The Horrorphiles, Part 19
By Stephanie Thompson; 1,650 words
Read all the earlier parts by clicking below:
- Part 1
- Part 2
- Part 3
- Part 4
- Part 5
- Part 6
- Part 7
- Part 8
- Part 9
- Part 10
- Part 11
- Part 12
- Part 13
- Part 14
- Part 15
- Part 16
- Part 17
- Part 18
Chapter 18 (where I accidentally recap the beginning of the novel), continued
She tried for a smile, her face moved a little but she didn’t actually achieve the smile goal. She didn’t feel the smile, plus it was difficult to do feel anything other than creepy under the Adam/Norman gaze. “I haven’t been able to find Jordan all day. And he’s my ex.”
The last part came out extra and sounded rude but that’s what she happened when she didn’t focus on being polite. Maybe she could blame it on her bruised liver. Or even his uncanny Norman Bates, how could she even tell that’s who he was.
“I’m sure he’s around here somewhere. He’s barely left your side all weekend, except when I could steal you away.”
Her face tried for the polite smile again and failed again.
“Oh, come on, nothing’s that bad. Everything’s going great. We should dance. Let’s dance.”
He didn’t wait for an answer, she couldn’t really muster one either. He took her by the hand, peeled her off the wall, and lead her to the dance-floor. She didn’t want to dance but he seemed really happy about the little twist he was doing the 50’s style monster song playing and she also didn’t want to be the only person on the dance floor not dancing, even if she was the only human amongst ghouls. She realized that Adam was technically dressed as a human too, but a murdering psychotic human. Again she tried to figure how she could tell his costume when what he was wearing wasn’t that different from what he’d been wearing the whole weekend.
After a couple of songs, she gave up thinking and just started to have fun. They’d obviously reached a part in the Dj’s set that was mostly song’s inspired by Monster Mash and the creature features of the 50s. Adam kept up his little twist dance and she kept up her awkward white girl (maybe?) two step with a few mashed potatoes thrown in for fun. Then there was a slow dance and Adam took her hand again.
“If you don’t mind a close dance,” he said.
“Of course not,” she said finally managing the small smile she’d been working on all night.
As he pressed his hand into the small of her back and pulled her close, she had the first rush of warm feelings for him since their first drink in the drawing room. And she had the same thought now as she did then. “This actually nice,” she said.
“I’m starting to think you’re always expecting the worst.” He spoke so closely to her that she could feel his lips move against her hair nearest her ear. “And that you think so poorly of me. Maybe I should be offended.”
“No, it’s not you, it’s just. . . Nothing has gone as planned and . . . And so many strange things keep happening.”
“Strange?” he chuckled gently into her hair. “Strange like what?”
She didn’t know what she could say that wouldn’t sound completely insane. Around her there were Chuckys dancing with Annabels and zombies slow dancing with wolfmen.
“Like last night, for example. I can’t remember anything after the Creep ’N’ Greet but I woke up this morning covered in bruises and scratches. All day I’ve tried to remember but it’s like a blank slate.”
He laughed again. “Now, that’s not strange, that’s the results of too many cocktails and a possible a bump on the head. We went out in search of the family cemetery last night. Took a bit of a wrong turn and you took a bad step, fell in to a sort of ravine or ditch. You said you were ok, brushed off the dirt, but we decided to turn in anyway since it was so late.”
“Was Jordan there?” Maybe he’d helped put her to bed since she’d fallen and that’s why she had the feeling he’d taken care of her.
“No.” He softly pushed her hair behind her ear. Now she could feel his moving lips on her lobe like kiss and his breath behind her ear. “Is that all?”
“No. . . I mean, yes.” She couldn’t think straight, she has having trouble standing straight even like her knees had been replaced a soft dough instead of bone and joint. She was starting to feel like a 12 year old at her first dance, with a little bit of seven year old at her first sleep over away from home thrown in. She thought again how silly she’d been for being scared and wanting to go home. And entirely different kind of silly for melting in the arms of a stranger in a crowd of costumed strangers.
“Are you sure?” he said.
“I guess, I’ve just been stressed.”
