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Writing Horror: Scary Writing Prompt Game #11

Happy Saturday, Spookies!

Welcome to another round of the scary writing prompt game. Again, here's how it works: I'll announce the prompt, then you guys post a 1-2 paragraph response in the comment section. At the beginning of each round, I'll share my favorite bit from the previous week's entries before announcing the next prompt. As I announced in June, at the end of the year there will be a spooky prize drawing for ALL participants!

Want to give yourself more entries in the drawing? Go back to review and comment on past rounds if you haven't already. A late entry is just as fun to read for me!

The Prizes

2 winners will be receiving customized horror bottles in the scary book or movie of their choice. (What's a horror bottle, you ask? That, my spookies, is when I decoupage the shiz out of an empty wine bottle to showcase whichever book or movie you choose. They make for some killer decorations! Pun intended, especially if you request a Freddy Krueger bottle.)


Last month's prompt brought a reaping, of which all entries were truly stunning. I continue to get all the horror warm and fuzzies when I read through your responses, but this one in particular was especially fitting with the photo selection. Ameriie, girl, you nailed it this week:

You take a step backward. A gust sends the neighbor's newspaper fluttering down the sidewalk, and you hear the pages from the clipboard flutter in the wind. You glance down, ready to kick it from the welcome mat.

But the pages aren't moving. Some of them stick straight up in the air, as if someone has pressed pause on time. You edge farther away from the doorway, and the pages flip furiously in the opposite direction. The wind screams and the woman opens her mouth wide.

A green convertible jumps the curb across the street and runs right over Mrs. Kelson's lawn and into her jasmine bushes, but the car doesn't stop until it rams into the side of her house. Two girls sit motionless in the front seats. You take a tiny step forward, when their blonde heads snap back, synchronized, and even from here, you can see the blood running from their eyes. You can see their mouths, two black holes punched into their faces as they stare up at the churning clouds.

The bell tolls again, and again, and just before you slam the door, your head snaps back. You struggle to raise it, but you can't. Your neck muscles are so taut, you can barely breathe, and when you feel your feet lift from the floor, you wonder if you may be hallucinating, if your brain isn't suffocating. Because how could your toes brush against the top of the old woman's frizzy hair? How is it possible you're floating out from your home? You manage to turn your head. There are others. Hundreds, floating up and up with their heads back, their spines forming lazy c's as they rise.

A flash of pink in the distance, high above the rooftops--the ballet flats you got for her birthday present last month. A tear squeezes out the corner of your eye. This can't be the last time you see your mother, not like this.

Not like this.

Good job, Ameriie. Your descriptions were gripping and memorable and oh my, don't we just wish the narrator had signed the contract?

This Week's Prompt:

Photo credit:
Babysitting was never your money-making activity of choice, but winter break was approaching and you were strapped for cash. Desperate, you scurried over to the local community college, to scan the bulletin board for job opportunities. That's where you found the flyer offering a whopping one hundred bucks for a single night of sitting, for some family called the Masons.

Mrs. Mason told you on the phone that you had been the only person to answer the flyer, which surprised you. A hundred bucks was way too much for working just five hours, but you weren't about to tell that to the overly anxious-looking woman who opened the door on Friday night, thanking you once again for answering the flyer.

"We'll be gone until about midnight," Mrs. Mason said as soon as you stepped inside, grabbing the purse that hung on the wall and going out the front door. Wasn't she going to introduce you to the kid first? "Edmund is upstairs waiting for you."

Then the door was closed again, and the house was quiet. How rude was that of Mrs. Mason, leaving so quickly when you didn't even know your way around the house or what the kid's usual routine was like? And hadn't she said 'we?' Where was Mr. Mason?

"Edmund?" you called up the stairs, unsure of what to think or expect. "My name is Jamie, I'm the babysitter..."

No answer, but you could have sworn you heard a banging noise in one of those rooms upstairs. Maybe the boy was hiding. You ascended the stairs quickly, not caring for the chill and impending feeling that you were being watched that weighed the air of the entryway.

The hallway floorboards creaked beneath your feet as you approached the room you thought the noise came from. With a clammy hand, you pushed the door open. "Edmund?"

Sitting in the center of the room was a boy so small he could have been a doll. There was a wooden mask, painted to look like a ventriloquist dummy, hiding his face. His feet were covered in blood. "Jamie," he said.

Just then, a pair of hands shoved you into the stale room from behind, causing you to shriek and pitch forward. Before you could even see who it was that pushed you, the door to the room had been slammed shut.

