Down The Wishing Well

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Mystery and Crime  |  House: Booksie Classic

A man hears a voice coming from a well. What is the origin of the voice and how did it get down there? Our protagonist finds out that something isn't quite right down the wishing well.

Submitted: January 31, 2018

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Submitted: January 31, 2018



Down the Wishing Well

“…And please grant my wife and child a long lasting life.”

Jon kissed his lucky silver dollar and threw it down the well.
The well has been dry for several years and hardly anyone paid attention to it for all that time. Several years ago a group of children went missing in the dense forest where the well is located. This attracted some media attention but unfortunately the children were never found. The nearby town was left distraught by this news and most people simply stayed away. Nowadays children are warned not to play around in the dense forest and so the well was not taken care of. It was covered in a thick moss and the stone was discoloured.

Jon walked away from the well but was stopped in his tracks by a strange voice.
“Why didn’t you wish for a lot of money?”
The voice sounded mechanical and confused Jon.

“Hello…who said that?”
“I am behind you mister.”
“How can you talk? You’re a well.”
“Just because I am made of stone does not mean I do not have feelings. No…I’m just kidding I am actually down this dried out well.”
“How did you get down there?” Jon asked.
“I climbed down to escape from my mom. She wasn’t very nice to me so I hid here. The rope I used snapped just before I landed down here. I’ve been stuck here ever since…please help me mister.”

From the tone of voice Jon believed it was a young boy that somehow got stuck in that well.

“How long have you been down there? I mean there’s no water or food down there…right?”
“I don’t remember because I hit my head pretty bad when I landed. Every time it rains I use my shoes to catch the water and there are some icky bugs down here to eat,” the boy said.
“Oh…that just sounds awful. I can try to find some more people and help you.”
“Uh…I’m very shy and I just want to go home. I don’t want to be on television or anything.”
“I’ll just get a long and strong rope then…ok?”
“Thank you mister I am very grateful. My mother told me to always do good to others then others will do good to you.”
“Oh don’t mention it, happy to help. By the way, why does your voice sound so strange?” Jon asked confused.
“I have a scratchy throat and I am shouting really hard. The well is pretty deep you know.”
“Hmm…that sounds reasonable. Just a minute I will be right back.”

Jon went back to his home to grab a large thick rope from his garage and returned to the well. He attached one end firmly to a tree and threw the rest down the wishing well.
He climbed down the well and when he was about three quarters down he saw a strange looking boy. He was pale, skinny and definitely malnourished. Suddenly the rope became unstable and snapped causing Jon to fall down on the dry stone floor.

“Ah…shit that hurts…I hope I didn’t break anything.”
“Thank you for helping me mister,” the child said.
“Helping you? How are we supposed to get back up again? It seems were stuck here together.”
“At least I am not alone here anymore. We can be friends and maybe we can work together to get out!” The boy seemed happy that he had someone to socialize with. From the looks of him it seems he has been down here for a while.
“Well maybe we can dig our way out of here…I guess. What’s your name anyway?”
“My friends always call me little Harry because I was always the shortest. Sometimes bullies can be really tough when you’re small. I don’t like bullies very much…are you a bully?” Harry asked confrontationally.
“Why would I help you if I was a bully? Come on kid…were in this together. I don’t care if you’re short.”
“Thanks mister! I want to show you something…com e on follow me!”
Jon followed little Harry and found out that there was an underground liar. He saw a pile of mud that served as a bed, on top of that pile was a dirty blanket to sleep under. He even had some furniture from clay and it seemed little Harry had made the best of his situation. There were however several large piles of leaves shoved against the wall.
“What are all the leaves for?” Jon asked.
“Oh…I use those to stay warm. I scatter around for some rocks and rub them together to create a spark. I ignite the leaves to make a fire…I saw that on the Discovery Channel.”
“You’re a bright kid…I must say you are very resourceful.”
“Thanks mister! I even made a spare bed just in case anyone would be down here with me.”
“You thought of a lot of things down here huh…although it is a little odd to make an extra bed as if you’re expecting guests. Well hopefully someone will come by soon.”
“Honestly…you are the first one in a long time to come by and you’re the only one wanting to help. We’re stuck together for now. Oh…and it might smell a bit funky since well you know…I have to do my ‘business’ somewhere,” Harry was ashamed to say.
“He kid I totally understand. You have to survive somehow right…speaking of which what about food and water?”
“Well I do have some water saved in my shoe. You would be smart to do the same…and food well…it’s scarce. I sometimes roast some insects, which are crawling everywhere, on a fire to make them taste a little less gross.”
“I want to know a bit more about you though. Never mind how you survived. I want to know how you got in here in the first place.” Jon was anxious to hear Little Harry’s story.

