tagSci-Fi & FantasyCompany Hates Misery

Company Hates Misery


It had started as a force, a power that fed on the despair from the lost souls wandering the wastelands of transition. But transition was not the final place, and eventually the despairing souls would find the way to pass through and new ones would appear to take their place. The force had learned to reason and to manipulate, it had learned that there were ways of delaying the souls in transition so the force could feed off them for longer. Thus the force grew stronger. It developed substance, and then identified individual tasks that fragmented it into separate elements. The elements began to take the form that the human souls remembered; they grew to look like people. As the elements got stronger they got better at assuming the characteristics of humans until, after many centuries, they were identical in every way. They learned to speak to the souls in their own language, and they developed effective tricks to make the agonised souls stay in transition, thinking that there was no other choice. These souls usually thought they had been banished to Hell. As the misery around them compounded the elements became more like individuals. The force was stronger than ever but it was no longer a single entity, it was now made up of a collection of individuals all working to the common good. But the elements also developed human characteristics, and some of them became bored. Sure they could manipulate the pathetic souls using tricks like assuming the looks of long lost loved ones, but this was prone to backfiring. The elements soon realised that in the same way as the despair made them stronger, if the soul became happy it made them weaker and drained their power. But they were bored, and they looked beyond their traditional limits.

The force had watched carefully as humans had evolved. It had observed them through the thin divider of life, something the souls in transition were not able to do. And the force saw that despair was not just in the realm of the dead, it was also strong in the waiting room that the humans called life.

It was during a drought that the collective despair of thousands of dying humans had brought a large number of elements to the divider, and the weight of their primal desire had unexpectedly allowed them to pass through. The force had finally found a way into the world of the living. The elements drank greedily from the misery of the living, it was brighter, fresher, and made them swell with something they had never experienced, that thing that the humans called life. The elements stayed for as long as they could, but then rain clouds approached, and the delectable misery started give way to hope, and the elements had to flee. They used the same method to find their way back through the divider as they had to come through. All the elements that had stayed behind in transition then felt the increased power and strength of the others as they returned. The return was a surprise to the elements still in transition, because they could only see humans through the divider, they could not see their own elements.

The elements had repeated the foray many times, and they had learned some very hard lessons too. To be near a happy human was painful, to be near an ecstatic human was debilitating, and the number of humans affected multiplied the result. Once there were about ten elements amongst the crowd at a huge jousting contest. Twice his stronger and more skilled opponent, who was an arrogant oppressor of the common people, had knocked down the popular local knight. But he had remounted for one last desperate try. The elements were breathing deeply, sucking in the despair of the crowd as their battered hero rocked precariously in the saddle, barely able to hold his lance. As the horses galloped toward each other the elements prepared for the banquet that waited when the hero fell for the last time, but somehow the injured knight brought his heavy lance up, striking his opponent a fatal blow. The crowd's despair became instant jubilation, and almost all the elements were destroyed, simply disappearing. It was the single biggest loss of power that the force had ever experienced, and the two surviving elements joined other elements that were elsewhere during the tournament. It had been established that there needed to be about twenty elements clustered together to enable them to return through the divider, but they had just enough and were able to pass on the clear warning.

The force learned to only ever bet on a sure thing. They would enter the land of the living humans when there was a major disaster, natural or man made, which ensured that where they were going they would feed well and in safety. There were still risks involved, and a major one was that the elements had all the attributes of real humans when they went through the divider. During wars a number of the elements were shot or blown up, and they were injured and died in the same way as the humans around them, each time losing a small bit of the total force. But the overall net result of the visits was to make the force stronger, so they continued. If an element was injured when the rest had to return then it could not go with them, and could not get through the divide alone, so it remained. Because it was alone and invisible from the other side it too disappeared forever to the main part of the force. But some of these stragglers learned to survive, usually only very briefly, amongst living humans.

