Getting ourselves grown up into sophisticated individuals, we’ve forgotten what glorious mess we were back in the old days, when the world seemed so tall from our heads, when teasing and fooling around with those tall figures was so much fun, when we all were pretty liars, lying about every second thing we’ve been asked by the tall people. That perplexed look on their faces was the best part, because they had a hard time guessing whether we’re actually telling truth this time or lying again! Those days were so lovely, so lively.
“HONEY! SWITCH OFF THE T.V. NOW! YA GETTIN’ LATE FOR SCHOOL”
Little Gerald stood up from the couch, mending his jumpsuit in the process, and switching off the television as ‘Dennis the Menace’ finally rolled their credits. He was happy he completed the whole episode this time, which he often misses as he leaves for the school every day by then. He quickly picks up his tiny schoolbag and rushes off to the door, as if he has been standing there since a long while and it was his mom making him late.
Dorothy Williams, a skinny blonde with an angry grin on her face reaches for Gerald, “Have you seen the car keys Gerald? I’m sure I saw them right here on the cupboard this morning” pointing towards the elegant wooden cupboard on her left, “OH! I KNOW MOMMY! I KNOW! I saw them on the couch when I was watching T.V.” As soon as his mother left the scene, Gerald pulls out his right hand from the pocket and throws the keys flying above on the cupboard exactly where they were supposed to be kept. “That’s strange. There were no keys on the couch. I ought to…” she looks at the keys, “GERALD! How many times shall I tell you not to mess around, especially at such a wrong time! I know you must have kept them here when I left.”. “No mommy I didn’t!”
The frustrated mother neither had time for arguing with her son, nor did she want to get late anymore. Both of them now drifted towards the Hatchback Sedan and soon left the big Victorian House, towards a long endless street with houses of all shapes and sizes on both sides. The car took a left turn after a quarter mile, towards another street. After a drive of another couple of minutes, the car stopped. The door on the passenger’s side opened wide. Behind the metal door, on the ground, emerged two small feet, and behind the black tinted windshield, one could see the driver bending slightly towards the little passenger to kiss him goodbye.
“Honey, I have an important meeting this noon and won’t be able to drop you back to home. I’ve asked Mr. Winters to pick you up along with his son. Take care. Bye bye”
Gerald Nodded. Swinging his bag pack round his back, he rushed towards the school, with enough confidence and determination in eyes to give his teachers a hard time at school.
After a few hours, the gates of the Marigolds Primary School opened; little toddlers started spilling out. Gerald came gossiping with his gang, easily distinguishable from others amidst the crowd. Just then he saw Mr. Winters, eagerly waiting for his son and Gerald to arrive. “Hello Gerald! We’ll leave for your home as soon as Carter comes. Just stick with me, he will be here soon.” But Gerald was the kind of a kid who would do anything but the exact opposite of what is instructed to him. Moreover, he’s a grown up now and the tallest in his class, he can go home all by himself! Perhaps that’s what he thinks. “No need Mr. Winters! You see my mum over there! Here I go!” Before Mr. Winters could check if his mother has really arrived or not, the little boy was vanished from the crowd.
On the way back home, Gerald was walking and skipping all around when his eyes fell on something which made him stop his feet. Gerald saw a weird looking, shabbily dressed, Gothic lady. Her face as pale as dead dried autumn leaves. Her head tilted slightly towards left, with eye sockets embedded with something, but definitely not eyes, wrinkles running all over her face, with a smile not as wide as the one Gerald’s mom used to see in late night horror shows, but the smile was grim enough to frighten anyone who looks upon it. Her hands were motionless, suspending downwards from her shoulders awkwardly, as if ropes suspended off an upright corpse.
Gerald was fear ridden. Obviously. No matter how much naughty and peculiar type of a child he was, yet still, he was a mere 6 year old. His head dripped streams of sweat running all the way down to his belly. His legs started trembling and his face which always wore a naughty smile, now frowned with fear. Without wasting any moment Gerald rushed towards his home with all his might. He’d never run that fast before. Overpowered with panic, the swift little kid fell badly on the road, and hurt his knees.
With tears in his eyes and blood oozing off his knees, Gerald reached his home. He threw the ‘WELCOME’ carpet in front of the main door in the air, picked up keys, unlocked the door, and quickly shut it with a thud once inside.
