The man I’ve always called my father won me at a card game when I was three years old, lost me at seven, won me back at eight, lost me again. In between, I’ve lost count of the number of men among whom I’ve been passed.

To keep things simple, I called them all “Daddy.”

Who my real father is is a mystery to me. I have never known a time when I was a virgin. I guess you could find in these facts an explanation for my troubles with men.

I killed my first man the month before I turned eleven. He kidnapped me outside a convenience store in Camden, New Jersey. I let him rape me in the back of a van. All in all, it wasn’t as bad as Camden.

I was so passive, so perfectly compliant, that he felt comfortable enough after he came inside me to fall into a drunken stupor. It is then that I picked up the tire iron I found lying on the floor under the cot and beat his brains out like scrambled eggs. It was then that I learned a most valuable lesson: men often mistake passivity for weakness.

As I sat there regarding my handiwork, I was suddenly seized with an irresistible, inexplicable urge. I gnawed the bastard’s cock and balls off. I did it purely by instinct. I had no idea what I was doing or why.

I munched my way through all that flesh and hair and cartilage. It was a bitter, foul-tasting experience, a lot like my life up to that point, but somehow more satisfying.

I screwed up my face with distaste, but I got through it as I’d gotten through so much up to then: somehow.

The second man I murdered I did away with in a fleabag motel somewhere between Iowa and Kansas. I never was very good at geography.

The circumstances of our meeting were a little more ambiguous than those of my first victim. I’ll spare you the details. It followed the general pattern. “Come here, little girl. I’ve got something for you.” Hand over mouth and nose, pointless struggle, tied, tossed in the trunk, etc.

Tires squealing.

Bumpy ride.

The ending was much the same.

I cut his throat as he lay snoring and farting his way through another version of the post-coital drunken stupor. He’d been careless with the electrical cord he’d used to bind my wrists and ankles. Big mistake.

As the last of his blood spurted out, I grabbed his cock before it could go completely flaccid. I pumped him up real hard. He was awake by now. I stared right into his terrified eyes and bared my teeth. I ducked my head over his lap. This time I didn’t hesitate. No tentative lick.

I dug right in.


The third one…well, here is where my memory starts to get a little hazy.

In my experience, you really remember only the first three or four in any detail. All the sights, the sounds, the stenches. The reassuring heft of the tire iron in your hand. The wet and satisfying squelch of that initial meaty blow. The effortless way a blade melts into flesh. The alarmingly beautiful pattern of blood as it sprays across a mildewed wall.

And most memorable of all, the first sweet taste of candied man-flesh. Because that’s how I’d come to think of a man’s death-stiffened pole. As a smooth, shiny candy. A sweet treat. A Valentine from me, to me.

Just like pink chocolate!

A guilty pleasure, except I don’t feel any guilt.

After twenty, thirty, forty, who’s counting? You get jaded, the details start to blur; it’s like being on a merry-go-round. Names, faces, the order of events; it all starts to bleed together. The truth is that it all resolves itself into one archetypal Ur-story of sex, murder, and mayhem.

Well, that’s okay. Order and sense have nothing to do with it. I’m not writing a novel. I don’t plan on making a confession. That’s not my intention. At some point I slipped up, got cocky (pun intended), and found myself underestimating my prey as they had once underestimated me, the stupid pricks. It happens.

I got caught, muzzled, and convicted, albeit, the judge conceded, with extenuating circumstances. I’d lived a tough life. I was never shown the proper love. I was more sinned against than sinning.

My crusading lesbo-feminist lawyer argued on my behalf with maternal ferocity and righteous indignation; I was groomed, abused, traumatized, gaslighted, you name it, #MeToo, no one ever defended me from the cold cruel world like that dyke did, not even my actual mother, whoever she might have been. She convinced the jury of nine men and three carefully chosen closet bulls that I was more victim than victimizer.

But most of all, what saved me from hard time was simply this: I was too pretty for the penitentiary.

Someone took an interest in me. He—naturally it was a “he”—rescued me from the prosaic prison in which they would have interred me for a minimum of five years of tedious counseling and ultimately futile rehabilitation. Released into his custody is how they put it. On some kind of bogus probation. House arrest. They put the electronic anklet on me and everything. He brought me to his mansion on a secluded ranch in the mountains surrounding a pitiless stretch of Nevada desert. I have no idea how he accomplished this feat of legal hanky-panky, but I suspect it involved considerable sums of money and a crooked politician or two.

My new captor wasn’t interested in my rehabilitation. He wasn’t interested in justice. He wasn’t even interested in the truth, not the way the police were interested in the truth, for instance, or the court-appointed psychiatric worker, or my legal aid attorney, or any of the well-meaning but clueless social workers from the Division of Youth and Family Services.

No: my captor simply wanted to hear me sing. He knew that song has its own truth, a truth that can’t be handcuffed to morality or even facts, because the truth cannot be held prisoner, not even to things like right and wrong; the truth is Houdini-like, it always escapes. The song, like violence, belongs to a higher order of things, where truth and beauty merge…and emerge into something that transcends this world.

Like an angel.

That’s what he called me.

Daddy’s little angel.

And that’s what I did: I sang. I sang inside the pretty white cage he kept me confined inside day and night. I sang of all the glorious, terrible, ecstatically bloody crimes I’d done and dreamt I’d done in my short, incredibly violent life up to that point.

