Created on: January 12, 2013 Last Updated: April 18, 2013
Shawna mentally reviewed her schedule of meetings for the day: Clients. Legal. HR. She checked her PDA to make sure she would be done with her two o'clock before meeting with the head of the Daitetsu Corporation. The elevator pinged open and she filed inside along with a dozen other suit-wearing wage-slaves. As she calculated her approach for her first client of the day she froze.
She wasn't sure why at first. Some intuitive flash of danger, although no one else in the car seemed to be in the slightest bit alarmed. Her eyes swept left and right. She always had sharp instincts, and something within her was screaming to run and hide.
She realized what it was. The music. The music on the elevator was playing a tune that caused her to squirm. When she was three years old her parents bought her a Jack in The Box. For whatever childish reason, the first time it popped open she went into a screaming panic; and her father threw the toy away. But the image of that demonic clown-thing that popped out of it haunted her to this day.
The elevator was chiming the same tune.
First stop. Several passengers disembarked, and she drew in a deep breath at the sight of the exterior of the car. Her adult mind tried to calm her childish fear. The doors closed.
As the song wound down, she felt a slight sense of apprehension. It pinged its final note and after a long, silent second, Shawna allowed relief to wash over her.
The song began playing again. Her face turned white.
Second stop, the rest of the passengers vacated the elevator while she leaned against the back wall paralyzed with fear. The empty car seemed smaller now that she was alone. Each note pinged slightly louder until she winced in pain from the musical assault.
Top floor. Final note. A split second of silence.
A demon-faced clown clawed through the door in a scream of fire and steel. Shawna screeched with all the passion and innocence of a child before her heart stopped.
Downtown, a man lay in a coma in a hospital bed. As the dreamer dreamed, he pulled childhood nightmares out of people's minds all over the city.
Learn more about this author, Matt S. Law.
Click here to send this author comments or questions.
Below are the top articles rated and ranked by Helium members on:
Flash fiction: A child's nightmares
by Summer Grace
It seemed like Pearl's nightmares had begun around the same time her family moved into the old house. Yes, it was a beautiful
by Matt S. Law
Shawna mentally reviewed her schedule of meetings for the day: Clients. Legal. HR. She checked her PDA to make sure she
by Robin Lamb
The boy hadn’t been sleeping well. For weeks, he’d tossed and turned and on a couple of occasions had wet the
Ben held his breath as the car screeched to a halt and the boy’s bike flew high up toward the sky. Something cracked
Lila quickly jumped off the bus and took off running at her fastest pace, which still wasn’t quite fast enough in
View All Articles on: Flash fiction: A child's nightmares