“Well you might have heard about those kids that went missing. I am one of these kids. We wanted to live free from our mothers…always telling us what to do. We went into this well and dug it out to create this place. Eventually all of them got scared and wanted to return home to their parents. I stayed behind and after a few days got tired of it. I used the rope to get back up and it snapped…I’ve been down here ever since.”
“Wow...that’s some story. You do know those other kids never returned…right?”
“What! How can that be?! They got out and they wanted to go back…I mean I’m confused.”

Harry’s mind went all over the place.

“You didn’t know! Shit man…I’m sorry to break it to you like this kid. You must be devastated.”
“I…I don’t know what to do. I have to process this somehow.”

Little Harry’s mood started to shift and he sat down on the ground facing the muddy wall.
“I must breathe…I must breathe…I must breathe.”

He repeated it several times like a mantra. Jon was in awe. He didn’t expect this strange reaction. Each person griefs differently you could say. It almost seemed like a trained method to relax his mind. Jon felt confused and doubtful about the fate of those children. The bodies were never found and therefore they were presumed dead. Jon’s thoughts ran rampant.

If they escaped the well how could nobody have seen them? You must notify the parents as soon as you get out of here. With this new information from Harry there might be some more answers as to what had happened.
Should I bring the kid with me though? No…of course…you have to. You can’t just abandon this kid here. You are going all over the place…out of here is the first step. First someone has to come by in order for that to happen. Right now…sleep is probably the best option. We’ll get up nice and early and form some sort of escape plan.

Little Harry had finished his mantra and calmed down. He was Zen like and almost void of emotion. Jon approached him carefully.

“Are you okay?” Jon asked concerned.
“I am…thank you very much for asking Jon. If you don’t mind I wish to rest and continue our quest in the morning.” Little Harry’s tone of voice was somehow different.
“Uh…sure I was about to suggest the same. Are you sure you’re okay?”
“Excellent in fact…once I meditate I can usually reflect my current predicament and find tranquillity. If I cannot find this then I fear insanity is all that remains.”
“I am going to take that as a yes and I will wish you pleasant dreams,” Jon said feeling somewhat eerie.
“I wish you the same…my new friend.”

Jon quickly lied down on his mud bed and pretended to be asleep. Hours went by and he could not find sleep. He was shivering from the cold and his back was aching from the hard floor. He figured eventually he would grow tired and fall asleep. His mind was still racing…especially after that odd conversation right before bed. Suddenly he heard a soft whisper.

“All of you…cowards…no more…little Harry. None of you…would even be here…fiends and scum.”

Jon was starting to get really anxious and also started to notice a strange mechanical sound. It was like a soft humming and he wanted to get up to explore. He hoped that little Harry was a sound sleeper and eventually he took the gamble. He tiptoed and followed the humming. He was headed towards one of the large piles of leaves. He stood before it and examined it…carefully he turned around to check on little Harry. He took a deep breath and started to remove the leaves from the top. Slowly it was revealed that a machine with several monitors was covered under the thick pile of leaves. Once again he looked behind to see if the coast was clear and he revealed even more of the machine. Several camera angles were shown on the monitors and they all covered the area around the well. The machine even had a microphone attached to it. Jon didn’t know what to think.

