Weekly Short Stories Contest and Company! discussion

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Weekly Short Story Contests > Week 332 (October 19-25) Stories Topic: Candle In a Pumpkin

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message 1: by C. J., Atm Seeker in the "Lin Kuei" (new)

C. J. Scurria (goodreadscomcj_scurria) | 4214 comments You have until the 25th of October to post a story and from the 26th to the 30th of October, we’ll vote for which one we thought was best!

Please post directly into the topic and not a link. Please don’t use a story previously used in this group. Only one submission per person is allowed.

Your story should be between 300 and 3,500 words long.

REMEMBER! A short story is not merely a scene. It must have a beginning, a middle, and an end.

This week’s topic is: Candle In a Pumpkin

Thanks goes to Daniel J. for suggesting the topic!

The rules are pretty loose. You could write a story about anything that has to do with the subject/photo but it must relate to the topic somehow.

Have fun!


message 2: by Garrison (new)

Garrison Kelly (cybador) | 9056 comments If you saw my post in the last thread about bedroom remodeling, you'll understand why my participation in this week's contest might be tentative. If the home improvement project gets finished early and I can move my computer back to my room, the story I plan on writing will be called "Having a Cold One" and will push the boundaries of good taste. It goes like this:

CHARACTERS:

Jay David, Necrophiliac Highwayman
Casey Carter, Creepy Mortician

PROMPT CONFORMITY: Jay uses a lantern that looks like a candle-lit pumpkin to find his way to Casey’s hearse.

SYNOPSIS: Casey drives down a deserted highway at night to deliver a dead body to a funeral home. He gets a flat tire and is held at gunpoint by Jay, who wants the dead body for himself so that he can get his mojo on. Little does Jay know that Casey can be even creepier than him. The hostage and gunman both try to frighten each other into doing what they want until one of them relents and adds to the funeral home’s collection of corpses. Who will it be: the horseshoe-haired necrophiliac or the puffy haired mad scientist?


message 3: by Garrison (new)

Garrison Kelly (cybador) | 9056 comments AUTHOR: Garrison Kelly
TITLE: Having a Cold One
GENRE: Crime Horror
WORD COUNT: 1,631
RATING: Somewhere between PG-13 and R for gory violence, coarse language, and necrophilia references.



Whoever built a funeral home at the end of this abandoned highway was creepy, low, and rotten…and an imaginative guy. Casey Carter had a phantasmal grin on his face as he drove through here in his hearse with a dead body in the back. Some of his teeth resembled wolf fangs, others were golden or diamond-encrusted. His gray puffy horseshoe hair looked like a tumbleweed ready to blow down the highway as Casey drove with the windows rolled down. The smell of death was in the air that night, and that was just the mortician’s bloody lab coat and latex gloves. Heart-racing organ music played on his stereo and that gave Casey an even bigger grin, reminiscent of a wild animal ready to devour an injured rabbit.

It seemed as though it would take some serious plastic surgery to remove Casey’s grin, but all it took was a hard bump over a pothole and the deflation of his front passenger’s tire. “Son of a bitch!” he yelled demonically as he pulled over to the side of the empty highway. Once the hearse was stopped, he pounded on the steering wheel like he was in a championship boxing match. With hands as meaty and calloused as his, it seemed like an apt description. The undertaker let out a monstrous growl before throwing open the door and stomping towards the back to get the spare tire.

Corpulent Casey Carter fumbled with his keys so much that it looked like he was playing pocket pool. Maybe he was. He unlocked the back door and instead of reaching for the jack and the spare tire, his hideous smile returned as he gazed lovingly at the casket he was supposed to deliver. “Oh dear Beatrice, you are so radiant and beautiful even in death. You’re just like a ray of golden sunshine!” he whispered.

Speaking of radiant lights, a bright one shone from behind Casey while a gruff voice yelled, “You there! Put your hands up! Turn around slowly! That cutie girl is mine!” The undertaker did as he was told, but not without losing his jack-o-lantern smile, which complimented his bushy black and white eyebrows perfectly. His eyes widened with delight as he recognized the man who was holding him up.

With little more than a candle-lit pumpkin-themed lantern to reveal his features, the gray prison jumpsuit, slashed up face, and greasy brown hair gave away the profile of escaped convict Jay David, who licked his lips as if he just ate a bucket of fried chicken, all while gazing lovingly at the casket. With a prison guard’s pistol trained on Casey, Jay said, “Step aside, sweetie pie. That bitch is mine for the taking. I’m having a cold one tonight, motherfucker!”

