Shock

How did I get myself into this? Joining a cult, performing a ritual sacrifice. It all happened so fast, and all because of my friend Bob.

“God! How do I face this?” I whispered, an edge of fear in my voice. The dim hallway we stood in looked spooky.

“You can do this!” Bob assured me.

Men dressed in red robes started marching into the hall. It had begun.

“After today your wealth will double,” Bob whispered to me, his voice soft and gentle as when we were boys. “Not to worry, the lamb will soon come in.”

“The lamb?”

“Yes. A young boy that will be sacrificed on the altar of Milcom, the god that maketh wealth.”

Bob took my hand in his and we entered the hall. The chill from the marble floor bit into my bare feet. I raised my face and beheld the cult master beckoning me to come up to the altar.

I breathed out forcefully when I could no longer hold my breath. Others stood in a queue with their shoulders brushing.

Bob’s face remained stoic even as a young boy whose face was masked was dragged into the hall. They laid the child on a red mat before me, his hands and legs bound.

My palms were so sweaty I could barely hold onto the ritual knife. It was one thing to witness a sacrifice, but a much more terrifying thing to perform the deed yourself.

The task was to pierce the heart as soon as I unmasked the lamb.

“On the count of three…!” the cult master echoed.

One!

Two!!

Three!!!

I leaned forward and pulled off the mask. The eyes that stared back shattered my heart.

“Daddy!” the lamb cried.

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