Give Him Your Nightmares

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic
Have you ever had a bad dream. A manifestation of all your fears, both realistic and irrational. An imaginary place that exists only within your mind yet seems so very real. An illusion within your sleep that was so horrible that no other word can describe it other than a nightmare?

Submitted: June 23, 2008

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Submitted: June 23, 2008

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“In visions of the dark night
I have dreamed of joy departed---
But a waking dream of life and light
Hath left me broken hearted.”
Edgar Allan Poe -- “A Dream”
“Oliver Fright is not a criminal, he is a businessman.The media portrays him as a ruthless evildoer with no soul who preys on weak and defenseless young women like a ravenous wolf, but that is simply not so.They call him evil, vile, and even monstrous.Yes, monstrous!
“I ask you: How is a man who alleviates people's sufferings a monster?How is a man who helps people sleep at night ruthless and evil?Don't pay attention to that idiotic droning of puppet newscasters whose strings are being pulled by ratings hungry, corporate scum suckers.Oliver Fright does not wish to harm anyone, he is merely profiting on a previously unharnessed resource. More coffee, madam?” said Carl von Moltra.Margret nodded absently, completely snared by the tall man's honey coated words.Von Moltra's mouth curved upwards in a seductive smile as he poured the rich and flavorful coffee into her cup.Margret's cheeks flushed as she returned the smile.
Carl von Moltra was certainly a handsome man.He stood well over six feet tall with glossy black hair combed towards the back of his skull.His jaw was as smooth as polished marble; not a trace of stubble could be found anywhere on that chiseled face.His skin was pale and creamy, like the foam on top of his cappuccino, which he barely touched.His eyes were a very deep maroon color, almost haunting in their brilliance.He wore a custom made black suit with bright red vertical pinstripes, accenting his finely toned frame quite nicely.The attraction that Margret felt towards von Moltra was so strong that she felt an almost unbearable urge to drag him back to her apartment and spend the next couple of days beneath him.This animal attraction she felt made it very hard to concentrate on what he was saying.
Von Moltra gently placed the silver coffee pot on the edge of the table and turned his attention back to Margret, who fluttered her eyelashes like an infatuated school girl.
“Margret -- can I call you Margret?” he asked politely.She nodded eagerly.
“Marget, have you ever had a bad dream.A manifestation of all your fears, both realistic and irrational. An imaginary place that exists only within your mind yet seems so very real. An illusion within your sleep that was so horrible that no other word can describe it other than a nightmare?”He put special emphasis on the word “nightmare,” as if the word was in italics.
Margret turned inward at this question.
“Yes . . .” she said meekly.
“Have they plagued your sleep like a flock of menacing crows, intent on picking at your brain until you finally fall into the dark and terrible arms of insanity?”Margret was taken aback.
“Yes!” she gasped.“How did you know?”Von Moltra grinned and laid a cold hand on top of Margret's.A chill ran up her arm and down her spine.The simple touch gave Margret a thrill like she had never experienced before.
“Why do you think I invited you here today, Margret?” he asked her.Margret admitted that she had no idea.Von Moltra squeezed her hand tenderly, as if he were a lover trying to calm his partner.
“I've brought you here to free you from the tyrannical terror that rules over your mind.” said he.“I'm offering you the chance to lie in your bed at night without the fear of attack from those imaginary monsters that haunt your sleep.”Von Moltra locked eyes with Margret.The loving gaze pulled her deeper and deeper into the black hole of his pupil.“I'm offering you the chance to rid yourself of the Corn-man.”
Fear washed over Margret like a tsunami.The image of the Corn-man peering between the corn stalks, prowling like a starving tiger, leaped into her mind.Margret instinctively clasped the locket around her neck with such a force that it left an impression in the palm of her hand. The fear washed away just as quickly as it came, and she quickly realized that she was squeezing von Moltra's hand with just as much force.Margret snatched her had back.