Casey laughed like a demonic hyena and said, “Enjoy my sloppy seconds, Mr. David!” The prisoner’s demented slasher face turned into one of disgust. “Well, what are you waiting for? You clearly came here look for some fun. How many years have you been locked up? It must be so lonely in solitary confinement. Yes, you’re a popular guy on the evening news, but not so popular with the ladies. Well, the live ones, anyways.”

Jay laughed right back at him and said, “You’re a sick son of a bitch, I’ll give you that. If you weren’t taunting me right now, I’d probably have a beer with you. I’d probably crack the bottle of your head and throw you under the bus, but I’d still have a nice cold beer with you.”

“Now why would you do that to your best friend, Mr. David? Prisoners don’t like being around snitches like you. If you wanted to ‘have a cold one’ so badly, why don’t you just go back to jail?” chuckled Casey.

Jay squeezed the trigger and blew off a chunk of Casey’s hair, causing the mortician to drop to his knees and let out a few sarcastically frightened coos while holding his cheeks. Those coos turned to laughter and “Woo-hoo’s” as he slowly returned to his feet. He looked his adversary in his confused eyes and said, “Let me guess: you don’t miss twice?”

The convict rushed up to Casey and pressed the gun up to the old man’s scraggly chin. He said with clenched teeth and an itchy trigger finger, “Don’t you fuck with me, you goddamn nut job! You want to live to see another day? Huh?! Step aside, shut your mouth, and let me have the bitch in the box!”

Even at the threat of getting his head blown off, Casey chuckled, slowly stepped back, and said, “Okay, sweetheart, you win. The bitch in the box is all yours. But you have to promise you’ll let me watch. I love to watch!” The oratory ended with Casey blowing a wet kiss at his captor.

Jay squeezed off another shot and this time hit Casey in the arm, causing the old fart to double over and emit a blood-curdling scream as he kept his coat sleeve over his wound to stop the bleeding. The scream continued in the form of babyish crying, even going so far as to suck his thumb and call for his mommy.

“Yeah, and I’m the one with mental problems. Give me a break,” said Jay while shaking his head. He cast a hypnotic gaze at the coffin and crawled inside the hearse like he was possessed. “Alright, baby girl,” he said in a raspy whisper. “It’s just you and me versus the world. I’ve been waiting for this moment a long, long time. Jerking off just isn’t the same. Then again, neither is getting corn-holed in the showers. But you know that already. Of course you do, because you put me in that hellhole. Well, now that you’re dead, Miss Beatrice, you and I will be together until the end of the world. I love you, sweet princess. I love you so much!”

Jay set down his pistol and lantern and ripped the coffin lid off with hulking strength. Instead of a “bitch in a box”, he got a face full of green poisonous gas, which has him hacking up blood right away. The fumes got so bad that he tumbled out of the hearse and landed on his back. He violently coughed some more and even rested in a puddle of his own vomit, which tasted like rotten prison chow. Once he was done barfing and coughing, he was so lightheaded that he was ready to pass out in his own filth.

The convicted necrophiliac had his hands firmly held behind his back while cuffs were tightly bound to his wrists. “On your feet, you sick prick!” shouted a much less creepy version of Casey Carter. With one Herculean jerk, Jay David was pulled to his feet, but still had a head full of clouds.

“Bet you didn’t see this coming, did you?” whispered Casey, whose arm wound turned out to be a ketchup stain. “Bulletproof lab coats: what else will they come up with? Of course, you can’t get that kind of equipment unless you’re part of a special group, like I’d say, the Paulson City Police Department.”

“You’re…you’re a cop?!” said Jay as he breathed heavily with a sore throat and nose.

“For a guy who spent most of his life tricking the police, you sure are slow to catch on. You’re damn right I’m a cop. This whole thing was a setup. Like a moth to a flame, motherfucker. Like a moth to a flame!” Casey punctuated that last line with his in-character laugh before chucking Jay in the back of the now-clear hearse and locking the doors.

Accompanying Jay’s winded breathing were a girlish sob and kicking legs. “It’s not fair! It’s not fucking fair!” he shouted as Casey got in the driver’s seat and pulled away. “Why can’t women say yes to me? Just three little letters! Y-E-S! It’s not that hard! I didn’t want to kill them, but they gave me no choice!”

