Mr. S and the Waycross Wither

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic



There never was a time in Charles life where he was happy. Birthdays, ceremonies, even his wedding seemed empty. Life was a series of the same events, replayed over and over again. Driving around, eating dinner, going to sleep. There was never a moment of excitement or joy, fear or shame. There was never a moment of emotion. Charlie yearned for the presence of emotion in his life. Charlie had no friends, family, or connections within his town. This town, Waycross, Georgia, was his childhood town. Never had Charlie left the bounds of his city for anything besides a high school football game, or the need of groceries. Charlie lived in his childhood home with his wife, the only friend of his childhood that stayed with him after the graduation from Hillcross Preparatory School. The few friends Charlie had in this school moved to Boston and Dinkytown, even New Haven for their college endeavors. Charlie stayed and married, but never had a child of his own to put through Hillcross, or even the nearby public school, Waycross High. 

It was a Monday, a day of loneliness for young Charlie. Charlie lost his only job as a clerk in the local pharmacy, and his wife supported the family as a nurse. Charlie had his small home to himself on the weekdays, but rarely ever stayed within the bounds of his own property out of pure boredom. Charlie would drive around aimlessly for hours and hours until his wife would get home, sit down for dinner, and go to his bedroom and retire for the night. Charlie longed for a conversation, something he had not had in years, or even to have the ability to recognize someone from his town and smile or wave. Charlie made his normal stops, the bar on hs block, and the bar down the street. Only the bartenders knew Charlie, and only one spoke to him. Charlie rarely replied, but today felt gracious enough to use his mouth for something other than drinking. 

“Charlie.” Said the bartender, Al, as he saw Charlie walk through the door.

“Al.” Replied Charlie, simple, but a lot for the quiet man.

“I see you’re speaking today, huh?” Al stated sarcastically, which not only made Charlie not laugh but also feel much worse than he already did. “Still miserable? Why don’t you get some help?” 

“One beer please, sir.” Charlie replied, ignoring the remark on which he heard quite often. The TV in the corner of the bar flickered to life just as Charlie turned to view it, and soon the face of the local reported came on screen. Waycross was surrounded by large trees that stretched for miles, and this reporter was standing on a hill which oversaw this green horizon. 

“Another has gone missing today. Family of Ms. Alice Walker say they heard she was travelling into the woods to meet a friend, Mr. S, just as the first missing person did. Anyone with any informat-” The channel was changed mid-sentence to the replay of the football game from the night before, the Falcons and the Broncos, where the Falcons were victorious and the town was elated. 

“Why would these people willing kill themselves?” questioned Charlie to Al, a rhetorical question, however Al knew the answer. 

“Something about how someone in this town, long, long time ago, suddenly came into wealth and happiness and said it was a man he met in the woods, “Mr. S”, that allowed for that to happen. Since that whole story came into public view people have killed themselves trying to meet this “Mr. S” but end up dying in the woods. Hey! Maybe wealth will make you happy, huh?” Al laughed at his joke and turned back to wiping his bar down. Charlie knew it was crazy. There was no “Mr. S”, but what if there was…

That night when Charlie went home he ate his meal and went to bed. As he heard his wife cleaning and washing dishes, he began to think of the deal with “Mr. S” these people have killed themselves for. Well, they aren’t for SURE dead, right? Merely missing. Charlie rolled over and allowed the clinking of the washed plates being put in the sink fade him into his slumber. 

