Nip & Tuck

My girlfriend is pretty much perfect.

She’s smart, funny, has the cutest laugh and the type of body that will make any guy stop and stare.

It’s how she got me in the first place. I was just nursing a drink in the bar, when she came in, perfectly svelte in a Chanel evening dress, and my jaw dropped on the floor.

Everyone else seemed intimidated by her. I wasn’t. I can read people pretty well and I knew that she came to this bar for some fun.

So I walked up to her, offered to buy her a drink in exchange for a conversation and that soon became 4 drinks later, and then a bedroom conversation.

I didn’t think she could be any more perfect up close, but I was dead wrong. She has these incredible green eyes that shimmer during the golden hours and tiny freckles across her straight nose that I found incredibly cute. Her lips were sensually thick and I wanted to kiss them forever.

Her voice was husky and sensual, she always sounded like she was half whispering something to you, and I always felt like I had to strain to catch every nuance in her words.

But my God, her body was to die for. She was pale, with dark raven hair hair that flowed down her sculpted back. She had full, firm breasts with a flat stomach and these incredibly supple thighs that I caressed constantly. I remember seeing on her back, a birthmark shaped like a diamond. It was the tiniest blemish that was hidden from the world, just behind her right shoulder, a fact that she hid with a bra strap constantly. Even her imperfections were difficult to find.

I loved her. She was my world from that night, and for the next 2 years. When she was away from me, my dreams would populate every sleep with all my memories I had of her. I would wake up, painfully erect and desperate to see her.

I craved her like a drug.

That night, as we laid entwined naked on my small bedroom apartment, she told me her name was Ava.

Which is why I was fucking confused when I was sitting across my friend, at a trendy brunch place and I saw Ava, sitting at another table, with another guy in front of her.

But this Ava had blonde hair, tanned skin, and the loud, infectious and sunny accent of a valley girl.

My friend, her fork, halfway up towards her mouth, with a load of avocado bread, winced as my hand grabbed hers. She dropped the avo back on her plate in pain and slapped me angrily.

Daniel, what the hell?

Summer, look at her. Isn’t that Ava?

Summer turns around and looks at the blonde Ava. She doesn’t believe me.

Ahhh come on Daniel. I know you love Ava, but you’re seeing her everywhere. It’s not healthy bro.

But she looks EXACTLY like her though. Look at her nose! It even got the freckles. I would recognise that nose anywhere.

Summer waves her fork dismissively after spooning a successful mouth of avo this time.

Daniel. Ava is like … marble white. That chick? She’s your super tanned, super hot, beach bunny. Last I checked? Ava had dark hair not blonde wavy locks?

I slump back, defeated, in my chair. I am certain it’s Ava. But so much of her has changed. So, I could be wrong. Maybe it isn’t her.

Besides Daniel, look at the hunk she’s hanging out with. I mean, don’t get me wrong, you’re cute, but he’s … h.o.t.

Summer spells out the word, with each letter another nail in my jealous coffin.

He’s like you, but only a bit more muscly and he’s got a better jawline.

I glare at Summer. She shrugs and pouts teasingly at me.

Oh come on, I’m just teasing. He’s doesn’t have a better jawline. But he is hotter though.

I’m getting mad now. Desperate even.

I’m going to talk to her. I get up halfway to leave. I’m going to solve this mystery.

Summer grabs my hand and pull me down.

What are you, crazy? They’re on a date stupid! You can’t just barge in there like that and interrupt them! If you really want to know if that chick is your precious Ava …. why don’t you just text or call her dumbass? If that hot beach babe really is her in some crazy blond wig, then you’ll know for sure!

I blink in surprise. Summer’s idea makes a lot more sense than me barging over. I pull out my phone and text Ava, praying that the hot blonde beach babe isn’t her in some elaborate disguise.

Hi baby, just checking up on you, where about are you right now? Wanna meet up?

The moment I hit “send”, I look over at the blonde Ava clone. I’m certain that she will reach for her phone on the table, mid conversation and look at the text I sent her.

Each second that passes feels like agony for my heart. I want to be right but I also desperately want to be wrong.