“I'm so sorry!” she exclaimed.Von Moltra reached across the table with his impossibly long arm and took her hand again.He rubbed the back of her hand with the tips of his fingers.The touch soothed Margret almost instantly.A sigh of relief slipped between her lips.
“I'm so sorry . . .” she repeated.
“Do not worry, my sweet.” von Moltra cooed.“Everything is alright.”
“But I must have hurt you-.”
“Not at all!I hardly felt it.”
“Are you sure I didn't-?”
“Positive.”Von Moltra smiled and Margret melted.She sank into her chair, letting another careless sigh escape her lips.
“Wouldn't you like to know how I know about . . . You-know-who?” von Moltra asked.Margret subdued any traces of the Corn-man's image and sat up again.
“Yes I would, actually.” she said, smiling slyly.“Can you see my dreams?”
“I can't, but Oliver Fright can.”Margret was taken aback for the second time.
“I . . . I was just joking . . .”Von Moltra allowed himself a small chuckle.
“I know, but your words were of the utmost truth.Oliver has been monitoring your dreams for several weeks now, and he believes that he can, through an ingenious process of his own invention, remove this nightmare and make sure that it never bothers you again.”
“Monitoring my dreams?” Margret asked him quizzically.
“That's correct.”
“How?”Von Moltra pressed a cool finger against her lips.The corners of his mouth curved upward in that oh-so-seductive smile.
“That, I cannot reveal.” he said.“It is a complicated process anyway.Nothing you should worry your pretty little head over.”Von Moltra’s hand gently caressed her cheek.His fingertips glided across her smooth skin.Using his index finger, he gently traced an outline of her soft, rosy lips.Margret's hand drifted up to touch von Moltra's.Her fingers curled around his hand and she tenderly kissed the tip of his finger.The action felt so totally appropriate and so completely right.She suddenly realized that her feelings (as feelings usually do) had betrayed her.She let his hand roughly fall to the table with a dull and oddly metallic clunk!
“I'm sorry!” she exclaimed.“That was . . . that was very inappropriate.I mean, we just met, and-.”Von Moltra smoothly scooped up Margret's hand and delicately pressed his lips to her white knuckles.His head remained there for a few agonizing moments.Margret suddenly had the urge to run her fingers through that silky hair of his.Von Moltra raised his head and said:
“No harm done, my sweet.Tell me, do you want to remove from your subconscious any and all traces of the monster that stalks your dreams?”Margret was drawn into those beautiful maroon eyes of his.The total blackness of his pupil seemed to mix with the brilliant maroon of his iris.The two colors swirled together in an infinite whirlpool that sucked her down, down, down . . .
She couldn’t help it.
“Yes.”
Von Moltra smiled.
He stood, still holding Margret’s hand in his.She stood with him, refusing to take her eyes off of his.Von Moltra raised her hand to his lips once more, tenderly pressing his lips to her fingers.
“Oh, von Moltra.” she sighed.
“You may call me Carl, Margret.” he said in between kisses.
“Really?”
“I would prefer it, my sweet.”He stroked her cheek with the back of his fingers on his other hand.Margret’s heart began to beat faster, thumping lightly in her chest.Her lungs pumped in shorter intervals, causing her breathing to become shallow.Von Moltra just smiled that oh-so-seductive smile.
“Perhaps you would like to enjoy a more private screening with me before we go to see Oliver?Just to make sure you’re ready for the process.Would you like that, Margret?” he asked.Margret’s heart beat against her ribcage so fast and so hard that she thought it might explode from the strain.Her breath came in short, ragged bursts.
“Yes!” she gasped.“I would love that, Carl.”
Von Moltra only smiled.
That oh-so-seductive smile.
