As it’s nearly Halloween I thought I’d share the opening of my new scary story with you all. POISON is a YA horror. Let me know what y’all think.
P.s It was formatted properly, but WordPress kept changing it. I gave up fighting in the end – I’m a quitter.
After killing her abusive father, eighteen-year-old Bethan Jones loaded her pockets with rocks and walked into a lake. She was dead for six minutes before her body floated back to shore and her eyes popped open. Bethan is alive, but she didn’t come back from her six minute trip to Hell alone.
I can hear whispering.
That goddamn priest. He’s mumbling a prayer under his breath again. When will he learn that the monster hears everything? The smallest sound tolls like a church bell. Just this morning it woke to the sound of a butterfly beating its wings.
Wood knocks, skin flakes as he pulls a string of rosary beads through his thick, callused fingers. I wish he would stop. Praying doesn’t help. It only makes the monster mad. Sometimes, if I’m not too tired and I think about it hard enough, I can make believe that I am a stone. With no skin to cut, no bones to break, no blood to bleed, I hurt less.
“Hallowed be thy name.”
A growl echoes from deep inside me. The sound claws its way out from my throat and rolls like thunder around the room.
“Thy will be done,” the priest continues, the volume of his voice climbing above the monster’s growl. “On earth as it is in Heaven.”
The monster snakes around my insides. Curling up and around my ribs. Squeezing my bones in a tight fist. Too tight. Something snaps.
I’m not stone, I’m glass.
My eyes pop open and my whole body jerks forward as a scream rips through me. The noise of it makes the pictures on the wall tremble.
“Forgive us our trespasses…”
“Stop! Stop. It’s killing her.”
My bed —my borrowed bed— depresses at one side and I turn to see Toby. The sharp lines of his face are hard to trace because of the white mist in my eyes, but it’s him. I know his voice. Soft and gentle, even mixed with the urgency. He’s holding a wet cloth. I hear the drip, drip, drip of the water as it splashes against the bed sheets. Toby’s not brave enough to close the gap between us and mop my brow. Last time he got too near I sank my teeth in to his skin and tore a chunk out of his arm.
It was the monster. But the memory still brings a warm, iron taste to my mouth. It’s my mind that recalls the rubbery texture of his flesh between my teeth.
I try to reach out for him, but the binds holding me to the bed frame won’t let me move. The thick leather cuffs just grate against the already worn skin on my wrists, creating red-hot friction.
“As we forgive those who…”
“I said that’s enough.” Toby jumps up off the bed. The priest stumbles as Toby snatches at his hands. Wooden beads tumble to the floor.
A chorus of ragged breaths slice through the silence.