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Boys & Girls Come Out To Play Ch 1 The Warning

by  Shnarkle

Posted: Saturday, September 19, 2009
Word Count: 1086
Summary: First draft of a horror story that has been percolating around my head, and very different from the Shnark. This is the first chapter.

The Warning
“You are going to come and play with me, aren’t you William?” the girl’s voice seemed to echo strangely, in an almost other worldly way. And he felt it wasn’t really a request, more a command. Aged about nine, she stood about two metres in front of him; ramrod straight, with her feet together and her hands clasped tightly behind her back. She wore her almost black hair in plaits which reached just below the front of her slight shoulders, each plait finished off with a small delicate red ribbon. Her round, deathly white face was completely devoid of expression, with dull, black glazed eyes that looked like windows into a bottomless void. Thin mauve lips made a severe cold slash across her face, where a softer, fuller mouth should have been.
Her long dark dress featured hundreds of tiny blue and purple flowers, and its high collar and hem were finished with fine white lace. Her feet were clad with functional and sturdy brown boots.
“You are going to come and play with me, aren’t you William?” she said again. An identical girl suddenly appeared to her left, only with green ribbons in her hair.
“You are going to come and play with us, aren’t you William?” they chorused together; although something about the sound of their combined voices was deeply unsettling. They seemed strangely out of synch, with one a split second behind the other, and still the faint echo persisted.
“You are going to come and play with us, aren’t you William?” they insisted; their faces as blank as stone. The moment they had finished speaking a third identical girl appeared, this time wearing yellow hair ribbons, and all three began repeating the phrase over and over again; each time the phrase grew in volume, and each time it became more of an irresistible command. On and on it went, louder and louder, with no change of expression on the girl’s faces, until it reached a peak with the shouted command, “William!”
William awoke with a start, his heart pounding in his chest so hard he thought it would explode, and his rapid rasping breathing catching in his throat like steel fingers trying to choke the life out of him, as sweat poured down his face where he hid under the duvet. He was terrified. Absolutely, totally terrified. Terrified that if he looked up from his safe haven beneath the duvet he would see the three girls standing at the foot of his bed. Terrified at what foul creature might be lurking outside his bedroom door, waiting to pounce and rend him limb from limb. Terrified at who, or what might be standing in his garden right now, looking up at his bedroom window with red, inhuman eyes. All manner off horrors seemed possible in the lonely still darkness of his bedroom which was usually his happy bolt hole from the rest of the family, but now, at this precise moment took on the dimensions of a truly deadly, nightmare world of danger. As his panic rose to even greater heights he knew that he had to do something, and do it now before he was completely paralysed with fear. Slowly, with a trembling hand, he reached from the depths of his duvet to switch on his bedside lamp and bathe the horror stricken bedroom with welcome, comforting light.
Sure enough, as he slowly peered over the edge of the duvet, and more and more of his bedroom came into view, he realised with a flush of the most intense relief that it had been a dream. There were no frightening girls standing at the foot of his bed. There were his Manchester United posters intact on the wall with Ryan Giggs smiling comfortingly down at him. There was his computer table, his chest of drawers; everything was as it should be.
He sat up in bed, still shaking from the effects of the dream, and looked at his alarm clock. 2.55 am. Something strange was going on here. He’d woken at the same time for the last three nights as a result of the most vivid dreams he’s ever had. He’d actually felt that he was living inside the dreams in real time. First there had been the dream about a large, rambling old house. It was a house he’d never seen before, but after the dream’s vivid virtual tour he felt he knew it room by room, inch by inch. Then last night there was the dream about jumping over a skipping rope which was held by unseen people just out of his field of vision. The rope had whirled faster and faster, slapping ominously on the ground as he jumped; and he knew, just knew that his life depended upon him successfully jumping the advancing rope each time it arced towards him. Equally instinctively he knew that untold horrors lay in wait should he stumble or fall.
And now tonight, the most vivid and unsettling dream of them all. He wondered who the girls were and what it could all mean. As an eleven year old schoolboy it was highly unlikely that he could decipher such messages, but he certainly felt in his heart that he was being told about, or more accurately warned about something, and that if he valued his life he’d better take heed.
Leaning down over the edge of his bed, his fingers scrabbled around the carpet for the TV control he’d carelessly tossed aside just before he’d settled down; finally grasping the remote and levering himself into a sitting position. He stabbed at the power button; he’d watch a bit of MTV to take his mind off his dream before trying to get back to sleep. The TV screen burst into life, featuring nothing but wall to wall white noise like you get when you hadn’t tuned to a station properly. With a “Tut “ William pushed button after button on the remote, trying to coax some sort of programme out of the TV, but all he managed was more white noise. Perplexed, because it had worked perfectly only hours earlier, he was just about to switch the TV off when the screen cleared and the image of three girls appeared, staring coldly out at him; and through the speakers, loud and clear he heard them chorus, “You are going to come and play with us, aren’t you William?”
William screamed. And screamed; until he thought he would never stop screaming again.