Domini Mortum

By Paul Holbrook

A supernatural murder mystery novel set in late Victorian London.

Monday, 12 September 2016

My Search for Perfection

Perfection today would be another percent in the bag.  In the meantime here is a short story about a man with a deep need for affection and his search for perfect love (or something like that).

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My Search for Perfection

It had always been a dream of mine, to find the perfect woman.

As a child I had looked through Mother’s catalogues, Freemans and the like, always spending particularly longer period looking at the underwear sections. Do not think that I am some kind of pervert though; I was just a young boy with a developing interest in the female form. I would sneak the books up to my bedroom and stare for ours at the different women in the photographs.

This developed further when I found an old catalogue of mother’s in the bin in our drive one day. I slid it under my jumper and back into the safety of my house, where I slowly went through it armed with scissors and some pritt stick, cutting out the best pictures and sticking them in the scrapbook I had been bought by Uncle Charlie the Christmas before.

The scrapbook, which I still own to this day by the way, became my secret obsession, a desperate part of me secreted in a hidden compartment, which I had purposely created, in the bottom section of my wardrobe. I would scour magazines and newspapers looking for women who took my fancy and, when they finally met the dustbin, I would ensure that they were saved, carefully cut out and added to the book. I was always, however, very particular in my tastes;

• Hair – must be blonde, light brown or a tinge of red was acceptable,
• Face – skin must be pale and smooth, eyes large but colour not an issue
• Body – tall and shapely, not too muscular, nothing too skinny
• Hands – long fingers, well-manicured nails
• Legs – toned but not chunky, slim but not bony

When I was fourteen I found my older brothers secret stash of ‘adult’ magazines. It was a revelation to me and my eyes were opened wider than they ever had been before.

For a start there were many ‘parts’ that I had not considered in my list of the attributes of perfection and I found that, within the crusty pages of these wonders of smutty literature, there were countless women who deserved a place within my book. On a daily basis I sneaked a look at these beauties when my brother was not around, I found myself spending more time thinking about them day by day until I decided that they must be mine.

The solution was simple of course, find a way of making Mother aware of their existence, (which she did) and then retrieve them from the bin when she had finished screaming at my brother (which I did). The subjugation, which subsequently followed from my irate brother, was easy to endure knowing the prize that I had gained.

It was as I grew and developed my idea of the perfect woman that I first thought of combining the best elements of the hundreds of different specimens in my collection into one great ‘Superwoman’. The ideal example of everything that was wonderful about the female form, carefully dissected, lovingly collated and adoringly gazed upon, a beautiful mutation created by me and for only me to love.

The first few attempts at combining the body parts from my favourite pictures into one form were disastrous to say the least. They were great hulking monstrosities, bizarre in their appearance and without the slightest hint of the glorious femininity of which I was obsessed. This was, of course, in the days before computers which were capable of home photo editing and the wonders of resizing, trimming and blending and as a result my continual failure to create the perfect form, whilst systematically destroying my collection of beauty. However I did, with practice, hone my craft and eventually started to develop collages which resembled something which looked like a woman.

In the real world, that I kept away from my secret art, I worked hard at school and developed into a clever though some may say insular young man. I worked my way through college and then on to university, the only suggestion of my private obsession being through my loves of human biology and portrait photography both of which I studied.

I must admit at this time that throughout my school, college and university days I was not in the habit of making and maintaining friends. I had acquaintances, those that I would speak to in passing, but I never got close enough to be friends with anyone, and this isolation extended to any interactions with the opposite sex. Girls and ladies that I came into contact with and who showed an interest in me were shunned and in some cases told in no uncertain terms to stay away. They could not compare with the mental image that I kept locked in my mind of the woman sublime, perfectissimae feminae, donna perfetta.

This, of course, gave me a reputation as a rude, obnoxious man, often accused of being homosexual and in one particular case an ‘Asexual freak who probably hasn’t even got any bollocks!’ These insults did not bother me, I knew within what I was and what my purpose was in life. The curses and the slander only strengthened my view that these women were shallow, desperate and beneath my contempt. They were not her, they could never be her.

Through my studies I became a forensic pathologist, not my ideal profession, but one in which I could earn enough money to live comfortably and continue my search for the person that I knew was out there somewhere, waiting patiently for me to claim her. As time passed, and technology evolved, I discovered the aforementioned digital photography software which I had never been able to enjoy as a child. I took time to digitalise my scrapbook and scour the internet for images of fancy, ones where I would spot a skin tone, an eye shape or hand which fitted my needs. Again, as with my initial attempts with glue and scissors my first attempts were infantile at best; horrific combinations of film and TV actresses, models, singers, porn stars and randomly found facebook photographs.

