Ben was a man who wasn’t afraid of making money – no matter what the cost. He used to be a retail zombie, In a company with a gazillion franchisees, but he found that self-employment worked for him better than working under a middle aged middle manager unsatisfied in her marriage, and unblessed by children.
He was a man interested in global culture, particularly of that in America. When the American railway was first built, the Native American culture (or what was left of it) was finally visible to the people of the western world.
The Native Americans fascinated Ben. They were a people at one with nature in everything they did. Hunting, Farming…Scalping. Ben had looked into why certain American tribes scalped their victims. They did so for a reason, not just for fun. They did so for revenue.
Chiefs like Bald-Eagle-Little-Wang needed more than just power to attract some Native American women to bear children to their tribes – they needed hair.
One particular tribe was fond of the practise, the Hairokees. Little was written about them and they had died out generations ago. But Ben had read widely and discovered the existence of SSHAVE. He became a member, and the writings of the Hairokee’s came with it.
Ben grew his hair out to shoulder length in accordance to the SSHAVE constitution – and his inability to grow a beard made him a trusted member of the society.
One day, while he was working in his lowly retail job, he snapped. He wanted to embody everything that the Hairokees believed in. He took in a large carving knife that he found in his father’s butcher’s shop and took it to her head as she stood outside on her cigarette break.
Squelch, squelch, squelch. The first time, Ben read the night before, Is always the messiest for the young members of the tribe’s adolescents passing through the rite of passage. The first scalp often resulted in spilt brain matter.
Ben was a little peeved that the book didn’t warn him about the tendency of the scalp-ees to try and bite, but he persevered, somehow, without a bite-mark to be seen.
Ben was a shrewd operator and managed to avoid getting his fingerprints on anything. He sold off the evidence to some chap named Timothy he had met in an online chatroom for a decent price, and when the authorities questioned him about the knife, he said his dad did it, using the excuse, “he’s a butcher, he does that sort of thing for a living, I’ve seen much worse growing up.”
Ben’s father went to jail, and Ben was free to scalp at his free will. He quit his job and decided to professionally supply SSHAVE’s cultivation team with scalps to plant.
He developed his scalping methods carefully over the next while – using apps like Tinder and Grindr to meet strange ladies, manipulate them into doing whatever he wanted with them – which was always to scalp them – with his silver tongued ways, and then leaving them when he was done with them.
He used these apps because doing so with people he knew, his friends, was too risky. It was hard for him to resist though, as he often coveted their hair.
His friend Brian’s hair was the scalp he wanted most especially; he wished he could get his hands on his luscious locks of thick velvety black hair, like the pelt of an old grizzly, the alpha of his pack. He wanted to sling it around his neck and wear it like a scarf, he wanted to put it on his floor and have his cat sleep on it on a cold winter’s night.
He even let it slip one day, “Gosh Brian, I wish I could have that black hair of yours,” but stopped himself before his true, dark intentions were revealed. Better be distanced for homoeroticism than abandoned altogether for his deep and dark desires.
He had a good thing going. He felt sure that revealing what was really going on underneath would make him a pariah.