It was two hours later when Dorothy arrived in the house and saw some red liquid stains on the floor. At first she was shocked, but soon this apprehension was turned into suspicion. She thought Gerald was playing his games with her again as he did the ketchup blood stain prank last month. She followed the stains to Gerald’s bedroom to find her son having wounds on his knees. She soon realized he must have had some ‘prank gone wrong’ scenario. But whatever it was, the wounds were legit, so was the blood. Hence she first of all applied Band-Aids to her son, gave him a lovely hug, and then asked him affectionately, “Okay Gerry, Mommy wants to know what happened. I won’t scold you, but please speak truth this time.” Gerry honestly described the whole scene to his mother. But due to his fame of being a liar of liars, she thought he’s lying again and must have fought with some kid and lying in order to hide his fault. Little did she know that the poor kid was not lying.
She left him alone in his room in anger without uttering a single word. Gerald never felt so much helpless and lonely before. After a few minutes, he changed his robes, and came downstairs towards the telephone. He was calling Edward, his best friend to his home for some company in this hard time.
Ten minutes later, the doorbell rang. Gerald welcomed Edward. Just when he was about to close the door, he saw the same familiar figure he encountered a couple of hours ago, but this time, it was standing right in front of the house in the middle of the road, with face tilted left towards him. He shut the door quickly, grabbed Edward’s hand and rushed towards his room. He didn’t leave his hand until both were seated on the bed.
“ED..ED..EDWARD, I wanna tell you something.”
“Ya sure Gerry, I’m listening”
“Today when I was coming back to home from school…I…”
“I…what?” said Edward. Gerald didn’t speak and was completely motionless now.
“Are you even gonna say something Gerald. Stop playing your old games with me”
Just then, Gerald replied in a whispering tone, “THERE’S SOMEONE BEHIND YOU!”
“Oh really!? Shall I expect a boogieman behind me right now!? Stop lying Gerald. You shouldn’t lie.”
With a zapping sound of incision, the creepy Gothic lady cut Edward exactly in half with her nails which now seemed to be like needles. Blood fell all over Gerald’s face and clothes and the little kid shouted helplessly. Gerald quickly rushed downstairs looking for his mother. She saw blood all over him again. Just when Gerald explained what happened, she exclaimed,
“ENOUGH GERALD! Enough of these tricks, pranks and lying. You don’t have any idea how much problems you create for me. Stop lying Gerald. You shouldn’t lie…”
“MOM !! SHE’S BEHIND YOU!”
Before Dorothy could even react, or say a word, or look behind, she shared the same fate as that of Edward. Her body cut perfectly in half from top to bottom.
“NOOO!!” cried Gerald.
The left part of her body fell leftwards, while the right one fell on Gerald, with blood flooding all over the floor. The old lady now seemed much bigger, darker and creepier, now with a wide smile running from her left ear to the right ear, thus revealing her sharp teeth, hundreds in number. She spring-pounced upon Gerald with her nails penetrating deep inside his eyes.
“NOOO!! LEAVE ME PLEASE!! HELP!!”
“YOU SHOULDN’T HAVE LIED GERALD. YOU SHOULDN’T LIE. NOW YOU’LL DIE KID!!! TIME TO GO TO DEEP SLEEP!!!”
Just then, Gerald saw a much familiar face as he slowly opened his eyes. It was his mom frightened by him crying at midnight, and waking him up. And perhaps, it was just a nightmare.
“MOM! A BAD DREAM! You, Edward, me, all dead mommy, all dead, that old lady…”
“Really Gerald? I don’t think it was a dream, perhaps you were trying to scare me, as you always do.”
“But mommy, I swear! I’m not lying.”
“Tell me truth, it was not a dream, right?”
“IT REALLY WAS A DREAM MOM!”
“Stop lying Gerald, You shouldn’t lie. BECAUSE…”
Gerald noticed his mom’s voice and face changing Gothicly.
“…I SAID IT WAS NOT A DREAM AND I TOLD YOU THAT YOU SHOULDN’T LIE. NOW YOU’LL DIE KID!!! TIME TO GO TO DEEP SLEEP!!!”
And the bed he was lying on filled with blood once again.
CREDIT : Abbot Chambers
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