Here is the last segment of this weird and twisted story. I hope those of you who have followed it from the start have enjoyed it. If you didn’t read parts one through three, part one is a good place to get started. Thanks!
There was blood everywhere. The boy’s first thought upon entering the room had been to try to get the it back into the doctor’s body. Maybe he could somehow get him to start up again, like turning the key in a car with a freshly-filled fuel tank. If he could find a cup, or a scoop; something to pick the blood up in… But then he’d seen that the doctor was missing a head. And, though he was still young and still had much to learn about the world, he thought that might pose a problem.
His thoughts had reached about this point when he became aware of a faint hissing sound behind his back, like air escaping from a balloon. He whipped around and saw the strangest looking monster he’d ever seen. It was one long, thin, scaly body, with two stilt-like human legs and two delicate human arms attached (by thread?) at uneven intervals leading up to a serpentine head. Part of the body was wrapped in some kind of toga, as if this creature believed itself to be some kind of Roman God. Altogether it looked very… silly.
“Excuse me, sir, but I don’t think your body was design for such attachments,” the boy informed the creature as politely as he could manage. “Just look at that section of you between the arms and the legs – it’s bending at all sorts of weird angles when you move. It’s not meant to hold that kind of weight.”
Sid turned around abruptly and reexamined himself in the mirror. He was stunning. Wasn’t he? He spun on his heel and walked out of the room, returning a minute later dragging the gym bag. He’d placed the unconscious surgeon on top of the bag, with the doctor’s head on her lap, and was pulling her like a child on a sled. When he got back to the the boy, he picked up the doctor’s head and placed it over his own. The dead eyes came to life and, after rolling around erratically for a moment, came to rest on the boy’s face.
“What are you trying to ssay to me, ssmall child?” asked Sid through the doctor’s mouth.
The boy, developing a plan, replied: “Nothing. It’s just… If you’re able to take control of human pieces so easily, why don’t you use a human torso? You could still control everything, but you’d be much more comfortable, and bend a whole lot less.”
Sid considered it for a second. The whelp had a point. With no explanation, he exited the room once more, this time returning with a surgical needle and thread in one hand and a pair of scalpels in the other.
“Help me get thesse off,” he demanded, and handed the boy one of the scalpels.
He laid himself down on the floor and got to work cutting the stitches holding the left leg on. The boy looked uncertain for a second, then stepped up and started freeing up the right leg. They took turns on the arms: first Sid cut one off, then he allowed the boy to cut the other, since he wouldn’t have been able to do it himself. Pulling out the stitches had hurt a little, but he was numb with excitement at the prospect of working with a more complete human body. As soon as the last threads were cut, Sid retracted his head from the doctor’s neck leaving it to roll on the floor, then slithered over to the surgeon and into her mouth. He turned around somewhere inside her chest, and then peered out through her mouth.
He stood up in his new costume. It took him a while to get to his feet without the benefit of arms, but he’d gotten it eventually by placing his head against the hospital bed and using it for leverage. He looked down with the surgeon’s head at her legs. They weren’t as long as his other ones, but he felt like he could get used to them.
“Help me with the armss,” he insisted. He lay down on the floor next the the arms that had been casually tossed aside once separated from his snake body.
The boy put down his scalpel and picked up the needle and thread. His hands were a little unsure of themselves, but he got to work sewing the surgeon’s arms back on as straight as he could manage. Sid was having a great time. He could choose not to feel the prick of the needle going in and out of the woman’s body, though he could feel her heartbeat accelerate while the boy worked. He felt quite comfortable in this position, dangling down the surgeon’s esophagus. He got quite an eerie feeling from inhabiting a body that was still alive, but he quite liked the warmth, and the comforting rhythm of breaths coming and going.
In due time, the boy finished his task of reconnecting the arms. Sid stood up quickly and swung the arms around the surgeon’s body, as if loosening up them up in preparation for a long, delicate surgery. The boy had been right: a human torso made a world of difference.
“My thankss, young man,” Sid said, inclining the surgeon’s head slightly. “I shall be off now to experiencce more of what it meanss to be a human.” He took a step towards the door.