#
Stupid little girl.Oliver Fright thought as he watched the pair get up from the table.The image from the security camera came in as clear as bell.Not a hint of static marred the picture.Oliver pulled the tab on a can of Royal Crown Cola.He sipped the carbonated beverage while he watched von Moltra pull each one of the girl’s strings until she was the perfectly obedient puppet.Oliver was proud of the big oaf.His performance was to be applauded.He had caused the girl to completely forget about all the news stories that pointed accusing and derogatory fingers at him, calling him sadistic and a murderer.Fools.They had no idea what he was doing here.How could they? This type of work would be completely beyond their puny brain capacities.They couldn’t even begin to understand the power that lay dormant within the human mind.Fools.Every single one of them.
Oliver watched von Moltra and the girl leave the restaurant, undoubtedly rushing to the elevator.He chuckled lightly.Bravo, von Moltra. He thought.Another easy kill.
The girl was a fine specimen.Her lifestyle was very regimental, which didn’t suggest that she would be prone to random reoccurring bad dreams.There had been no recent traumatic break-ups or any untimely deaths of a friend or family member, which meant that her nightmares were the product of some traumatic event in her past. He deduced that it could have been anywhere between the ages of eight and twelve. It was rare to find a person plagued with nightmares from their early childhood.Very rare indeed.
Oliver sat the RC down on the table next to the security monitors and stood up.He strolled to the bathroom on the other side of the room.The floor was littered with empty pizza boxes and fast food bags.Against the wall to his right was a weight set, pull-up bar, and a treadmill.After all, sitting around all night watching people’s dreams wasn’t exactly the best form of exercise. After emptying his bladder, he meticulously washed his hands, scrubbing between his fingers and under his nails.He did not know if having dirty hands would affect the retrieval process in any way, but he didn’t want to take any chances.He donned a white lab coat and a white apron, both as clean as his hands.He left the bathroom and checked the security monitors once more.Von Moltra and the girl were already in the elevator and it looked like she was --.
“Oh!” Oliver exclaimed.The girl threw herself at von Moltra, roughly kissing him and nibbling on his lower lip.Well . . . Oliver thought.A very easy kill indeed.He shut off the security monitors and left the room by way of a second door opposite the bathroom.Beyond the threshold was a room so white that it glowed under the florescent lighting.The room was small, not so small that it was cramped, but small enough to allow Oliver to easily move around to each of the tables surrounding the operating table in the center of the room.On the table against the far wall were several complex and alien machines that hummed softly.The second table was neatly arranged with a wide array of glittering medical tools, both modern and archaic.The third table held a softly humming computer with a flat-screen monitor.A filing cabinet was neatly tucked underneath.
Oliver sat down at the computer table and pulled open the bottom drawer of the filing cabinet.After rifling through the manila file folders for a few moments he found the one he was looking for.It was the girl’s file.Inside were several charts that showed brain activity at certain points during the night, the results of a physical she had had two years ago (Oliver had hacked into the hospital’s database and copied it), and a personal history going back to when she moved to Chicago six years ago.Oliver merely glanced at the file, making sure everything was easily available should he need to find it.He closed the folder and laid it next to the keyboard.Oliver closed the bottom drawer of the cabinet with his foot and opened the top drawer.Lying inside was a white three-ring binder.He hefted the heavy binder and laid it on the table in front of him.
Opening the binder revealed page after page of newspaper and magazine articles encased in plastic sleeves.Many of the early articles were very positive, hailing Oliver Fright as a genius.One headline in bold, black letters read:
BRILLIANT PSYCHOLOGIST MAKES MAJOR BREAKTHROUGH
Oliver remembered being interviewed for that article.The reporter was an officious little twit that knew next to nothing about dream therapy or psychoanalysis, yet he persisted in trying to convince Oliver that he was an expert.After the article was published, he remembered offering to analyze one of the reporter’s dreams.The nae young man had eagerly agreed.Oliver spent an hour listening to one of the man’s strangest dreams (he suspected that the man made it up to try and impress him).He sent the little twit home crying ten minutes later after breaking it to the man that it was very possible that he had an Oedipus Complex.
