“Are you ready for bed sweetheart?” Amelia called out, sliding a pair of hoop earrings on beneath her curled hair.
“No,” came a reply from the doorway, gathering her attention. Her young son, Anthony, looked just like his father. Dark caramel skin, close cropped hair and hazel eyes with high cheekbones… just a handsome little devil.
“No? Why aren’t you ready?” Amelia asked playfully, adjusting the blouse she was wearing and checking her make-up once again.
“I just don’t want to go to sleep with you out again. I don’t feel safe.” Anthony said, not for the first time.
Amelia sighed. “Anthony, we’ve been over this. You have Grizzly and your other stuffed animals to keep you safe, and you have the key to our neighbor’s apartment in case something happens. I’ll only be out for a few hours, you’ll wake up tomorrow morning and find me here ready to make you breakfast like always.”
Anthony grumbled before turning away and marching back down the hall towards his bedroom. Amelia called out to his retreating back to get dressed for bed, and not to waste his time reading comic books.
“Okay,” he called back somewhat morosely.
After ten minutes of primping, Amelia stood and checked herself in the mirror one last time.
Slinky red dress and half jacket, Amelia looked the part of a streetwalker, which was perfect. She intended to tease a lot of men tonight… work had been rough this week, and she needed some release.
Walking down the hall to her son’s room, she rapped her knuckles on the closed door before opening it up, finding her son in his pajamas on the bed, staring at a large stuffed bear that one of her past boyfriends had won for the boy from a carnival that had come through a few years ago. The foot tall bear was shaggy, and white like a polar bear. It had hard plastic claws and hard plastic teeth in its mouth, which always made Amelia a little uncomfortable about it being around Anthony, but he loved the bear so much she just couldn’t take it away from him.
Stepping over a discarded robot and a mound of army men, she made her way to the bed to give her son a kiss goodnight.
“Now you go to sleep right this minute do you hear me? If I find you awake like I did last time I came home I will be thoroughly disappointed in you, do you understand?”
“Yes ma’am,” Anthony groused, shuffling himself under his covers slowly. Amelia smiled, leaning forward to give him a kiss on the forehead.
“Good night angel and sweet dreams.” She said as she stood up, knocking her head into the clown that hung from the ceiling fans light cord. Tugging down on the long leg of the smiling clown she bathed the room in a cold darkness before walking out to the hall, closing the door with a quiet clack.
As she made her way downstairs, she could already hear Anthony moving around his room. The thump followed by the pitter-patter of soft feet was unmistakable, as it happened every night.
No matter, Amelia thought, slinging a clasp over her shoulder. I got a club to go hit up!
“Is she gone?” A whispery voice came about in the darkness.
Giggling, another voice chimed in. “Hold on, let me check.”
“Guys can we not do this tonight?” Anthony said as he heard the light footsteps approaching his bedroom door.
“Whatever do you mean Tony, we just want to have fun with you.” Rumbled a deeper voice.
“Yeah,” the Giggler chimed in from across the room, “lots of fun!”
“I guess… I’m not really sleepy anyway.” Anthony acquiesced. “What game do you want to play tonight?”
“How about Hide the Knives?” Giggler suggested, chuckling low in the darkness.
“Or maybe Oil the Bathtub?” The whispery voice added, its tone growing more airy by the second.
“I say we stick with Hide the Knives, pretty simple if you ask me.” The deeper voice growled.
Amelia was laughing as she unlocked the front door to her house, dragging in a drunken college boy in behind her, his hands freely roaming over her body as they walked. She moaned as his hands hefted up her breasts before swatting them away.
“We’ll get to that soon; I was serious about that nightcap.” She said, slurring her speech slightly.
Walking into the kitchen, she turned on the light, allowing her eyes to adjust before she let out a yelp.
Sitting on the counter, long elastic arms propping it up against the cutting board, was that stupid clown. Not only that, but her butcher knife had been slammed home into the wood of the chopping block, sinking in about an inch. Shaking her head as Alex walked in behind her, snaking his hands around her waist, he propped his chin on her shoulder and looked around the kitchen, eyes settling on the doll.
“Whoa, freaky doll. He yours?” Alex asked, moving around Amelia to go and pick the doll up.
“Yes… I mean no, he-he belongs to my son.” She said, admitting for the first time that night she had children.
Alex’s hand stopped short of the clown, turning to regard her. “You never mentioned that you had a son.”
She shrugged. “It never came up.”
“That’s cool,” he said, turning back to the clown doll. “Hey there little buddy, you do anything cool?”
