Ring Around the Rosie (a short story)

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Thrillers  |  House: Booksie Classic
Isabella is driving home on a dark, rainy evening when suddenly out of nowhere a figure darts in front of her car making her crash. As she searches for a way out of the rain, she sees a house in the distance. The nearer she grows to the house, the uneasier she becomes. What things reside in this house and will Isabella come out of it alive?

Submitted: July 18, 2012

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Submitted: July 18, 2012

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Isabella was driving home from work on a dark, rainy, cold Friday evening. As she drove out of the business parking lot, she wondered what her weekend would be like. Would she decide to stay home again and watch movies on Netflix and gorge herself on sugary sweets? Or would she put herself out there and call up one of her nice, handsome coworkers to go have a drink with her? Dexter seemed to be a nice guy.

As she pondered this, the rain began to pour harder and the lightning flashed brighter in the dismal, ink black sky. Isabella averted her eyes from the bright flash of lightning at the same moment a figure leapt out of the brush from the right side of the road and darted across the highway. Isabella jerked the steering wheel hard to the right to miss hitting the figure that had now disappeared. Her black 1967 Chevy Impala drove off the road, passed the roadside brush, and straight into a tree, wrapping the entire front end of her car around the large trunk. The force of the impact caused Isabella to slam forward in her seat and smash her forehead against the steering wheel. Isabella thanked God for the invention of seatbelts at that moment. Had she not been wearing hers, she would have been thrown through what remained of her windshield. 

Feeling nauseated and light-headed, Isabella slowly lifted her head away from the steering wheel and waited for the dizziness to pass.

“Well, that was certainly more personal than I ever wanted to get with my steering wheel,” she grumbled coughing ferociously after having spoken. 

Snatching her purse from the floor of the passenger seat, Isabella unbuckled her seatbelt and all but fell out of her car when she opened the door. Standing upon wobbly legs, Isabella dug around in her purse for her cell phone. Retrieving her cellular device, she flipped it open and checked to see how many bars she had. Her phone flashed a message: No service. Tears pricked the corner of Isabella’s eyes as she stared at the smashed in hood of her car where it was now beginning to smoke. This was not what she imagined her weekend to be like. Blood from the cut wound on her forehead slowly dripped into Isabella’s eyes as she turned around in a circle and observed her surroundings. Far back in the woods she saw the glow of a distant light. She turned to look back at the road where a clear path of her wreck was outlined by the thick, dense brush the mysterious figure had popped out of. She could either head into the forest toward the light where there could potentially be people to help her, or she could head back out onto the road and hitchhike herself back to town that was about fifteen miles back. 

Deciding to go for the shorter option, Isabella pulled her designer coat closer around her body and began her long trek in heels that were very much not conducive to her journey through the dark, muddy woods. As she stepped out of the woods a few moments later, she came upon a house that belonged in a classic horror movie. Isabella stared at the house warily.

“I’m beginning to think taking the road was the better option,” Isabella said quietly to herself. Hoping these people weren’t a crazy family filled with creepy, sadistic serial killers, Isabella walked up the stone steps to the large, oak door and pounded the knocker. After having waited a few moments, Isabella was more than happy to turn back and head for the road when the large door creaked open a few inches. Isabella stared with wide eyes at the door.

“Because that’s not completely creepy or anything…” Isabella chuckled nervously to herself. Once more she glanced over her shoulder in the general direction of the road. She could still turn back and most likely not get killed. Or she could enter the creepy house where doors magically opened and potentially die. 

Sighing, Isabella turned back to the door. “I’m just gonna poke my head in and ask if anyone’s home and then do a quick scan for a phone. I’ll be in and out within a matter of seconds.” 

Isabella gripped the strap of her Prada bag and hesitantly stepped into the house which, not so surprisingly, was dark and creepy. 

“Hello?” She called out. “Is anybody home? I just need to use your telephone if you have one. My cell phone has no signal…” Conveniently, she thought cantankerously to herself.

As she took another step into the house, the door slammed close behind her making her scream in alarm and quickly backing away from the door.

