Frank Misundestanding

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Mystery and Crime  |  House: Booksie Classic
Creepy boy psychopath is called to the principal's office.

Submitted: December 24, 2009

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Submitted: December 24, 2009

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He swiveled his chair to face the window, holding the vial against the streaming sunlight, scrutinizing the thick, black liquid it held. He uncorked it, and was greeted by the sharp, bitter odor he recognized as nicotine. His attention was momentarily shifted to the scene outside when he suddenly caught the faint sound of maniacal laughter.

“Martha!” He cried to the young girl who was seemingly the source of this distraction. From his window he shouted,  “We don’t want lawsuits from angry parents, Martha!”.

 

Martha’s subsequent look of confusion prompted him to rephrase –

“Stop throwing sand into other kids’ eyes”.

“Ohhhh,” was the thoughtful reply. “Okaaay, Mr. Burke”, she said in a sing song voice, and released the fistful of sand that was just before aimed at a cowering victim.  Martha ran off to another corner of the playground not within the principal’s range of sight to resume her terrorizing.

 

Swiveling the chair back into position, he leaned across his desk and let his eyes rest on the boy seated opposite.

“What is this, Frank?” he asked, indicating the vial by a slight jerk of his head.

“I made it,” the boy said flatly.

“Is that so?” he asked, allowing every syllable to drag longer than it should. He was disappointed when this attempt at intimidation did not elicit the desired response. It did not, in fact, elicit any response. The boy just stared.

 

“How?” Burke asked sharply.

“Tobacco,” he answered simply.

 

The boy had a habit of answering direct questions with vague answers. Could make a politician if he had a little more charm, Burke thought.

 

“Frank, do you know what you’ve made? It’s called nicotine, and - “He searched the child’s face for any expression other than the perpetual mask of vacant, blank stares , “ – and it’s very dangerous liquid”. Burke could not tell from Frank’s silence and lack of facial expression whether the child did not understand or simply did not care. “Did you know that, Frank?”

 

“Yes.”

 

Burke looked at Frank, who returned the gaze with unflinching solemnity. Unable to keep up with the staring game, he leaned back and sipped on his coffee instead, and watched as the black waves danced in the mug as he swirled it. This boy is simply a visual oddity, he mused. The subject in question was a little shorter than most in his age range, but he was a well fed young man – a physique complemented by small, piggish eyes. As if being short and pudgy wasn’t enough, he had pale, sickly skin. He always thought there was something unsettling about Frank, and this morning’s events that led to Frank being in his office right now was proof. Burke coughed nervously.

 

“Then why, Frank, did you try to make another student drink it?”

A slight flush suffused the boy’s pale face. He mumbled, “I’m sorry. I just wanted to see what would happen”.  Burke was almost happy – some of the teachers had given up on trying to coax any kind of emotion out of the boy. Today, however, in this very office, the boy actually ventured beyond his usual monosyllabic reply and even managed to display something akin to emotion. Burke couldn’t wait to share this new development in the staff office. Oh, he would probably have to mention the murder attempt as well.

Burke downed the remainders of his coffee and nearly gagged. He couldn’t remember it being quite so bitter. Then something clicked at the back of his mind as he glanced at the empty vial on the desk and Frank’s still intently staring eyes.

Frank closed the door behind him as the principal slumped forwards on his desk.


© Copyright 2020 jen. All rights reserved.

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