at his legs as he approached with the axe, screaming as he thrusted it downward through her skin, slicing through muscle, and bone. Judith a siren of agony, covered in blood, as Fernando swung again and missed into the wall. Begging for her life, screaming for help; Fernando exclaims from his dripping red faced hairy cheeks "It's your fault! You made me him!" The axe now overhead and falling fast comes slamming through Judith's left arm, the blade now dulling, stretches the meat like rising dough before finally breaking through to the wood floor below. The Antithesis Device no longer clutched by a functioning appendage falls to the floor. Nearly unconscious, Judith has only one hope as her lone limb reaches for the the button on the device. She presses it with the entirety of her hand. The cog turns, the numbers count-down from 86 almost instantly, and Fernando's third swing, now in motion slows down and with it time. A flash of blue light, a deep thundering boom, and eyelids shut. When it was over, Judith now stood over Fernando in his floral white dress, covered in blood. She was now him, and he was now her. "No!" he screamed from his new found voice womanhood in the depths of humanity. The axe and its momentum was too much to stop as it severed Fern's final feminine arm. Judy, now standing over herself asks Fern one final question before life escaped him "Can you see yourself for who you are now?"


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