Charlie awoke, all his eyes could see was black. Pure black. Charlie looked around and started to see the outline of his dresser, wife, and the rest of his belongings. Charlie heard a hard knock at his bedroom door, which he decided was what woke him in the first place. Charlie started to slowly walk to the door, and as he got closer and closer started to hear a hiss, like a snake, get louder and louder. Charlie’s ears began to hard as his hand touched his door knob, as the hissing was shaking the house. Charlie swung open the door and nothing was there. The hissing has subsided, but a flickering light caught Charlie’s eye. He walked out of his room into the living room, and saw his TV was left on. As he went to turn off the TV, the channel was stuck on the news. The only strange fact of this event was simply the fact that the TV was replaying the news reporter from the bar. The same man was standing on the same hill, while the clock in the corner of the broadcast read the time of noon. When Charlie had been in the bar. Charli suddenly felt alone, and felt a cold pass over him. Depressed, Charlie decided to drive his car around the city again, as it was almost dusk anyhow. Charlie passed by his bars, his streets, but felt a stir within him drive him to the hill of the reporter. The screeching halt of his vehicle echoed in the dense green he now sat before. Charlie got out of his car, and started his trek into the woods. He stood now before the woods, barefeet stabbed and bleeding with the sticks and rocks he had planted his feet upon on his journey, and stared up at the wide and tall evergreens that stood and mocked his tiny body. Charlie started his walk through the woods, thorns and needles and branches and rocks stabbed him and struck him and attacked him. Tired, torn, and miserable, Charlie fell to his knees. Having curved his path to avoid tress and rivers, Charlie now had no way out of the woods. Charlie looked up at the night sky, though his view was blocked by the arms of the evergreens, and called out,

“Mr. S! Mr. S! I need you, help me! For God has already forgotten about me, don’t you too!”

Upon that very moment, the hiss returned. The wind sped up and the trees were thrown around as if they were made of rubber, leaves and logs were thrown into the air as if they weighted the same. The hiss became a screech, as if cheap blender blades were forced onto a blackboard, the screeching almost unbearable, as Charlie covered his ears and fell to the fetal position. Black daggers shoot through the trees and surrounded Charlie, and the daggers started to collect. The wind stopped, the logs and leaves settled, and the daggers disappeared. Standing in the black fog created in the madness, was a man. A tall man, thin with long arms and legs, and a sharp jaw. Ice blue eyes stared from the man at Charlie, and soon the man’s black hair was visible as the fog settled, as was his black tuxedo and sharp, shinning black shoes. 

“Please, Charlie, we have met now. Don’t call me Mr. S, you’re too respecting. Call me Scratch, that’s what your people have called me for years and years.”

“Scratch? Satan? You’re a man not a demon! Where did you come from!”

“My father made me before he even considered making you, kind sir. I have always been here, I killed the Christ Jesus! I made the world fight twice! I flickered radar systems for the Japanese, just to see this country fight! I shot honorable figures such as Kennedy and Lincoln! I enslaved nations and even created murdr! I fathered great men such as Theodore Bundy! Now don’t you go thinking I’m a bad man! I love humanity! Regardless of the fact you are just roaches compared to me! I just get bored with Mass and worshipping God and Jesus and Mary, fail a little!”

Charlie started to back away, but realized it was too late. He was face to face with Lucifer himself. 

“What do you want from me!”

“I believe I have the same question for you, sir. You called upon me.” replied the Devil.

“I don’t care anymore. I must get home.”

“You want to feel something right, and you feel as though riches will help you?”

Charlie looked stunned at Satan, who knew exactly what Charlie came for.

“Now here, I’m not God. So I wouldn’t give you something I THINK you need or some poor advice to worship me, I shall give you riches. But first you must bring me one thing. I want you to come here with your wife, and let her speak to me as well.”

Charlie could not resist. He ran to the car, drove home, and stormed into his bedroom. He realized all he had to do now was go to sleep and everything would return to normal in the morning, but when normal is misery who would willingly return to that. Charlie carried his confused and dazed wife to his car and threw her inside. Although it was difficult, Charlie explained the situation he created to his wife, who in turn agreed to speak to the Devil for her husband’s welfare. 

“If this is truly what you want, I will aid you in anyway I can.”

Charlie met with the Devil again, and held hands with his wife as Satan explained the deal. 

“Charlie, I will have to take one thing from your life that you don’t even know you have, and shall turn it to riches. Do you accept this?”

“I do.”

The earth got hot. The air thickened and got very humid. Mr. S looked to the sky and grinned as his skin turned red, his fingers grew and his nails blackened, sharpening to a point. Fire spread from his eyes and turned his eyes to red. Satan looked down at the couple and pointed to the wife. 

