As per the scary story Flash Fiction Challenge by Chuck Wendig http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2016/10/14/flash-fiction-challenge-a-scary-story-part-two/ we have to pick up another author’s part 1 and write out own part 2. I picked Martin Perlin’s story. Read part 1 here: http://mywrite.martinperlin.com/2016/10/flash-fiction-challenge-scary-story.html. And now, without further ado, here is part 2! I think we should call it simply “You’re Next!”
Daniel shook his head and got into the roller coaster carriage. His sister Katie and another boy scooted in beside him. The woman pushed the safety bar down to hold them in place when the ride went upside down. Katie reached for his hand and he grabbed it absently. All he could think was, she had touched the goo too.
It couldn’t really be a bad thing could it? It had healed the gash on his leg, seemingly like magic. His shoulder and leg itched a little. Katie let go of his hand as the roller coaster train lurched into motion.
The other children screamed as the rickety train rose and fell with the track, then almost went upside down. Katie was screaming too, but the only thing Daniel found scary about the ride was the way the supports felt like they were going to give way at any moment. It stopped there, and Daniel guessed that they were about 10 feet up in the air. The little roller coaster that could, Daniel thought.
He looked down, and saw the woman and the old man staring up at them. She seemed to smile only at Daniel, and she saw him beckon him with her index finger. Daniel had seen videos on the internet of people standing up in roller coasters and falling (to certain death, the videos had promised). But this train had stopped, and was starting to slide backwards a little. It was slightly angled to the right. And the goo had healed him before. Daniel was sure that if he fell, it would heal him again, and Katie too.
“Hey Katie. Want to get out of here?”
She looked around nervously. “I just want mom and dad.”
“I know. If you hold onto my hand, we can go ok?”
He pushed the safety bar up despite protests from Katie and the other boy that he would get into trouble. He stood and pulled Katie to her feet. She held onto his waist as he started down the track. After they had gone a few feet, he glanced back at the rollercoaster train, wondering if it was going to come back to life and chase them.
“We have to hurry.”
Behind them, Daniel heard screams.
“SHIIIT. RUN KATIE!”
A cry, then “Daniel! I’m stuck.”
She had pitched forward, her leg trapped between the tracks. The train was coming. Daniel pulled her out and jumped off. As they fell, he thought of how he had escaped the old man and the woman earlier that day.
Daniel managed to shield Katie as they hit the ground, but he wasn’t so lucky. He bent his knees just before he hit the ground. There was a snap like a branch breaking, then the bone tearing through his shin. Katie was screaming again, and Daniel was not sure if she had even stopped.
“MOMMY! DADDY! I WANT MY MOMMY!”
Daniel searched through the glaring lights, brighter now, and whirling rides for their parents. He was a big boy now, he thought ruefully. Their parents would be eating dinner, maybe strolling through the art gallery, confident that Daniel was old enough to take care of his sister for an hour or so.
“Honey, are you alright?”
“Mom?” Daniel looked up. Of course it was the woman. The bride of the vampire, he thought.
“Oh my, that’s a bit of a scratch isn’t it? Hector come and take a look at this.”
The old man was shuffling over now, too fast for a man of his apparent age. As he approached, Daniel saw that his hands were slimy with that green goo. As bad as the pain was, Daniel would rather spend the summer with his leg in a cast than let that creep touch him.
“Mister, you look like a vampire.” Katie said.
The couple laughed and exchanged a glance. “Oh sweetie.” The woman said. “Hector’s not a vampire. There’s no such thing. He’s going to make your big brother better.”
Hector now stood with his hands outstretched like a mummy. The goo seemed to be alive, surging down his hands and leaping from the tips of his fingers onto the open fracture on Daniel’s leg. He watched as the droplets of goo surrounded the injury like ants surrounding a dead animal.
Slowly, the bone began to retreat back into his leg, as though a magnet somewhere, somehow was guiding it into place. That same force seemed to join the two sections of bone back together. The injury disappeared as the flesh surrounding it took on a liquid quality. Daniel thought about how he stirred Milo into his milk in the mornings.
Some of the other children had gathered around. The woman looked around nervously. “Hector, we have to leave now.”
Daniel stood, looking Hector in the eye. “Th-th-thank you sir.”
“You’re next.” He said.
Hector and the woman started off away from the crowd, ignoring the inquisitive children.
Daniel turned to Katie. “Don’t say anything to mom and dad about any of this ok?”
“But why? Won’t it be on the news?”
“No. It would only be on the news if somebody died.”
“Can we get fairy floss.”
They walked through the sideshows, surrounded by people laughing, screaming and winning crappy little toys. Daniel might as well have been in a bubble made from those words: “You’re next.”
Hector had saved him twice now, intentionally or not, and Daniel felt like he now owed the man something. He didn’t think a “Thank you sir” was going to cut it.
Katie broke away from his hand and ran towards their parents. They were both crouched down, arms outstretched.
“Did you have fun sweetie?” Said mom.
“Yeah, we went on a roller coaster.”
“That’s great honey.” Said dad. “But what’s this?”
Daniel froze. They knew something.
The words “You’re next” echoed in his mind.