“Wait,” suggested the boy. “You don’t want to go out there looking like that. From what I can tell, you’re a boy snake. You don’t want to be seen walking around with…” He whispered the last word, since he normally wasn’t supposed to say it: “boobies.”
“Why not? Thiss body iss quite sstylish. I should like to get out of here immediately, boobiess or not.”
“But it’s better to be a man,” tried the boy. “For instance, my mom tells me that women often get paid less than men for doing the same work.”
“I don’t intend to get a job,” countered Sid. Then, after some thought: “But I ssupposse you’re right. I’m ssure thingss will be eassier to exxplain if I sstick to the gender I know.”
He retrieved the needle and thread and stepped over to the doctor’s body. He knelt down on the surgeon’s knees in the doctor’s blood and got to work reattaching the doctor’s legs. He worked quickly, then got started on the head, dipping his needle into the neck in one spot and arcing it out in another over and over again. When he was finished, he let the surgeon’s body slump over as he crawled from her mouth. As he slid off of her, she rolled gently and groaned almost imperceptibly.
She’s coming around! Thought the boy excitedly. Maybe the same thing will work for the doctor.
Sid had now entered the doctor’s body and was peeping out from the mouth. He sat up, bending the doctor’s neck from side to side and kicking the doctor’s feet to make sure everything was working. Satisfied, he leaned forward, as if to stand.
“Many thankss to you for all of your help,” Sid hissed. “Now, I really musst get going.”
Before Sid had a chance to close the doctor’s mouth, the boy shot his hand inside and pulled him out. The doctor’s body slumped forward, knocking the boy backwards so that he released his hold of Sid and tumbled to the ground. The doctor fell on top of the boy, pinning him in place. It hadn’t worked. The doctor had not been brought back.
The surgeon’s eyes were fluttering open weakly now. Sid, slightly dazed after being dropped by the boy, made his way back over to the doctor. It was really just a minor inconvenience, like being thrown out of your car by a car jacker who then changed his mind and let you get back in. However, before he had a chance to climb into the doctor’s mouth…
The boy felt a stir. A very slight vibration, almost too small to notice. Then the doctor pushed himself up. He straightened up so that he was on his knees. The boy clambered out from under him and stood up, his smile gleaming at the doctor.
“Doctor, I’m so glad you’re OK. This snake here was…”
The doctor turned his face towards the boy. His eyes were glazed over and his lower lip hung slack, a ribbon of drool making its way down to his lab coat. The boy managed to shriek for about half a second before the doctor’s hands closed around his throat. Obviously, this was not the doctor as he had been before. Death—even a short death—can have catastrophic consequences on the brain, and it seemed like the doctor’s was as jumbled as a stir fry as a result of his time spent coming all to pieces to satisfy Sid’s curiosity.
The boy found that he was running out of air. His mouth was toiling futilely trying to gasp in a small breath of life-giving oxygen, but he couldn’t get anything past the doctor’s hands. Just as he thought he would black out, he saw the snake crawl up the doctor’s body to his shoulder, and from there directly into his mouth.
The change was instantaneous. The doctor released his hold on the boy’s neck and stood up fully. He laughed hard. The surgeon sat up, holding her head where she had hit it back in the store room. She looked into the face of the laughing doctor-thing and felt a little shiver.
“Lookss like the doctor issn’t in anymore, eh?” Sid gloated. “M’lady, I thank you for letting me try out your body,” he said to the surgeon. “It wass very lovely, but it jusst wassn’t the one for me.
“And you,” he addressed the boy. “I shan’t kill you, desspite how much I want to know what you tasste like. Eating human children sseemss very unprofesssional for a human, and ssincce that iss what I am now, I will leave you alone. But I jusst hope you’ve learned a lessson on what happenss when you sstick your nosse where it doessn’t belong.”
And he strode out of the room. Out of the building. Down the street and to the park. He jumped in the fountain and splashed around laughing in pure joy at the new freedom that he’d uncovered for himself. Sid felt sure that this is what he was intended for: living the carefree life of a very blood-soaked doctor, on a very warm and sunny afternoon.
Back in the room, the surgeon stood up and helped the boy to his feet. He looked as if he was about to cry, and she really couldn’t blame him. She picked him up and, as she carried him back to his own room, she thought to herself:
Snakes are scary fucking creatures…