"What's happening?" You cried to the boy as he got slowly to his feet and took a step toward you, leaving bloody footprints that soaked into the wood. You noticed for the first time that the back of the room was lined with dolls of all different sizes.

"Hello, Jamie," Edmund said, and took off his mask.


Unleash the Hellhounds!
Amy Lukavics

Amy lurks within the forested mountains of Arizona. When she isn't reading or writing creepy stories, she enjoys cooking, crafting, and playing games across many platforms. She is the author of Daughters Unto Devils (Harlequin Teen 2015) and The Women In The Walls (Harlequin Teen 2016).

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  1. You let out a strangled gurgle. The pit of your heart spasms, writhing in much the same tempo as Edmund's skinless cheeks. The exposed muscle bears dozens of tiny notches. About the same number of tallies as dummies in the room.

    Edmund pulled a switchblade from his pocket. He didn't even wince as he added to a group of lines near his left cheekbone.

    1. Thanks, although I just noticed that I switched to past-tense in the second paragraph. :( I'm not overly used to present-tense.

  2. No… Jamie felt as if her insides had caved in on themselves. His eyes…
    She had to blink hard before realizing that what she saw was no trick. The space where Edmund’s eyes should be bore two impossibly black caverns, rimmed with… What were they? Were they teeth? Every inch of her filled with horror as she took in the boy’s presence, suddenly too aware of his empty gaze and the terrifying smile that crept across his porcelain-like face. Sweat gathered at the base of her neck where the hairs stood tall. She became aware of more eyes.

    The dolls. There were so many of them- more than she had first thought. Were they there a minute ago? There must have been over a thousand of them, lined up neatly on the high shelving lacing the room. There was something wrong about them, she quickly realized. They seemed somehow different to the dolls her mother and her grandmother had collected. They seemed… Alive. And then she saw it. Not only were the dolls watching- they were watching her. A second wave of horror enveloped her, followed by a wave of panic that returned her momentarily to her senses. Forcing herself to her feet, palms facing outward, Jamie began edging backwards to where the door had slammed shut behind her. After ten carefully placed steps, she hovered for just a moment. Where is it?! In a flurry of panic she turned around.

    Darkness. A weak gasp escaped her throat. Low hissing sounds rose from deep within the darkness that beckoned beyond. A sound like creaking floorboards came from behind her. Swallowing hard, she closed her eyes and turned to face the boy without eyes. I’m hallucinating, she told herself. This isn’t real, this is a dream. It’s not real. Wake up. Wake up, Jamie!

    She opened her eyes.

  3. Fear freezes your feet to the floor and you let out a choked cry. Edmund’s skin looks hard, like plastic, and pulls at odd angles around his face. His hollow eyes stare back at you, and his mouth twists unnaturally into a crooked smile, revealing his jagged teeth which are stained the same color as the blood that surrounds his feet.

    “I’ve been waiting for you, Jamie,” he says through his bloody smile, “you have no idea how happy I am to see you.”

    “Why?” You manage to ask through panicked breaths. The hair on your neck stands up, and you realize that the dolls lining the back wall wear expressions of terror on their faces; their empty eyes are wide with fear, and their mouths are frozen in silent screams.

    Edmund doesn’t answer you. He steps towards you again, and you reach frantically for the door handle, never taking your eyes off of him. The door doesn’t open; you didn’t think it would.

    “Why do you want to leave, Jamie?” he asks innocently, “don’t you want to play with me?”

    “No, I don’t want to play with you Edmund,” you sob, “I just want to go home. Please, let me go home.”

    “But Jamie,” he says, gesturing around the room with his tiny hands, “you are home.”
    He jumps at you and sinks his sharp teeth into your neck as you let out a strangled scream, and then everything goes black.

    When you wake, a young boy with dark hair and smooth, cream-colored skin stands by the open door. He smiles at you, showing off his perfect white teeth. You glance down at your hands and scream silently as you notice the smooth, hard plastic that is now your skin.

    “See you later, Jamie,” the boy says through his perfectly crooked grin, and leaves the room, closing the door behind him.

  4. "Let's play, Jamie." Edmund says, his pale smile curving wide and sharp up to the lobes of his ears.

    You fall to your knees, teeth clattering on impact as Edmund pulls out a marionette puppet, identical to you right down to the horrified expression.

    Edmund glances up, his eyes pits of hostage smoke, his face waxy and mocking.

    "What--what is this? What's going on? What--?" You stammer, wondering how a routine babysitting job could turn into a hair raising nightmare within a matter of seconds. These things just didn't happen...