The blonde Ava doesn’t do anything except continue her conversation with the hunky guy, and she reaches for another spoonful of the Poke bowl she ordered.

My phone buzzes.

I look down in shock.

Hi baby, I’m at Emporium’s Uniqlo, shopping. I thought you were out with Summer?

Summer laughs at my confusion and continues to eat. She waves her fork knowingly.

Oh, Daniel. I told you it’s not her. I mean look at that chick … she’s a total babe. Ava wouldn’t dress like that.

I nod silently, as I text Ava back.

Yeah I’m out with Summer atm, but we can meet up after?

Putting my phone down in frustration, I look over at the blonde I had confused for my girlfriend and note how different she dressed to Ava.

Whilst Ava preferred French clothes, all chic and gamine, this blonde version was decked out in American retro denim. Her tanned skin was perfectly off-set by the short jeans she was wearing, with a white crop-top that showed off her toned stomach. Her ankles were adorned with bracelets and her shoes were simple lace sandals.

The whole thing screamed beach bunny.

She was as different to Ava, as one person could be.

But she had the same body, damn it.

The same nose, the same sensual mouth, the same beautiful breasts.

Her stomach was even the same, with the hint of familiar abs showing on her lower ribcage and the long legs that threatened to overwhelm any sane man with their supple nature.

As I got up to the counter to pay, I couldn’t help but stare at her shoulder. There’s no way she can disguise her birthmark right?

But this blonde had no such distinguishing marks. There was no diamond birthmark just tucked away. I snap a quick photo of her anyway. I feel strange doing it, but I manage to capture her profile. It’s uncanny how much she looks like Ava.

Summer and I left the brunch restaurant, Summer bemused by my frustration.

Come on Daniel, be happy! It’s not Ava. She’s not cheating on you. Chin up. Anyway, I got to go work now. Be seeing you soon?

Yeah, see you soon Summer. I say distractedly as she leaves me behind to my drama.

~

It is nearly 2 hours later, when I met up with Ava. The moment I see her, I’m instantly reassured. The blonde version of her looks nothing alike the woman standing before me.

Ava is all class and mystery. She’s in a business suit today, with a black blazer that cinches her tiny waist and a white turtleneck. Monochrome is her normal style, but with enough cuts and adjustments to make her stern looks, vaguely sexual. There is an exciting severity to her looks that make you want to tear her clothes off.

In her hands are large shopping bags from various stores.

Daniel! she says huskily.

I wrap my arms around her. It feels good to hug her, and she is surprised.

What’s wrong? Your text message sounded strange.

Oh well … it’s kinda hard to explain, but I could have sworn I saw a blonde version of you. You don’t have a sister you’re hiding from me are you? I ask jokingly.

Ava looks confused, and she draws away from me. She shoots back No I don’t. But wait, I don’t get it, what do you mean a blonde version of me?

Well, Summer and I were having brunch together, just before she had to go to work and just across from us was this couple. I could have sworn the girl looked exactly like you, but she was wearing clothes that didn’t suit your style at all. She was in these beachy clothes and was super tanned. I guess I might have mistaken her for you, because you guys have the exact body type.

Ava frowns at me. Did you take a picture of her? I’m curious now.

Yeah I did. Have a look!

I show her a photo of the blonde clone and Ava is visibly shaken.

Oh my God. She looks just like me. You’re right.

I nod vigorously. See? I told you.

I look across at her and notice how pale she’s gotten. Ava, are you OK?

Let’s go home Daniel. Come to mine.

I do a double-take. Ava has never invited me to her place before. In all the two years we’ve dated, she has never shown me her home. I’ve dropped her off many times before, but have never been invited in. I’ve never really questioned it, because I was just happy to have her in my arms at my place.

Umm, OK Ava. Let’s go.

I lead her to my car and drive to hers. Luckily it’s only 5 minutes away from the city. As we pull up, I always forget how big her house is. A handsome two storey house, with your classic white picket fence, wooden veranda and glass stained door. The windows were covered with luxuriously thick velvet curtains that seem perpetually pulled down.

We walk up to the house and Ava looks back at me with a mixture of sadness and reluctance as she opens the door.