These first beasts did not fit the requirements in the least, but I am an intelligent man and slowly I began to put together an image which I could hold in my mind and that would help me to recognise the woman when I saw her.

Time rolled ever onwards and, as I grew older still, I began to have the first feelings of failure in my search. Maybe this woman did not exist? Maybe I had set the bar too high? Had I wasted my life in some sort of twisted, sexual grail quest? Driven to finding something which only existed in my mind? The feelings of doubt, hopelessness and self loathing grew within me and I spiralled into depression and angst, constantly tormented by a heavenly being who could never exist.

It was at the depths of my hell that I had my first ‘revelation’, a true Damascus moment in which the gates of paradise seemed to open towards me beckoning me forth to find my dream. I will not go into the full details of the ‘grand idea’, let us just say that it involved my job as a coroner, the use of knives and saws, and a quickly developed skill in needlework.

As had now become a pattern in my life, my first attempts at ‘creation’ were truly horrendous. Pale, cold zombies; devoid of all life, absent of expression or feeling and unworthy of my love or attention. I tried to pass off their obvious unattractiveness and press on with some type of relations but, as had been the bane of my life, found that they did not arouse my desires in any way. (They also had had a tendency to ‘go off’ quickly if taken out of cool conditions and as such the central heating in my flat brought about many malodorous calamities).

However, the main issue with these ‘cadaverous dates’ was that I found that, in my desperation to find a mate, I had lowered my expectations and settled for whatever good points I could find on those unlucky enough to pass through the doors of my workplace.

As a point of solace, I found myself sat one evening looking back desperately at my scrap book, my first blundered attempts with scissors and glue to create the woman who would make my life complete; lips of Le Brock, hair of De Mornay, eyes of Fisher, legs of Fawcett and posterior of Newton John (at the end of Grease, in trousers that had to be sewn on). All of these images from my teenage years flooded though my mind taking me back to an age where it seemed possible to wire up a Barbie doll to your ZX Spectrum and create a living, breathing sex object. This reminiscence brought about my second, most current, revelation.

My dream began in the eighties, before computers became powerful, before technology became a thing which we all can access, before plastic surgery became the norm, before … before … before successful limb and face transplants.

My mind was immediately sent into a frenzy of activity, I could do this, I could take a woman, any woman, and turn her into the thing which I desire the most, the thing which I have spent my life in search of, I could create … the perfect woman.

It has taken a while but I think that I finally have all the things that I need to complete the job. Of course I had to move out of my flat and find somewhere a bit ‘out of the way’, a place where all of the different ‘elements’ could be brought together without drawing too much attention. I found a farm with some old outbuildings and converted the stables into smaller ‘rooms’.

When this job was complete I started to collect the parts. It has been relatively easy to do, you would be surprised at the amount of women willing to put pictures of themselves on public display for all the world to see. It doesn’t take much for the inquisitive and intelligent mind to find where these people live when they find what they are looking for. We live in a world where ‘friends’ are a badge of honour to nurture and to grow, even if you have never met the person before in your life.

You tell these people, “Going out tonight in Reading, will probably end up in Sakura, gonna get proper mashed, pissed out of my head.”

You might as well just say, “I will be making myself vulnerable this evening, come and get me. Oh and by the way, here is a photo of me so you know who to look for.”

And so I sit. I wait patiently in my adapted van, at 2am on a rainy Thursday night in Bristol. The club will begin to empty soon and she will walk the ten minute journey back to her flat, as she has done for the past three Thursdays.
My collection is nearly complete, it is the left hand tonight, I have seen it shown to me when she last had her nails done and just had to let her ‘friends’ see them. Once the donor is ‘procured’, I will begin to put her together. A teenage fantasy come true. I am creating beauty here. This has been a long journey and I will not stray from the path now.

They will beg at first, plead for their lives and pray for freedom. When they are denied, they will kick and they will scream, hurl obscenities at me and try to put me off my job through their displays violence and ugly behaviour. However, I can form beauty and perfection from the most damaged and broken of sources and will not be stopped.

Nothing shocks me. I am an inventor of dreams. Of perfection.



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