Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Spooky Season, Writing

Old Scratch – Day Five

Tonight, when I go to sleep, I am going to take the lantern from him. I don’t know how, but I think if I do, something will change. I got so close last night.

Last night’s dream was the same, for the most part. I’m not even sure they are dreams anymore, it’s like he takes me away somewhere, when I’m too weak to stop him. He likes to torment me, to torture me.

I walked towards the lantern, as he laughed, taunting me with the incessant whispering.

“Little fawn…” His voice was husky, with an almost playful tone, like that creepy uncle you plead with your parents not to invite to your birthday party. Every time he spoke, I saw his wide smile, the towering top hat, his eyes, black like coal, that seemed to dart from place to place within seconds. “Come home, my little fawn…”

I kept staring ahead, fixing my eyes on the lantern, walking and walking until I saw it within my grasp. As always, I extended my hands towards it, the pain of his hands upon mine as I reached for it. The manic light was flashing.

Yellow. Red. Yellow. Red. Yellow. Red.

His laughter rang out, loud like a bell, and I should have been awake, but again, he kept me with him, so I held on, pushing myself through his searing grasp, until my fingertips rested on the lantern.

His face was across from mine, and as I wrapped my hands around the lantern, his immediately fell. Gone was the smile. Silent was the laughter. He looked as helpless as he had made me feel.

He reached forward, grabbing at the lantern, pushing me, pulling it, and we struggled.

“Be a good girl…” He mumbled breathlessly, pulling my fingers until I worried that they’d break. I held on as long as I could until my body gave out, and once again, I was falling.

The lantern lit up his face again, his smile had returned, and he cried out one last thing before I awoke.

“I’ll see you again, little fawn!”

Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Spooky Season, Writing

Old Scratch – Day Four

I finally succumbed to sleep last night. I don’t really remember falling asleep, but the second I saw the familiar light up ahead, I knew it had happened.

There was no laughter last night, just his breath, ragged and almost excited. Every now and again, those words.

“Little fawn…” I just looked straight ahead. I could hear his voice around me. I could see beckoning fingertips, the glow of the lantern, and I walked, reluctantly but resigned, like a moth to the flame. Like a lamb to the slaughter.

“Come home, little fawn.”

There I was, as I always ended up, inches from the lantern, reaching out with shaking fingertips, feeling the heat of his slender hands as they encased my own. Breathing through the burning, begging for the scream that was denied to me, but this time was different.

I should have woken up, but I was still trapped. The laughter began, brassy and bold, his grip on my hands became intolerable, and he pulled me close to him.

The smoke rose from our hands and his laughter was everywhere. I tried to pull back, but he was relentless, cackling as he held onto my struggling body. Cigarette smoke seemed to fill the air, and the light was flashing with some kind of madness that made me sure that I’d never be free.

That was when I woke up, but for a second, I saw him.

His hands, thin but with sharp nails, almost claws, a tattered suit, a wide smile and a top hat that seemed to go on forever. As I sped back to reality, it felt like I was falling down into the ground, where I’d never ever looked, so I fixed my eyes on him, the endless hat, the way the lantern lit up his face, and his charmless little wave as his laughter rang out.

Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Spooky Season, Writing

Old Scratch – Day Three

I didn’t sleep last night. I couldn’t face it. Hourly coffees, keeping all the lights on. I’m exhausted, but it’s worth it not to see him.

It didn’t make a difference.

He was here.

It was around 3AM. I was trying to keep myself, in the kitchen, making another coffee. The slow rumble of the boiling water in the kettle was soothing, and I leant against the counter, hoping the sunlight would arrive soon.

“Little fawn…” My skin was crawling. The voice was so close, right in my ear. I could feel his breath against my neck.

I turned to face him, but there was nobody there, just the kitchen, as it should be. Just me, all alone.

Am I losing my mind? Maybe. I don’t know at this point. I can’t be sure of what’s real and what’s not. I can’t understand what I’m seeing. Do you know what I mean? (Is anyone even reading?) I don’t know why he’s here. I don’t know what he wants from me. I don’t know who he is.

I’m back in my room, sunrise is still hours away. I’ve got more coffee. The silence is infuriating but comforting at the same time, because when the silence comes, I am safe, for a moment.

I need sleep, but I fear it. I don’t know if it even matters. He’s everywhere now.

I’ve just looked down and seen his nails, slowly sliding down my legs.

Here come the scratches.