I look at her beautiful features, twisted in an expression of regret as I walk past and look around for the first time at her home.

It’s threadbare, plastic sheets cover everything from the floor to the lounge chairs. Everything is incredibly clean and oddly “unlived” in. It doesn’t look like anyone lives here.

Ava, what the hell is this?

I turn around at my girlfriend, only to see her holding a golf club. She must have left it by the door. Suddenly, I understand why everything is covered in plastic sheets. My heart starts beating faster, terror, not love, coursing through my entire system.

Ava must have been blonde. I saw another version of her at the cafe.

I start backtracking, my hands in front of me.

Please, Ava. Let’s talk about this. Don’t you love me?

Ava’s beautiful features have twisted into a savage caricature of herself. Her scowl is now terrifying me.

Ava, please.

Ava swings and I duck it, only to feel my feet go up against the wall. I’m trapped.

Ava no!

Her first swing knocks away my hands, so now I’m completely exposed.

The last thing I see before the golf club slam into my head, is Ava’s cold beauty, now devoid of any warmth.

Dark, traitorous blackness swallows me whole.

My last thought is Why Ava? I thought you loved me.

~

Ava looked down at Daniel, the blood slowly trickling out from the huge dent in his head. She shook her head and calmly walked into the kitchen with the golf club.

Running the tap on the highest heat, she slowly scrubbed the golf club clean with a scourer, bone, hair and blood trickling down the white sink. Placing it aside to dry, Ava walked back over to the unconscious Daniel, and took out a specialised trolley that was hidden underneath the staircase.

A strange device, it is a trolley that can be laid flat on the floor, with flanges running on the sides and multiple straps hanging loosely from its frame.

Lying the trolley flat on the floor, Ava slowly rolled Daniel’s body onto the trolley, before doing up the flanges and using a pneumatic hydraulic jack built into the trolley, lifted the trolley up, so that it was more akin to a stretcher. Strapping him in with the black fabric on the frame, Ava wheeled Daniel into the back of the house, where she pressed a button on a bookcase that moved it on its hinges to reveal a dark tunnel that descended into the basement of the house.

Lights flickered on, as Ava moved through the tunnel, before flickering off behind her, their “on” duration, movement sensitive.

It was a simple way to disorient any of her captives, should they get free.

Ava navigated her own maze unerringly, and finally came to her unique prison.

Four barely alive men greeted her, suspended in bizarre prone cruxific style frames, their tongues removed and eyes permanently blinded by lasers.

Where they once struggled mightily against the black straps that held them, they were now resigned and defeated, their bodies wasting away slowly as they awaited death from starvation.

Ribs, sunken skin and numerous needle marks were etched across their bodies.

This was what Ava needed to maintain her beauty.

Bone Marrow.

Blood.

Fat.

Skin.

Stem Cells.

Each of these men, had been chosen by her for their desirable qualities. They had all fallen under her spell, had compatible blood types and were attractive enough to sleep with, but not so much that they ruined their precious bodies with artificial means like steroids.

Ava placed Daniel in the centre of the room, and activated a machine. The soft whir of the machine, stirred one of the men nearby and he began to anxiously break out into a sweat. He knew what was going to happen. But he couldn’t talk, scream or see. Disturbing shakes from the man’s anxiety rattled the metal crucifix cage.

Ava undid the straps from Daniel’s torso that binded him to the stretched and watched as the machine manouvered itself from the dark corner of the room. It was nothing more than a pneumatic circular hollow magnet, that was capable of lifting heavy weights, but affixed to end of it, was a high powered laser, that Ava could control. The machine lifted one of the spare crucifix frames and hovered it above Daniel’s unconscious body.

Daniel was face down on the mock stretcher, and without remorse or compassion, Ava strapped his limbs to the frame, before allowing the machine to flip the crucifix frame to give Ava access to Daniel’s face.

Looking at him, Ava mercilessly opened Daniel’s mouth and pulled out his tongue, and in a shockingly fast motion, severed the entire appendage out from his mouth with a small electric doctor saw, before jamming the high powered laser and cauterised the bloody wound inside his mouth.

