This is Halloween


Happy Halloween everyone! In honour of Halloween, I have written (or tried to, at least) a short story. What I tried to do is use a bit of suspense to make it seem more scary, instead of getting a parade of horrors to traipse in. One of my inspirations was Edgar Allan Poe, because he does suspense so well. And what better way to learn than from a master? Anyway, without further ado, here it is:

Hanging by a Thread

The cross legged children squealed with peals of laughter. The marionettes danced on the miniature stage, as a tinny melody played from a worn out old phonograph, behind the manipulator. He worked tirelessly, but there was a sort of deadness behind his eyes. His audience wasn’t able to see it, due to the curtain masking everything. As the strains from the song faded, the marionettes dropped into a bow, and the manipulator stepped out to the applause of his audience. He smiled, but it seemed forced and brittle, like a cracked mask.

After putting some money into the shabby top hat in front, the audience left, for it was dinner time, and they were out to find it. Only one lady stayed behind, along with what he assumed to be her spouse. She hobbled forward, and leaning towards him she croaked, “Young man, that was a splendid show you put on. I enjoyed it immensely.”

“Thank you, ma’am. Although, I’m not that young anymore, I’m five and twenty. I’d also prefer to be called Mr. Thomas.” He replied drily.

“Well, you’re certainly talented, Mr. Thomas. That must’ve taken years for you to master. Anyway, please excuse me. It was a pleasure.” The old lady shuffled away, but Mr. Thomas’ eyes stayed on her. She wore large, heavy jewelry, and expensive looking clothes, and suddenly he had a flashback of his mother, dressed similarly, but pleading with his father…

He snapped out of it, and angrily he packed up his marionettes, carried the stage, and went home.

Rain poured and pattered against the windows as Mr. Thomas entered his apartment. He slammed the door, and threw away all the marionettes and the stage into one corner of the room. Picking up the money, he counted it, and realized that he was one step closer to getting the amount of money his father told him to come back with after he kicked him out ten years ago.

Just thinking of his horrid father threw him into a fiery rage. He frantically looked around, and threw the first things he could get his hands on; his marionettes. They crashed against the wall, and slid down eerily, as if they were people.  Gathering the two of them, he saw that one had a hole through his head, as if he’d been shot point blank.

That should happen to Father, he thought darkly. He couldn’t stop himself. He let out all of his pent up fury on the puppets, thrashing and ruining them. He soon realized that he damaged his marionettes beyond repair, and thrashed his apartment, anyways. With another glance at the puppets, he almost felt a pang of regret, but nevertheless, Mr. Thomas threw them out on his front step like his father did to him so many years ago. As he turned away he swore he saw them turn to face him; something he’d swear to his dying day. But that was impossible; they were just marionettes.

The storm still raged on outside as he turned down the lights went to bed, and fell asleep.

Even more people turned up at the spot where Mr. Thomas usually held his marionette plays. All were perplexed, and asked each other “Where’s the puppet man? So and so told me he’d be here by now.” Nannies consoled upset children by giving them candy, and all the rest walked away. It seemed that Mr. Thomas had never existed.

Mr. Thomas kept to his apartment that whole day. He wallowed in quieter fury and despair, but by no means was it any less that yesterday’s. He now had no means to earn a living. Puppetry was the only thing he knew how to do. Old puppet shows at his father’s mansion streaked through his mind, the ones that he’d enjoyed as a young boy and had taken for granted. Back when he was cared for, loved, and before he became an embarrassment to his family. Memories flooded back to him, threatening to drown him with pain.

