Creepy Short Stories

The Monster’s Ball, by Kevin Lazarus

Kevin Lazarus on the streets of Carthage Falls

Kevin Lazarus in Carthage Falls

(From: The Dark Side of Carthage Falls, the Anthology – by Kevin Lazarus)

“Dude—that night when your step dad came in yelling at us, did he even ask why we were so scared?” Brett stared at me, waiting for my answer. Somehow, during our lunchtime discussion, of just about every gross thing we could imagine, Brett zeroed in on that night—and the shadow. We weren’t alone, sitting at our favorite table. Kelly and some other kid named Derek, who wasn’t there that night, were sitting with us—participating in the gross fest.

Irritated with Brett’s diversion, I realized what it was that had caused the course change. In my attempt to one up the other guys, I brought up the old man barging into my room, showing up in his BVDs. I figured that there were enough witnesses to that night sitting at the table; it would be an easy win.

Of course, Brett refused to concede. But the others were backing me up. That is until Brett decided to point out the fact that my step father was a little hinky—walking around like that—especially with a bunch of kids being there.

“I know he’s weird—what can I say—I didn’t pick him!” It was a mouthful to spit out all at once, but I was embarrassed. I didn’t want any of them to think that I was related to him in any way, other than by my mother’s marriage to him.

Anger flooded through me at Brett’s trickery—he knew how I felt about my stepfather. He knew that I hated him and that it would throw me off, bringing him up. Brett was pretty sharp that way. At this moment he could see I was pretty upset too. All of sudden he gave me a friendly nudge and said: “Tell the guys some of the things he does to you!”

I stared at him in shock, becoming angrier at his continued violation of my trust. It seemed to me that this kid didn’t know how to keep his mouth shut! It would’ve been one thing if he was sincerely concerned for me. But it seemed to me it was a peculiar fascination; like I was one of those bugs he’d trap and then torture mercilessly—all the while wearing that slight slip of smile—his sinister little grin.

The thought of revealing too much about my life was unnerving. But the prodding of my friends to “continue” was hard to resist. Somehow, my thoughts drifted past my desire for revenge against Brett, and with a long paused breath, started—hoping that I truly was in the company of friends.

My words faltered a little, awkwardly tumbling out of my mouth as I began to speak. “Well—one time he pinned me to the floor. I think he thought we were having fun, but I was stinking scared. He pinned my arms down and my legs so I couldn’t move—” more »

Shadow of the Hand, by Kevin Lazarus

Kevin Lazarus on the streets of Carthage Falls

Kevin Lazarus in Carthage Falls

(From: The Dark Side of Carthage Falls, the Anthology – by Kevin Lazarus)

The old orchard wouldn’t soon be forgotten. Often on our way home Brett and I would stop near the grassy path and tempt ourselves with the possibilities—of running headlong down the path. Not stopping at the old tractor and not exploring for new discoveries, but just running hard; cutting loose, pulling out all of the stops to temp fate—just for the thrill of it!

We would laugh and push one another, taunting the other to move closer to the head of the trail. So close to the branch covered opening that we could feel the hair bristle at the back of our necks. And then run frightened—like the little kids we were—back to the sidewalk; where often we would find Carly watching us, staring at us like fools. There was something about her? It would be sometime before I would dare to venture down that path again. Not for one second would I have guess that it would be by myself and that my worst fears would be realized…

Autumn birthdays and Halloween all jumbled into to one. With enough cake and candy to give an elephant a sugar high, it was most excellent! Add to that a sleepover and it made for one sweet trick-or-treat night. By that evening we had canvassed the entire neighborhood and returned to riffle through our booty.

I sat and watched Brett, dressed like a pirate (we were both pirates—no surprise there), drooling over a pile of candy that would choke an elephant. The two of us and several other friends had all of our candy on the carpet in mounds, going through it, counting it to see who had the most. And that kid, the one with the most, would be Peter. He was that kid that, not matter what he did, he almost always seemed to come out on top. Like a little miser, he kept scooping it all back into one massive pile, with a boyish grin, while laughing a sinister laugh and repeating over and over, “read ‘em and weep boys!” Yeah—he went as a cowboy.