“He has a pull cord on his back, but it’s broken…” She began to say just as Alex discovered the cord, pulling it.
“Hi, I’m Giggles the Clown and I want to be your friend!” The clown enthusiastically laughed as it spoke.
“Whoa, that is awesome.” Alex said, pulling on the cord once more.
“Giggles the clown is awesome indeed, thank you for noticing!”
Alex dropped the doll to the ground, backing away from it quickly. “Did that thing just respond to what I said?”
“What? No, like I told you its voice thing is all messed up, you probably just heard it wrong.”
Amelia said from her kitchen counter, where she was mixing two whiskey sours together. Taking the drinks firmly in hand, she held one out to Alex, who took a long pull from the glass, the fiery liquid burning a trail into the pit of his stomach. “Who, easy there tiger. I need you sober enough for some fun tonight, you know.”
Looking over at Amelia appreciatively, Alex grinned lecherously. “Of don’t worry, you’ll be more than satisfied.”
“Hmmm… I hope so.” She said as she sipped her drink. A thud from upstairs, followed by the lights going out caused Amelia to curse. “Sorry, this… this happens sometimes. It’ll come back on in a minute.”
“What was that?” Alex asked, moving closer to Amelia. “What the hell was that?”
“I don’t know, it sounded like metal being slid across something.”
With a hum and a flicker, the light came back on, allowing both of the adults to look around the room, trying to discern what that noise could have been.
Alex was the first to notice it. “The clown. He’s gone. The clown is freaking gone!”
“Relax,” Amelia said, setting her glass down. “Make yourself comfortable in the living room, I’m going to check on my son, who I suspect is doing this just to scare you.”
“Yeah, well… it’s working!”
Amelia shook her head as she walked out of the kitchen and into the living room, up to the stairs. The hallway light was on at the top of the stairs, with the toy robot sitting on the edge of the final step, as if it had been waiting for her. Looking behind her at the front door, she looked back up at the stairs.
“Was that light on when I came home…?” She whispered to herself, wondering if she was just starting to develop an overactive imagination. No, it had to have been, she was just busy… had other things on her mind at the time.
Marching up the stairs, she stopped long enough to scoop up the robot and turn the corner into the hallway leading to her bedroom, Anthony’s bedroom, and the guest bathroom. Flipping the hall light off, she opened up her son’s bedroom door a crack, peering into the folded darkness, trying to ascertain if her son was awake.
“Anthony? Anthony, are you awake?”
The room fell silent for a moment before a low voice grumbled. “No. Can’t sleep.”
“What was your clown doing downstairs, and why was the butcher knife out like that? You could have cut yourself!”
“Giggles just wanted to stretch his legs,” her son said, speaking as if into a pillow, low and slow.
“And I didn’t do anything with a knife that must have been Giggles.”
“Well, Giggles is going to be in real trouble tomorrow morning, you hear me? Now go to sleep!”
“I can’t,” he whined in his hushed tones.
“Well just try!” She hissed, tossing the robot into the room with a loud clunk. “And stay in your room, I have a guest over.”
Amelia closed the door before her son could even respond, locking it for good measure; she didn’t want him to come out and bother her while she was on a date! This’d been the first time she had a man over since the divorce, she was not about to have her own son mess this up for her! Smoothing out the wrinkles in her dress, Amelia heaved a sigh and descended the stairs, slowly making her way around to the living room, where the meat, er, man was sitting on the couch, staring forward at the TV, which was on and turned to some inane child’s show, thankfully muted.
“So what do you do for work Alex? Are you a student full time?” She asked as she slipped into the kitchen, fetching her own drink and downing it in one quick gulp.
“Oh, I just like to entertain is all,” Alex said, chuckling.
“Oh are you a performer?” She asked as she poured a liberal amount of whiskey into her glass, this time taking it straight instead of adding a flavoring to it.
“I make do with what I have,” Alex said, eyes never leaving the TV. “I act, I dance, I play and I sing. I do a lot of playing since I’m with kids all day.”
“That must get on your nerves,” Amelia said, leaning over the bar as she swirled her drink in her glass, staring at the back of Alex’s head. “I couldn’t work with kids, it’s bad enough having one!”
Alex was silent for a moment. “You don’t mean that, do you?” His voice cracked at first, a nervous chuckle trailing off at the end of his question.
Amelia looked into her drink, swirling it some more before taking a long sip. “No, I guess I don’t. It’s just so hard being a single mother is all… you wouldn’t understand.”
“No, but I can make you smile I bet.”
