This one has a few instances of "adult language."
by Eric J. Krause
"Death will come easy, just close your eyes!" he wailed at the top of his lungs, which brought out raucous shouts of "Slayer!" from the fellow metal-heads around him. Slit Wrists, the ultimate Slayer cover band, would be on stage next, and the energy in the building bordered on catastrophic. When Tom (yes, the lead singer-bassist had legally changed his name to Tom Ayala) belted out the opening scream of "Angel of Death," the club might just come down around them.
An old Metallica song blasted on the sound system while the roadies and technicians readied the stage. Heads banged and throats growled out the lyrics of "Creeping Death" as if they were watching the song actually performed. Wouldn't it be cool if someone organized a "Big Four" concert done by cover bands? He'd be there, that was for sure, and he knew most of these crazed motherfuckers would be, too. No doubt that could tour around the country, using different cover bands in each city if necessary. If he had more ambition, he'd totally make it happen.
Without any big build-up, Slit Wrists stomped out on stage and tore into it. As expected, they launched with "Angel of Death," and the crowd went ballistic. Three separate pits exploded in the tiny club, while fists, middle fingers, and devil horns shot up from those not moshing. After the first song, the band transitioned into "Killing Fields," "Disciple," and "War Ensemble."
After those four songs, with the crowd riled up to dizzying heights, Tom stopped and addressed the crowd. This was strange--Slit Wrists always played through two dozen or so songs in rapid-fire succession and left. No talking at all. If anyone but him wondered about this, they didn't show it.
"We are Slit Wrists, and we're here to slay you fuckers! This is 'Mandatory Suicide!' Die, fuckers, die!"
The crowd's reaction shot up to even higher testosterone-driven levels, and the mosh pits erupted harder than before. He seemed to be the only one in the place who didn't like that short speech. As much as he wanted to watch the rest of the show, something in the back of his mind told him to leave.
Turns out he should have trusted that voice.
As the group pounded through the song, a strange green fog fell from the ceiling and poured from the front of the stage. It was a neat effect at first, giving the band and crowd an eerie, otherworldly glow, but it soon proved deadly. A bitter taste assaulted his tongue, followed by a burning in his throat. And he wasn't the only one to notice. A number of people fled to the exits, but those doors proved locked. Some tried to escape backstage, but something he couldn't see blocked their way. He coughed and fell to his knees, joining everyone else in the final moments of suffocation. Those in the mosh pits had already succumbed, and somewhere in the back of his mind he realized the music had stopped, the stage now empty. Slit Wrists certainly had killed tonight.
Screams died with the patrons around him. He wasn't far behind. With his last living thought, he wondered why they'd chosen "Mandatory Suicide" instead of "Chemical Warfare." That would have made more sense . . .