Vicious Jack

[The following story is Rated "R" for Language, Promiscuity, Disturbing Artwork, Cruelty and Panties]

When Hyperion asked me to write about viciousness it reminded me first of Shan Yu. He was a tribal leader, years ago in Asia, now forgotten by history accept on a TV show here or there. Shan Yu said: “Live with a man forty years. Share his house, his meals, and speak on every subject. Then tie him up and hold him over the volcano’s edge, and on that day you will finally meet the man.”

I knew Shan Yu. He was a sadistic bastard, but there was a poetry to his madness. He wore cruelty like a velvet robe; wrapped himself in it. I thought about telling the tale of how I came to know Shan Yu. It would certainly fit. But then Hyperion told me a little about the person who wanted this story written, and it reminded me of a young lad I met a few years ago. His story was interesting too, and I give it to you, as he did to me, in his own words. - Carnivus Kickassius

Vicious Jack

With dad gone money was tight. I was more than happy to go to a State school—they don’t care much where you learn computer science—but mom wouldn’t hear of it. It was the prestigious Midbury for her son. She scrimped and saved and did I don’t know what to get me in.

My mom.


She made everyone call her Lynn. She was a great lady, but she had problems since dad left. Actually, she had problems way before that. It’s actually why dad left, although he was no prize, believe me. Mom was…well, she was not one for making great personal decisions.

I got to Midbury a few days late, and had to see the Registrar about a room assignment. It was supposed to be a lottery, but by then there was only one guy left with a single. The registrar laughed out loud when she told me who I’d drawn. “Oh, you got Vicious Jack.” A gleam in her eye.

When I was standing in line at the textbook store, I started talking to this cute girl, Sherri. We were hitting it off great, and then she asked me who my roommate was.

“I haven’t met him yet, but the registrar said they call him ‘Vicious Jack.’”

“You’re roommates with Vicious Jack?”

Just the way she said it, the way her voice went up hopefully on his name, told me everything I needed to know. I was now more interesting because I was roommates with Vicious Jack. I was now much more interesting, because I might get her closer to Vicious Jack.

Jack was…how do I explain it? The kind of guy you want to be around. The kind of guy you wish you could be. The kind of guy you sort of hate, and sort of fall in love with. I can say that as a straight man, and you know what I mean, right?

He was just larger than life. Everything he did was cool. Everything he did was funny. His approval was everything. His disapproval was death.

He was just that kind of guy.

I finally met Jack, breathed life into his reputation, filled it out like a sharp suit on the cover of GQ. He wasn’t gorgeous, but you could see every girl in school would want him to fuck her. Hell, half the guys would let him fuck them as well.

(I don’t use that word often, Carny. Fuck. I get kind of uncomfortable when people say it. But with Vicious Jack, it’s the only word that would that could possibly fit.)

I wondered how Jack got his name, but I didn’t have long to wait. He had this way about him. He’d make fun of you, awfully, cruelly, always very funny, unless it was happening to you. Everyone else would laugh at the joke, always perfectly timed, the perfect thing to say. When you were in the group it was the greatest. When you were the butt of the joke, it was the worst thing ever. There was only one thing worse than being made fun of by Vicious Jack; being ignored by him. If he was making fun of you, at least he knew your name.

As his roommate, I was the butt of many of his jokes. The good outweighed the bad, though. Everyone knew who I was, because I was his roommate. It got to be a joke. I went by VJR; Vicious Jack’s Roommate. I’d even introduce myself that way to girls.

(I know it doesn’t sound that funny telling you know, Carny, but when I said it to girls…well, actually it wasn’t that funny then either. I was no Vicious Jack.)

So life as Vicious Jack’s Roommate was difficult, but much better than being a nobody. There was a cachet about it (I looked that word up; pretty cool, huh?), and if the girls who went out with me did it to get closer to Vicious Jack, well, a girl’s a girl, and one in the bush is worth two in the hand, eh?

Jack came from money; where else could a guy get that much confidence, savoir faire, coolness? His family was old money, the kind that becomes bred into your bones after awhile, makes you think—know—you’re better than everyone else.

Jack’s father died when he was seven, and Jack grew up the only child, doted on by his mother, Lily. These were the same circumstances I had—except for the money—and if anything it’s what made us friends. When Jack’s mother came to visit, I assumed she’d be…well, I didn’t know what she’d be like. What kind of mother creates a boy like Vicious Jack? Was she cruel herself? Did he develop his mean streak as a defense against a vicious mother? Was she distant, never there, and Jack needed a way to garner attention?