Amelia smirked. “Oh yeah?, and how’s that?
“It’s a surprise; you’ll have to come over here to see.” Alex said, giggling as he drunkenly wobbled back and forth from his seat on the couch.
Amelia finished off her drink and pushed herself up, wobbling herself a fair bit, before walking over into the living room. Moving to turn on the light, Alex shushed her. “No, keep the light off. I like it… off.”
“Ohhh… aren’t you a kinky little guy?” Amelia giggled flirtatiously as she moved over to the couch, standing in front of Alex, who was now staring at her stomach.
“Get down on your knees, and check my pockets. I have something for you… something long.”
“Ohh, I like long.” Amelia said, dropping down to her knees, sliding her hands up Alex’s chest slowly before rubbing her hand over the obvious bulge in his pants.
It was huge!
“Oh my, you’re holding quite a bit back, aren’t you?”
“You have no idea… now go ahead, unzip me… and do it slowly.” Alex commanded, a slight chuckle bubbling up.
“You got it big boy…” Amelia grabbed the zipper on Alex’s jeans and slowly tugged it down, placing the flat of her hand on his thigh to better tug the stubborn garment off of him. As she tugged it down, fully unzipping him, something long sprouted from crotch, something long and round… and something that was definitely growing.
“Oh my god, Alex… I don’t know if that will fit inside me…”
“Oh don’t worry,” Came a far higher pitched, giggling voice. “He didn’t think it would fit inside him either. But he was wrong, just like you!”
“What? Alex, I don’t understand… what do you mean?”
Alex’s phallus, hard and erect, popped with the sound of a tire being blown out, as a flurry of shadows leapt from the confines of his pants, dragging with them a heavy handled butcher knife. Shrieking as the small object smacked her in the face, small cloth hands grappling with her hair as a leg slammed the heavy metal blade into her throat, knocking the air from her.
Amelia pushed herself up from Alex, who merely slumped over, his head lolling to the side as blood seeped from a neat wound over his windpipe. Stringing along with whatever was grabbing at her face was a long strand of something, leading out from the dead man’s crotch and onto Amelia’s face. The smell of sweat and blood assaulted her senses as the giggling spider on her head swung from lock to lock, dragging the blade along her collarbone as he circled her head.
Moving away, she slammed against the far wall, flipping on the light so that she could at least see what was going on. Looking down, she saw she was staring into the glassy eyes of Giggles the Clown, a wide smile radiating from his face.
“This is what you get for ignoring Tony like you have!” Giggles cackled, running around her head once more before jumping down, crossing the line of what turned out to be colored handkerchiefs, which were now wrapped around her throat, choking her thanks to the weight of the cleaver Giggle’s leg had wrapped around.
Reaching forward towards it, she recoiled when Giggles slashed at her hand with a hatpin, causing her to stumble back, slamming into the wall. Sliding down, this gave Giggles plenty of opportunity to reel more of his handkerchief line out and move away from her body, choking her further as he crawled on hands and one leg, lead handkerchief held now in his cackling maw as he pulled the noose tighter around her neck.
Reaching to her neck, she pulled at the cords in a vain hope of freeing herself. Looking to Alex’s corpse didn’t seem to help, and the demented clown doll was crawling away from her with the cleaver… yes, the cleaver! That could cut this damn noose!
Scrambling from her spot on the floor, Amelia crawled after the clown until she bumped into the pajama clad feet of a young boy. Looking up, she saw Anthony, holding his bear in his arms, staring at his mother with a dispassionate glare.
“Honey… please… help me!” She gasped out, the edges of her vision starting to sparkle as her oxygen levels began to deplete.
“No Mom,” he said, looking to his bear, who nodded. “I don’t think so. I think after this I’ll go live with Dad, like I wanted in the first place.”
Choking on her own bile as she could no longer even swallow, Amelia fell to her side, struggling against the tight cords around her neck until her body went slack. Leaning down, Anthony closed his mother’s eyes with two fingers.
“Do you want to play Tony?” The bear asked his voice deep and gruff. “We can’t call the police until morning you know, so that leaves us plenty of time to play!”
“Yeah, let’s play, let’s play!” Giggles chimed in, padding up next to Tony, the cleaver being drug by one of his arms now.
“Giggles, go put the cleaver by my Mom so it looks like she killed the guy, alright?” Tony asked the diminutive clown.
“And Grizzly? Thanks for playing Hide the Knives tonight. It was really fun!”
The bear hugged Tony around the neck, nuzzling into him. “Anytime kid, anytime.”