As he flipped through the pages, the tone of the headlines became more and more reproachful and disparaging.The earliest of these read:
BRILLIANCE TURNS TO MADNESS
He continued to flip through the articles, glancing at titles such as “MURDER IN THE OFFICE” and “MIND RAPE IN CHICAGO.”Oliver noted with some amusement that some of the most damning articles were written by the reporter he’d sent home in tears.He closed the book and placed it back in the top drawer of the filing cabinet.He stood up and walked to the table with all of his tools laid out on it.His hands hovered above the tools for a few moments, feeling for the souls locked within the gleaming metal.They weren’t souls really, just the dreams of those long dead and buried.Oliver picked up a glistening medical scalpel.He cradled the blade in his hands lovingly, watching the light reflect off its polished surface.He picked up a white cotton cloth and wiped the scalpel down.Von Moltra would arrive with the girl soon . . .
It only seemed appropriate, Oliver thought, that he and his friends look their best.
#
Margret lost it in the elevator.She just couldn’t hold it in anymore. The raw lust that coursed through her body was just too much for her to handle.And the subtle, but very sensuous caresses from von Moltra’s wandering hand weren’t helping.
Margret relished in the sharp tingle that danced up and down her spine as von Moltra held her.His hands felt like they had been soaked in half frozen water, but the cold only made his gentle touch ever more sexual.His lips were cold too.In fact, it seemed that every inch of von Moltra’s body was covered in a thin sheet of ice.But Margret didn’t care.She was too wrapped up in the taste of his lips and the way his muscles moved under his pinstripe suit.
The elevator doors slid open with a soft ding. Margret grabbed von Moltra by his coat and dragged him into the hallway.She pressed herself against the opposite wall, pulling her new lover close.Von Moltra slipped his hands around her shapely thighs and lifted her off her feet.Margret wrapped her legs around his waist and attacked his neck.Von Moltra carried her down the hallway, ignoring the embarrassed and distasteful stares of several passersby.Margret slapped his back and urged him to hurry, but he did not change his slow and purposeful pace.
After what seemed like an unbearable amount of time, the new lovers arrived at the hotel room.Von Moltra took the card key from his back pocket and unlocked the door.Using him for balance, Margret leaned back and turned the door knob.Von Moltra pushed through the doorway and closed the door with his foot.
Pale moonlight spilled into the room through a thin crack in the curtains, illuminating the room just enough for Margret to see von Moltra’s face.She slid from his grasp, her feet lightly settling on the shag carpet.She let her hands slide off von Moltra’s shoulders and down his chest.The muscles beneath his shirt and jacket brought her arousal to its zenith.She had to have him and she had to have him now.
Von Moltra fumbled for the light switch.Margret stilled him with a light touch to his arm.
“Leave the light off.” she said.
“Fine by me.” von Moltra grinned.
Margret turned her back to him, allowing his eyes to wander down to her buttocks.She walked deeper into the hotel room, working her hips.As she walked, Margret imagined what von Moltra would do to her.She imagined him stepping up behind her and running his frozen hands over every inch of her body, seeking out the areas that he could use to pleasure her the most.She imagined all of this and more as she made her way to the bed.Margret turned to sit on the end of the bed, expecting von Moltra to be standing there, ready to pounce on her like a lustful tiger.
Instead, he smashed a lamp into the side of her head, plunging her world into complete darkness.
#
Oliver had just finished cleaning his tools when von Moltra arrived with the specimen.He entered the lab with the girl thrown over his shoulder like a bath towel.
“Thank you, von Moltra,” Oliver said. “Your punctuality is to be admired.”
“Thank you, Oliver.Shall I change the subject’s clothes?” von Moltra asked.
“Please.Strap her to the operating table when you’re done.”