Detective Carter slammed on the brakes and caused Jay to lurch forward headfirst into the “casket”, causing even more dizziness and heavy breathing than before, not to mention a small drip of blood. The cop said, “You know what? You’re probably just going to keep escaping from prison anyways. You’ve done it half a dozen times already. I don’t know why the prison guards keep doing the same thing over and over again. So you know what? I’m going to do them and the whole world a favor and deal with you myself. You and I are going for a ride. Not just any ride, but a nickel ride! Buckle up, sweet cheeks! It’s going to be bumpy!”

Jay shouted an extended, “No!” before Casey slammed on the accelerator and drove over the bumpy road, all with a flat tire, making this ride even more bouncy and miserable. Jay was hurled into the casket edges and hearse walls with such force that his bones shattered and deep gashes were forming on his body. Sparks from the flat tire grinding against the pavement shot inside the hearse and burned Jay like a branding iron on his fresh wounds.

By the time Casey reached his new destination, Jay Nathaniel David, a thirty-one-year-old rapist and murderer, looked less like an intimidating criminal and more like a pile of human wreckage. Blood and bone powder flooded the back of the hearse. Organs splashed against the walls. Teeth rolled around like dice in the most violent game of craps.

How did Detective Carter react to this? With a million dollar smile and a finger to his lips as he shushed the dead body and softly said, “Don’t tell a soul. I wouldn’t want anything to happen to my bonus pay!”


message 4: by C. J., Atm Seeker in the "Lin Kuei" (new)

C. J. Scurria (goodreadscomcj_scurria) | 4214 comments Thanks Garrison. I see you got to put your story down after all. No surprise since you have become one of our prolific writers! :)


message 5: by Garrison (new)

Garrison Kelly (cybador) | 9056 comments I'm a WSS lifer! :)


message 6: by Edward (new)

Edward Davies | 1727 comments Hopefully I'll get a story finished tomorrow. I've been a bit unwell, today is a public holiday, and I get very little written at home. Will have to finish what I've started tomorrow and hope it works out okay.


message 7: by Garrison (new)

Garrison Kelly (cybador) | 9056 comments Happy writing, Edward! I'm going to need some competition this week! :)


message 8: by C. J., Atm Seeker in the "Lin Kuei" (new)

C. J. Scurria (goodreadscomcj_scurria) | 4214 comments Edward wrote: "Hopefully I'll get a story finished tomorrow. I've been a bit unwell, today is a public holiday, and I get very little written at home. Will have to finish what I've started tomorrow and hope it wo..."

Yes as Garrison just said happy writing! Also hope you feel better soon, whether you get to finish your story or not.


message 9: by Edward (new)

Edward Davies | 1727 comments So I got it finished - it's not quite what I was going for, but it will do. Hope you guys like it.

Title : Just A Pumpkin
Author : Edward Davies
Word Count : 1403
Rating : PG13

“Why are pumpkins so scary?”

“They’re not scary,” Darryl Black informed his best friend Damian Wary as the two of them stared at the decorations outside a local house. They were heading home from school, and as it was October it was already getting dark, “it’s just the way they’re portrayed in movies that makes you think they’re scary.”

Damian frowned, “I don’t think I’ve ever seen a movie with a villainous pumpkin in it,” he said.

“What about Pumpkinhead?”

“He wasn’t a pumpkin,” Damian corrected Darryl, “he was some sort of... I don’t know... monster or alien or something.”

“What about The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow?” Darryl suggested, “Didn’t that have a pumpkin head?”

“I can’t remember,” Damian shrugged, “it had a headless horseman, but I forget if there were pumpkins involved.”

“Anyway,” Darryl sighed, “pumpkins are not scary. They’re there to keep ghosts away.”

“Really?”

“Yeah,” Darryl continued, “I think there’s a legend that says you put one in your window to ward away evil spirits on Halloween night. Ghosts and vampires and stuff.”

“I better get down to the green grocers then,” Damian said, “and get me a whole batch of pumpkins.”

Darryl chuckled as he and Damian headed towards their own street, where they lived next door to each other.

“Well, I’ll see you tomorrow,” Darryl said as they arrived at his front door.

“I’ll be going to the grocers to pick up some pumpkins,” Damian said, “if you want to come too I’ll be heading out bright and early. Those spooky ghosts aren’t going to catch me lying down.”

“I’ll knock for you in the morning,” Darryl said, “if you’ve already gone out, I’ll catch you after lunch.”

