Posts from the ‘Creepy Shorts’ Category

But For the Pumpkins

I think I must have my holiday season associations mixed up.
I know some people like to think of winter as starting in November, or spring starting in April and so forth, (it might as well be around here), but I happen to know and stress otherwise.
For example, even though Thanksgiving and Halloween are both Autumn holidays, turkey day to me has always been a festive harvest occasion, while Halloween always gets me excited for winter.

If this is the point where your brain just screeched to a halt, you can go back and read that again, but it was right the first time. I don’t know whether it’s to do with seven-headed rodent kings, skeleton Santas or Dickens’s ghosts, but something about that last day of October, (it should always be chilly), just gets my toes curling in anticipation for fur-lined boots crunching through snow and snuggling under warm blankets and listening to the wind howl outside.
Those readers who have been with me since the days when I was more prolific can probably appreciate the strangeness of this admition.
And now I offer you a story, one day late, but I was feeling inspired.

As soon as Kaylie pulled her head up, she began searching for Billy. Her wet hair whipped against her face as she looked wildly around the room.
“That wasn’t funny Billy!” she shouted to the emptiness; her little fists clenched. Then she went tearing out of the room to find mama.
Mama had gone inside earlier with a headache and left Billy in charge. Mama had headaches a lot, but one time when Kaylie had come inside to get a bandaid for her cut and to tell on Billy for pushing her, she had caught Mama kissing a strange man in the laundry room. She must have had a real headache today though because Kaylie found her in bed; a glass of water on her nightstand.
“Mama! Mama Billy’s being mean again.”
Mama opened and closed her eyes without looking at Kaylie.
Kaylie tried again, but Mama didn’t so much as glance at her. Patches the cat came over and sniffed at Kaylie. Then his fur got big and fluffy and he hissed at her. Patches had never hissed at Kaylie before. She backed away.
Billy had gone back outside to join his friends after he had let Kaylie go, and that was where she found him.
“Mama’s really mad at you Billy,” she lied; hands on hips. “She’s going to come down any minute to whup you.”
Billy ignored her; continuing to throw the green and white ball around with his friends.
“Whadja’ do to your dumb little sister anyway,” one of the boys asked.
“Don’t worry about her,” Billy dismissed.
Mad now, Kaylie ran up and got right in his face.
But Billy just danced away and threw the ball to one of his friends. Kaylie ran and tried to catch the ball, but the boys were all taller than her and so it was easy to keep it out of her reach.
When finally Billy got the ball again, he turned and threw it hard. Kaylie had to duck out of the way as it came right at her face. Then she went running inside and began hollering.
Mama came staggering downstairs then and nearly tripped over the bucket of water in the middle of the dining room. She swore; then fast walked to the kitchen door and leaned out.
“Billy,” she called, “what’s this bucket doing in the middle of the floor?”
“I donno,” Billy called back. “Kaylie musta brought it inside.”
“Nuh uh,” Kaylie countered. “He brought it in to show me how to bob for apples.”
“Well it doesn’t belong there,” Mama finished. “Now send your friends home and come clean up all this water that got spilled.
Kaylie watched smugly as Billy laid newspaper down over the wet spot while Mama dried and put away the rest of the apples. When Mama came back in to the dining room to put the bucket away, Billy jumped up and ran to her.
“Mama don’t.”
She shook him off as he grabbed at her arm.
“I’m putting it away. The closet’s where it goes Billy.”
“Wait, I wanted to use it for something else.”
“Not now,” Mama said firmly.
“She pulled open the closet door and shoved the bucket inside, but it wouldn’t go in. Yanking aside an old suitcase, she tried again. Then she stumbled back as something fell out. Her hands flew up to her mouth; the bucket forgotten beside her.
Kaylie’s small form lay crumpled on the floor; still in her little blue dress. Her curly dark hair and shoulders were soaked through from the water; bits of apple still in her mouth.


The Capture

I posted
a story
here a while ago that I had written for a friend. While this is not a direct continuation, all the usual players are there

