"Tonight we have a most unusual offering in our gallery. The gallery, ladies and gentlemen is of the most macabre and malevolent paintings the world has ever seen. As you will see they are all paintings in oil from various masters in various parts of the world and in very different time periods. In total there is just over one hundred paintings in the showing. So let us begin."
The curator of the gallery whose name was Conrad Cody finished his introduction in the lobby and the crowd that numbered just over fifty thronged into the hallway to the see the first painting. Mr. Cody waited for the crowd to settle in. The cloth was pulled back on the first painting and it was revealed. There were audible gasps from the crowd. The grotesque painting offered up an extremely grim representation of a man screaming in agony as open heart surgery was performed on him without anesthetic.
Mr. Cody stood by the painting as the crowd stirred and finally he piped up, "This is a painting that harkens one back 2000 years in an area that today would be modern Macedonia. The actual painting itself was done by an Italian in the Renaissance period, his name is not known."
One by one the crowd filed by the grim painting examining the surgery to a certain degree but that surgery was pushed to the background in preference to the tormented face of a man whose facial features were twisted into an expressions that didn't seem possible. The eye brows, the cheek muscles, the lips, and the skin was being stretched downward in ghastly elasticity. One lady vomited when viewing the painting up close. Another lady who had a baby screamed and the baby started to cry. The whole time Mr. Cody stood with his hands behind his back and smiled in pleasure at the pain the viewers were receiving.
He moved on to the next painting which was of a man being torn apart by a lion. The painting was particularly graphic as the lion was ripping off the man's limbs and one could see the veins and muscles underneath the skin. But this man had a different type of distorted agony in his face. It was one of terror and the hope that he would die soon without prolonging and suffering. Again the crowd groaned and a older lady passed out and was given medical attention. Mr. Cody grinned once again. The lady with the baby could not get her child to stop screaming which irritated the rest of the people.
Painting by painting they moved through the gallery until they came to the last one of an ancient cave man who was a cannibal screaming at the top of his lungs. His mouth was opened unbelievably wide which revealed his frightening teeth and blood running down his chin. You could almost feel his hunger as he hunted down his prey. The lady with the child examined the painting closely, the baby took a peek and starting crying immediately.
Mr. Cody spoke, "Unfortunately we have come to the end of the gallery and I wish you many happy nightmares. I hope you have enjoyed..."
His words were cut off by a screaming lady, "My baby. He ate my baby."
The lady stood empty-armed by the painting of the screaming cannibal.
Mr. Cody smiled and said, "Oh, yes. That's one painting you definitely don't want to stand too close to."