To my utter shock Jack’s mother Lily was…normal. No, better than that; she was warm, tender, caring, solicitous, the kind of mom any boy would love to call his own. She was proper to be sure, but not in any way cold or reserved like you’d imagine old-money rich women to be. And Jack adored her. The one person who never got caught in his crosshairs.

I still remember when we were introduced: “John, it is so good to meet you. My son has been kind enough—under duress, I should amend—to tell me a fair amount about his new roommate, but I won’t hold that against you if you can offer me the same reciprocity. No doubt I’m a terrible old hag who never let him have any fun. It is decidedly untrue, you know, John. (beat) I’m really not that old.”

How can you not love a woman like that?

When Lynn visited it was a different story.

Like I said, my mom had problems. She was gorgeous, but she made the worst choices ever. She’s the kind of woman who definitely should have been under a doctor’s care. She was for a time, several times actually. She usually ended up sleeping with the doctors (medical doctors, psychologists, psychiatrists, their staff, the EMTs who rushed her to the hospital every time she had an “episode” or pretended to try to kill herself)…you get the idea.

Lynn would sleep with them, then eventually they’d go back to their wives, their girlfriends, their own life that didn’t have my mother in it, and she’d get very upset about it. Not upset in a “eat a pint of Ben & Jerry’s, watch chick flicks and listen to Joni Mitchell” sort of way, but in that “boil a rabbit Fatal Attraction” sort of way.

Like I said, my mom made bad choices.

The first time Lynn met Jack, she went ape. I could tell. I’d seen it before. She gushed over him. Laughed at his jokes, too much, like a girl who with two wine coolers in her; not drunk, but buzzed enough that everything he said was just so funny. She touched his arm a lot when she laughed, and she flipped her hair, and she leaned forward to show off her…

You get the idea.

I would have been more alarmed, but this was the way Lynn acted with any alpha male. Plus, she was only staying for a day, and I was with her the whole time. She couldn’t get into trouble with him if I kept my eye on her.

Still; I barely let her go to the bathroom.

Lynn didn’t come to visit me much, which in some ways was a relief.

Jack went on being vicious to anyone and everyone he felt like. People took it. You’d think they’d get mad at him, and maybe they did, but I never caught an angry glance, felt hurt feelings. It was the strangest thing. Vicious Jack was in many ways a bully, but he didn’t engender the bad will other bullies did.


It was fall of my Senior year. It’s a weird time; you’re getting ready to graduate, to leave this place, to face the real world. At the same time, this is home to you, and you don’t really want to go. I was out with Jeni Acorel one night; another girl who had hopes to get close to Vicious Jack through me and settled for me when she realized she couldn’t. (I’d grown use to it by then. You do what you must to land the Jeni Acorels of the world, especially when you’re me.)

Jeni got called into work, which left me with nothing to do. I headed back to our apartment (we moved off campus for the final year), thinking to maybe hang with Jack or call one of my other friends.

I walked into the apartment and heard familiar sounds from Jack’s bedroom. I heard those same sounds almost every night. They seemed a bit more familiar than usual, but I didn’t think anything of it.

I went to the fridge and fixed myself a drink. I heard a woman’s laughter from his bedroom. It tickled my brain so, but I couldn’t place it. Perhaps a girl who’d been over recently? (This would be unusual behavior for Jack, who definitely liked to spread his bounty.)

I took my drink into the living room to watch the television for a minute. Standing there, stark naked, was my mother.

“Oh, John. I didn’t hear you come in. I came down to visit you and I….” Lynn looked around plaintively, for her clothes, or who knows why, “got really hot; you know how I get those hot flashes, so I took my clothes off for a bit, but now I’m a bit chilly, so I think I’ll put them back on.”

It was insane, but not unheard of for my mother. She’d done as crazy or worse many times, and I was ready to pass it off as another of her episodes, when I heard Jack in the other room.

“Are you coming? There are many more places I still want to fuck you, and I’m not talking about the rooms!”

Jack walked into the living room and saw me, saw my mother in all her glory. As usual, he had the perfect line.

“Hey, John. Didn’t hear you come in. I was just showing your mom our apartment. You know; how it’s all laid out.”

I couldn’t believe it. I was in shock. I ran from the house, blindly, just had to be out of there. Lynn chased after me, pulling on panties and dress as she scrambled to catch up.

“John, wait! Please wait, darling! I just got caught up. I came to surprise you, and you weren’t there, and Jack let me in, and we had a few drinks, and you know how I get when I’ve been drinking, and…please darling, just stop and talk to me!”

I’d like to tell you it was awkward between Jack and me. He felt awful, couldn’t look me in the eye. No such luck. He thought it was funny. Didn’t feel an ounce of shame. His one concession to the whole affair was to not make fun of me in front of others. This didn’t stop him from doing it when we were alone.