    Edmund pulls up on the marionette, wooden legs clacking to his command, and you suddenly feel a horrible piercing pain in your left arm. You turn your head to see rusty wire looped through the flesh of your bicep. You cry out as the wire is pulled up into the ceiling, and the sound of wooden clacking becomes lost as more wire is sewn through your limbs and pulled taut to prevent your escape.

    Blood turns your clothes a festive rouge but the smell seems to upset Edmund. He replaces his mask, hiding the madcap grin that once again stretches his face. He holds his hand out and sways the wooden cross in his grip, delighted with his new toy.

    You dance with his commands, a flesh puppet performing for an audience of enslaved porcelain babysitters.

  5. Thank you, Amy! And these writing prompts are fantastic!

    1. No problem whatsoever. This feature has become so near and dear to my heart! <3

  6. The fragile mask’s collision with the floor was unexpectedly rough, and its leering façade splintered at several ugly angles. You, with tremendous effort, kept your gaze lowered to the tiny thing. You dared not move from your position, belly to the floor like a dying snake.

    “Jamie,” the buoyant voice resonated again from the far crook of the dusty room. The miniscule, wine red feet of the boy pitter-pattered forward into the light. Your eyes squeezed shut of their own volition and your stomach quivered. This had not been the manner in which you imagined you would die.

    “Jamie,” rang a shrill voice from the center wall, almost questioning. The tears began to fall freely, then. Your forehead hit the cold, wooden floor and you sobbed quietly. Finger by finger you inched your hands forward in front of you, protecting, begging.

    “Jamie,” chirped a gentler, boyish voice from a lower region of the center wall.

    “Jamie,” the boy, Edmund, said again. You were wailing unabashedly by this point, but the voices of the room overpowered your own and swallowed your cries like a charm in a wishing well. You wondered if that was truly all that they could say. It was enough that you would die, but dying without explanation was too terrible.

    “Why!?” You shrieked over the deafening echoes of your own name.

    “Why!?” you called again, because it was the only thing worth uttering.

    “Jamie,” came Edmund’s voice directly at your ear, vibrant over all other clatter. You could feel warm breath, and his voice was soft and light as a drizzle.

    All sounds ceased suddenly, though the silence itself was as deafening as the noise. You remained lying for only moments, before a single, small voice told you that it was safe to rise. You pressed yourself with caution from your belly to your knees and looked up at the shelf of dolls before you.

    With the abrupt intensity of a storm, every doll began to plummet one by one from their shelves to shatter on the floor beneath them. Each crushed face revealed a musty, infant skull, grey with decomposition. You could sense your skin prickling at the sight as the last doll dropped and another cranium was brought into view. All was quiet for some time before a solitary crash alerted you to the presence at your side.

    Edmund lay crumpled on the floor, his face shattered into chunky pieces. Like the rest, he too had been a doll.

    ‘Not only a doll,’ you thought. Beneath the paint and meticulous sculpting you could see the decaying remains of a face. It was by far the freshest of the bunch and still recognizable as a boy possibly five years old.

    Perhaps due to shock or empathy, you stayed for an indeterminate period of time. When the last little girl and boy were mourned for, you backed over the threshold and shut the door as tightly as you could. You descended the stares, stopping at the last step and gazing out.

    Upon further inspection of the house, you grasped how sparsely furnished it was, as if moments before your arrival someone had hurriedly packed their bags to leave. With a harsh release of breath, you paced to the front door, grabbed your bag and exited the house. In your beaten Chevy you drove to the nearest convenience store. There, stood a metal pay phone in proud relief against the outer brick wall. You approached it, bag in hand, and dialed the police. You explained that there were many children in an abandoned house down the street with no guardian in sight.

    “—Yes. There is an older boy, Edmund, who will keep them put until you arrive. No, I can’t stay with them. I have to go.”

    You hung up, even as the voice on the other line continued to speak. In a daze, you reached into your right pocket and removed a folded page. You didn’t remember it coming into your possession, yet somehow was confident of its presence. It was a list of numbers written in a crooked hand, some fraught with backwards twos and threes.

    By the time you boarded the rickety Chevy again, every one in the surrounding three cities were called, and you'd paid one hundred dollars in coins to call them.

  7. Apologies for the length of my response. I'm fairly new here and did not notice the "1-2 paragraph" bit. I just strived to finish the story appropriately. I'm sorry. XD

  8. CityofFilth- no problem!! There have been quite a few rounds where sticking to the 1-2 paragraph response was a bit tricky. Thanks so much for participating, your story was wicked awesome!!


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Item Reviewed: Writing Horror: Scary Writing Prompt Game #11 Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Amy Lukavics