“Yes, Oliver.”Oliver laid his medical tools on a silver tray then transferred the tray to a wheeled stand.He rolled the tray over to the operating table, to the right of where the subject’s head would be.Von Moltra took the girl into the next room.He returned with her a few minutes later.Her pretty red dress had been replaced with a green patient garment.Von Moltra gently laid the girl down on the operating table.He fixed one of the leather restraints around her waist and fastened it tightly.He was just about to bind her hands when Oliver called him over to the table with the weird machines.
“Look behind the apparition manipulator and tell me if you see anything wrong.” Oliver said.Von Moltra leaned over the machine, peering into the shadows.
“I don’t see anything.Is the power cord all the way in?”
“I’m not sure.Try it.”Von Moltra reached behind the machine and pushed on the power cord’s plug.The machine hummed to life in an instant.Von Moltra stepped back while Oliver adjusted a few knobs on the front panel.
“That seems to have done it.” Oliver said.He nodded to the girl lying on the operating table.“Let’s finish tying her down so we can apply the anesthetic.”Von Moltra nodded and they walked back to the girl.Oliver pulled the leather strap across the girl’s ankles and tightened them as much as he could without cutting off circulation to her feet.
“Oliver . . .” von Moltra said quizzically.
“Yes, von Moltra?”
“Are you missing a scalpel?”Oliver’s head snapped up, his eyes tinged with fear.
“What?”
The girl, who had been as still as a corpse only moments ago, suddenly awoke, swinging her arm out towards von Moltra.Oliver saw the glint of the medical scalpel as it cut through the air.Von Moltra moved to dodge the blow, but it was too late.The polished steel bit into his stomach, jaggedly cutting through the expensive suit and ripping open his gut.Von Moltra staggered backwards, knocking over the tray of medical tools.The ripped pieces of the suit fell away, followed by von Moltra’s flesh –
The girl screamed an ear-splitting cry of sheer terror as the flap of flesh fell down, revealing the intricate clock-like machinery inside.Devices that shouldn’t even exist mixed with brass cogs and wheels.Von Moltra looked down at his stomach curiously, as though he was just as surprised by what he saw.Then he looked up at the girl.Her eyes had grown to the size of a pair of baseballs and she had begun to visibly shake.The scalpel slipped from her grasp and clattered against the unblemished floor.Her jaw dropped open and she screamed again.
Oliver approached from behind and stabbed the needle of a syringe into her neck.He thumbed the plunger, and the sedative filled her jugular vein.Her scream ceased almost instantly, and her face muscles relaxed.Oliver quickly pulled the needle out of the girl’s neck and stopped her from falling as her whole body went limp.He gently laid her down on the operating table and quickly finished strapping her down.Once he was satisfied that she was secure, Oliver looked up at von Moltra, who was still staring at his mechanical insides with great fascination.
“What are you doing?” Oliver asked him.
“Marveling.” von Moltra said simply.
“What on earth are you marveling at?”
“I’ve never seen what I look like on the inside.”
“I’ve shown you the schematics.You’ve seen how you’re put together.”
“It’s not the same.”
“How so?”
“Well, you’ve seen pictures of what humans look like on the inside, yes?”
“Yes.”
“But you’ve never actual seen what your own insides look like, have you?”Oliver said nothing to this.Von Moltra simply shrugged.“It’s just interesting.” he said.
“Well quit gawking and put on an apron.” Oliver snapped.He crouched down and started to pick up his tools, making sure that none of them were damaged.
Bloody Hell. Oliver thought. He’s starting to think. I’ll have to get rid of him soon.Oliver carried his tools over to a small sink in the corner of the room and began to clean them.
I suppose I’ll have to make sure that the next Carl von Moltra is a bit more simple minded.
#
With the glistening pink of the subject’s brain exposed to the rest of the world, Oliver shifted the magnifying glass so that he could get a better look at the area where he wanted to make an incision.He gently traced a line between the two cerebral hemispheres with the tip of his index finger.He had to be very careful at this stage.If the cut was off by just a fraction of an inch, he might accidentally kill the girl, or damage her mind to a point that he would be unable to extract what he needed.
