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Heyo! I’m Lauren, a high school sophomore who loves reading too many fantasy novel series, listening to music, and eating a probably unhealthy amount of ice cream.

Message to Readers

Is there anything I can revise or improve? Please let me know, I really appreciate it!

Devilish Wishes - 5

September 26, 2020


The last thing Martin Alexander Hopkins Rawlings remembered was a dazzling, be-robed figure carrying what looked like a wine glass on LSD and telling him in an incredibly soothing voice that he’d be on Earth shortly. For what reason, Martin had no idea.

And now, he was somehow perched atop the branches of an old oak tree. More specifically, the old oak tree he played on as a kid. Martin saw the initials “MAHR” he’d scratched on an uppermost limb, and he saw the glimmer of too familiar streetlights and the rooves of too familiar houses in the gaps between leaves. It was night, and a chill breeze stirred the tree branches lightly.

Instinctively, Martin inched downwards, his feet finding the little old notches he’d carved in strategic places along the tree trunk. He landed on the soft grass and observed his surroundings. There was Mrs. Delilah’s house, with its pink walls and antique gate, and there was the Homers’ house, with that upper bedroom window whose lacy curtains he had spent too much time staring longingly at. Martin cringed. He was pretty sure Natalie Homer had graduated by now from her dream university and married another genetics researcher.

And next to the Homers’ house was the Rawlings’. His mother’s house. Martin winced again. The last time he’d seen those roses was two years ago, before the argument. Before his mother had stomped on his dreams, before his mother took over his bank account, before his mother screamed in his face and told him fixing antique cars was a good-for-nothing business—all so she could get him to study at the university she wanted him to go to, so that she could mold him into the goody two shoes son she always wanted—Harvard graduate doctor who scribbled prescriptions with clean hands and a clean smile. And then? Martin left.

Slammed the stupid door and drove. Tires squealing, angry tears burning. He remembered camping at a friend’s house, and wondering what the hell should he do with his life. He remembered the frantic calls, the tearful voice messages, all of which he ignored. He remembered starting over, working three jobs, and spending night hours hunched over dingy cash registers and the stuffed cans of other people’s garbage. Things were crappy. But somehow, his life took a turn for the better. He found work as a car mechanic and scrounged up enough money to fund his own business. And then? Something happened. Martin never knew what went down that fateful day, the one that ended in an explosion of glass and twisted metal, and the sense of terrifying loss.

Yet somehow, he was back where he started, in his old neighborhood, facing the house he grew up in. His mother’s house.

Something compelled Martin to walk across the grass, across the asphalt road, until his feet touched the brick sidewalk and carried him up the porch steps. Hesitantly, he halted. Martin stared at the roses, illuminated silver by the light of the full moon and touched with the cast of the yellow porch lamps. He sucked in a breath. Then he stared at the rusty doorbell. He raised a finger…and screamed.

That wasn’t his finger. Not the fleshy digit he knew, soaked in grease stains and flecked with tiny scars. No, it was pale, rigid, jointed, and gleaming. Bone. It was bone.

Martin screamed again, a panicked, bloodcurdling shriek that went on and on, until his throat rattled and the sound died away like the wheeze of a battered old radiator. Then he collapsed against the porch railing with a clack, and stared at his hands, made a pathetic tee-hee as he realized he looked like one of those dusty skeletons in every high-school biology classroom. Because he was a skeleton.

The realization hit him again. Ululating hysterically, he dragged his bone fingers down his skull, hitting a note high enough to break glass as those pale digits went clean through his eye sockets. For a while, there was nothing but frenetic wailing and the eerie noise of a cannibal’s xylophone. Bone on bone. ClackclackAAAAAAAAAAAclackAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH.

Finally, Martin slumped against the roses and cried. Technically, it wasn’t really crying, since no tears actually fell, but more like a lot of pitiful wheezing and sniffling. Half-heartedly, he banged his skeletal hand against the porch railing with a loud clank.

So he was a fricking skeleton now. Now what? Martin gave one last sniffle and shuffled to his gruesomely skeletal feet. Suspiciously, he eyed his mother’s front door, and glared emptily at the rusty doorbell. There wasn’t much else he could do. Martin raised his finger again, wincing slightly, and pressed it.
Chapter 5 of a novel/novella? I'm working on.


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  • September 26, 2020 - 12:38am (Now Viewing)

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