In Filth

The auctioneer cleared his throat. His assistant scurried forward with a mug filled with rare pu-ehr tea, precisely at the temperature he requested. He was going to need the warmth now that the minor day bidding was done. The first of the featured items had generated a buzz of interest.

“My worthy guests, we are ready to begin the afternoon with the first of our featured items.” He nodded and two assistants, far burlier than the tea bearer, wheeled in a large bathtub. Several appreciative “oohs” came from the crowd. He smiled, feeling invigorated by the energy in the room.

“Lot 117, a bathtub belonging to the most infamous of dictators, Adolf Hitler. As always we have our staff confirm every item we auction, but I can see some of our more discerning guests have already determined its authenticity. Included are the original fixtures, but any specialized services – installation, plumbing – are the responsibility of the buyer. We do offer those, but at a cost in addition to the price of the item. Let us start the bidding at 500,000.”

The auctioneer hid his surprise when a dybbuk nodded to make the opening bid; it didn’t matter what the customer did with the item so long as they were able to pay. Though he imagined the sledgehammer the dybbuk had at its side would be involved.

“500,000. Do I have 550,000?”

A red cap raised his card

“550,000. Would anyone care to go to 600,000?”

 With a soft hiss, a kappa countered with 600,000 only to be countered by a succubus.

“600,000. Do I have 650,000?” When no one responded right away he went on. “I don’t need to tell you what a special item we have here. Most of us felt the residual energy still pouring from it. A human, not only capable of the sheer malice and evil of any demon present here, but with a terrible efficiency that humbles us all. 650,000 might be fine for a simple collector’s item, but think of the energy still capable of being drawn from here! A tool of intimate cleansing belonging to a human yes, but a human whose diabolical reach touched so many more. And the hatred directed at him and all things his adds even more energy. This is not a simple conversation piece but a tool you can use for your own harvesting needs. 650,000 is too little. I know our astute customers would pay 700,000 and call it a bargain. Who shall offer that?”


The bidding went fast after that, the succubus claiming the tub at an even million. She walked up to her new toy, running a well-manicured hand along its length. “Oh yes,” she said. “A million is a bargain indeed. With all the energy this will help me claim I think I shall do quite well.”



Today's story was inspired by the picture prompt at Magpie Tales


31 comments:

  1. Oh, what an auction house! Loved it!

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    1. Makes you wonder what else they have laying about.

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  2. What Insomniac's Attic said! Everything, especially the second to the last paragraph. The way the auctioneer describes the piece makes me want to run home and shower with a cleansing brew.

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    1. It was a particularly gross bit of prose.

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  3. Dybbuk! What a fabulously fitting incorporation in this story. I'm amazed at your mind!

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    1. It just comes from my love of old folk stories :)

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  4. You have hit the nail on the head , Dear Trueseeker , a most dangerous object indeed !

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    1. At least in the story, everyone was aware of exactly how dangerous it was, especially after the auctioneer had his say.

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  5. An interesting and more-than-appropriate twist on the tale of that photo!

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  6. Ah, the energies that remain in old pieces. Did you see that video of the priest claiming secondhand clothes might be haunted by demons? I know mine have only ever had positive vibes!

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  7. Whistles!! Gosh Rommy, what an incredibly vivid imagination you have ❤💜 absolutely mesmerizing from 'The auctioneer hid his surprise when a dybbuk nodded to make the opening bid' to 'The bidding went fast after that, the succubus claiming the tub at an even million.' Beautifully executed. Thank you so much for participating at Prompt Nights and for your constant love and support ❤💜

    Lots of love,
    Sanaa

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  8. Sadly such items do not possess the attributes of the owner unless he/she crafted them for themselves. I am sure it is more of "Look I have done what the previous owner did", hoping some of his dirt might stick on them! However I did have a good laugh at the dialog!

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    1. Fiction allows us to play with ideas. LOL, at least the dialog works.

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  9. This second time around, I focused on the bidders. The red cap stuck out in my mind--maybe because of the color, perhaps because I imagine him dripping into the tub.

    I love this piece. So telling and vivid.

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    1. A red cap would have need of a good tub to rinse themselves off after a hard day of spilling its victims' blood.

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  10. Shivers... great imagining here

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  11. Oh that was a gloriously creepy tale :D XXX

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  12. what an idea...chilling!! and such captivating words!

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  13. What a chilling and unique story - raised a lot of thoughts.. your imagery was spot on..particularly that manicured nail running round the tub

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  14. Wow, would we want such energy? Could we harness it for good instead of evil. An interesting write, I enjoyed it very much. I have goosebumps :-)

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