The rise of terrorism was a mixed blessing for the force. It did perpetrate major horrific acts that created misery and despair, giving the visiting elements places to feed, but it also gave desperate minorities some hope, when previously they may have fallen into despair. The mothers always grieved when their beloved sons died, but when they died a martyr, with explosives strapped to their bodies, the mothers also had a perverse hope. Misery remained, but it was no longer so thoroughly entrenched within individual populations.

Sally had very little chance from the start. Her mother was a drug addicted single mother who sold her body to make the money she needed to feed her habit. The short, skinny girl with the tattered clothes and matted dirty blonde hair grew up in a poor neighbourhood virtually unsupervised. She sometimes went to school, but was teased mercilessly and called 'rag doll' by the more fortunate kids. She never had the money for the required books, so she skipped classes more and more often. Sally wasn't clever, but she also wasn't dumb, and she was a keen observer of people. Sally could often guess what motivated individual people, just by watching them from a distance. She was a late developer physically, and kept her spindly and underfed boy's figure until she was into her late teens. This allowed Sally to watch a number of her friends suddenly becoming attractive to the neighbourhood boys, and she saw the power of sexuality used and abused by both sexes. Sally suddenly sprouted when she was eighteen. She had been working at the Tasty Chickee fast food place for a few years, but the addition of pert 36C breasts to her very slight frame became a major problem. The men all suddenly wanted her, and Sally's boss was a man.

Sally was a realist, she had seen her mother selling her body, and knew that sex was just another physical exercise. She also knew that where money wasn't involved, then usually the woman had the power to say no. Unfortunately for Sally, her boss was an arrogant and very strong man.

"Sally, come here, I want to talk to you," Dave said, leering at her too small shirt, which was straining to hold her chest in as she swept the green tiled floor. She shuddered, knowing he was going to try and paw her again, but she had no choice, payday was tomorrow and she desperately needed the money. The other workers had all left for the night, and the lights were dimmed in the front. Sally walked into the storeroom that had Dave's desk in it, and he motioned for her to close the door. She shrugged and did.

"Yes?" she asked, her voice trembling. Sally was scared of Dave, he had the power to fire her and cut off her money supply. He looked at her appraisingly for a moment. Sally was about five six he supposed, and very thin. Her hips had filled out a bit when her chest had, and he had made sure that her uniforms were always much too small. Dave liked them young, although he would never touch a girl under eighteen, he didn't want to go to jail. But Sally was eighteen now, and her mother was a whore; she knew what it was all about. Dave pointed to some clothes on his desk.

"You wanted a bigger uniform, there it is," he said pleasantly. Sally smiled, and Dave knew he had tricked her.

"Thanks Dave," Sally said happily, and she picked up the clothes and turned to leave.

"No,' Dave said, his deep voice grating, "you have to leave the old uniform here." Sally paused, realising he was taking this to a new level. She shrugged.

"OK,' she said, "I'll just go and get changed."

"No," Dave said again. "The lights are out; you'll have to get changed in here if you want it." He grinned triumphantly, knowing he was going to see the girl in her underwear. Sally quivered inside. Her bra was old, and had holes in it. It hid virtually nothing. She looked at Dave, who was standing just a couple of steps away next to his desk. He was a big man, six foot or so with broad arms and legs and a beer belly that made his shirt hang down like a curtain in front of his jeans. She knew he was very strong, and could also move deceptively quickly.

"I'll wait until tomorrow then," Sally said nervously, putting the clothes back down and edging toward the door, but Dave grabbed her arm viciously.

"No," he said menacingly, "I went to all the trouble of getting this uniform, you'll put it on now." Sally wriggled futilely in his strong grip, tears rising.

"I don't want to," she cried desperately. Dave looked at her through narrowed eyes.

"Either you take this off," he said, rubbing his hand across her breast, "or I will." Sally looked at him pleadingly, but there was no sympathy in his eyes, just determination. He waited as she struggled with her thoughts, and smiled cruelly when she nodded miserably.