“Okay then,” Damian said, heading towards his own house as Darryl walked up the stairs to his.

The next morning Damian headed to the grocery store first thing to pick up some pumpkins. Darryl hadn’t knocked for him, but that wasn’t unusual – he enjoyed sleeping in on a Saturday. So Damian returned to his home and began carving one of the three pumpkins he’d purchased, making gruesome faces on one side and saving the pulp for later – he liked chewing on it because he found the texture so pleasing. Once he’d finished the first pumpkin, he decided to take it over to Darryl as a present.

“I’m just heading over to Darryl’s, mum,” he shouted to his mother.

“Just make sure you’re back in time for lunch,” his mother called in return.

Heading out of his house, carefully carrying the pumpkin with both hands, Damian trotted down the steps then back up the steps to Darryl’s house. Placing the pumpkin on the ground, he knocked at the door.

After a few minutes Darryl’s mum came to the door. When she saw Damian she smiled desperately, though she looked like she’d been crying.

“I was just about to call you,” she said, wiping her nose with the back of her hand, “is Darryl with you?”

Damian frowned, “No,” he said, “I just came over to give him this pumpkin.”

Mrs Black looked like she was about to sob again, “You mean he didn’t stay with you last night?”

Damian’s eyes widened, “No. I haven’t seen him since about eight o’clock last night.”

Mrs Black burst into tears, “Then it’s true,” she sobbed, “they took him.”

Damian was confused, “Who took him?” he asked.

“The monsters,” Mrs Black replied with anguish, “they always said they would. I knew I should have left pumpkins outside, but I just wouldn’t listen.”

Damian stared at Mrs Black, unsure whether or not to believe what she was saying. Monsters? It sounded crazy, but Damian had always sort of believed that monsters might exist.

“Why would anyone take Darryl?” he asked.

Mrs Black shook her head, “I don’t know, but I just know they did.”

Damian stooped to pick up the pumpkin, “Well, if you do see him, can you give him this. I’d suggest putting it in his bedroom window to ward off evil spirits.”

“If only we’d had it last night.” Mrs Black smiled, ‘”Thank you, Damian.”

As she slowly closed the door, Damian began to walk back down the steps. So Darryl was gone? And his mum thought he’d been taken by monsters! Maybe she’d been taking too much of her medication or something, but Damian thought that she might have a point about the monsters. It was Halloween after all, and he’d always thought monsters could be real.

What if they were?

Damian went back to his house, heading straight to the kitchen and carving out the remaining two pumpkins, nibbling at the pulp as he did so. It didn’t take him long to carve out two more Jack O’Lanterns and, once he was finished, he carried each of them under his arms, struggling to get them through the doorway and out onto the street.

He sat down on the steps, staring out into traffic, and he sat like that until the sun began to set, He watched the police arrive and depart from the Wary household, clearly not getting much out of Darryl’s mum, and he huddled himself up as small as possible as it started to get cold.

His mum came out with a jacket, “I know you’re waiting for Darryl,” she said a little sadly, “but at least try to keep warm.”

“Thanks mum,” he said, putting on the jacket.

After about another half an hour, it was almost completely dark outside. The only lights came from the streetlights and the Halloween decorations on the few houses that still took part. Damian looked up and down the road at the mist that had begun to settle close to the ground, and he wrapped his jacket tightly around his body.

“Waiting for somebody?”

Damian jumped at the sound of a voice speaking from over his shoulder. He turned quickly, not recognising the voice, and saw a tall, gaunt, pale man standing behind him. The man smiled, showing off pointy canine teeth.

“You’re a –a –a –“

“-mazing?” the man guessed, “-stonishing? –stounding?”

“A vampire!” Damian finished, staring nervously at the undead creature of the night.

“Ten out of ten for observation,” the vampire beamed, “You may call me Vlad.”

“As in Vlad The Impaler?” Damian asked.

“As in Vladimir Jones,” the vampire corrected, “I used to live round here.”

“What happened?”

Vlad stared at Damian, “Seriously?”

“Sorry.”

“Anyway,” Vlad said, cracking his knuckles, “I’m here to turn you.”

Damian looked stunned, “Into a vampire?”

“No, into a bunch of flowers,” Vlad rolled his eyes, grabbing Damian by the shoulders, “of course into a vampire!”

“But the pumpkins,” Damian insisted, “they’re supposed to keep you from attacking.”