At night, when quiet was supposed to reign undisturbed, a knock on the door jolted Mr. Thomas awake. “Who the blazes is awake now?” he muttered to himself. He dragged himself up, and peeping through the door’s eyehole, he was shocked breathless. Standing on the opposite side, out in the rain, only shielded by a frilly parasol, was his mother. She looked exactly like she did years ago, gorgeous and demurely smiling. With fumbling hands, he opened the door, only to see that nobody was there.  He stepped forward, only to hear a sickening crunch that sent what felt like cold hands playing piano on his spine. He realized with a jolt that he stepped through a corpse’s skull. His mother’s head lay crushed and rotten, as if it’d been dead and lying there for years. Strings led from her wrists and legs, leading off into the shadows, from where emerged two ruined marionettes, holding them. Their faces were smashed in, the clothes tattered, and the girl hobbled with one leg. In unison, they lifted the strings, and then his corpse mother rose back up.

Mr. Thomas’ blood ran cold. “What are you?” he whispered. They only sneered, and began to walk away into the shadows, with the Corpse Mother in the lead.  Against his will, he trailed them. It felt like he was being controlled by strings. What’s going on? He thought worriedly. A high pitched voice one would imagine to belong to a child echoed.

Your worst nightmare, Daddy, it said.

Daddy? Since when was I Daddy?  He thought.

Since you made us…

The marionettes’ heads turned backwards to face him. He winced, and realized that he was being led to the cemetery. He struggled against the ropes and tried to run away, only to be pulled closer. His wrists were burning, and skin was scorched where rope would have been if he’d been a marionette.

As soon as they were in the cemetery, they headed directly for a hill with a towering tree. Two headstones were nearly visible in the dark night. Mr. Thomas’ vision grew even blurrier as a shower promptly started and drenched everything beyond comprehension. He was dragged closer and closer still. He stumbled forward, and saw that one of the plots still had to be covered. His Corpse Mother stopped at the foot of the plot, and like a marionette whose strings were severed; she dropped into the hole with a sickening crack.

A rope came out, dancing like a snake listening to charmer music. It wrapped itself around Mr. Thomas’ neck. Like a dog being led by its owner, he was yanked to the tree. Flailing and struggling, he was dragged up, branches pounding him everywhere. He wasn’t able to see or breathe, but managed to grab a branch and pull himself up to find himself at the edge. The noose made him stand, and there was a strong gust of wind. All he could hear was the roar of the air, and he knew that the ground would hit him and his legs would probably be broken.

The ground never came.

Mourners visiting the grave of old Mr. Thomas, whose son he kicked out some ten years before, were alarmed to see a figure dangling from a tree. It looked exactly like his son.

What do you think? Good? Bad? I’ve tried making suspense stories before, but they were absolutely horrid; however, those were ages ago, and I hope I’ve improved since then. But don’t we all?

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The First Bit


Hello! So I thought that today I’d start off with putting some old writing of mine up here. You know, not reviews, but stuff like creative writing. So this is something I wrote a couple months ago, and it’s a fractured fairy tale. The idea of posting it came after I read the prompt for the August chain on Teens Can Write, Too! When I first wrote it  I asked a couple of my friends to edit it, but editing a 16 page draft seemed daunting to them (even though I told them it was double spaced. Didn’t make much difference). Only one of my friends actually edited it in whole, and her response was “It’s cute.”

The story is a (hopefully) new take on The Little Mermaid, which I called…The Little Merman. Obviously I was very original, as evidenced by the title. Oh, and another thing: I went by the Disney version, I really don’t like the non-Disney version, since there wasn’t a very good Happily Ever After in it.

Anyway, here is the first chapter of it, and I hope you enjoy . Feel free to critique it, I really need it. I can’t wait to hear what you guys say!

The Little Merman

Chapter 1

What year is it now? Okay, go back a century. Then another. Then another. And maybe another. Alright, that should do. Now the story starts.

A long time ago, in a land not so far away, there lived a young girl. Her name was Lily. Lily had everything: joyful friendships, a loving family, lots of money… what else could a normal girl want? A lot, actually. It also didn’t help that Lily was not a normal girl. She wanted more freedom. She wanted to explore. Even at the tender age of 10, she wanted to see the world. Unfortunately, even as they tried their hardest, her parents couldn’t see why she wanted to go. According to them, she was perfectly fine here. So they set some limits, and tried in vain to squash her dream. It wouldn’t be fit for an inexperienced princess to go travelling about the large, frightening world outside the kingdom, now, would it? Still, Lily would keep questioning her parents on why she wasn’t allowed to go. This was how it usually went.