Daniel’s eyes opened wide in shock and pain, his first instinct to scream, but no real noise could emit from his open mouth, but a high pitched whine.

In a well-practised move, Ava removed the laser from Daniel’s mouth and swiftly burned his open eyes blind.

His

Stepping back, Ava allowed the machine to flip the crucifix again, so that Daniel was looking down at the floor, as blood rushed out of his mouth and into a drainage pipe that led to a blood collection tank nearby.

She would leave him like this, until his mouth was drained, a slow process that would take 3 hours.

Ava looked down at her watch and sighed. She was going to be late for her brunch date, who had asked her out for dinner.

Leaving Daniel behind to suffer with her other victims in darkness and pain, Ava walked back into her house and closed the bookcase.

She walked upstairs into her bedroom, where there were exquisite clothes arranged on racks everywhere, as well as numerous realistic wigs, and make-up stands.

Stripping naked, Ava placed her black business suit and white turtleneck on the dirty rack, to be cleaned surreptitiously later. Looking at herself in an antique full length mirror, she examined every inch of her body for any marks or signs of ageing.

She frowned when she saw a tiny crease near her eyes.

She would require an injection tonight to remove that stain.

But everything else was flawless. She had designed this perfect look for herself and she was damned if she was going to have anything ruin it for her.

For now, it was time to become the girl Daniel had saw at the brunch place and the new man, Sam, had fallen for.

Her green contacts came out. Ava’s eyes were actually naturally blue.

The dark hair that Daniel loved to caress was real, but actually much shorter. She removed the hair extensions that were pinned to her dark hair and took up the blonde wig. It was made from genuine hair and had cost her in the thousands to obtain. She clipped it to her short dark hair and was pleased when she looked at herself in the mirror.

She was halfway to transforming into the stunning blonde.

Reaching behind her, she removed the skin-like birthmark sticker that Daniel had identified her with, placing it carefully aside in a small container. In reality, there was no way she would allow any such blemish on her flawless body, but it served a purpose in confusing the multiple victims she courted at the same time.

Getting out a specialised tan liquid, she ran a bath, where she poured the liquid in. By taking a long soak, Ava would ensure that her pores would absorb as much of the tan as possible and thus give a convincing illusion that she spent a lot of her time in the sun.

Within the hour, as Ava padded naked and wet back into her room, she picked out the same style retro denim that was associated with beach-loving women all over the world. She even included a small stud in her belly button, and had tossed her blonde wig into the slightly frizzy, wavy mess that could only come from salt water exposure.

Ava was now Eve.

Smiling at herself in the mirror, Eve was now decked out in a cute denim overall, with a bikini underneath that emphasised her perfect full breasts, and cut-off legs that showed off her tanned ankles and white Vans.

With a practised sunny smile, Eve walked out for her dinner date with Sam, the memories with Daniel already forgotten.

He was now just Donor number 5.

Sam pulled up outside her house and Eve hopped in and kissed him on the cheek, as he hungrily looked her up and down.

Eve merely smiled confidently back at him. She was relieved that her beauty would last a while longer with a new donor.

Perhaps she might even play around with Sam a bit longer. He was very cute.

But like all of her previous partners, he would soon be reduced to bone marrow, stem cells, blood, fat and skin.

All the nutrients she needed to stay youthful forever.

~

Author’s Note

I came across this idea when I was sitting with my girlfriend at a dessert bar and someone at a table across from me looked like the spitting image of one of my girlfriend’s best friends.

It was a Eureka moment for me, because I soon wanted to write a horror story where a guy confused another girl for his partner, only to discover later that he was right. She was just a radically crazy person who would create disguises for herself to court other men and pretend to be multiple people.

I wanted to also touch on how she had designed herself to be this perfect aesthetic for womanhood through various surgeries performed on herself and that is what doomed so many men to fall for her spell. They would ignore red flags, because they were just grateful to have sex with her.

I had a fair amount of fun creating Ava’s surgery/extraction chamber and I hope it was suitably gruesome in your minds! I honestly made all of it up on the fly, without referencing anything so I’m quite pleased having come up with the original idea.

Until the next one!

~ Damocles.

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