Creepy Game

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Review Chain
The tale of a young boy's night of terror, as he lays awake praying for sleep.

Submitted: July 01, 2016

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Submitted: July 01, 2016

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Eric Leeth lay awake, terrified, as he did most nights. This he knew was nothing to feel ashamed about-and right now did not care if anyone thought he was a scaredy-cat. Eric knew kids were afraid, particularly of things that go bump in the night. But it wasn't the boogey man, vampires, or their pal Slender keeping him awake, not exactly anyhow.


 

Eric was top bunk to his older brother. Not by choice, nobody ever takes residence in the top bunk by choice. His brother's name was Jason. For Eric, Jason was his boogey-woogey man. The very reason he now lay in his bed, eyes wide open, surveying for any irregular shape in the dark room. Chest thumping the same way a rabbit, trying to get out of a bag would do.

 

Eric and Jason, for the most part, were nice enough to each other, and were not unkind to one another. Family friends were very vocal - how astonished they were - the boys were seldom at each others throats, like their own children were apt to be. Eric's parents very proud of their two boys, how great it is to know your kids are the angels made out to be in your Facebook posts.

 

Though, if you were to ask Eric - after they had been kissed goodnight by mom and dad - if he thought his brother was nice, the story would be a much different one. You see, Jason had this little game he liked to play, when the lights were off. Quite simple really, you really must try it, oh stop being a baby. He called it, “The Creepy” game. The way to play it was simple enough. Jason would make noises, throw things across the room, kick the bottom of Eric's mattress, then plead innocence; blaming it on some monster lurking in the dark. It sounds silly, and to Eric it was. After numerous times of telling his brother to stop, all the while Jason claiming it wasn't him, eventually Eric wondered if there might be something else in the room. Eric now found himself breathing briskly, trying to suppress the noise his puffing made. If the creature – which couldn't possibly exist – did not hear his respiration, he remained safe.

 

Eric's fear only pushed Jason further. Jason began pushing up on his brothers mattress using his feet. He knew his prying would drive Eric to a frenzy. It was a peculiar thing, but Jason got no bigger thrill than scaring his brother. Knowing he had power over his brother, the ability to make Eric beg for him to stop, invigorated him like nothing else.

 

“Stop kicking”, Eric pleaded.

 

“It isn't me”, Jason replied, “The boogeyman is doing it, don't you see him? Standing by the coat rack.” He had to stifle back laughter as he said this.

 

Eric's eyes flicked to the coat rack, then took on the job of convincing himself there could not possibly be an arm, surely it's the sleeve of a jacket. Suddenly the sleeve was moving, or was this his imagination? “Jason?” he called out to his brother, “Jason?”

 

No reply came. Perhaps Jason was sleeping, he was sure of it. A part of him, the part which had been through this routine, knew better, and told him it to be a farce. Eric knew Jason was waiting for his nerves to ease, for sleep to come closer, then he would attack again.

 

Eric lay bed, for what seemed like an eternity, without any bothersome tricks from his downstairs neighbor, he began to fall asleep. Eric was in that queer state between sleep and consciousness. It was at this moment, Jason whispered, “Eric?”

 

Eric heard this, but knew acknowledging Jason would encourage nastier tactics, he thought better of it. Eric lay in bed, pretending to sleep. Abruptly – the culprit had to be Jason – the closet door inched open, creaking each inch by inch, hinges protesting the entire movement. Eric nearly yelled at Jason, perhaps calling him a curse word, alternatively he remained silent. Eric thought it best to keep up the appearance of being asleep.

 

“Eric? Is that you? You better get back into your bed and stop joking around, I will run and get mom”, said Jason.

 

Well, that was odd thought Eric. Surely another piece of bait, to lure him into one of Jason's traps.

 

“C'mon Eric, this isn’t funny”, Jason sounded … scared? Surely not. “Eric, stop pulling my blanket! I mean it, if you don't stop then I am telling. It is too late to keep playing, I want to go to sleep. Hey! Give me back my pillow you faggot!” Jason was now whimpering, “Eric… say something. Is that you?”

 

To Eric, his brother seemed to be trying his best to get him to bite. And, was putting on one hell of a show while he was at it. Eric was honestly impressed. Jason never took his crooked game to such a level before.

 

Jason let out a scream, immediately sending goosebumps up Eric's skin. Soft, steady sobbing drifted up from Jason's rack, similar to the cries of a child who has been whipped, without knowing why. Eric was overcame with an uneasy feeling, but knew Jason and himself could be the only people in the room, he would have heard the bedroom door open. But then, hadn't the closet door opened very precariously, a few short minutes ago? Just then, THUMP! Instantly followed byrapid, rasping breaths. Jason had fell from his bed. Eric knew without even having to peek over the edge of his bed.

 

“Okay you queer bait, enough is enough”, said Jason. Thinking Eric to be the queer bait who pulled him out of his bunk. “I am turning on the lights, and then you are going to get it, you sissy!”

 

Turn on the lights? Surely this was a last attempt to draw Eric from his silence, why would he take it that far? Eric rolled over to see the open space of the room. No sooner had he done this, when the light snapped on. What he saw, was completely different from what Jason saw. Jason puzzlingly spotted his brother lying in bed, simultaneously coming to the sudden realization: Eric had not tugged at his blanket, yanked his pillow away, or pulled him out of bed. Though, if not Eric, who had?

 

On the other hand, Eric saw, what had tugged his brothers blanket, yanked his pillow away, and also pulled him out of bed! Eric concealed himself beneath his blanket, not wanting to see into the eyes of the beastie. He was unable to meet it's gaze, and did not want to. To look into those eyes, he knew would mean death. Through some unwritten child's code, he knew looking into the purple eyed stare of the beast bonded his fate to his brother's. Eric loved Jason, and did not want to see him die -thank goodness the blanket kept him from actually seeing him die- but Jason had been the one to invent the creepy game. And now, there was no way he could be saved.

 

Eric lingered under his blanket, dreadfully waiting for what he thought would be the high pitched squealing of his big brother -or would he make more of a gurgling sound, as the monster munched into his throat? Instead, he heard a much more grotesque report. First there was a small CRUNCH, such as when you bite into a cough drop, immediately causing Eric's stomach to tighten. Leaving him to assume: Jason's skull was cracked, much the same as an egg would be. Next, came what sounded like air being let out of a balloon, could this be Jason's warm brains, squeezing through some tiny puncture in his skull? Perhaps. More likely, Eric thought, his brother's bowels were relieving themselves. Danny Williams had told him that once, while they played army soldiers during recess. Danny's dad was an EMT, and told his much too young son this truth of life. Then silence. Save for a faint sound, one every dog owner would know, clamor of a bone, being gnawed into nothing.

 

The following sunrise, seven AM.. When mom and dad weren't joined for breakfast by their two precious sons, mom went to wake them , they were just sleeping in as children do. She entered the bedroom, after no response came back to her calling out to either boy. She found Eric in his bed, under a mess of blankets and pillows. His mom stripped the blanket away, discovering him flinching, as if expecting a mouth full of teeth to follow.

 

“Calm down Eric, I don't bite. You boys must have stayed up all night playing video games again, what did we say about going to sleep early, so you could wake up early? No video games the rest of the week. Where is your brother? He better be in the bathroom getting ready for school.” Said Eric’s mother. 


© Copyright 2017 Foster Riley. All rights reserved.

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