“It was just the wind, just the wind, just the wind…” she chanted softly over and over to herself. A crack of lightning mixed with the deafening explosion of thunder caused Isabella to dart into the nearest room in fright. Gaining control of herself, Isabella felt alongside the wall for the light switch and flipped it on and illuminated what looked like was once a study. On the desk Isabella spotted an antique phone. Isabella bolted for the phone and snatched it from the cradle and began dialing 911. She put it up to her ear and realized there was no sound of ringing. Glancing down, Isabella found the cord snipped in half. Feeling like she wanted to cry, Isabella took out her phone and saw the same message staring at her in the face: No service. Frustrated at her luck, Isabella slammed the phone back down onto the receiver. Seconds after, the phone in the room began ringing in a shrill, horrific way. Isabella’s blood turned ice cold at the sound. All the blood drained from her face. 

“There is no way…that cord is cut,” she breathed in disbelief picking up the two halves of the cord in each hand. The phone continued to ring. Should she answer it?

Isabella picked up the phone. The sudden silence in the room was almost more deafening than the sound of the impossibly ringing phone. She put it up to her ear and swallowed hard.

“H-hello?” 

Every hair on her arms stood on end; chills erupted across her body at the eerie sound that emitted from the other end of the phone. A bone-chilling giggle of a little girl sounded in Isabella’s ear before everything went quiet. 

Not wanting to be in that house a moment longer, Isabella dropped the phone to the ground and made an escape for the door. Just as her hand curled around the doorknob, the click of the lock rang in Isabella’s ears. She glanced down to look for a dead-bolt. All she found was a key-hole.  She was locked in a house haunted by the ghost of a psychotic little girl. Isabella scrambled around to find each and every window, door, and exit she could find. Everything was locked. Short of throwing herself out a window, Isabella was trapped. As she slumped against the front door in defeat, Isabella saw a white, translucent orb floating at the top of the stairs. Knowing deep down that she really shouldn’t follow the orb, knowing without knowing it was the little girl, Isabella stood up and hesitantly followed the orb up the stairs and down the hall. As she came to the last door on the left, the orb disappeared through the door. Isabella followed.

In the middle of the room stood a small, young girl around the age of ten with curly blonde hair and a white sundress on. The blue ribbon in her hair matched the blue of her eyes. 

“What do you want with me? Why won’t you let me leave?” Isabella demanded of the little girl. The small girl poked out her bottom lip, pouting.

“I just want a friend is all,” her quiet, ghostly voice responded.

“I need to go home,” Isabella told her.

“Play one game with me and I’ll let you go,” the girl giggled taking a step toward Isabella.

Isabella narrowed her eyes in suspicion.

The girl smiled even wider and cocked her head innocently to the side. “I promise.”

“One game?” Isabella repeated deciding whether to give in or not.

The little girl held up one finger. “One game,” she promised. Isabella saw all the ways her saying yes could go wrong, but if she wanted out she knew she had to play along.

“Fine. ONE game,” Isabella warned stepping closer to the girl. “What game?”

“I want to play Ring Around The Rosie.”

“But that’s not really a game.”

“So technical aren’t you?” The little girl sighed. 

“How would we hold hands anyhow? You’re transparent.”

“Don’t worry about that, silly Isabella,” the little girl smiled. Her voice and smile was laced with too much innocence. 

“How did you-?”

“Come on, let’s play!”

Hesitantly, Isabella joined the little girl and walked around in the circle while the little girl dance and sang:

 

Ring around the rosie,

Pocket full of posies.

Ashes, ashes…

 

As the little girl slowly sang ‘ashes, ashes’, her dancing and skipping and hopping around came to a dead stop. Isabella arched a curious brow wondering why the little girl had suddenly stopped singing and dancing. 

Then an evil, sadistic smile contorted the innocence of the little girl’s face into something horrendous and demonic.

“We all fall down!” She finished in a demonic growl thrusting her hands forward. 

Isabella felt herself being thrown back across the room and into the large window. Her arms pin wheeled as she felt herself falling backwards out of the house toward the ground. Shards of glass fell after her from the now broken window. 

Just when she was about to hit the ground, Isabella jerked up in bed with a hand up to her chest. Beneath her hand she could feel the rapid beating of her heart. Isabella closed her eyes in relief that it was all just a dream.

“Isabella…” Isabella’s blood froze in her veins at the chilling sound of her name being called. She slowly turned her head towards her balcony window.

There stood the little girl from her dreams; the same sadistic smile on her face.

“Wanna play a game?”

 


© Copyright 2017 Danielle Taylor. All rights reserved.

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