Ben peered in to the bush.
“It’s ok, you can come out,” he encouraged, holding out the chunk of pb&j sandwich.
A reddish snout poked its way out, sniffed cautiously, then sneezed. Ben pulled back.
“Not a fan of pb&j?” Ben frowned.
He crawled back to where he had left his backpack and Rummaged around until he finally came up with a package of beef jerky.
This time the snout came out quickly and snapped the meat from Ben’s fingers. He winced as the sharp fangs grazed him. The second piece he held further away from the bush; forcing the animal to come out further. Slowly, warily, it slunk forward, until it crouched just in front of the bush; eyes focused on the meat, ears alert and twitching, its body tensed to flee. Ben stared at the little creature.
He knew it must be a stray dog, but he had never seen its breed before. It had the pricked ears and wolf-like snout of a husky. Its paws were huge; its tail bushy and straight, and its coarse thick fur was a beautiful shade of reddish brown. The black nose twitched.
“It’s ok boy, you …”
The little dog sneezed.
“Girl?” Ben amended. “It’s ok girl, I won’t hurt you.”
The little dog slunk forward; body hunched, tail down, ears back. When she reached Ben, she stopped and waited. Ben kept perfectly still and held out the jerky. He really hoped she wouldn’t try to take his hand off, but she seemed more scared than vicious. Tentatively she took an edge of meat between her teeth and tugged. Ben let her have it.
“You must be lost,” Ben reasoned. “I can’t imagine someone would leave a poor little pup all by itself on purpose; especially one as pretty as you.”
The puppy had allowed Ben to feed her a few more beef jerky strips before stretching out beside him. She was about two feet away, but Ben thought she was starting to trust him; a sure sign in his mind that she was a stray dog and not a wild animal. Her ears still twitched though.
“Mom never let me have a dog,” Ben sighed. “She says they’re too expensive.”
Then he perked up.
“But I bet she’d let me keep you. I wouldn’t have to pay anything for you girl.”
The boy reached out tentatively for the pup and waited. She sniffed his hand cautiously, but made no move to run away. Slowly Ben crawled closer, until he was right next to the pup. Then he picked her up. She looked curiously at him, but did not wriggle away. Encouraged, Ben picked up his backpack and headed back toward his camp.
“But Mom, she’s all alone with no one to take care of her, and look how cute she is.”
“Benjamin you don’t know where that dog has been or even if she already belongs to someone.”
Mother and son stood just outside of their tent; Ben still holding the puppy, his mother looking at him sternly with her hands on her hips.
“Well we can’t give her back until we know whose she is,” Ben argued. “Can’t we at least keep her until then? She likes me mom, and we’re in the middle of nowhere. She could get eaten.”
In spite of herself, Ben’s mom laughed.
“I don’t think anything in these woods is big enough to eat a dog; even a puppy.”
“What about bears?”
“There are no bears here.” Then the woman sighed. “Alright Ben, if your father says it’s ok, we can keep her.”
Ben had set the puppy on her generous paws and was nearly airborne in order to give his mother a grateful hug, when she stopped him.
“Just until we go home. Then we’re putting up fliers.”
But Ben’s father—his stepfather to be exact—had other ideas. He screamed something about big paws and a wolf and getting his rifle, but the little creature was long gone by then.
She was a wolf cub of course, but there had been no need to tell anyone that. Besides, that beef jerky had been delicious. Now she just had to get as far away from the yelling man with his big gun as possible. The little cub didn’t even see the car as she ran out on to the middle of the highway.
Hugh slammed on his breaks and swore. He wasn’t sure what he had almost hit, or whether or not he had actually hit it, but he felt he ought to check if it were still alive. The little creature stared up at him with frightened gray eyes. He wasn’t in the habit of collecting stray dogs, but he could probably find some kind of animal hospital for this one.
He picked up the little shaking thing and deposited it in the back seat of his car. The second time he slammed on his breaks had Nothing to do with anything outside his car and everything to do with what was now inside it. He whipped out his phone.
“Hugh?” answered a sleepy Taylor. “What’s …?”
“You’ll never believe what I’ve got in my car,” Hugh said.
“No, You’re probably right. Tell me.”
“Your werewolf niece.”
There was a pause.
“Dale? Is she alright?”
“I’m not sure. She was a wolf when I almost ran her over, and now she’s changed back.” Hugh’s tone was exasperated.
“It’s not full moon yet; she shouldn’t be changing,” Taylor reasoned.
“Well, apparently she can now change whenever she likes.”
“Scott and Wendy must be frantic. Bring her over to my place; I’ll take care of her.”
Hugh hesitated; his eyes looking everywhere but the back seat.
“There’s a problem.”
“Which is?”
“I’m a bit far from your house right now.”
“So just drive here. She’ll be ok in the car.”
“That’s not the problem.”
Taylor’s tone became impatient.
“When she changed back she had no clothes on; do you know how that could look if I got stopped?”
Taylor was silent for a beat, then,
“Did you cover her?”
“I threw my coat over her.”
“Alright. Just pull over somewhere and let me know where you are; I’ll be right there.”
When Hugh spotted Taylor’s car, He straightened from the door where he had been leaning to get some fresh air and came toward her.
“I called Scott and Wendy and told them I had her and that she was fine,” Taylor said in a rush. “I can’t imagine what could’ve happened if you hadn’t been the one to find her. How is she? Is she ok?”
The two peered in to the back seat of Hugh’s car. The only signs of anyone having been there were the few red hairs sticking in a small patch of blood. Even the jacket was gone. Taylor turned white; Hugh swore.

From The Retreat

Almost a month ago I attended the anual writing retreat run by my college’s english club. I have gone every year since we began when I was still a student and it’s been fun and informative every time I’ve gone.
I won’t say much about it now, but I do have a piece I wrote there for you. Here it is!

My first memory of mother was of her bending over me; her long dark hair sweeping across my face and arms, and this scarf. I remember being fascinated by the white flowers against the bright blue silk. She wore it everywhere this scarf. Whether cleaning the house or going out to the opera; mother always had to wear her blue silk scarf.
Father once asked her if she wanted to be buried with her scarf, but she just laughed at him. She had a wonderful laugh; full and deep like a great gong. She through back her head and laughed her full bellied laugh, and told father that such pretty things are meant to be seen by everyone; not wasted on the dead. It would have been a waste you know. I hardly recognized the faded lifeless doll that lay in mother’s casket; or perhaps it was the absence of her scarf. I can’t be sure.
It has been with me ever since. I never wear it, but every now and again I take it out to remember her. Even after so many years her scent is still woven in to the fabric. She told me once to give it to the girl I love. I would have given it to you earlier, but I wanted to make it special. I needed to do it where the two of us could be alone.
I had hoped you’d like it. No please, don’t claw at the fabric like that; it looks quite lovely wrapped around your throat.

The Surprise

For the record, I am so not ok with getting snow and winter storms in October!
Here’s a story I wrote for a friend just today. Enjoy Read more…