Oliver picked up a clean scalpel from the wheeled tray.He held the subject’s head steady with his glove clad left hand, using his index finger and thumb to measure how long the incision needed to be.He pressed the point of the scalpel into the soft tissue.The blade cut deep, at least an inch and a half down.Oliver expertly sliced downwards, opening a two inch laceration between the two hemispheres.He held the scalpel out to von Moltra.The mechanical man took the blade and replaced it with a small, hollowed out cylinder made of amethyst.
Oliver opened the wound in the subject’s brain with the first two fingers of his left hand.He slipped the crystal tube into the incision and let the brain tissue wrap around it, holding it in place.He straightened up, muttering some words in a language that hadn’t been spoken by a human being in over two thousand years.He turned to the wheeled tray and picked up a very old Native American dream catcher.
Dangling the dream catcher by a leather strap, Oliver continued to mutter in the strange language as he bent over the subject once again.Strange symbols began to glow on the surface of the amethyst tube.Oliver dangled the dream catcher in front of the cylinder’s opening.A thin wisp of white smoke began to drift out, snaking towards the old net.Oliver ceased his chant, holding the dream catcher steady as he watched the evanescent smoke become tangled its web.The vapor writhed as though it were a living creature.It lurched and wriggled, trying to break free of its new prison.
As the last trails of the nightmare left the girl’s mind, Oliver stood up straight and carried the dream catcher over to the table with all the alien machines. Von Moltra followed like a duckling follows its mother.Oliver held the catcher steady, lest the nightmare fall free and escape, turning this whole venture into one big waste of time.
Von Moltra stepped up to a machine with a large glass container attached to the top of it.He unscrewed the cap and stepped out of the way.Oliver lowered the dream catcher into container.He knocked the edge of the trap against the container’s side.The entangled nightmare shuddered and fell away from the trap.It floated down softly and came to rest at the bottom.Oliver quickly pulled the dream catcher free of the container.Von Moltra capped the container just as the nightmare cloud spiked upwards.The cloud slammed into the lid and let out an angry screech that echoed in the back of Oliver’s mind for several minutes later.
Von Moltra screwed the cap on tightly while Oliver flipped a series of switches on the front of the machine. He moved to his left, pushing von Moltra out of the way.He twisted one of the large dials and the machine hummed to life.A panel slid back on the top of the machine and a strange bowl shaped object on a mechanical arm rose from within its belly.The arm automatically pointed the object to a spot on the floor to Oliver’s left.
The glass container holding the nightmare cloud was suddenly filled with arching bolts of electricity.The nightmare screamed and writhed within the container.Oliver covered his ears to block out the sound.He didn’t know why he kept doing that, though.It never seemed to stop that terrible scream from getting through.
The inside of the bowl shaped object began to glow, projecting the light in a flashlight-like beam.The intensity of the light kept growing and growing until it was unbearable.Oliver threw an arm up to cover his eyes.He didn’t look to see if von Moltra was doing the same.
Then all at once, the light burned out.Oliver lowered his arm, black splotches blotting out his eyesight.He looked to where the object had been projecting and marveled at what had been created.
He was crouched down inside a perfect ring of black scorch marks.He stood, his face obscured by a tattered hood that looked to be made out of soot covered burlap.His muscled chest was bare, and wrapped around his wrists were a pair of grimy black chains covered in an oil-like substance.From the waist down he was dressed only in a pair of ragged blue jeans and a pair of black boots.
Oliver smiled wolfishly.
“Welcome to the real world.” he said.
The Corn-man smiled right back.
*
Margret awoke with the worst headache she’d ever experienced.When she opened her eyes the light seemed to sear her eyeballs with a pain she didn’t even think was possible.Despite the pain, she held her eyes open to try and discover just exactly where she was.The ceiling was covered in dozens of rectangular white pads.Further inspection showed that the same was true for the walls and the floor as well.