Dave let go of her arm and positioned himself in front of the door. This, he thought, was going to be good. He watched as Sally went to the desk and turned around to undo the buttons on her top. "Face me," he said, wanting a better view of those lovely tits. Sally froze again. She knew he could do anything to her here and no one would help her. It was just after nine, but the buildings beside them and the road at the front were deserted at this time of night. All right, she decided, squaring her shoulders in determination, let him look, she would get changed as quickly as possible and get this over with. She turned to face Dave and undid the buttons of her tiny top. She saw him scowl at her expression of revulsion to him, and wondered if she should try to appear friendlier, but that would only make him think he could get away with more. Sally slipped the top off and stood there defiantly as she reached around for the new one to quickly cover herself. Dave almost laughed at the pathetic bra she was wearing. It was white and would have been modest if it wasn't both too small for her and full of holes. Her creamy skin poked out tantalisingly, and on one side he could see the dark pink of her areola. His penis stirred as his illicit excitement rose. "Skirt first," he snapped harshly as her hand found the new top, and she looked disdainfully at him before reaching for the clip at her hip. She was an arrogant bitch, Dave thought, and he might have to make her suffer a bit more. Sally's short skirt dropped to the floor and she stepped out of it. Her underwear was old, but intact, and Dave's penis grew more as he saw the small triangle of fabric clinging to her young and inviting mound.

"Seen enough?" Sally asked in an angry voice, and she slipped the new shirt on and started to do up the buttons quickly. She noticed that it was only about one size bigger, and was still far too small for her. Dave moved to her suddenly and he bent down to kiss her. He wanted to tease her a bit, and break down that rebellious attitude, but Sally turned away, her face wrinkling in disgust. "Don't touch me," she shouted angrily, and Dave snapped. His hand came across quickly, delivering a heavy slap to the side of her face. Sally, who hadn't seen it coming, staggered in pain and shock.

"What's the matter bitch?" Dave shouted. "Think you're too good for the likes of me?" He breathed deeply as Sally shook her head, trying to clear it. "You're just another whore like your mother, and if I want to touch you I fucking will." Dave reached for the new shirt and pulled it open; tearing off the two buttons she had managed to do up. His huge hairy hands grabbed her breasts through her bra, and in another fit of rage Dave grabbed it and pulled.

"No," Sally cried in desperation, but the old and weak material tore and Dave finally had a view of those tits he had stared at so often when she was working. They were magnificent, and he squeezed them harshly, making Sally cry in pain as he left red finger marks on her tender young body. Dave's cock was hard now, so hard that it was almost painful. He decided she was going to suck it, and as one hand squeezed her brutally the other reached down and undid his pants. Sally didn't see as he released his cock from his pants. Her head was ringing, her eyes were watering and her body burned with pain. Dave pushed her to her knees, and she collapsed down gratefully, thinking it was over, but it wasn't.

"Suck it bitch," he commanded and she felt his sweaty and sticky cock push against her lips. The stench was overpowering, and Sally turned away gagging. Her obvious revulsion infuriated Dave even further. "You fucking stuck up whore," he shouted, dragging her to her feet by her hair. Sally screamed in pain, but Dave was beyond caring. His left hand held her hair and his right crossed and delivered another stunning blow to Sally's face. As she reeled again he shoved her backwards onto the desk, and then savagely tore her underwear off, revealing a well-formed pussy with a very light sprinkling of blonde hair. She struggled feebly to cover up but the strong man levered her legs apart, and with an animal cry of triumph he shoved his hard cock into her unprepared pussy. Sally screamed again as Dave savagely pulled out and then once again buried himself full length into her hot body. Fortunately for Sally she was not a virgin, but she had only had sex twice before, and that had been with a fair amount of preparation and lubricant. At least Dave's cock was quite small, she thought as he plunged brutally into her over and over. Suddenly a switch in Sally's mind shut down, she saw the ceiling, she saw the shelves stacked with boxes, she saw the tattered light shade around the hanging bulb, but she was able to totally block out the sensation of the fucking she was getting. Sally was still gasping for air, but she had stopped crying out, and this was another thing that enraged Dave. He was fucking her and she was ignoring him, almost as if nothing was happening. Dave knew his cock was quite small, some women had even laughed at him when they saw it, and that was why he chose the very young ones now, the inexperienced girls who screamed and sighed like it was huge. He took Sally's sudden silence as an insult and he struck her repeatedly on the face as he fucked her as hard as he could. Sally grunted when his hand struck her, but showed no other sign of noticing him. In Sally's hot, tight and half dry pussy Dave lasted only a few minutes before he shot his load inside her, bucking wildly. But then, as he looked down at the bleeding face of the girl he had raped he realised this could be a real problem.