What is going on here? Has this kid build all of this on his own? Does he even need to be here or is he just free to leave? You can’t keep this a secret…you have to tell people about this. This kid is keeping something behind.

“Well isn’t this convenient,” a voice sounded from behind Jon.
Jon was too scared to turn around and face little Harry. He feared for his life and was contemplating his next move.
“What is all this?” Jon asked.
“I fear the cat is out of the bag. I might as well be truthful. I must warn you though not to attempt any funny business. I have made it a habit to sleep near Clobber. Who is Clobber you might say…well let me show you.”
Little Harry grabbed a thick wooden pole that had sharp rocks attached to the top.
“If you attempt to hurt me Clobber will be there to protect me…won’t you Clobber? Ha-ha isn’t that the truth. Clobber says…without hesitation my liege.”
“You’re crazy kid…come on put that thing down. Nobody needs to get hurt okay.”
“NO! You will listen! You wanted answers right? You might wonder where the other kids are…well wouldn’t you like to see what’s beneath leave pile #2? Go ahead…look!”

Jon shuffled towards the other pile and started to remove the leaves. An ungodly smell hit his nostrils and yet he kept on going. He shrugged backwards when he saw what was underneath.
The skeletons of several bodies were now exposed and Jon felt horrified.

“What have you done…you sick child!”
“I’ll tell you the story but once again I want to ask you to refrain from any funny business.”
“Fine…just tell me.”
“Thank you… growing up I never knew my father yet if I would have to believe my mother, he was the most horrible man that ever lived. She made sure that was engraved in my memory…therefore I hated the kids in school with fathers. In the end all men will disappoint their children and abandon them. Oh yes…my mother did a number on me. I remember stumbling upon a dead cat when I was much younger and I was curious to see his insides. Once I returned home and told my mother about it…the terror began. She kept up her viciousness…sometimes I asked for it with my actions other times it was merely for pleasure. I despised her and blamed her for my father leaving. One night I just had enough and ended it. I was ten years old and I felt satisfied for the first time ever. Finally set free from the terror and suddenly I felt stricken with a strange urge…the urge to consume human flesh. I feared my sensation since it was wrong…obviously. It’s not what normal people engage in and yet it felt wonderful...”
“I remember a woman that went missing…was that your mother? What happened to her?” Jon asked Harry.
“Indeed it was. I dragged her into the woods and that’s when I stumbled upon that old well. After she was buried I scoured the internet to build all of the materials you have already stumbled upon. It took me days of keeping up appearances and telling everyone my mother was ill, incapable of leaving the house. They all praised me for my independence. The night we all went missing was carefully planned by me. Jasper, Luke, Terry and me wanted to get away from our parents. Everybody wanted to live in the woods forever
and that’s when I led them to the old well. We expanded it with the underground liar and they helped me to put the equipment in place. When they questioned me about the equipment I merely said my grandfather was an engineer and left these as toys to play with…and they bought it! Oh and a little help from the Discovery Channel of course.
That night I made my move. With a sharpened rock I hit Jasper in the head while he was sleeping…this of course woke the others up. They screamed for help and tried to run away. I caught Terry with a blow to the back of his head. Luke was able to reach the rope and climbed to escape as fast as he could. Fortunately, as you have experienced, I had placed a sharp knife hidden in the rock.
I have a small remote hidden in my pocket that triggers a slashing motion to cut anything near it. I hit the button and it worked…Luke fell down hard and met his fate. Once again I gave in to lust and tasted their flesh. Ever since that day I have waited here for victims and there have been some. And now you are here…to meet the same fate!”

Little Harry swung his weapon while approaching Jon.