“Are you stressed now?” His mouth finally made full contact with her neck. His hands moved her hair aside and his teeth nipped at her ear lobe.
“No.” Her answer came out little more than than a hot gasp.
She was nothing but putty. Putty on the inside, putty on the outside. She couldn’t hear if the song was the same or changed yet, she didn’t notice what anyone around them were doing.
And more suddenly than it started, it ended. A Creature from the Black Lagoon wearing glasses tapped Adam on the shoulder and he pulled away from her. The icy cold shower of reality hit her in a embarrassing flush. They were the only ones still close dancing as the music had changed to some psychobilly fast hard hitting song for who knows who long.
The creature was saying something to Adam which Ronny could only assume something along the lines of “May I cut in?” as she was now in the creature’s arms instead of Norman Bates’. And while everyone else was moshing and head banging, her and her new dance partner were still dance slow and close like they had their own separate soundtrack.
“I’ve wanted to get a moment alone with you for awhile,” he said and she recognized his voice as definitely belonging to Kurt.
“Oh?” she said as nonchalantly as possible, trying to cover her confusion mixed with disappointment and remnants of arousal.
“I know it’s been kind of awkward between the two of us since that dumb kiss,” he said.
“I mean. . .” She still had her latest kiss on her mind while trying to figure out a way to get Kurt to stop slow dancing and start dancing like everyone else.
“And I just thought it was time to say clearly. . .I didn’t think anything of it. I know you were drunk, you were going through a bad time with Jordan, and you kissed me, mostly on the cheek outside of the bathroom at a Mexican restaurant. I maybe a geek but I’m not such a loser. I haven’t been obsessed with you since it happened.” While he’d been talking his mood went from casual, to tense, to malicious.
“I don’t …I don’t…” Veronica felt a different kind of embarrassment now. And just a little scared of the anger in his voice. Plus she started to notice little odd things about Kurt’s cosstume, like how the gills on his neck actually moved like he was breathing through them. and how his skin was slightly sticky, slimy even.
“No, I know exactly what you’ve been thinking about me. Like I’m such a dweeb, I have to daydream about your sloppy drunk kiss to get any action.”
He squeezed her hand tighter and pulled her closer, pressing hard against her bruise until she cried out. The entire front of her sweater and jeans were no covered in whatever slime his costume . . . His body?. . . exuded.
“I didn’t think anything like that. You’re a nice guy, I like being friends. I was . . . I was just embarrassed . . That I had done it.” She would tell as many half truths or outright lies it would take to get away from him.
“Don’t flatter yourself, you’re just a little hopped up bitch,” he said, nearly spitting on her, before pushing her away like some kind of garbage.
She didn’t know what to say or do next. It was so strangely out of character for Kurt as well as being exactly the same thing Dan had said to her earlier. She tried to leave the dance floor but the crowd pushed in around her, dancing more and more frantically. She was beginning to feel sick to her stomach being jostled and tossed between horror villains of all eras. There was no pause in the music, no break from the Mc. Then she realized she should probably be the one doing the Mc-ing. Shouldn’t she have announced the first part of the costume contest by now? Shouldn’t someone, anyone?
She couldn’t see a clock through the throng of monsters. She couldn’t even hold still enough to read the watch that was a part of her costume. She had to get out of the crowded, she needed to push through, to keep moving no matter.
That was important when she met her first obstacle, a dusty mummy who kept jumping up and down, moving his arm in and out of the space Ronny was trying to get through. She tried to time it so they wouldn’t collide, she even ducked a little, but it was to no avail as the mummy’s elbow came crashing down on her head. Instead of hurting or knocking her down, the mummy’s arm crumbled on her, showering her in the slight smell of cinnamon, ancient dust and dried up fingers and unraveling bandages. The mummy kept dancing, if you wanted to call his manic jumping that, like he didn’t notice or didn’t care that he was now forearm-less. If he wasn’t going to care, she certainly wasn’t going to collect his fragments and ruin his obvious good time or try to figure out how it was even possible.
Keep Reading in Part 20
Keep Reading in Part 20
Thanks for Reading!