Friday, August 20, 2010

Night Terror

Photo courtesy of Magpie Tales
It was late, and darkness filled the room like death creeping in through the cracks in the old wooden floor.  The only light was that from a candle on the vanity. The silence screaming inside her head was deafening.  She suddenly had a strange, creepy feeling.  Barely breathing, she moved her eyes left and right, peering into shadows.  "I'm alone", she kept telling herself, "I'm alone.  I locked the doors and closed the blinds before I came up here." 

The old iron tub was quite the challenge to get up that narrow stairway.  The workmen were cracking jokes about rich gals and bubble baths as they lugged it up the steps.  She and her husband had bought the old house to restore, and the tub was one thing she insisted on.  Now, alone in the house for the first time since they moved in, she thought she would enjoy a long soak in her tub. 

But now she felt a chill even through the warm water.  It was then she heard the first creak.  It's an old house she thought, it will crack and pop from time to time.  It's OK.  In the hall, the floor creaked again.  Fear began to settle into her heart.  Maybe I'm not alone!  She looked around the room, trying to see anything that could help her.  There was no phone, and nothing to serve as a weapon.  She had refused to keep a gun in the house.  Only the innocent get killed with their guns, she had said.  Now here she lay, naked in her bubble bath in a dark room, in a big empty house, with a psycho killer on the other side of the door.  Maybe it's just a robber and if I stay quiet, he'll take what he wants and leave.  Please, God, don't let him find me.  Her heart was beating so loudly in her ears she was sure he'd hear it.  Then there was a footstep just outside the bathroom, and the rattle of the old glass door knob as it turned.  The door squeaked as it opened slowly.  Eyes wide open, she stared through the dim light toward the door.  As a dark figure entered the room, something glinted in the light from the candle.  It was a knife, the blade long and thin. The killer waved it menacingly at her.  This was it.  She would die here in her tub.  Now, oddly detached, her last thought was "I'm glad I had a pedicure".  She screamed one hoarse scream and slumped back into the now cooling water. 

"Lily, wake up.  Wake up, you were screaming."  It was her husband, gently calling her back to reality.

A fictional story written for Magpie Tales #28


  1. Until the last few lines, you had me hook, line and sinker! Great Magpie...

  2. ooooh gotcha! and you got me!
    Good one!

  3. Wow! had to keep reading! it was great :)

  4. ah - i was glad it was her husband..and he didn't came to kill her….glad she had a pedicure…kind of weird things one can think in tense moments…

    my magpie is here

  5. Well done, I just had to keep reading, it held me to the end.

  6. haha. loving the surprise endings this wife tends to doze off in the tub...i have saved many a set the tension just right there at the beginning and i was settling in for a good scare...nice magpie!

    my magpie

  7. Linda,
    I loved how you drew us into the meanderings of the mind and how the fear rises out of proportion to the reality and then of course add the dream quality to it and it jumps into your psyche!
    Awesome magpie.

  8. A chilling tale, the revelation at the end came as a shock and was wonderfully done. But living in an old house, I've often felt like this, that somebody is watching, lurking in the shadows. It is nonsense of course, but, as they say, fear is irrational.

  9. Powerful stuff, and very well done.

  10. I've been there! ... you captured it brilliantly :o)

  11. It looks as if we were strolling down the same never knows where Norman will show up!!Ha!! Excellently done!

  12. I must tell you, I am quite afraid to take a bath in this old downstairs tub, late at night, when I'm alone in the house.

  13. Nice and creepy! Thanks for sharing it.

  14. Good. I'm glad it was just a dream. :)

  15. Just a dream? Or was it?

    Nice Magpie!

  16. nicely done, i totally thought her number had been called. i really enjoyed reading this.

  17. Helen- Thanks, that's what I intended.

    kathew- Thanks, glad you liked it.

    Sezaaay- Thanks.

    Claudia- I like those weird twists in stories.

    nana_ang_poppaphil- Thanks, glad you enjoyed it.

    Brian Miller- Thanks, there have been some surprises. I like that.

    rel- Thank you. It was fun to write.

    Jingle- Thank you.

    Sam Liu- I'm glad you enjoyed my creepy tale.

    Berowne- Thank you.

    Deborah- The dream or the tub? Glad you liked it.

    Lyn- I do love the creepy ones. Thanks.

    willow- Was I channelling you? Uber creepy.

    Jenny Beans- Thanks, glad you enjoyed it.

    Angie Muresan- Yeah, so was Lily.

    Vicki Lane- It was a dream, but each story is different for each different reader. It can be whatever you'd like it to be.

    Tumblewords- Thank you.

    Patience- Thank, that's what I was hoping people would think.

  18. Linda, I felt every shiver and as you used the third person, it could have ended in tragedy, but I was a little disappointed at the 'dream' ending. I would have been happier had the glinting object turned out to be a champagne flute and in the other hand, a second glass and a frosted bottle! :-)


Hi, thanks for visiting my humble abode. All comments are read and appreciated.


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