"Get dressed bitch," he growled and Sally looked around, dazed and found the new skirt and top he had given her. Her underwear was wrecked, and there were buttons missing on the shirt, but she stood up and dressed mechanically, ignoring Dave totally. Sally's mind was still reeling and she just wanted to get out of there. "If you ever tell anyone about this I'm going to kill you and your whore of a mother," Dave threatened. She looked at him, mouth and nose bleeding, and just walked out past him. "I mean it bitch," he shouted angrily. "And don't ever come near here again." The snarling voice barely registered as Sally got out and then ran away from the Tasty Chickee as quickly as she could.

Half an hour later Sally got home. Her face ached, and her mind was numb. Too numb to see Jim's pickup parked nearby. Jim was one of her mother's regulars, a snivelling man who had no teeth and very little hair left, even though he was only in his thirties. He always groped Sally if she was home when he got there, so she usually stayed out of sight, but this time she walked right in. Sally's mother was naked on the lounge, lying back with that glazed look of having just had a fresh hit. Jim had just put his shorts on when Sally came through the door crying. She had wiped off most of the blood, and her damaged top barely covered her bra-less breasts.

"Wowee Marlene," he said as he saw the young girl. "What say I gives you another forty and I gets that little girl of yours?" Sally reeled back in shock.

"No," she cried, "please say no."

"It'll do you good," Sally's mother said dreamily, "and we need the money." Sally turned to run, but Jim grabbed her quickly.

"You heard your mother," he crowed, "we's gonna have us some fun."

For the second time that night a man who revolted her raped Sally, and nobody cared. Except Sally.

The group of elements mingled with the crowd at the late night memorial service for the children. There still were no bodies to bury, but the families had gathered together for mutual comfort and support. The air was heavy with suffering, and the elements sniffed appreciatively. They could feel their strength increasing, and an hour and a half later they left the church, and prepared to return to transition. In confusion one element accidentally stepped into the path of a passing car. It never saw what hit it. The others left it behind, knowing there was nothing they could do.

A dark shadow approached the back of the Tasty Chickee. There was a dim light from a storeroom at the back, and a small car was still in the car park. The shadow knew where the old cooking oil was stored. There were rules about the storage, but most places ignored them. The shadow busied itself for a few minutes, and then stepped back. There was the brief flash of a lighter, and then the shadow threw something bright into a pile of rubbish at the rear of the building. The shadow became a silhouette as the building erupted in flames, but by now it was even later in the evening, and there was still no one around to see.

The element was doomed, and it knew it. The human body had broken its neck, and it was in the back of an ambulance rushing to a nearby hospital.

"What is your name?" the paramedic asked.

"Huh?" the element replied, it didn't have a name.

"Do you remember your name?"


Sally had the pedal down and the old Ford was rattling and groaning. She knew they would be after her soon, and she had to get to the city, dump the car and disappear. She didn't feel guilty for taking it; her mother wasn't going to need it again. Sally had been tempted to take Jim's pickup, but had decided against it because she was used to the automatic. She had $240 that she had retrieved from her mother's purse and Jim's wallet, she had a very small bag of personal belongings, and the Ford had a full tank. Sally would be over the state line in about two hours, and would be at the city in another two hours, if the car held together long enough. By daylight she would be lost in the crowds. Sally knew she now had to live on the streets, her ID was useless, and as soon as it was seen she would be caught. But she could make money, and Sally shuddered at the thought. She knew what she would have to do, but even now her face hurt more than her pussy, she would do it for a while and find a way to get further away, somewhere where the nights events would never catch up with her.

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