A man walks through the grocery store, swept up in philosophical ponderings. He is in his early twenties, with well-combed hair and a jawline resembling those of a Greek god. His shoulders are enormous, and his body tapers down to a narrow waist. He is wearing no shirt, displaying his shredded abdominals to the world. He skips leg day every chance he gets, and stumbles around on the twigs he calls legs, oblivious to the world around him.

    His thoughts are interrupted when he goes careening into another shopper. The groceries in both of their baskets scatter across the floor, milk cartons bursting on the ground and mixing with spilled soup and fruit juice. It’s disgusting.

    “You’ve derailed my train of thought, plebeian,” he tells the person he just knocked over. “I, Dirk Chadley, did nothing to prompt your attack against me. Why did you do this?”

    The other man stares incredulously. “You knocked me over. You just walked right into me,” he whines.

    “Silence, cretin!” screams Dirk, beads of sweat materializing on his forehead. This is more cardio than he is used to.

    “Um, my name is Josh. Not cretin.”

    Dirk freezes, his eyes bulging out of his head and growing bloodshot. The vein on his temple throbs with a burning rage. “Cretin,” he growls, “is an insult. I don’t think your name is cretin. I think you are one.”

    He leers at Josh, a man in a trench coat whose receding hairline is matched in intensity only by his receding jawline. He wears a fedora that is at least a full size too small for his bulbous cranium. He has a very patchy beard on what Dirk can only assume is his neck, though it is impossible to determine a cut-off because he has no chin. This is no mere hyperbole— he appears to physically lack any jawbone below his lower lip.

    “My, you are hideous,” hisses Dirk.

    Tears form in Josh’s eyes. Mucous immediately begins bubbling up from his nostrils. “B-beauty— real beauty, it comes from the inside, not—”

    He is cut off by a slap to the face. “You are ugly on the outside, but uglier still on the inside,” says Dirk. He crouches on Josh’s chest and positions his face inches from Josh’s, so flecks of saliva spray from his mouth onto Josh as he says, “I, however, am beautiful on the outside, but more beautiful still on the inside. My internal world is rich and luscious, and my body is a well-oiled machine.”

It seems Dirk takes this term somewhat literally, as he is dripping with oil. He continues,  “Any thought you have, any meaning your life possesses, is infinitesimal in comparison to the depths of my mind. No cognitive hurdle you surpass is but a spark, invisible against my searing Sun. You are nothing. A speck. A no-one.”

    Josh does not move, his spirit apparently obliviated by the words. His work done, Dirk rises from the mound of flesh called Josh.

    As Dirk makes his leave, Josh righteously declares, “At least I’m not a leg day skipper.”

Dirk turns around with rage and carelessly sets foot on a single pickle from his spilled groceries. His foot slips out from beneath him, and he wobbles on one flimsy toothpick of a leg for what seems like an eternity. He feels his shriveled quadriceps straining to hold his steroid-blasted carcass up alone. For a moment it seems he will right himself. Then, his second leg gives out, and he plummets toward the ground. As he falls, he is overcome with a fleeting sensation of weightlessness. Alas, it is interrupted by the swiftly approaching ground.

    There is a loud crack, but no scream. Josh rises and peers down at Dirk, whose eyes are wide open but unfocused. His head rests in a growing pool of blood. His lower lip twitches ever so slightly, and he murmurs, “I… am a god… my star shall never wane.” 

Then he goes still.

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