Friday, March 30, 2007

UNDERTOW - The Scheherazade Project

For March's Scheherazade Project, "What Makes You Tick?" - Inspired by an old James Whitcomb Riley poem designed to get naughty children to behave - with which my ornery Grandmother used to entertain (and secretly scare the bejeebers out of) us before bedtime. Still a little rough, but I wanted to get it posted before the weekend. Comments and criticisms welcome.



UNDERTOW


* * * * *

I'm so sorry I was bad.

I don't even remember what it was I did, but I'm so sorry.

* * * * *

"Come on! I don't feel like playing your stupid games tonight!"

Ariel was tired of his pranks. Tonight a game of hide and seek was apparently in order, but she wasn't in the mood. If he'd jump out of some darkened room somewhere down the hall trying to scare her she was just in the right frame of mind to bust him in the face. But he hadn't yet. It seemed like he was home, but he rarely had the patience to wait it out this long. She kind of hoped he'd left the house altogether. Maybe out with the boys. Maybe even not come back.

She picked half-eaten sub up off the bed and marched it to the kitchen trash can with a disgusted grunt. He was such a pig. She returned to the bedroom, shooed the restless dog off the bed, plopped down, and absentmindedly surfed the blaring tv a few times. She then turned it off and opted for peace and quiet - something her life lacked since he'd invaded it.

It was so quiet. Just the gentle mumbling of the evening spring rain.

She wished she didn't love him.

She turned out the lights, hugged her pillow, stared at the droplets wandering down the windowpane and thought about that.

Maybe she didn't.

* * * * *

I don't know what happened.

I remember kicking those damn pink throw pillows on the floor and stretching out on the bed with my sandwich to catch a little tube. I stuck my feet under the comforter ...

FOOM! Something pulled me under like a black hole. So fast I didn't even see it happen. I was just under. Sucked under.

I've been trying to get out for hours. I can see the surface of the bed. I can see the dog digging her claws into the material trying to get underneath of them. I can see her mouth chomping at the air ... I know she's barking ... but I can't hear her.

I'm exhausted from fear and struggle. Big bolts of linen and satin and velvet and wool flutter angrily on every side of me. Hanging down like theater curtains. Flapping up like Marilyn Monroe's white dress. They shudder and tense as if in a huge wind tunnel, yet no air moves. I scream, but I sound as though a pillow is over my mouth.

And whatever had my ankles, still has them.

Something strong. And cold. That breathes very hard.

I grasp at the bolts around me but my arms go right through them like dry liquid. I thrust my hands through them, clawing, searching for walls, confines, projectiles. Nothing. And if I stop moving, I slowly inch further and further down.

I grunt in desperation in the roaring silence. I look down at my ankles, enveloped in, what, tree roots?

No. They're fingers. Long, mottled, wet looking fingers. And then I see the eyes. Illuminated bloody eyes the shape of caraway seeds. As I look at them, they narrow. And awful amber teeth glint in a wicked smile.

I panic, clutching and grasping for anything. I see Ariel above me, but she's not looking. I scream for her. She looks pissed, but she can't let me die. I scream and scream. She only turns out the lights. My heart explodes with terror.

Something below me rumbles. I know I'm freaked out right now but I swear it sounds like laughter.

* * * * *

A few days later he still hadn't come home. She still didn't miss him. In fact, she was kind of glad he was gone.

* * * * *

Wake up. WAKE UP!

Please God, I'm sorry... I'll never be bad again...


* * * * *

10 comments:

Nelly said...

What a vivid post; so detailed. Love it. Gosh, so little for so long and now I can't keep up! Again, welcome back.

Izzybella said...

That really and truly scared the crap out of me. Very expressive writing. I enjoyed this!

River Rat said...

Freaked out a bit, but loved it just the same.

By the way I turned 28! lol

River Rat said...

Oh, not a problem at all! I thought it was kinda' funny really. My son adores his John Deere Gator! I swear the boy would sleep with it if he could, I love it even better when the battery runs out! LOL!

Faith said...

Love it! Cool! It's been so fun seeing what people have come up with. Everyone's so creative, and it's just been a delight.

Faith

Jody said...

well you just about scared the pee out of me! I Loved it!

the domestic minx said...

Well, if that didn't scare the bejeebers out of me!!!

Brilliant stuff Clew!!
Exceptional writing.
Loved it!

martie said...

A great read, dear Clew! I'll be gone to Kentucky for a few days and maybe gone from blogging for a bit too!

chesneygirl said...

Very good...as usual, your writing impresses the hell out of me!!! :)

Faith said...

Clew, you won the drawing for the Amazon gift certificate. I get paid Friday, so check your e-mail then. Congrats!!