Short Fic?: That Dune Thing [dark fic, excerpt?, deathfic?]

Title: That Dune Thing
Author: Harper Kingsley
Summary: A prisoner held in a Dune-like setup with a cat. Thought-centric.

Tend the cat, suckle at its teats… fucking Dune-obsessed moron needed to be put down. But what could he do? They’d broken both his legs, his right arm, and three fingers on his left hand before casting them in heavily weighted plaster. All he had was his thumb and middle finger, which made it hard enough to care for the cat–how was he supposed to escape?

And the cat…

There was resentment, of course. Trapped as he was–wrong as it was–he felt the need to lash out at the nearest living thing. But it wasn’t her fault he was here.

Nothing was her fault. She was just as much a prisoner as he, moreso as she would never understand why this was happening to her. Why some horrible man had stuck her in a glass box with her limbs held immobile and only her head poking out the top.

He’d begun to pity the beast, even as he forced his heart to stay hard. They were going to die here in this cold stone room that leeched the warmth from his feet. They were going to die here and there was nothing he could do about it. So he held the tattered remains of his dignity around himself and refused to break.

Even as he tended the cat–slowly and painfully dragging himself across the floor each day–and felt his soul slipping and cracking at the madness, he refused to break.

Because somewhere in him, he still held an ember of hope: Someone would come for him. His brothers-in-arms would not leave him here.

And even if all he left behind was an empty shell, he had to hope that they would see his body home.

“Here kitty kitty.”

=THE END?=


This popped in my head as I was washing my hands. No explanation, no reason why, just the idea of someone held in a Dune-like cat trap.

I have ideas for more, but this could turn out super dark or full-on redemption and I don’t know. Plus I’m also tempted to turn it into a story-game where you can choose your genre (spy, superhero, killer, military pow) and darkness level.

I just don’t know if people would want to read something like this. The opening alone seems like a deathfic, and it’s pretty obvious that some messed up stuff is going to happen before it’s over, no matter the genre.

Like, the superhero group comes back with help, and they find the stone room where a dead cat is cradled in the arms of their dead comrade, “Here kitty kitty” painted on the walls in bodily fluid. Which would make that opening scene a prologue for the superheroes to find the Dune-obsessed villain that killed their friend.

Or a Bond-type spy is held captive by a monologuing madman that’s obsessed with sci-fi movies and “Cleansing the population of the Impure”, which could mean anything from a racial cleansing to a belief in a future god-emperor.

I don’t know. People might be too grossed out by a man forced to drink cat milk. I mean, just that right there could kill a story dead.