Stuffed with candy and hotdogs from dinner, and cake from my birthday—and more candy, we retired to my bedroom to tell scary stories, and of course—eat more candy.

We sat in a circle, still dressed in our costumes, each taking a turn trying to scare each other. We passed around a flashlight, holding it under our chins to make our faces look creepy. Brett told the last story—The Hand—which freaked me out. He took particular delight in laying it on heavy, adding every creepy detail he could think of. We were scared out of our minds.

Daniel, this pudgy little kid that I grew to like because of his sincerity, suddenly went off on Brett, “you aren’t all that scary!” With that, the banter intensified resulting in a little shoving match between Daniel and Peter, because Peter disagreed with Daniel—he thought Brett was plenty scary. Finally, Brett broke it up by revealing to the others that I had some real scary stories to tell; bragging about the orchard and then telling them that I had been hearing creepy footsteps at night while walking home. Brett and the others suddenly got real silent staring at me. “Go on,” Brett whispered, “tell ‘em what happened to you!” more »

The Shadows of Indian Summer, by Kevin Lazarus

Kevin Lazarus on the streets of Carthage Falls

Kevin Lazarus in Carthage Falls, photo by Penelope Knight

 

(From: The Dark Side of Carthage Falls, the Anthology – by Kevin Lazarus)

Indian summer was in the air. Unusually warm for October in Carthage Falls; the enigmatic Carthage Falls—the inexplicable Carthage Falls. Golden leaves spotted with orange, both in the trees and everywhere on the ground; piles of leaves inviting unbridled play. And oh how I wanted to play!

My newest friend, Brett and I, stood at the edge of the Orchard staring down a grassy path leading into a clump of old Cherry trees. They were unkempt, tall and straggly—unlike so many of the other orchards in Carthage. They were now wild and overrun with vines and various other trees that clearly didn’t belong.

Brett nudged me—taunting me. “Scared?” he laughed. And then in an incessant tone said: “there ain’t nothin’ to be afraid of in there! Besides—it’s the fastest way home.”

The fastest way home? Now that was tempting. That long walk home from school was frustrating. It cut right into the middle of what little time I had after school with my friends. Not to mention that the other way was tiresome. Once more I inspected the path surrounded by tall dead grass; shrouded by the low lying braches from the trees, and the dark opening, that for some unknown reason fascinated me.

And while a lot of the leaves had fallen to the ground, it wasn’t enough to see where the path actually traveled. I could only imagine. And considering the distance that I normally had to walk, I suspected that even this shortcut wasn’t all that short.

Off to the side there was an abandoned house. Its shaker siding was broken in many places and falling onto the ground. Every window in it had been smashed. And an old curtain dangling from the corner of one of them was slowly flapping in the afternoon breeze. Its material was dingy with black smudges and full of holes. Next to that there was an old singlewide trailer; the door wide open, swinging back and forth while making the most unpleasant raspy noise. I felt an uneasy chill as I listened to it. more »

Night Stalker in Carthage Falls, by Kevin Lazarus

(From: The Dark Side of Carthage Falls, the Anthology – Kevin Lazarus – by Kevin Lazarus)

What I am about to tell you is the beginning of a series of truly mysterious events that happened to me when I was very young. I have told these stories to very few during my lifetime and refrain from using the name of the town out of consideration for friends who might still live there; who also experienced similar events. What I am about to reveal to you is the truth.

Autumn Shadows

The onset of fall came early that year, ushered in by windy nights and chilled breezes. Even at the age of eight I knew it meant that the snow would fly early and that it was going to be a long winter. As with most autumns, the sun would set earlier with each day. We had just moved to this town because it was close to my step-father’s work. I will call the town Carthage Falls for the sake of a name. We moved into a new house that had just been built in a new development on the side of a mountain in Carthage Falls. As I would learn later in life, this little town was old and had a dark legacy well known among the locals.

