Trigger Warning: This story has elements of Crime and Horror. It includes descriptions of Violence, Murder, and Cannibalism from the viewpoint of a Serial Killer.
As I sit here in this cage, awaiting my death, I have been moved to tell you a few confessions and explanations for the actions that have sealed my fate this day.
You see, I used to think I was a chicken. I know how crazy that sounds. Maybe that is why I feel I need to explain myself. You see, it all started with a dream.
You have to expect weird dreams when you love to eat as much as I do! Steak, chops, bacon and eggs, gravy, pasta, and all the strange sounding things at the Chinese Buffet were fodder for my feasts. But bar none; I loved chicken. Not just any chicken; I'm a faithful Kentucky boy and I love the Colonel's blend of those eleven herbs and spices!
Maybe part of that was because I lived next door to a KFC. I would smell the chicken all day. I would wake up to it in the morning and go to sleep with the deep-fried aroma of the bird wrapping me like a blanket at night. Maybe that is how the dream started.
It was a fever dream and in it I was feasting on a table piled to overflowing with crispy and regular coating chicken along with a mountain of mashed potatoes when a great pain ripped my chest and I blacked out. "I'm dead," I thought as the darkness took me.
But then it happened; I was still awake, I was conscious and floating around in a warm, dark place. "Well, life after death. That's something I didn't expect! But this is rather boring just floating around in the void. If this is all there is then those nuts always screaming about reincarnation will have a few surprises in store!"
So I floated and I thought about my life. Didn’t seem like there was going to be much else to do. So, beyond the gluttony, there was little to mark me from any hundred other guys walking down the street but that was okay; I’d mostly never hurt anyone and though I never felt I needed to bother with religion, I knew that was one of the things that was supposed to get you to a good place.
This wasn't it. I realized my universe of darkness was getting tight!
I struggled, I couldn't breathe! (Had I even been breathing?) I kicked and kicked until my arms were trapped at my side and all I could do was to beat at the walls of my prison with my head. Finally a speck of light appeared and I slammed my head harder until suddenly the wall split apart and I felt myself fall head-first through the shards of an eggshell that had surrounded me! I reached up a hand to steady myself and fell over again, hurting my beak, sore from pecking through the shell as a set of stubby nearly naked wings fluttered about uselessly by my sides!
"What the Hell?" I peeped as I spun around trying to make sense of what I was seeing. Then a monster rushed out of nowhere at me. I knew Hollywood had been making dinosaurs look more like birds in recent years but none of them could ready a soul for the house-high feathered beast that loomed over me briefly before roaring loudly and sweeping me up under its wing as it sat down on several more eggs that I saw beside me right before the lights went out.
So I dreamt I grew up as a chicken, well, rooster actually, and quite the cock-of-the-walk in the bargain. My new body was big for its kind and was covered in bright orange and red feathers. I had my pick of any of the chicks, er, chickens, around the farm. I was always first to score the best corn when the farmer's wife fed us.
There were still those dark nights full of angst when something I'd seen reminded me of my life as a human. I remember once screaming that I remembered walking on two legs and that little, inner voice chiding me, "Silly, you still are!" as I flapped my wings and screamed again at the rising sun!
I dreamt I was a good chicken and was content for the most part. There were dangers and I blame my downfall on the Fox. While our enclosures were well-made, flaws develop over time and one night not long after I had tucked my head under my wing for the night, safe on my top-tier perch, there arose a cacophony of blood-curdling screams from below me! The fences had been breached and the fox from the neighboring woods had gotten in among the chickens!
Terror and the smell of blood filled the air and a strange rage filled my feathered heart. With a savage cock-a-doodle-do I flung myself off the perch and landed all two clawed and taloned feet on the fox's head as he held one of my hen's limp bodies in his mouth. I thrashed and clawed and cawed loud enough to wake the sun and in the end, the fox dropped his spoils and fled, blood dripping from his wounds, through the entryway he had slithered into. I stood panting and clucking in fury and triumph over the broken and bleeding form of the hen and a dark wind blew through my mind.
Part of Juliet's firm breast meat was showing through the rips the fox had made in her feathers and my thoughts went blank. An urge had come upon me I had not felt in years; the taste and warmth of deep-fried chicken breast. I drove my beak into her dead chest repeatedly, pulling away succulent bites of her tasty flesh.
I don't know how long the monster of my urges would have held me had the farmer not shown up just then to investigate the noise. He misinterpreted what he saw and thought the blood on my beak was the fox's since there were obvious bits of red fur stuck to my feet. He mourned the two birds he had lost that night and I fell into a dark funk trying to understand why I had done such a despicable thing after my fight with the fox.
A deep depression took me after that. I barely bothered to sound the alarm that dawn was breaking and the corn that was spread for us was tasteless as ash in my craw. I took to lurking in the shadows of the hen house watching the hens as they went about their day, scratching the ground, eating, and cooling in the dust baths. I watched and that dark urge grew in my own feathered breast until one day, Betty, the black hen, wandered off from the rest of the ambling flock and I struck.
I was on her in a moment, wings beating, claws ripping, and beak striking again and again into her back and neck. As the blood flew my mind went totally dark and I don't know how much later it was I found myself perched on my top tier and savoring the after-taste of chicken once again!
I tried to get on with life as best a rooster can in the days following my murder and feasting on Betty's flesh. I tried to make myself be interested in the corn that was thrown to us every day. I even followed a few of the hens around to look for the random bug or grasshopper that made its way into our enclosure. But all was for nothing as the urge grew until I cock-a-doodle dammit did the same thing to a white hen named Snowball.
I don't remember much after that. For a long while I began to avoid all the other fowl around the farm. I took my stubby wings and launched myself to the roofs of the buildings around the farm. I particularly liked perching under the rusty old weather vane shaped like me. There were times I felt I had more in common with that copper rooster than I did the tempting birds made of flesh scratching in the dirt in the yard below.
It was from this perch I made my last kill. From my high vantage point I saw when tan-feathered Audrey wandered by herself in behind the farmer's equipment shed. Gaining altitude with my crappy wings looks clownish and awkward but I can glide like you wouldn't believe. Silently and at speed I struck Audrey hard just behind her shoulders and latched onto her body with both feet. I felt my beak plunge time and again into her before she was inert under me. I crowed automatically in glee as I began to feast on her thigh meat. And then my mind spun as a great weight jerked me to the side and away from the food I craved.
I was viciously slung around and slammed face-first into the side of a dumpster. An implacable binding force held my arms together and forced them up towards my shoulders all the while discordant screams and yells echoed through the alley. Lights flared and as I was thrown down on the ground I saw the body of the KFC waitress lying across the way, her clothing disheveled and the upper leg a bloody mess and half gone. The police were not kind to me as I was dragged off to jail but for a time I was comforted by the warm, full feeling I had in my stomach.
But here come the guards to take me to my fate. According to all the news accounts I have read it seems I only hunted KFC employees which is why I am called the "Kentucky Fried Cannibal" and they are having a field day with my sentencing to death in the electric chair. Don't hear much about any organizations or people really protesting my execution so I guess this is it.
"Huh, fried indeed."
The farmer swung his ax and the head of the big rooster went flying toward the wood pile. As the body flopped out its last nerve impulses, the old man shook his head. The old rooster had been his favorite but ever since actually running off a fox from the hen-house last spring he had gotten to acting peculiar. Then to everyone's horror the rooster had begun a killing spree that had cost him three laying hens. "Well, whatever his problem was, let's get him cleaned up. He's going to taste mighty good fried up for supper tonight!"