Parajunkee’s View Welcomes DL Richardson

Firstly, a huge thank you Rachel for having me on your blog. You gave me the instruction to write a haunted story or relate a haunted experience I’ve had. Well, I’ve combined these two elements to come up this flash fiction story, and I’ve also added a bit of humor to make it fun. This story is based on my own experiences in the kitchen. Without a shadow of a doubt, I truly believe my kitchen is haunted, because really, I can’t be that clumsy all the time. Cutlery flies out of my hands. Food leaps out of the pan. No matter how careful I am, something splats or clanks or clunks whenever I am in the kitchen. There has to be an other-worldly explanation. Don’t you agree? If you can relate to this, you’ll enjoy this flash fiction. I hope you do.

People just don’t scare like they used to

The creature is alive, though barely, dragging its bare feet along the floorboards. Schluck. Schluck. Slow. Painfully slow. Black hair is plastered to a sallow face, and a solitary, vacant orb searches for something like a black hole in space searches for life to destroy.

It flickers its gaze in my direction. Does it see me? I stay perfectly still but its zombie-fied body jerks in attraction. Like a magnet it is drawn to the spot where I’m standing. I can’t move.

Groaning now, the beast is, as if dying or in the throes of ecstasy. Still dragging its feet, it stretches out its arms, and its fingers click-click-click in a desperate need to touch life.

The creature is almost upon me. But I am not afraid. I will strike back.

***

Who in their right mind insists on a 7am meeting? It means I have to drag myself from bed – which I love – to the kitchen – which I only love because it has a shiny new coffee machine – but what I want is to go back to bed and sleep till it’s tomorrow.

Ooow. My head hurts.

I can’t even be bothered to swipe my hair out of my eyes. Luckily my feet know their way around my apartment and they drag themselves slowly toward the kitchen. Muscles aching, stiff and sore, I try stretching my arms to work out the yawn that usually begins the waking process, but this morning I can’t even lift my arms over my head. Who in their right mind insists on dancing till 2am? At least my outstretched arms mean it’s less likely that I’ll smash into the walls.

I see it before it sees me. Like a magnet, I’m drawn to the spot.

Coffee. Coffee. Coffee. Already my fingers are wrapping themselves around my favorite mug – the one I got last Halloween with the print of a skeletal hand wrapped around it. I love it. It’s so cool. I love being scared. And yah, Halloween is coming.

I frown. I think I brought something back from the dead with me at the last party. The kitchen has never been the same since.

***

The creature is upon me. It reaches into the drawer and pulls out a spoon. It will use that spoon to gouge out my eyes. I won’t end up a zombie like it is. Every morning I see the same zombie shuffle and vacant stare, and to think that I used to be the terrifying creature. Oh, how the table have turned.

I summon all my strength and swipe at the spoon. It flies out of the creature’s hand and lands with a loud clang on the floor. The creature grabs its head in its hands and howls. After a tense moment, it reaches into the draw and withdraws another spoon, this time gripping it so tight I see the beasts’ white knuckles.

How will I defeat this beast? It has an endless arsenal of weapons in those drawers.

***

Clumsy klutz. I’ve dropped the spoon and the clang is echoing around inside my very tender head. Who in their right mind drinks shots of vodka like they’re water? No biggie. I’ll just get another spoon. But I swear that this place is haunted. This shit happens to me every single morning. I drop cutlery, drop food, bang my head on the cupboard doors. I could stand perfectly still in this kitchen and something will explode.

As I press the button to start the coffee machine, I think to myself, might as well stand here and wait for the thing to finish. It’ll take too long for me to drag myself to the bedroom and back.

As I wait for the machine to do its job, I feel a gust of warm breath on my neck. Yep. This place is haunted. Do I know any good priests to exorcize this place? What about a séance?

Oooow, that could be kinda cool.

My eyes lift in glee. What a perfect idea. I’ll invite some friends over, it’s Halloween in a few weeks so we’ll dress up, decorate the place, and kindly ask the spirit to leave, or at least ask it to learn how to switch the coffee machine on in the mornings for me.

***

My days are numbered here. I suspect the creature is onto me. It stands so close that I can bite its ear off. But I am not of this world. I have no substance. I am invisible, trapped inside the wooden chopping board this creature used as a device to conjure spirits. I think the beast called it a Ouija board. If only it had gotten the conjuring spell right, I’d be free to roam around the house at least.

The creature slowly spins its head and stares at me. It has that glint in its eyes. I’ve seen it before. In a few days this creature will bring in more creatures. They will sit around a table and want to talk to me. Always with the talking, talking, talking. But I don’t want to talk. I want to terrify them, make them scream, make them angry. It’s their screams I feed on, their fright that gives me power, gives me life, and makes me stronger. That power will release me from this prison.

People just don’t scare like they used to. Alas, I am fading, fading, fading into the wood, going the way of the tree people, the fey, the ancient Celts. Soon, I’ll be lost forever.

About the Author D L Richardson

D L Richardson was born in Ireland and came to Australia with her parents as a baby. She went to a public school in Sydney’s western suburbs and the books she read were given to her or borrowed from the library. However it was music that first captured her creative interest.

She joined the school choir at age eight and got her first acoustic guitar at age ten, although she really wanted a piano. In high school she took up lead vocals after the girl she was to sing a duet with failed to show up. After that she told her stage fright to get lost and took up singing with the school band where she performed in many concerts. When she left school she helped form her own rock band where she sang lead vocals, played bass guitar, and wrote all the lyrics. At age 26 she realized she wanted to write novels for the rest of her life or die trying so she sold her equipment, quit pursuing a music career and began writing instead.

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Ethan James, Florida Bowman, and Jake Inala need organ transplants. When they receive the organs of a dead CIA agent, Dylan Black, they take on more than the task of completing the mission of deactivating bombs that threaten millions of lives. Kidnapped, their lives under threat, the memories stored in the CIA agent’s mind begin to awaken within each of them, except the one piece of information they are abducted for – the location of the bombs.

Publisher: Etopia Press

Published date: October 5, 2012

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