This first one is, well, the first story I wrote...well after the unnameable first one. Its a bit dark, a bit twissted, and pretty haunting. I could never settle on a title for this one and its listed as both "She Could Have Been Mine" and "Monster in the Room" in my computer. Leave a comment below if you feel like it, and let me know what title you like best. Or better yet, come up with your own!
“Daddy, there’s a monster in my room. ‘I sleep with you,” asked Kasey. Her dad was lying next to her as she climbed onto his arm to ask him again. “I scared” she proclaimed genuinely, in a way only a four year old could. She made a little frown that exposed all her teeth, and her daddy John, rolled over to comfort her.
“There’s nothing to be afraid of”, he assured her “there’s no such thing as monsters.”
“Ya huh”, she argued.
John propped his head up on his hand and leaned over her. “Well I won’t let any monsters into your room,” he said with a tender smile.
Kasey relaxed her grip on him and laid with her arm across his chest.
“Now close your eyes and go to sleep.” He said, as he gently brushed her blonde hair away from her blue eyes. The same blue eyes her mother had.
John watched her toss and turn, clinching her stuffed animal dog “Ruff”, given to her by her naïve aunt on the day she was born. Four years and three months later, Ruff was looking like his name sake. He was bleeding white stuffing, and tendons of thread hung from where his right eye once belonged. Patches of silky fur were crusted with an unknown gunk that refused to wash out. But, she still loved him, and snuggled him face to face.
John Slowly falls into blackness and lands on a dark road with bright yellow lines painted in the middle that reflect a car’s head lights. He knows this road, Hillcrest, and the car he is driving, a 99’ Chevy Cavalier. He looks to his right and sees his beautiful wife sitting next to him. Although it is only months after Kasey is born and she is still struggling to lose the baby weight, she looks absolutely stunning. Like the day he falls in love with her; only the first month into their relationship, he speaks those words; “I love you”, on the beach front after dinner. Their foot prints disappear to the engulfing waves that slap right at their feet. She doesn’t feel the same way, she needs to give it more time. His emotions always move faster than hers. A year later she is walking down the aisle, dressed in white. Their life together has just begun. Now they drive down the street one year later. He starts coughing, and rolls down the window. The cool winter air chills his lungs. His throat tightens up as he gasps for breath.
John woke up back in Kasey’s pink room, moved her arm off of his neck, and massaged it to relax himself. The moon shone through the windows illuminating it as if early dawn had broke, but the butterfly clock only read 9:30. He could never tell Kasey what happened that night. How could he? She was too young to understand just what had happened to them, all of them, that night. She had already lost her mother, which was heartbreak enough. She didn’t need to know the gruesome details. It was too difficult for him to explain.
John pulls down the blinker and turns left. The wind blows his brown hair into a frenzy. The air smells crisp. Angie reaches to hold his hand, but he pulls it away to lower the gear and turns onto Hillside Ave. Hillside seems like the epitome of twilight and engulfs the car, with only two cones of light to guide them. The naked trees hunch over the street like the hands of death, reaching for its next victim. His heart beats faster and he grips the wheel with white
knuckles. As he speeds up, he sees Angie’s smile disappear out of the corner of his eye. “John?”, she asked
He lifted his hundred pound eye lids and Kasey was looking down at him. “Daddy, I have to go potty”, she said. John rose from the bed and walked, hand in hand, with Kasey to the bathroom. He had done everything right as a husband; there was nothing he could have done differently to prepare himself for the news that awaited him. “Why’d she do it?” he thought as Angie begged for forgiveness.
“Daddy I’m done” said Kasey as she flushed the toilet. John picked her up and carried her back to the bedroom. Her body sank into his as she fell asleep, her head on his shoulder. He laid her down in her princess castle bed and kissed her on the check. He quietly motioned for the door, but at the first creek Kasey asked, “You ganna keep me safe?” He smiled to himself and responded “Of course.”, and then laid down next to her.
Nine months had come and gone, and he thought he had forgiven Angie for her ‘lapse in judgment’. She didn’t mean for it to happen; he knew that much was genuine. But the news from the doctor was a bigger bite to chew, and would remain stuck in his throat for the next 6 months. Angie had known the doctors results all along – womanly intuition and her less than stunned reaction to the news had given that much away. That betrayal hurt even worse. He hadn’t cried so much in his life than he had that day in the cold, unforgiving office.
John sees the clearing, the location of which he had picked days before. The next three seconds he runs through his mind thousands of times. He wants to force the car to its max, but a bolt of anxiety struck his foot and he can only manage to push it down to 70 miles an hour. Angie lets a shriek escape and throws her hands over her eyes. He takes a sharp right and trudges through the slush and mud from the storm earlier in the day. John is relieved; the car handles better off road than he had hoped for. He angles it perfectly, striking the right side of the car on the tree trunk. The last thing he remembers before blacking out is his head careening into the steering wheel as an eruption of crimson rain splatters the shattering windshield. The meeting creates a mixture of red sleet that sparkles as it hangs in the air. The same New England weather he tells the police causes the accident, the sudden loss of control of his car, and the death of his wife.
He shot his eyes open and next to him laid Kasey, sound asleep. Her blonde hair rested flat against her rosy cheeks, just below where her baby blues hid behind their closed lids. He could never tell Kasey the story of how her mother died. John held Kasey a little closer. She squeezed him back and whispered “I love you, Daddy”.