My captor was anonymous to me. I never saw his face. He kept it carefully concealed behind a mask whenever I was to perform for him. He was a careful man, not at all foolish, like all of the rash and careless men I’d known up to that point.

When he fed me the candied sweets I craved from his own hand, he always wore a thick leather glove through which he knew my teeth couldn’t penetrate. Not even once did he fail to put on this glove when he reached between the bars of my cage.

Believe me, I was waiting for him to make a mistake, for him to trust me. I was waiting for him to grow careless just that one time like all the other men I’d ever known. One slip up and I’d have snapped, taken his hand right off at the wrist if I could, chomped my way through the salty veins and cabled tendons.

He never slipped up, though, not even when he was tired from the labors of his long days away from his desert mansion getaway, not even when he was intoxicated, and, most impressively, not even when his cock was standing straight up against his paunchy, furry belly, poking up to play.

At those times, he had me turn around, bend over, and present my bottom. And he took me just like that, from between the bars of my ornate cage.

He never forgot—even at the moment of his most explosive, thought-shattering orgasm—what I was, how lethal I could be, and because of that ever-vigilant watchfulness, I understood that he was the first man who ever truly respected me.

And it was for this respect that he had for me that I in turn felt for him something equally special. Something that I never felt for any other man. Something that I imagine is akin to what other people must mean when they talk about “love.”

I “loved” my captor, my latest daddy. Because if he so much as let his guard down for an instant, I’d kill him without so much as a second thought.

But he never did.

He never, not once, disrespected me.

I don’t know how much time passed like this. Years, maybe. If I’d gone to a regular prison, I would probably have earned my release by now; provided, that is, I didn’t kill one of the guards, an all-too real possibility given the prevalence of sexual harassment in the prison-system.

Eventually, I noticed that my captor was coming to see me less and less. Perhaps he’d gotten tired of me?

When he did come, he no longer wore the mask. His face looked drawn and rubbery, like he was wearing a second mask. He appeared to be dramatically losing weight, his body like a structure made of sticks. He had trouble lowering and raising himself from the chair he pulled up in front of my cage. He moved cautiously as if in anticipation of pain. He winced often when he came. He fucked me less and less and then not at all.

Eventually, he confided in me. He had a complicated cancer. It was seated in his liver like a nest of spiders and was webbing its way through the rest of his gut, eating him alive from the inside out. Recently, his doctors found new colonies nested in his lungs and brain. He laughed. He could see I didn’t give a damn about his problems. He could see the question plain on my face. My one and only concern. What the fuck was going to become of me?

The answer came some months later, when all the various experimental treatments only the rich can afford had failed, when the hope of a spontaneous remission was less than the likelihood he’d be able to walk across the water of the swimming pool.

He rode into the room one afternoon looking like a skeleton in an electric wheelchair. In his bony fingers, he held up a key. He inserted it in the lock and left it there.

He said, “Free yourself.”

Then he announced what we both knew already.

“I am your Daddy. Your real Daddy.”

No explanations offered. None needed. What did it matter?

He stood back and waited.

I reached through the bars of my pretty cage, the only real home I’d ever known, and turned the key. The lock snapped open.

I strode out, free as a bird, naked as the day I was born.

I knew what he wanted.

He wanted me to kill him and eat him. He was so certain that I’d jump at the chance that he didn’t take any precautions. His shriveled-up, impotent thing sat in his lap like a dead baby vulture in its nest of ashes. But I didn’t bite. Instead, I walked right past him and out the door. I let the spiders in his gut finish him off.

The son-of-a-bitch deserved nothing better.

I crossed the desert, killing only as the need arose. Strangely, I found that I no longer derived any pleasure from it. Or not much. The flesh of my victims no longer tasted like pink chocolate to me anymore. It just tasted like what it was: sweaty, bitter, sad loser meat. I guess I lost the taste for it, if not the aptitude.

I’d gone straight, you might say.

Well, as straight as a girl like me can go.

I made it to Las Vegas. I managed to hustle a job as a housekeeper. I met a high roller in one of the casinos who regularly dropped small fortunes at the roulette wheel just to piss away the time.

“Who is that man?” I asked one of the guys who worked casino security.

“He’s an oil tycoon” was the answer.

I came to know him a lot better after that.

He wears a ridiculous ten-gallon hat and has steer antlers fixed to the front of his Caddy. We were married eight days after we met in his unmade bed. I had taken it upon myself to augment hotel policy for high rollers, going to his room to comp him a complimentary wakeup blowjob along with some extra bath towels.

Now I stand on the balcony and survey a stretch of Texas that extends all the way to the horizon, and a good deal beyond that, too. You’d need a telescope to see it all.

The land, the oil rights, even the senators…one day, it will all be mine.

His legitimate children, all well into their late middle-age, hate me, of course. But there’s nothing they can do about it. They’ll mount legal challenges that will last years. I’ve got a great attorney: the crusading lesbo-feminist, now my lover. Meanwhile, I’m already diversifying investments, moving mountains of money to the financial equivalent of Pluto. Sherlock Holmes wouldn’t be able to follow track it down.

He’s on the far side of eighty. And when I step on his accelerator, I can hear his heart stuttering to make it to the finish line.

It’s just a matter of time.

Just to piss my brothers and sisters off, I call him “Daddy.”