Tag Archives: fear

Brothers in the Fatherland

copyright Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

copyright Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Brothers in the Fatherland

The guards never check the back, my brother Kurt had said.

I crouched in breathless darkness, rain Niagara Fallsing down the windows. Kurt was talking to the guard, getting me through security.

I gripped my pistol. Kurt was loyal but I knew that only a bullet in the tyrant’s head would set the nation free.

I heard a command and the van moved forward. We were in. Kurt thought this was intelligence bureau training. This would kill him.

I’m sorry, Kurt.

The van doors flew open. Rifles pointed at me. “I’m sorry,” Kurt said. “It kills me to do this.”

 

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Rear Windowed

Rear Windowed

It had started with a skiing accident. Two days and a leg cast later, Phoebe was set up in a chair by her window, ready for some quasi-legal voyeurism. Some people had Netflix; Phoebe had young Mr. Miller washing windows across the street.

Two hours later, Phoebe saw him look over. He’d noticed her. A fearful look came over his face. He was mouthing something at her. Suddenly she understood.

Behind you.

She turned and screamed at the figure looming over her.

“Admit it,” her husband said, when she’d recovered. “You deserved that.”

Across the street, Mr. Miller was laughing.


Life Lessons in a Death Trap

When Sensei said there would be a final test, I was hoping for something multiple choice. Maybe even true/false, if I was lucky. Instead they grabbed me in the middle of the night and stuck me here.

I am alone in a hallway lined with stark white doors. There are hundreds of them and above each, the glowing number 12. I have a small, cold feeling deep down that I will probably not survive this.

My heart is pounding, and sweat is dripping in my eyes. I’m looking for scuff marks, fingerprint smears, anything to will make one stand out.

I spot one with what looks like a slight discoloration above the handle. I open it.

A brick wall stands behind it, taunting me in a stony sort of way.

In unison, the numbers above the doors all change to 11.

Sensei is a great one for thinking outside the box, or hallway in this case. I know I’m missing something, but I’ve already tried to pry up the floor tiles and even tried climbing up through the ceiling.

He’s probably watching me somewhere by camera, laughing at my confusion as he lounges around in his dirty robe and drinks his wretched chamomile tea, which is half honey and milk. I’ll bet Sensei is not even his real name.

I open another door at random.

10.

Crap.

9.

8.

7.

Crap crap crap.

This is probably some sort of life lesson, something about a myriad of choices not equaling opportunity or some such garbage. I try to reach the end of the hallway but I’m pretty sure it curves around slowly to form a loop.

6.

5.

4.

Crap crap crap crap crap.

Uh, how about this one?

3.

This one?

2.

At this point, I don’t even care. Sensei can have his little test. I’m not playing anymore. I open another door.

1.

Nope, I don’t care a bit. Here’s goes.

0.

I was wrong. I care a lot.

A siren begins to blare. Without thinking, I slam myself against the brick wall behind the final door. It collapses in a parody of a real wall. There’s no mortar between the bricks.

“You took long enough,” I hear a voice say. It’s Sensei bending over me.

“Are these even real bricks?” I ask.

“I got them at Toys ‘R’ Us,” he says. “What did you learn?”

“Don’t let perceived obstacles stop you,” I say, trying to keep the question mark out of my voice.

He reaches down and whacks me across the back of the head. “Yes, and don’t be ruled by desperation.” He walks away.

“So did I pass?” I ask.

He stops and takes a long drink of chamomile tea. “Maybe,” he says. “Try it again tomorrow and we’ll see.”

Great, I thought. Just enough time for him to put mortar between all the bricks.


Shades in the Dark

As you may know, I am an English teacher. This last month, our university was host to a group of students and professional from Mexico, as part of the Proyecta 100,000 program. They are gone back home now, I am very sad to say, but while they were here, I was their writing teacher. Among the projects we did were short stories. I asked if I could post them on my blog and they agreed. So here is the first one, Shades in the Dark, written by Frank Soria and Jorge Montesinos.

Shades in the Dark

by Frank Soria and Jorge Montesinos

It was an October night full of stars, and the moon shone in the high clear sky. There was nobody but the wind blowing outside. Deserted streets seemed to be aware that something unexpected was coming up. Everything was quiet, warm, and cozy. Emily and Kevin had just gotten to their grandpa’s home. He was an old fashioned man, rough of character, but lovely deep in his heart.

The first days passed harmoniously, soft, and warm. One night after having dinner, Kevin heard a slight creaking noise coming from the corridor. Without notice he stood up and went through it to realize no one was there. He felt how the temperature in the room dropped drastically. His legs trembled as he walked away. He was almost voiceless, nobody seemed to be there, but the whisper of a strange entity surrounded his little body, taking him to his deepest scary feelings. The lamp in the corridor flickered, announcing the inevitable encounter with the paranormal event. His heart beat as fast as a horse in the wild field. Suddenly, he felt a hand grabbing his shoulder. His breath stopped for a moment. He turned around to realize that it was his grandpa looking at him. He told his grandpa about the noise, but he said nothing about it.

The following day his sister teased him about the ghost story, laughing at him. Kevin cried for her madness. Night came back. A storm was announced in the papers. The lights went off. It was windy and cold outside. Grandpa took some candles from an old drawer and met the boys for dinner. Kevin was afraid and asked grandpa to take him to bed. Emily stayed for a while in the kitchen. Suddenly, she heard somebody coming to her. She turned around. No one was there, but an empty room in the shadows. She never had felt so lonely and frightened. A gust of wind opened the window blowing the candle out, pulling everything in its path towards Kevin’s room. She ran to rescue her little brother, but she couldn’t open the door. She yelled at him desperately. There was no answer. Lightning lit her frightened face when her grandpa hugged her and calmed her down. They heard a horrible roar coming from the inside of the room, but the door remained sealed. After a few minutes they could open it and Kevin was not there. The room smelled like a rare fragrance. They had a terrible feeling, but they could do nothing.

The little boy had disappeared. Not a single roar, strange sound or shadow was seen from that day on. No one mentioned a word about that event. Emily grew up there with her grandfather and sometimes she woke up thinking that was a weird nightmare and looked for Kevin but he had gone.


I think something is stalking me

It’s out there somewhere, I know it. It knows where I am and I feel it getting nearer, little by little. I haven’t told anyone before this—I’m too afraid of people thinking I’m crazy. Afraid it’ll hurt my career if anyone finds out at the office. And so I go along day by day, trying to ignore the fear, like the man who avoids the doctor because he is terrified of confirmation more than the cancer itself. The truth is, I know something is after me.

If I only knew what it was.

I say “it” and not “he” since I can’t tell if it’s even human. Sometimes it looks like it, but then it moves wrong, or just disappears. I can see it across from my house sometimes, if it moves into the streetlight. I saw it once out my office window, just a flash of something dark moving between two cars. I can’t prove it but I know it wasn’t a person or an animal.

I finally got a picture of it. It was standing there in the streetlight across from the house, almost taunting me with its presence. I turned off the lights and took a picture. It turned out horribly, of course. I shouldn’t have taken it through the screen, for one thing.

I’ll have to use video next time. I’ll let you know if I get anything more.

I thought it looked human, but now I'm not sure.

I thought it looked human, but now I’m not sure.


Mob Mentality – Friday Fictioneers

As a writer, I’m intrigued with situations where there is no easy answer. A story is so much more complex when you can sympathize with all parties and put yourselves in their shoes. As you read this story, ask  yourself what you would have done. I’m curious to know.

copyright Sandra Crook

copyright Sandra Crook

Mob Mentality

The mob of infected surrounded the car, their pounding fists turning it into a drum.

“How can you?” they screamed. “Where’s your heart? We’ll die without that medicine.”

Craig keyed the loudspeaker. “There are only ten doses left. We need them to replicate more or millions could die. I’ll return in two days.”

“You expect us to believe that?”

“Sir, I can’t get through,” the driver said. “They will eventually overturn the car.”

“Run them down,” Craig said finally. As the car bumped forward and the screams increased, he punched the dashboard. “Idiots! Can’t they see I’m trying to help?”

 


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