"We have him," Butcher said as they walked, a cruel smile on his leathery, skeletal face. His white teeth showed bright in the poor light of the lantern.
Butcher dug in a pocket for his key. He placed it in the iron door and gave it a turn. The heavy click of the lock echoed down the corridor.
Torches and lanterns on every wall painted the stone surfaces orange, and the shallow puddle of blood that covered the floor gleamed under the firelight. Stacked in the corners were hundreds of limbs, heads, and torsos. Gaige thought of the many times when he was a student that he had used Butcher’s facility for his own medical research. It was for a greater good, he always told himself, and not some sort of sick curiosity.
He cared for the sick, the sick from the Wastes. He perpetuated this world by keeping its inhabitants alive.
Every time he returned to this place, though, it was harder and harder to convince himself that there was any good in his soul, that there was any good in the whole world. So he told himself nothing.
“Look at the pile, Gaige. He is still alive, the bastard,” Butcher said, followed by a sound that was not laughter, just a terrible noise made in its place.
Gaige squinted, and then he saw the horror. In the mountain of mutilated flesh, there was a torso that still had a head, no limbs. Instead there were iron stumps, burned onto the severed stumps.
“The lads and I have been taking notes when we watch you perform, doctor. It is a marvel, what a man can take before he dies.”
Gaige saved people. Butcher murdered them. But to a man like Butcher, perhaps they were one and the same.
He walked toward the wriggling thing. The eyes were burned out and the mouth was sewn shut. A faint moaning came from the wretch, and at the sound Gaige hated Butcher, he hated that damned city, and he hated himself for the job he still had to do in those dark hours of the morning before the sun rose.
He twisted the handle of his cane, from it drew his sword, and in a surgically accurate and swift motion he slit the mutilated man’s throat. Blood shot from the wound more fiercely than it should have, and Gaige knew Butcher’s men had fed their toy powerful elixirs to keep his heart beating as they chopped him up.
“A bit too far, Butcher, a bit too far,” Gaige said, his voice hollow and without any real reproach.
Butcher stepped beside him. “Nothing is too far in this place, no fate too cruel. One day I will pay for all that I have done, and I am ready for that price. I am ready for anything, because in truth, I have come to believe that this is all just some horrid dream, a horrid dream without limits to its depravity.” Butcher indicated the heaps of death around him. “How can this be real? How can any of this be real, doctor?”
Gaige did not answer; he turned away from the corpse with the iron stubs to look at Butcher, who was staring into a torch on the wall. Gaige could see into his eyes and he saw a great fear in them, a great and endless fear.
“I am going to need something fresh if you have anything,” Gaige said, trying to move things along. The urgency of his mission weighed on him now.
Butcher turned from the fire on the wall and looked at Gaige. He made that noise again, the one that replaced laughter. The fear was still in his eyes.
“You can take him.” Butcher pointed to the iron-stumped horror as his feral white smile grew. “For you are the one who just slaughtered him fresh.”
- Butcher's excerpt is from Catacombs of Time: https://www.dylandooseauthor.c...
- Recommended to be printed at higher resolutions, sample support file included to show orientation, as well as the bust in parts and an assembled version as well. The models are solid, not shells. Intended for print as a 1/7 scale bust at ~94 mm from cleaver to hat!
- Butcher is an original character, and a collaboration between my brother Dylan Doose (writing) and I (sculpting).
- Print made on an Envisiontec printer done by the fantastic Impression 3DA.
- Sculpted in ZBrush, rendered in Keyshot.
- Cast in Smooth Cast 321 resin. Base pictured made of burnt wood and a brass rod.
- For personal use - painting/collecting/modelling!