A horrible thought dawned on Margret.
Had she gone insane?Had the whole incident with von Moltra and Oliver Fright been in her mind this whole time?She knew that the man in the white coat had to be Oliver Fright.Who else could it be?But who was Carl von Moltra?He obviously wasn’t human.He was something impossible.Something that only exists in science fiction novels and shouldn’t ever be allowed in this world.Was he real?Was anything she had experienced real?Had her whole life up to this point been one long, stretched out dream she had while lying inside a cell in an asylum?Margret curled up into the fetal position and began to sob loudly.It couldn’t be so.
She put he hands on her head, trying to stop the nonstop pounding against the inside of her skull.She recoiled in horror when she discovered that her head had been shaved bald.Margret tenderly patted the top of her head.Her fingers found the line of stitches that parted her scalp.Why were they there?What had Oliver Fright done to her?
Margret heard the soft squeal of hinges that would have to be oiled soon.A wave of harsh light spilled into the room.She recoiled, shielding her eyes with her arm.The room was still for several agonizing moments.When Margret lowered her arm, all she could see was a blinding rectangle of light at the other end of the room.She rose, wondering if she was being set free.Then a tall, black silhouette filled the doorway.
Fear washed over Margret.She knew the shape before her.It was the same shape that had plagued her dreams every night since she was ten years old.It was the same shape that crept back and forth behind the rows of tall corn stalks, beckoning her to come forward so that he could snatch her up and drag her screaming into the field.
The Corn-man stepped into the room, his malevolent grin and glowing red eyes visible from within the shadow of the hood.Margret whimpered pathetically as she watched the door close, sealing her in with her lifelong tormentor.
The Corn-man took one slow step forward, then another, and another. Margret pressed herself against the wall with each heavy step.The Corn-man stopped in the middle of the room and began to laugh. She could hear the evil and malice that oozed from the sound.Her tormentor raised his right hand, grasping the top of the hood.Margret’s eyes bulged with fear.This is something he had never done before.Could it really be him?Had he really been torturing her all these years?
He pulled back to ash-gray hood –
Margret cried out in anguish.The Corn-man had finally revealed his true face to her.The shadows fell away to reveal the chiseled face of her father.His chin was covered in a thin layer of scruff and his black hair was all over the place. She closed her eyes and rubbed them with the back of her hands.Nothing had changed when she opened them again.Her twisted father still stood before her, his head thrown back in laughter.
Her father started coming for her again, still laughing and chuckling like a hyena.Margret was suddenly ten years old again, cowering in the corner of her room with Daddy shuffling towards her.She watched herself run between his legs and out the bedroom door.He chased her out of the house into the corn field.She was screaming for Mommy, but she was far away.No one was there to save her.Her foot got caught on a rock and she stumbled.Her face plowed into the ground, filling her mouth with moist soil.She scrambled to her feet, spitting dirt as she went.But Daddy was too fast.He’d already gotten ahead of her.She could see his silhouette in the moonlight, his wolfish grin flashing menacingly.
“No, Daddy!No!” the younger Margret shrieked just before he fell on her.She kicked and scratched at her father, but he would not release her.He slapped her across the face hard enough to daze her.Her body went slack, but she still held on to consciousness.Daddy began to rip away her clothes.
“Stop it Daddy . . . stop it . . .” she kept muttering, but his lust would not be tamed.
The next several minutes were pure, unfiltered agony.But the worst of the pain was not from her father’s molestation.The worst pain was the heart breaking betrayal she felt.Daddy had promised to never let anything hurt her.He promised!And he had broken his promise in the worst way possible.
“Mommy!” she cried again.
Mommy came this time.She’d brought Uncle Tomas with her.And he had brought a forty-four magnum with him.They found Daddy hurting her in the corn field.Uncle Tomas shot Daddy in the back.His dying scream was a mixture of anguish and rage.Daddy toppled forward, landing on top of her.Margret screamed again and again until Uncle Tomas pulled her dead father off of her and Mommy scooped her up in her arms.