Vlad chuckled, “They’re just pumpkins,” he said before sinking his teeth into Damian’s neck, “nothing but hollowed out pumpkins.”

As he began to drink Damian’s blood, his eyes suddenly shot wide open and he pulled away, starting to gag, “What is that?” he asked, “What have you been eating?”

“Nothing,” Damian replied, rubbing his sore neck, “just pulp from out of the pumpkins.”

“What?” Vlad screamed, “NO! Why didn’t you say something?”

“Why?” Damian asked, “It’s just a pumpkin.”

“Just a pumpkin?” Vlad shouted, “You’ve killed me with that pumpkin!”

Vlad fell to the ground, writhing in pain and shrinking almost imperceptibly. After a few minutes, during which Damian was cringing with terror, Vlad stopped moving, his cape draped over his head. As Damian watched, he slowly began to move, sitting up and pulling the cape off his face.

“Darryl?” Damian said in disbelief.

“What happened?” Darryl asked, “Where am I?”

“You’re outside my house,” Damian said, “do you remember what happened?”

“I remember someone grabbing me and biting me,” he said, “but after that... nothing. What happened?”

“You were a vampire!” Damian told him, “You called yourself Vlad Jones and you tried to kill me!”

“A vampire?” Darryl repeated, “Vlad Jones? That’s crazy!”

“Well that’s what happened,” Damian said, “the pumpkin pulp I like to eat was the only thing that stopped you from turning me – and that managed to turn you back.”

“Do you think that’s why we put pumpkins outside our houses at Halloween?” Darryl asked, “To stop the vampires and the ghosts and the monsters?”

“I don’t know,” Damian replied, “but I’m definitely going to keep a pumpkin outside my house from now on – and maybe a nice bowl of pulp.”


message 10: by James (new)

James Meadows | 146 comments Hey Everyone, I tried to get this story out last week for "In The Air" but wasn't able to finish it in time. I wasn't sure I would get it finished for this one but thankfully did. Anyway, let me know what you think!

Title: Jogging in the Shadows
Author: James J Meadows III
Words: 1,629
Rating: PG

Left, right, left, right…

Each foot fell in front of the other in an almost hypnotic rhythm as I raced ahead down the dimly lit sidewalk on my nightly jog. I liked jogging at night. It was just about the only time when the temperatures were cool enough for someone to go jogging – unless you count the morning, which I don’t. There is no way I am getting up early to go running. No, I’m a night owl, and the night is where I feel at peace.

Over the bridge, past the small pond, and across the entrance to the apartment complex, I made my way along the well-trodden path. Soon, I found myself in the line of thick trees, which provided some protection for my eyes from the glaring headlights of the busy street they lined.

I couldn’t count the number of times I had run this path. Suffice to say, however, I knew the exact distance I was from my house during every piece of the journey, including what time I should be making and how much further I had to go. I knew its every feature by heart.

Over the cracked tile which wound around the ancient oak tree, past the park bench set just a few steps back from the trail, and past the old brick well at the end of the fence line.

It took me about five or six steps before I snapped out of my trance long enough for my brain to process what my eyes had just registered. There wasn’t a brick well on my run.

I turned around, jogging backwards for a few steps, and looked behind me. Sure enough, there was an old-fashioned brick well, with a wooden cover and an old bucket, sitting right in the middle of a small grassy area, which I knew was normally blank. Even more strange, sitting on top of the well was a jack-o-lantern, whose grotesque chiseled features, illuminated by the candle burning in the center, left an odd impression in my mind. Where did they come from?

I spun back around, resuming my jog as I tried to wrap my head around the weirdness of the situation. On the one hand, a well should not suddenly appear in the middle of a park where it didn’t exist before. Furthermore, it was the middle of spring. People didn’t light jack-o-lanterns in the middle of spring. Heck, it wasn’t even pumpkin season. No place would be carrying pumpkins this time of year.

At the same time, though, as I reminded myself, it was a public park, where kids host plays, residents put on shows, and neighborhood have their community events. The whole thing was probably just some sort of prop. I decided to take a closer look at it on the way back. After all, I didn’t get a good look at it as I passed in the dark.

Speaking of the dark, I glanced around. It was much darker than usual in this area. The lamp posts seemed to be out. I lifted my eyes to look at them. Sure enough, all of them were completely dark, as though the area was experiencing a power outage.