“One thing you may not know, young Charlie. Is your wife’s job allows her to afford amazing life insurance. You shall be rich when she dies, and seeing you have not spoken to her in months, it shall be an easy transition.”

Charlie now realizes that the thing the Devil will take is his wife, and screams for the ceremony to stop.

The Devil does not listen, and Charlie’s wife began to float off the ground and towards the Devil, she held her face to a straight frown, as she prepared for the next step in the ceremony. The Devil reached into his jacket pocket, and pulled out one of the black daggers that brought him into Charle’s life in the first place. Satan drove the blade into the back of Mrs. Charlie, as her back arched from the force at which the dagger was driven into her. The Devil peeked from behind her body and stared at Charlie, as he stabbed the innocent women was seemed like a hundred times in a row. After the deed was done, the ground opened and the screaming of the damned echoed through the forrest. Hands of demons pulled apart the dead wife and ripped her flesh from her bones, limbs from their sockets, and sprayed the blood and organs from her stomach into the air. Her intestines and entrails fell into Hell, and then, she was pulled into Hell herself, at least, what was left of her. 

“It is done.” sneered the Demon. 

The Devil snapped his fingers, grinning, and Charlie’s world went white.

Charlie awoke in his bed, covered in sweat. His wife was not at his side, and his shirt was stained with blood. There was knock at the door. Charlie gathered the mail, one of which was from Waycross Life Co. The title read “Check” and Charlie opened the letter. Shaking. Simply, a check was placed in the letter with the amount of 25,000 dollars listed. Charlie tossed the letter onto his couch, and answered the door. A policemen stood in the doorway, and quickly arrested Charlie. A neighbor reported seeing Charlie carry his wife to his car in the middle of the night, and return alone. His blood stained shirt was the rest of the evidence. Charlie had killed his wife for money, the money was given back to the Waycross Life Co. And Charlie spent the rest of his days in a state prison, alone, cold, depressed, wishing the lonely life of driving a car was still an option. 


Now, the Devil being a good and sympathetic creative, returned to Charlie while he rotted away in his jail cell. 

“Are you happy with your riches?”

“I was never rich. I am now cold and alone, more than ever before. You have not held up your end of the deal. I sold my wife for a price I was never paid.”

The Demon took this to heart. Of course the suffering of Charlie only brought the Devil bliss, but the accusation that Lucifer was not a man of his word angered the Devil.

“Oh young Charlie, but I have! If you need this riches, I shall give them to you. But seeing this is but another deal, you must pay another price.”


“Your soul. I want you to rot in this cell, and when you die, you shall be mine for all of eternity, and only then while you feel your riches.”

Charlie shook his head, but realized this was his only chance at feeling something again. Years of loneliness had taken a tole on Charlie, and the brutality of jail life had taken any sanity he had left. Charlie’s life grew shorter and shorter as each day passed, and on his last day Charlie prayed to God for forgiveness. The guards, knowing Charlie was going to pass, allowed his final hours to be spend in the warm sun outside, a privilege he had not earned in trail. Charlie was given to the Devil shortly after leaving the jail, and finished his payments. 

“All the riches Hell can offer you, are yours for your labor. You shall receive the ability to remain on Earth, but only in Waycross. You shall dress however you want, buy whatever you want, but no one can see or hear you until you are called upon. Just as I appeared to you, you shall appear to others, you shall take their wives and children and bring them to me just as I did to you, you shall take what is mine. You are my collector, you are my right hand. Just as Christ sits on the right hand of God you shall sit on mine, for this you shall have every rich in Hell you can find. De Manu Inferni!”

And to this day, Young Charlie stocks the streets of Waycross at night, only returning to Hell in the day. He collects the prices of the deals the Devil makes with the weakest of beings, and takes what they love, have, or need. To this day Charlie has never felt happiness, sadness, regret, anger, fear, he has only felt numb. And so he will continue to take from others until this void is healed. 



Submitted: October 29, 2020

© Copyright 2020 Jack T. Garvey. All rights reserved.

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