“Oh God, Margret!What are you doing here?I thought you were at Ashley’s house!Oh God, Margret, talk to me!” Mommy wailed.Margret squeezed the locket around Mommy’s neck.The cool metal comforted her.
She had been at Ashley’s house, but she had forgotten the movie they were going to watch, so she went back for it.That was when Daddy went insane.After years of a steadily deteriorating mental state, he finally broke, nearly destroying his own daughter in the process.Margret’s body still bore the scars of his incestuous rape.
She remembered looking down on her father’s blood soaked body lying in the moist soil of the cornfield.Just before Mommy whisked her away, she muttered only a few words with more venom than she ever thought she could produce.
“That’s not my Daddy.”
Margret slammed back to reality as her father – no – the Corn-man clamped his hands around her throat.He lifted her up until her feet could barely touch the floor.
“You’re not my Daddy.” Margret croaked.“He’s dead.”The Corn-man’s grip tightened. A strangled cry escaped Margret’s lips.The Corn-man’s chuckling increased in intensity until it transformed into wild laughter.
Margret suddenly affixed him with a gaze of intense hatred and let loose a bellow of pure rage.A pure, undistorted sound that cut through the Corn-man’s laughter, causing him to stop short.
“Not . . . my . . . Daddy . . .” Margret whispered.“He’s dead.”
The sound of a gunshot ripped through the room and the Corn-man’s entire body jerked.His grip loosened and Margret fell to the padded floor, coughing and holding her throat.The Corn-man’s gaze fell to his chest, where there was a bullet hole Margret could put her whole fist through. The wound suddenly began to smoke, releasing a noxious smell into the room.The flesh began to blacken as though someone was holding a blowtorch to the wound.A foot-long jet of flame speared out of the Corn-man’s chest.He didn’t scream at first.He just stared at the fire with disbelief.His head slowly rose until he was looking at the ceiling.
Then he screamed.
His dying scream was cut short as a second jet of flame erupted from his mouth. Two more gouts of fire exploded through his eyeballs, completing the show.The spectacle was both horrifying and liberating for Margret.He was finally disappearing forever.Her father’s ghost would never bother her again.
The Corn-man was suddenly ripped asunder by the flames consuming his body from the inside out.His body split down the middle in a bright flash. The two halves quickly disintegrated into nothing but clouds of ash that floated gently to the floor.After all this, and despite the fact that she was still at the mercy of Oliver Fright, Margret allowed herself to smile.
The door at the other end of the room swung open, filling the room with the harsh light once more.A new silhouette stepped into the doorway.Margret knew this one as well.
Carl von Moltra stepped over the threshold.The way he moved was completely opposite of the Corn-man.His strides were long and purposeful.He crossed the room much more quickly than his predecessor.His handling of Margret was very different as well.Although he too clamped his hands around her neck, instead of slowly strangling her, von Moltra pressed both of his thumbs into her windpipe with inhuman strength.Margret’s throat collapsed underneath the pressure, cutting off the air to her lungs.
Von Moltra dropped her body to the floor, which had begun to twitch violently with death spasms.Oliver Fright stepped through the doorway and walked over to the pair with his hands in his pockets.They watched her suffocate for several long moments before speaking.
“Another waste of time, my friend.” Oliver said.Von Moltra nodded.
“The search for the perfect nightmare continues.” he said.Oliver shrugged and turned to leave.
“After you dispose of the subject,” he said.“Start packing up.We need to move on before anyone notices that she’s missing.Since she’s one of the top child psychologists in Chicago, I don’t think it will take long.”Oliver smeared a clump of gray ash across the white floor.“I think we’ll go to Colorado this time.”
“I hear the weather’s lovely this time of the year.” von Moltra chimed in.


© Copyright 2017 Aleksander Azrael. All rights reserved.

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