“Wait, wait, wait…stop! Let’s just calm down here…I can just leave you know. I can just go away from here and never even mention anything. Please…I have a family. Just because you don’t have one anymore doesn’t mean that…”
“SHUT UP! Shut up about your drama…I don’t give a shit! Please, please help me mommy…mommy is dead and she isn’t coming to get you!”
Harry made less and less sense. His behaviour shifted rapidly. Suddenly he became red with anger.
“I can’t stand all of you weaklings…pleading for your lives. You are all the same…just like her. Constantly filling my head with shit…they are all predators and trust nobody she would say. My brain would spill over and I decided to drown out the voices. I became the one thing my mother always warned me about… a predator. It was a giant fuck you to her legacy.”
“I can take you with me! We both forget everything that happened here and we leave in different directions. The story about the missing boys has been dead…nobody is paying attention anymore. You can move freely and do whatever you want…please just let me go,” Jon pleaded.
“You’re pleading with me as if I would want to leave here. As long as people like you come by here I am satisfied. Besides the only way back, is up the well…we need assistance for that. What am I doing arguing anyway? Just stand still and I will make it quick…I promise.”

Little Harry raised his weapon as he stood before a petrified Jon. He was frozen stiff as he stared into the dark brown eyes of Harry. Clobber was retracted behind Harry’s back and struck down with force. Jon managed to break his stance and jump out of the way in a nick of time. The machine was destroyed and this angered Harry even more.

“No, no, no! You have ruined everything. My work is obliterated all because of you! Fuck making it quick now…the torment shall last a million times longer!”

He swung around Clobber fuelled with rage and Jon was backed into a corner. He quickly noticed a scattered pile of leaves next to his feet. He reached down, grabbed a handful and threw it on front of him. Harry didn’t see a thing and missed his swing. Harry looked around frantically in search of Jon. Before he located him a fist landed against the side of his face. The unsuspecting Harry went into the wall causing him to lose consciousness. Jon grabbed Clobber from the ground and frantically grabbed everything he could. He yelled for help as loud as he could while throwing rocks as high as he could. He was trying to cause a ruckus in the hope that anyone would hear him.

After a while Jon heard barking nearing the well. He knew this was his chance to escape.

“Over here! Help me! I am stuck down here…help me please!”
“Baxter! Where are you Baxter?”
There was an owner nearby and Jon sighed from relief. He could hear footsteps approaching.
“What’s down there boy…can you see anything?”
“I am down here…could you please throw down a rope? I will explain everything once I get up.”

And so the dog walker threw down a rope and helped Jon escape from the well. He told him the entire story and the dog walker was mesmerized. They contacted the police and explained everything.
Little Harry was apprehended and taken in for questioning. He was a suspect in the murder investigations of at least seven people. Jon returned home to his family and was grateful that the nightmare was over.
The next morning Jon grabbed a cup of coffee and sat down in his chair. He turned on the television to watch the news.

“Our top story today…a missing child and now the lead suspect in several murder investigations. Be warned as this broadcast will contain images that might be considered disturbing.
The child known as ‘little’ Harry went missing several years ago with three of his friends. Luke, Terry, Jasper and ‘little’ Harry went into the woods and never returned…they were presumed dead. The remains of the three along with several other victims were found in an old well. Near this small suburban area there is a dense forest…’easy to get lost in’ as some locals have said describing it. The well that stood in it had been dry for decades and was used in this elaborate crime. Police believe that the suspect orchestrated the entire thing and one of the detectives has even been quoted as saying that:
‘Judging by his age you think…a kid can’t do this. Judging by his backstory and character…he was a ticking time bomb’.
A local man by the name of Jon Pardew would have been the next victim in this horrible crime. Instead he became the victim that got away. He contacted the police as soon as he managed to escape. He told our local reporter that he wants to leave it all behind him and sincerely hopes that the child can still be redeemed. The suspect is in the custody of police and a trial date is expected to be set soon…
For Channel 5 news, this has been Gloria Dawson.”


© Copyright 2018 Tales From A Martian. All rights reserved.

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