That summer had been full of new friends and new adventures—and I didn’t want it to end. I didn’t want to go to a new school or have a new teacher. Things at home weren’t all that great, so I didn’t want to be there either. I would stay as long as I could at my friend’s, even into the fall, well after school had begun—when night would come early. That’s when it started, on one of those long walks home—in the dark—when I first realized that strange sensation, that I wasn’t alone. more »

Dark Whispers, Part 2

(Continued from Monday the 5th, from: The Dark Side of Carthage Falls – the Anthology – by Kevin Lazarus)

And then I heard it again–empty and hollow–odd little whispers! The words exploded through my mind. Voices–I was hearing voices? Hyper panic set in as fear flowed through me like a shockwave, dialing up ever sensory emotion. Every sound, the slightest bump or creak was now magnified a thousand fold. Those strange little noises were coming from somewhere at the back of the house; back in the bedrooms. Images started flashing before me, from my memory and for a second, once more, I thought I could hear the same footsteps walking behind me from that first night. I quickly shook it off. “Not in the house,” I quietly insisted, “No way!”

Deeply disturbed by what I thought I was hearing, I backed into the corner, scrunching down into a ball. I listened some more, waiting for another gust of wind–hoping that I was wrong. Whatever it was, at least it wasn’t the sound of footsteps. But, for some reason I had the same crummy feeling that I had that night…like I wasn’t alone. “Listen Kevin–listen,” I whispered to myself. “Maybe it’s nothing…”

I lost track of the time waiting. Curiously, the sound hadn’t returned and I began to breathe a little easier. But I didn’t move, not yet–I had to be sure. So I continued waiting there in the corner listening wanting to prove that it was nothing. Again, the wind battered away at the house mercilessly, rattling the windows.

My lower lip was painfully sore, as locked onto it with my teeth, biting down hard and pulling on it; thinking, rehashing what I had heard over and over again, in my head. Another gust of wind hammered the house–and then–it happened again! This time there was no mistaking what I had heard and that realization hit me hard–it was voices! more »

Dark Whispers Part 1

(From: The Dark Side of Carthage Falls – the Anthology – by Kevin Lazarus – Continued)

The sky looked dark, even menacing. Happily, the driveway was empty. Of course, I couldn’t say that I was sorry he wasn’t there–the man with two faces. more »

The Monster’s Ball (Part 2) by Kevin Lazarus

Kevin Lazarus in Carthage Falls

 

(From: The Dark Side of Carthage Falls – the Anthology – by Kevin Lazarus – Continued)

There was a slight audible gasp from them. Brett was now staring at me intensely, completely mesmerized.

“So who was it,” Kelly stammered, “do you know?”

“Who do you think it was, you little worm—it was his step dad!” Brett snapped. more »

The Monster’s Ball (Part 1) by Kevin Lazarus

(From: The Dark Side of Carthage Falls – the Anthology – by Kevin Lazarus – Continued)

“Dude—that night when your step dad came in yelling at us, did he even ask why we were so scared?” Brett stared at me, waiting for my answer. Somehow, during our lunchtime discussion, of just about every gross thing we could imagine, Brett zeroed in on that night—and the shadow. We weren’t alone, sitting at our favorite table. Kelly and some other kid named Derek, who wasn’t there that night, were sitting with us—participating in the gross fest. more »

Shadow of the Hand by Kevin Lazarus (Part 2)

(The continuation of The Dark Side of Carthage Falls – the Anthology – From last Wednesday November 16th – by Kevin Lazarus)

“I heard that there was some guy they caught,” said Peter. “He liked little kids!”

“What’s wrong with liking little kids?” blurted Kelly. His sandy hair hung nearly clear down into his eyes as he looked at us like a deer in the headlights. You could’ve heard a pin drop as the rest of us stared at him in disbelief. Finally, Brett leaned over and whispered something in his ear. Kelly’s face turned a little red as he did. “That’s sick!” he finally declared. more »

Shadow of the Hand by Kevin Lazarus (Part 1)

(The continuation of The Dark Side of Carthage Falls – the Anthology – by Kevin Lazarus)

The old orchard wouldn’t soon be forgotten. Often on our way home Brett and I would stop near the grassy path and tempt ourselves with the possibilities—of running headlong down the path. Not stopping at the old tractor and not exploring for new discoveries, but just running hard; cutting loose, pulling out all of the stops to temp fate—just for the thrill of it! more »

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