As I approached the nearby intersection, I glanced ahead to see if the traffic signals were out also. Sure enough, they were out. And I mean they were out – not flashing red, like you sometimes see. I mean, they were completely black. This made me feel a little leery about crossing the usually busy intersection. Even at this time of night, the road was still fairly well traveled. I became struck by the sudden realization that I hadn’t seen a car in several minutes of running now, and the intersection was entirely empty.

If I was feeling confused before, I was totally unnerved now and I had a strong desire to turn back on my run. Still, I managed to suppress the desire. I was being silly. I was allowing my imagination to get the better of me. There was a reasonable explanation for all of this and there was no reason for me to abandon my run. I was only a couple of miles into the run anyway.

I had just crossed the intersection, when I felt a strange chill in the air. It was like running through an invisible wall of evil. The hairs on the back of my neck rose, like antennae picking up the dark broadcast of some sinister radio signal. My body involuntarily shuddered, goose bumps rising on my arms, and my footsteps faltering, as though drained of all strength.

Only my resolve to continue on my run compelled me forward, though at a much slower pace as I fought to force my legs ahead.

“Come on,” I muttered to myself, gesturing forward with my hand the way I always did when trying to encourage myself.

“Come on,” I heard the words echo in my head. Except the voice wasn’t my own.

It was a strange, deep, echoing voice, like one might hear when speaking to an empty stadium. Even more disturbing than the voice, was the strange impression that accompanied it: the impression of a presence, a vile-wicked presence, watching me, waiting for me.

This was too much for me. Without needing another moment of thought or reflection, I stopped and spun back the direction I had come. Maybe I was just imagining things, but I didn’t care. I was getting out of here!

I spun quickly around with the intention of heading back home. As I retraced my steps across the intersection, I felt the strange chill wash over me again, like a gust of wind coming from behind. This time it brought more than just goosebumps. A strange vision filled my mind, a vision of a man – if you wanted to call it a man, perhaps ‘a thing’ would be more accurate – running just a short ways behind me.

The ‘thing’ was man-like with two legs, two arms and a humanoid body structure, yet it possessed no face, no eyes, and no features. Rather, it seemed almost like a living, moving shadow approaching from behind me. The vision brought an almost irresistible urge to turn around and look over my shoulder, an urge I fought to resist as some distant instinct, buried deep within my mind, seemed to come to life, mingling with my fear, urging me to run for all my life was worth and not to look back.

Of all the times in my life where I found a ‘second-wind’ none compared to the burst of energy I found now. My previously weary legs sprang to life, sending me hurtling forward.

“Come on,” the voice whispered in my head again.

With it came a fresh vision. I could see more of the creatures. Some of them seemed to be wearing clothes, hats, and various garments now, yet the figures inside them remained dark as the night. An eerie sinister feel seemed to radiate off of them. I picked up my pace, as much as I could with my heart already aching like I was running a marathon.

This didn’t seem to make a difference. Rather, they seemed to go even faster in response to my increase, steadily growing nearer to me with each step I took. As they approached, the visions grew more intense, their dark forms more clear and their evil aura more intense.

I ran harder, my legs and feet screaming in protest. Yet I didn’t dare slow down. I had to run. I had to get away.

“Come on.”

The voice whispered more urgently, the words taking on an almost sinister delight, as though mocking me, or perhaps, inviting me to my doom. I didn’t care which. I just wanted to get away.

Then I saw it. Just a short distant ahead, the well sat in the park with the bizarre jack-o-lantern on top, its grosteque candle-lit grin shining through the night. That was where all the strangeness began. Maybe if I could make it back there, everything would return to normal. It was a long shot. But at this point, it was all I had.

Straining with all my might, I sprinted toward the pumpkin, the black figures in hot pursuit, the vision growing ever clearer as they grew nearer. I was only a fifty yards away. They were getting closer. Only thirty yards away, they were practically on top of me. Only twenty yards away, I could see their shadowy hands rising. They were reaching out to me. Ten yards away, the nearest one almost had me. Five yards, his fingers were just inches from back.

I could feel him grab me. I could hear the vile voice laugh in my ears. He was pulling me backward!

No!

With the last of the strength I could muster, I threw myself forward, out of the strange grasp, and fell tumbling onto the sidewalk, rolling past the well and its wicked decoration.

Everything was silent. The voice was gone. I looked up and stared around me. There were no figures. There was no well. There was no jack-o-lantern. Cars were passing down the road, their headlights illuminating the dark street along with the glow of the fully illuminated street lamps.

