16 May, 2012

Flash Fiction: Costume Party Memory

I was never one for parties. Whether it be birthday, holiday, or just a party for the sake of one, I lacked the ‘zest’. But, then again, what does ‘zest’ actually do for the party other than drunken Guitar Hero battles or dartboard competitions.

My friend, Hyde, thought he could help me find my party spirit; that ‘zest’. He invited me to this costume party a while back. For awhile, it was going smoothly; just a group of people talking about their lives and high scores on Temple Run. I even played some intense rounds of Dance Dance Revolution, sweating like crazy after each match. I could tell tales about how I defeated the Joker, Solid Snake, a Cyberman, and even that dude from Jersey Shore; all in one night and surrounded on all sides.

I was feeling good about this whole party thing, maybe I had found my ‘zest’. And here I was thinking that Hyde actually helped a brother out for once. Maybe I’ll actually watch some British television with him and go out for some tea. I had to keep all that to myself though, didn’t want him getting any ideas.

That was when disappointment struck. Out came the alcohol; scotch, brandy, whiskey, you name it. Sure, Hyde may have stayed a sober guy, but the people went wild. They were slurring through all of my favorite Guitar Hero songs, even Barracuda was wrecked by their voices.

Then it got worse, all the other sober guys went out back for darts. It was just me and Hyde out in the kitchen. Oh, I forgot about that old woman that hosted the thing. She and Simon were fighting over some Ben and Jerry’s ice cream about the new Doctor Who.

I paid little attention to the argument and tried to focus on happier thoughts. Me at home. Me at home on a day off. Me at home, on a day off, watching Glee and 24 reruns; all on my HDTV. This never worked, being far from home, in a place worse than my own job.

Instead, I did what any sensible person would do. I took my steps towards the front door, past the drunken gamers and that flirtatious guy by the stairs. I could hear Hyde calling my name, but the front door was calling my name even louder. I could see the light pouring in from the mail slot. The closer I got, the brighter.

I was ready for the golden moment, my hand on top of the doorknob. I swung the door open and breathed in the night air.

I was jogging towards my house just blocks from where the party was. There were little signs of life throughout the many houses I passed. The wind howled at me with cold breath. Slightly creepy stuff, but I wasn’t worried.

My worries only set in after small shadows began flitting about the bushes and blight of nearby yards. It’s as if the party followed me home or Hyde trying to drag me back for that extra game of backgammon. I tried calling for Hyde. No answer. Same thing happened when complaining about those drunks.

Afraid for my life, I started running towards my house. So close, but it seemed to drift further away every moment. The bushes rustled louder and the wind blew to a halt. I began to sweat for my life, running to those happier thoughts.

Then the shadows revealed themselves as several slimy lizard arms. Their claws dug into the soles of my feet. That wasn’t even the worst part. A larger shadow emerged from the front patio, taking the lawn with it. Its red eyes gleamed and roared something loud. I had wet my pants for sure.

The reptile arms then guided my body towards the horrid beast, whatever it was. It was at this point I began to pray and beg for forgiveness. I should have stayed at that party until they crashed for the night. I won’t mind listening to Hyde bark on about British stuff, Heck, at this point, I’d watch that EastEnders show or at least listen to his favorite critic; Mark Kermode.

But the monster didn’t care about my pleas. The arms dragged me and then lifted me for those final moments; eye-level with the beast itself. I could finally see it for myself; green and scaly skin. The face was the most menacing I’ve ever seen with sharp pearly whites like the ones on graffiti art or something. Then it’s mouth opened and the rows of teeth went on for miles.

The arms threw me into that pit. The air from beyond his mouth pulled me in.

I could only imagine the pain the teeth would inflict on my body. But all that actually happened was being covered in bed-sheets. I could barely see nearby curtains and that sunlight. Man, it was bright!  

For Flash Fiction Project prompt 19: Livewire

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