“I talked to Sara tonight,” he said when were sitting watching TV. “She wants to come over and do me, but I’m not sure. I mean, she’s hot and all, but after your mom, can any girl even compare?”

I’m just giving you the nice part.

Did I stand up for myself? Did I beat the living hell out of him? Did I shoot him? Did I at least move out?

Shamefully, no. As bad as it was, as much pain as he caused me, it was still better to be within Jack’s shadow than without.

Plus, if I didn’t stay close to him, how could I ever figure out how to get him back? This was a thought that nearly unhinged me. I totally let my studies go, obsessing over it.

Then one night I got a phone call, and the beginnings of a plan fell into place.

Jack’s family had fallen onto hard times of late. Some bad investments, a turn in alpaca wool; who knows how it works with Old Money? They were still rich, but that was a state of mind. They were also broke. It wasn’t even for sure Jack would get to continue going here, and Graduate School at Yale was looking worse and worse.

Jack didn’t seem to worry about this problem too much. His solution was to play the lottery. This is partly what gave me the idea. I got a bunch of our friends together and told them what I planned. They seemed reluctant, but excited too.

I had a buddy at the college TV station, and he agreed to help us out. We set up the feed ahead of time to go on a closed circuit, just on our TV. We all gathered at our apartment to watch the Lottery numbers. The guys had a hard time keeping their faces straight, but luckily Jack paid them no mind. He only had eyes for the numbers on the screen. Perhaps he cared more about his situation than he let on.

When the first number came up Jack cheered, but no big deal. After the third number, he was really interested. Fourth, fifth, sixth came, and he was jumping up and down like a kid at a tee-ball game. He was going nuts and could hardly speak he was so excited.

When that power ball dropped, lucky #6, Jack went absolutely ape-shit. He pulled a picture off the wall and threw it out the door, where it sailed into the streets. Jack ran out after it, shouting like a mad man.

The guys couldn’t hold back any more. They laughed and they laughed and they laughed at what an idiot Jack looked. This was the first time anyone had every pulled anything over on Vicious Jack, and it felt great. For all the times they’d been the butt of his play, now the chickens were coming home to roost.

Jack came back in, almost crying he was so happy. “John!” he screamed, or tried to; his voice was hoarse. “My family is going to be okay. Money won’t be an issue any more. I will be able to take care of my mom.”

“You’re more right than you know.” I commented wryly.

At this point, Jack noticed my friends trying their damndest—and failing—to keep the laughter at bay. Choking, they told him what we’d done. The Lottery presentation we’d just watched had been faked at the Campus TV station, sent to us for the perfect joke.

Jack was in shock. He stood there, slack jawed like some yokel, unable to even speak. I thought he might commit murder. When he got his wits about him he tried. Jack rushed me, held back by our friends. They didn’t understand how dire the situation had gotten.

Held or not, Jack let me have it. “This is because of Lynn, huh? I didn’t think you were so petty. So I fucked your precious mom. It’s not that exclusive a club. I’d have thought you’d be used to it by now. She threw herself at me, man, and for that you punish me?”

The others looked at both of us, incredulous.

“That’s right,” Jack said, warming to his audience. “I fucked her. I fucked her on that couch.”

The guys sitting stood up in a hurry.

“I fucked her in the kitchen. I fucked her on the porch. I even fucked her on your bed. Oh yes: she came up here more than once. She’d been coming for three years. You just finally caught us. It must kill you, John; that she hardly ever came to visit you, but she went out of her way to visit me.”

I said nothing, just looking at him. He didn’t seem too cool any more. Okay; that’s a lie. He was still cool. He was still firing bullets, even after such an emotional roller coaster of the last few minutes. Had to admire how he kept it up like that. I could never come up with such great lines off the cuff. I usually had to think them out.

“Don’t you have anything to say?” Jack sneered at me. “Are you just going to stand there and let me say all that? You know, if you’d taken better care of her, maybe I wouldn’t have to.”

“What can I say, Jack? You’re right. Well, not about my mom. No one has ever been able to take care of her. But you are right about finally being able to taking care of your mom.”

“What are you talking about? You faked the fucking lottery! We have no money! How can I take care of my mother?”

“Well, I meant to tell you. Her doctor called late last night. Your mom was dying. She must be dead by now. So I guess you will finally be able to take care of her.”

That my friends, is the story of Vicious Jack.

I hope I never piss him off

1 comment:

Hyperion said...

The paintings aren't related to the story in any direct way. I just wanted to add to the feeling of unease and cruelty. I love Halloween!