For several minutes I lay there gasping for air. I could feel the pain throbbing from my knees and arms where they struck the pavement. At that moment, however, I could care less. I was just thankful to be alive; thankful to be safe; thankful to be away from wherever or whatever I was experiencing.

Still gasping for air, I rose to my feet, my injured legs shaky beneath my frame and headed home to chart a new route for my evening runs.


message 11: by Edward (new)

Edward Davies | 1727 comments Garrison wrote: "AUTHOR: Garrison Kelly
TITLE: Having a Cold One
GENRE: Crime Horror
WORD COUNT: 1,631
RATING: Somewhere between PG-13 and R for gory violence, coarse language, and necrophilia references.

Whoeve..."


Another tale of retribution, Garrison style! Jay did that old mistake of all criminals - returning to the scene of the crime, but what waited for him was more than even he could deal with. Nicely told, G-Man.


message 12: by Edward (new)

Edward Davies | 1727 comments James wrote: "Hey Everyone, I tried to get this story out last week for "In The Air" but wasn't able to finish it in time. I wasn't sure I would get it finished for this one but thankfully did. Anyway, let me kn..."

Wow, that was weird. No real explanation, lots of creepy stuff happening, and a now terrified runner having to change his route to avoid further horrors. I like that there's no explanation for the shadow people - it makes the story that much more strange.


message 13: by James (new)

James Meadows | 146 comments Edward wrote: "James wrote: "Hey Everyone, I tried to get this story out last week for "In The Air" but wasn't able to finish it in time. I wasn't sure I would get it finished for this one but thankfully did. Any..."

Thanks! That is kind of what I was going for. I felt an explanation would take away from the tale.


message 14: by James (new)

James Meadows | 146 comments Garrison wrote: "AUTHOR: Garrison Kelly
TITLE: Having a Cold One
GENRE: Crime Horror
WORD COUNT: 1,631
RATING: Somewhere between PG-13 and R for gory violence, coarse language, and necrophilia references.


A nice little sadistic revenge story and an interesting trap. For a little while, I was trying to figure out if the flat tire was genuine or part of the ruse to capture the guy. Thanks for sharing the story with us!


message 15: by James (new)

James Meadows | 146 comments Edward wrote: "So I got it finished - it's not quite what I was going for, but it will do. Hope you guys like it.

Title : Just A Pumpkin
Author : Edward Davies
Word Count : 1403
Rating : PG13

“Why are pumpkins..."


That was a cute story. Who knew that pumpkins could be so dangerous for vampires. I guess I need to start chewing the pulp. Or, better yet, I think I'll just stick to what I did last year and roast the seeds. Do seeds work too? Regardless, the pumpkin pulp vs. vampires was a pretty clever idea. Thanks for sharing!


message 16: by Garrison (new)

Garrison Kelly (cybador) | 9056 comments Thanks for the feedback, James and Edward! It feels good to tap into my sadistic revenge side every once and a while. Hehehehehe! I'll be sure to read both of your stories sometime today. I know they're going to be awesome! :)


message 17: by Garrison (new)

Garrison Kelly (cybador) | 9056 comments Edward, let me start off by saying that I love how a small detail like eating pumpkin pulp turned out to be Damian’s saving grace. I also love the witty banter going on between Vladimir Jones and Damian right before the vampire chewed into his victim’s neck and shriveled up like George Costanza’s penis after swimming in a cold pool on an episode of Seinfeld. You had a little disclaimer before your story that you didn’t have a lot of faith in how it turned out. I’m here to tell you that this is a very Edwardian story filled with Edwardisms and delightful Danger Mouse-esque humor. Mark Reeves once told me in a private message that one of my stories had a lot of Garrisonisms, so now I’m passing that feedback onto you, my delightfully British friend. Great job this week! I’m glad you got to compete after all!

James, there was once a time where every now and then I would go out for a late night walk when everything was peaceful and the cool breezes felt like heaven. I can relate to the main character’s affinity for the darkness of night. I also love the descriptive language you used when the freaky occurrences started happening, whether it was the hair standing up on the back of his neck or the tiredness in his legs as he kept running away from the beasts. Seeing as how there’s no true explanation for these creepy happenings, I figured it was somehow all in his head, whether he didn’t get enough sleep or he’s experiencing schizophrenia. Maybe it’s a combination of both of those things. Either way, thank you for bringing such a descriptive and frightening story to our Halloween-themed contest this week. Excellent work!


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