“Mum, isn’t it so pretty?” Lily sighed dreamily, while staring out a window of the castle.

“What’s so pretty, dear?” asked her mother, barely glancing at her while she embroidered and sat daintily in the sunny part of the stone room.

“Outside, mum. It looks so charming; with all the lovely cottages, the green, grass and the cattle, and far away, do you see that? Mum, do you? Those are the mountains, where they say the snow falls really thickly. And the beach! I want to go there, mum.” She said, looking bright eyed and very excited.

Lily’s mum, the queen of Anthesia, looked warily at her daughter. They’d been through this conversation a hundred times before. “Dear, you know you can’t. Papa and I know what’s best for you. And what’s best for you is to keep you safe. We can do that best if you’re in the castle; however, I can see that you’re feeling rather restless today.” Lily raised her eyebrows, not believing that the queen only saw that now. “So,” the queen continued, “I will allow you to stroll in the gardens, but only if you have two guards with you at all times, understood? You may go now.” She dismissed Lily with a wave of her hand.

Outside the room there were already two guards waiting for her. She sighed, and resigned herself to skipping all the way down the corridor. The guards marched alongside her, and easily kept up with their long strides.

Soon Lily was only walked, and was very aware of the guards’ presence. She glanced at the sea beside her; she didn’t realize that she walked that far.  The sun glinted off the smooth water, temporarily blinding her. Gulls floated lazily above, and the wind off the water was cool. She stood there silently admiring everything, and wished that she could just dive under the water. Little did she know what would be waiting for her underneath if she did…

What’s down there, you ask? A paradise. Not just any paradise. This was a kingdom called Aquaria, ruled by the Sea King Neptune. Soon, one of his six sons would inherit his throne. It would most likely be Seth, since he was the oldest. Young Prince James, however, only had a chance if all of his other brothers had gone, since he was the youngest.

Now, even back then, this saying had worth: “The grass is always greener on the other side.” James, like Lily, could not stop fantasizing about what was on the other side. In Aquaria, the young merfolk couldn’t visit the surface world until they reached the age of 16. James and his siblings were each born a year after the other, so every year one more of them were able to go up to Terra .  James listened to all of the thrilling adventures with happy eyes and a wistful heart; he wanted to go there more than anything, but it seemed like it would take forever.

 

Thanks so much for reading it! I’m kinda nervous, putting it out here, because I’m the type of writer who writes something, thinks it’s good, looks at it 2 weeks later and absolutely cringes at every sentence. Well, not so much with this, but you get the idea. Crossed fingers.

P.S I realized this a couple days after I wanted to post it. My main characters’ names are James and Lily. Turns out Harry Potter influenced me more deeply than I thought.

Well This Never Happened Before


Hi, guys! If you’re wondering about the title of this post, I’m going to clear it up now: it’s not a book. In a way it’s news. But it’s my thoughts, too.

Basically this is what happened: I read a Freshly Pressed blog called Musings from Neville’s Navel, written by nevillegirl (it’s a really good writing blog). She inspired me, along with others, to make this post (this is technically my fifth draft), and change things up a bit. By the way, I had no idea what this post was going to be about until I crossed out my third draft.

What’s going to happen is that along with me posting reviews, I’m going to also post stuff like this. You know, stuff that’s on my mind at the moment. I think it’s going to help me be a better writer than I am right now (I fell out of practice). Plus, it seems freer (that’s a word, right?) than writing a review, for some reason. *shrugs* Maybe because I’ve missed it so much.

Besides Musings From Neville’s Navel, here are a handful of other blogs that have inspired me: