drama, horror, thriller

Seven Days (part 2)

PART 1

PART 2:

Elizabeth was sure that if there were such things as Murmer Men, her, Connor and Kenny were likely standing directly on their entry to our world. Second thoughts to this adventure had passed her half a mile ago. She was on her thirtieth thought. And then her thirty-first. They were thoughts on auto replay like those 24-hour YouTube videos that play the same skit over and over. We should go back. We’re going to die. We should go back. We’re going to die. We should go…  Her thoughts were interrupted with a long, low groan. All three of them stopped setting up the tent and looked through the falling rain at the miles of forest that surrounded them.

“Did you hear that?” asked Kenny.

“Just a frog,” said Connor. They both pointed their flash lights at Elizabeth who didn’t say a word.

Her eyes just looked at them, large, terrified. Then she pushed the words out, “Frog. Stop being a girl, Kenny.”

Connor was the last to bend down and squeeze into the tent. His boots were covered in the muddy rain water as soon as he stepped in. Elizabeth and Kenny watched his reaction to the amount of water that was in the tent until they all blew out laughter like balloons, releasing the tension of terror that had accumulated for the last few hours. The fact that they were even in that tent was just ridiculous. They looked up to see water seeping through the top, and noticed the smell of mud and muck had intensified in their tiny area while Elizabeth and Kenny sat in what could, at that moment, be used as a kiddie pool.

“It was a tent… for my bedroom,” she admitted. “I was five.”

Connor sat halfway on Kenny before sliding down beside him in the water. “My ass is going to be all wrinkled by the morning.”

“Why do I feel like we’re going to drown in this thing?” asked Kenny.

Elizabeth slapped the water around her legs, trying to angle it at Kenny. Kenny splashed back. Connor joined in, accidentally dropping his flashlight into the water. They heard a quick zzzt and his light was out.

“Connor!” they both yelled. A thump noise emanated between his shoulder and Elizabeth’s fist.

“Shit!” was his only reply.

“It’s eleven-fifteen,” said Kenny. “forty-five more minutes.” They took turns looking at each other.

“I was six,” she started. Kenny and Connor waited for her to continue. “I was six when I overheard my mom and dad talking about them. About the Murmer Men. She was ten when she saw one.”

“Who, your mom?” asked Kenny.

“Yeah,” she wiped water from her forehead and hit the tent roof as though that would stop the leaks.

“A Murmer Man?” asked Connor.

“Yeah.”

“Bull,” said Connor.

“I never got to meet my Grandmother. She died when my mom was ten. That’s when she saw it.”

There was silence for a moment.

“No, you’re trying to get us going,” said Kenny.

“Have either of you ever met my Grandma??”

They both looked at each other, then at Elizabeth. There was another groan. It was a little closer this time. Elizabeth tried desperately to remember what a damn frog sounded like.

“I saw two frogs doing it before,” said Connor.

Kenny forced a nervous laugh. “Gross,” he said.

“You guys don’t have to believe me,” she said. “I guess we’ll all know tonight.” She raised her eyebrows.

“Eleven-thirty,” said Kenny.

“Thirty more minutes,” said Connor. “That’s when they will come out and feed. Who wants some jerky?”

“Really?” said Elizabeth. “You want to eat now when they are going to be here in thirty minutes?”

“Might as well fatten up for them!”

“Just so you know, I’m going to push you out first if these things are real!” her eyes stayed on Connor.

“I’m actually hungry,” said Kenny as he maneuvered into his bag and passed chunks of dehydrated beef to each of them.

They listened to the rain pouring over the tent while chewing in silence. It was eleven-forty-five when they heard the next groan which had a touch of a growl and sounded more like a “mmmmmmrrrrr”. In timing, all three looked below them before looking at each other.

“Was that?” Kenny’s eyes were large.

Connor nodded.

Elizabeth could feel her heart beat in her chest. “Yeah. It sounded like it was…” she jumped up, backing into the top of the tent. “What was that? Did you feel that? Something just moved underneath me!” Tears started to fill her eyes. “What was that?” She could now hear her heart thumping in her ears.

“Nothing, I didn’t feel anything”, said Kenny. “But I heard something…under us.”

“Bull, you didn’t feel anything. You’re just messing with us again, Liz.”

“No! No, I’m not! Something is down there. We should go.”

“Out there?” Kenny said.

“Yes, we can’t stay here,” she said as she unzipped the tent, pointed the flashlight out before poking her head out and then looked around. She saw something to her left in the muddy water. There was a trail of water in the shape of a V, kind of like a beaver makes when pushing a log through a stream. But it was raining, so all the animals should have been tucked away. And the trail was too wide for an animal that could hide beneath two inches of water. A new trail formed in front of her, going in the same direction. There were two of them. And again, she heard the “mmmmmmrrrrr”. She ducked back into the tent and zipped it.

“Calm down, Liz,” said Kenny. “You’re going to pass out. Breath slower.”

“There’s something out there. For real. I’m calling my mom.”

“No!” said Connor, “You’re going to get us in trouble!”

She pulled her phone from under her poncho and started to dial, but Connor reached up and knocked it out of her hands.

She tried to catch it before it fell in the water. “No!” she yelled while her and Kenny reached into the water for it. By the time they pulled it out, it was dead. She glared at Connor.

His eyes were huge while his hands waived in front of his face. “Liz, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to break your phone. I just can’t get in trouble again. I’m sorry!” His head was knocked down to the left with her right fist.

“We’re going to die, Connor!” She punched is face back with her left fist. “It’s all your fault! We’re going to die!” She felt the tent move as Kenny stood up and grabbed her from behind.

“Liz, stop!” he said. “Stop it!”

Connor grabbed his face. “I’m sorry, Liz.”

Kenny let go as soon as she calmed down a bit.

She plopped down in the cold water. She hated that water. She hated being there. She hated Connor for making them go. “What time is it?”

“Eleven-fifty-eight,” Kenny said, head in his hand. “Maybe you didn’t really see anything.”

“I did!” she said. “Maybe Connor should go out there. He’s the one that wanted to see them so bad. Maybe they’ll leave us alone after feasting on him.” She moved her leg in an effort to kick Connor, but the confined tent saved him from another one of her blows.

“You want me to go out there? I’ll go out there. You’re right. I do want to see them.” He got to his feet and unzipped the tent. “Kenny, give me your flashlight.” He took the flashlight and directed it out of the tent. “I don’t see anything.”

“Good, then get out.”

“Liz, maybe he should stay in here.”

“Maybe he shouldn’t,” she said.

Connor climbed out of the tent and stood outside with the tent door open, hand gripped to the tent zipper, just in case. “I’ll let you guys know if I see anything.”

“Give me your phone,” Elizabeth said to Kenny.

“My mom took it, remember?”

“Ugh!” She punched the water.

Outside the tent they heard “mmmmmmrrrrr” and then Connor saying “What the…” Then there were two or three of the same noise, right outside the tent. Elizabeth and Kenny backed a few inches into the wall of the tent.

“Guys?” Connor squeeked as his hand gripped tighter onto the door’s zipper. Then he started to scream as his body was yanked to a lying position and then pulled forward with instant speed. The tent followed behind him, his hand still clenching it tight, with Elizabeth and Kenny trapped inside. They screamed as they tried to keep their heads above the water while falling over each other, bouncing over bumps and hitting – what they assumed to be – trees. Then it all stopped. All but Connor’s screams which continued outside the tent until they faded further and further away.

End Part 2

PART 3

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drama, horror, thriller

Let Me Out!! flash fiction-thriller

KELLY

“Let me out!” I scream. “Let me out! Somebody! Please!” My screams fade out. I can only yell so much, because I can only breathe so much. The air is thick…no, thin. Is it thin? God, I don’t know. “Please!” I yell. Tears run down my face. I try to wipe them away, but I can’t. They just trickle down my cheek, past my ear to the wetness below my head that I hope is an accumulation of my tears, not an accumulation of my blood. My hands are at my sides, and this box I am in barely lets me raise my chest in and out let alone move my arms any higher than the thickness of my body. I wear it like a snug snow suit. No room to move. No room to breathe. And the air…the lack of air. “Please, please, please, please,” I repeat in a low voice to no one.

Wherever I am, I am in motion. I can’t tell which direction, but I feel a very slight sway like I may be on a boat. If I am on a boat, it must be in the lower cabin, because it’s not just dark in here, it’s black.

I touch the wood that surrounds me, hoping for a clue, praying for an opening that will set me free.

I was…I was putting groceries into the trunk of my car. It was raining, actually it was a downpour, but I had to get home to Ryan.

The air is thin, not thick.

Everyone was inside the store, waiting for the rain to stop, but I didn’t wait. The babysitter was going to leave, so I had to get home to Ryan.

Not thin…the air, it’s barely there.

Ryan,” I whisper. The box is too tight for me to hit upward, but I can move my arms to their sides. A little. I hit the walls on each side of me as hard as I can. “Let me out!” Hitting the walls is doing nothing. There’s not enough room to gain momentum.

I didn’t realize it until now, but I am famished. I feel like I haven’t eaten for days. Maybe I haven’t. I was… I was at the grocery store. It was Tuesday night. I shop on Tuesdays. I woke up here maybe an hour ago. Or was it two? Maybe just ten minutes.

Why is there so little air? Am I buried? I know I’m not buried, I swear I am moving. I breathe in through my nose, praying I don’t smell dirt. I smell urine and feces instead. I can’t tell if it’s mine or if someone else had been in this box before me. I go from being hungry to turning my head just in time to vomit. It’s warm as it slithers down my neck. The smell and feel of it make me hurl again. It’s a vicious cycle until my mind comes to terms that I am going to lay in my feces and vomit and I cannot allow myself to give into the repulsiveness of it.

I’m going to die. People don’t put people into boxes unless they are going to kill them. Or send them off to be sex slaves. Or… “No.” I hit the walls again. “No. no.no. no NO!!” The black market. They are going to slice me apart and sell me piece by piece. That’s why they’re shipping me somewhere. They are selling me like an animal.

As scared as I am, I can’t… I just can’t. I need to stay in control. Ryan will be alone. He’ll end up in the foster system. I need out. I have to get to my boy. “Please! Please!” I sob, “Somebody, please! Help me! Let me out!” I scream, not even words anymore, just terrified screams that originate from every inch of my body.

Then, between my cries, I hear a long, low horn. Am I on a…barge? I quiet to listen. My body weight shifts to the left. I am. I am on a barge. They are shipping me for body parts. Oh my God. God! I scrape at the wood walls trying to get out until I can’t feel my fingertips anymore. I have to get out!

LISA

The sun’s reflections bounce off each ripple in the river, making it hard for Lisa to pull her gaze from it. Not that she wants to. She reaches into her insulated lunch box and pulls out a sandwich.

Everyone else in the office went to some restaurant in the city, but Lisa takes this time to be alone and relax. Boats seem to calm her. And every day at this time, she is guaranteed to see at least one boat, the 12:00 barge that rounds the river’s corner and passes her as if to give a friendly hello. Every day she watches it while her mind wanders and the breeze twists in her hair.

The horn of the barge blows, warning other boaters that it is turning into their area. She pulls her focus from the river and places it onto the barge. She needs this boat more than ever today. Her mind is constantly on her best friend Kelly who went missing Tuesday after work. The local authorities found her car at the grocery store a few blocks from her home. Her purse was on the ground, her keys a few inches from it. They ruled out robbery and linked it to the series of missing women and men that had been taking place in their city for months. One person goes missing every day. This past Tuesday, it was Kelly. They have yet to recover any of the missing people, dead or alive.

Lisa watches it pass and forces herself to take in the strength of the structure, the beauty of the deep red metals, and the hypnotic waves pushing up and down the sides of the barge. And for just those few moments, her mind is off Kelly, and Lisa is at peace.

KELLY

“Let me out!!!!”
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Written by Sheryl Marasi
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Read more stories like this one here.
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drama

The Memory – flash fiction-drama

Dad had always played by the rules. “Don’t cheat.” “Don’t steal.” “Say please.” “Don’t fight.” “Always ask before using someone else’s things.” And so on. So his suggestion early that morning took me by surprise.

“Do you want to go for a ride in it?” He smiled as he looked down at the seven-year-old-me. The stranded boat sat silently on the sandy beach.

My heart leaped—a couple times, actually. I stared up at him with my only answer being the giant smile on my face that matched how large my eyes were at the moment.

“Help me pull it to the water, big guy!”

It was dirty inside. We could tell it had been sitting on the beach for a while. A daddy long leg scurried across my hand before we made it to the water, but I didn’t mind. It was the thick black kind of spider that I couldn’t stand. The water pushed up to the shore repeatedly.  There were mainly little rushes of water, but sometimes a bigger rush of water rolled up with a lasting swish sound as it completed its summersault. Eventually my giant smile gave way to excited chit-chat and probably one too many questions. Looking back I either drove my dad nuts that morning or made him fall deeper in love with me.

There was only one oar in the boat, but that was enough for Dad. “Climb in Jimmy, and stay seated, okay?”

“What happens if I stand up, Daddy?”–One of my hundred questions during the 30 minute boat ride. Dad pushed us deeper into the water and then jumped in himself. “Will we tip if I stand? How come you could stand when you got in?” And the questions went on until there was silence as we both enjoyed the rocking of the boat, the sounds of birds, the freshness of the air along with its gentle morning chill, the faintest smell of fish in the water below us, and everything else the free boat ride had to offer us. It was beautiful—the weather and the time we spent together.

Today if I could, I would find the man who had left the boat on the beach and thank him. Because of him, my dad put aside his rules for the only time in my life so that he and I could have a memory that lasted forever. That was my favorite memory of us and it will be the memory I share later today at his service before we lay him to rest for eternity.

I love you, Dad. I will miss you forever.
~~~
Written by Sheryl Marasi
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Read more stories like these here.
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Feel free to leave a comment!  As always, thank you so much for reading and sharing the stories you enjoy!
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