Innocent Violence

by Jeff Alan

Michael is twelve years old and big for his age -- so big that some might call him a monster. His clothes are flecked with blood; it is not his blood. He feels no sympathy for his victims when sudden terror contorts their faces, no remorse when he leaves them twitching on the ground. He loves the brutality of it, the hot spike of adrenaline, the sense of getting away with something that is unacceptable and utterly incomprehensible in everyday life. Besides, he sees this kind of violence on television all the time, so how could it be wrong? Later, when the savagery is over and his mom asks, "Who wants ice cream?" he and his mates shout, "Me!" as they sit bumping shoulder pads in the back of the minivan.


Jeff Alan is a self-described gypsy, having lived in more states than he can count on one hand. He presently resides in a small, quiet town in North Carolina. His work has appeared in MicroHorror, and will soon appear in Flashshot. Visit bonescribble, his online home.


Richard said...

I had to read this three times.

First time, I missed it, but blame that on being English - we don't wear pads.

Second time I understood it.

The third time was simple hedonism - to enjoy it again.


Quin said...

nicely done, making you wonder...wonder, a sigh of relief...and then the realisation... michael might still turn out ever so badly.

Anonymous said...


Madam Z said...

This is a thought provoking post, Jeff. I see a great future for "Michael" in talk radio.

Pam said...

Wonderful. I was picturing a kid pulling the wings off bugs or bullying in the schoolyard or something equally horrible, and felt physically relieved at the end because I wanted to like Michael.