Read Inanimate Online

Authors: Deryck Jason

Tags: #horror, #children, #dolls, #king, #clown, #dummy, #china doll, #ventroloquist

Inanimate (31 page)

BOOK: Inanimate
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Look boys I know how this
sounds, but have you ever known me to lie to you?”


No”


No sir”

Came the responses.


But come on Sergeant, you
have to admit it
seems pretty ridiculous.”


I
know” Jacobs said sympathetically. “And to
be honest, I’ve yet to see any hard evidence myself. But there are
bodies, and I’ve met the boy, honestly it’s hard not to believe
him.”


But sir, this kind of
thing
doesn’t
happen in real life, dolls don’t come to life. I don’t think it
matters how convincing someone is, let alone a child”


Look guys…” Jacobs sighed, “…As
I’ve said I know how this sounds. You don’t have to tell me. All
I’m asking is that you come with us tomorrow. There is probably a
worldly explanation for all of this, but the fact of the matter is
there are still multiple killers on the loose in Staunton and we
need to catch them or they will just keep on killing.”

J
ames Graham and Perry Murdoch sat looking
at their Sergeant who had never steered them wrong, never lied to
them, at least not that they were aware of. Upholding the law was
important to them and they were trustworthy, that’s why Jacobs
chose to approach them.
“Two bright, up-and-coming stars in a sky of
dullards”
was
how Jacobs described them. Murdoch and Graham shared a looked
before deciding to accept Jacobs’ proposition.

With the last of the paperwork finished
Doctor Crass signed the last of his forms and picked them up. He
banged them gently, lengthwise on the desk so that they were neat,
grabbed his things and headed out the office. With his satchel
slung over one shoulder he locked his office door, placed the files
in a plastic docket on top of the nurse’s desk and headed down the
hall. In another office Doctor Frieda still had not gone home yet,
having decided to forego the silence of his empty condo for the
relative safety of Hallcombes. Smoking a cigarette, his hand was
deep in his hair as he rubbed his head. The knock at the door
startled him and he quickly threw his cigarette into the dustbin,
knowing that if he got caught smoking in the hospital he would be
in serious trouble. He was especially worried once he saw who was
entering his office.


Dr. Crass, what can I do for
you?”

In his haste Frieda
forgot to sort his
hair so he had an oversized quiff sticking up where it was once
styled.


Doctor MacNamee
and I are going away
for a couple of days for a conference. We might need to get
information from the boy while we are away so we may contact you
and ask you to get it for us.”

Crass
couldn’t help but feel pity on Frieda
as he looked around the messy office. The man behind the desk was
sweaty, unkempt, but Crass had bigger things to worry about than
Frieda’s personal hygiene.


Ok, Doctor Crass.
That sounds
good.”

Crass
stood for a moment, analyzing
Frieda’s shifty behavior.


Paul,
are you alright?”


Yes sir, I’m fine. Why do
you ask?”

Frieda’s lie
was paper thin. Crass didn’t
believe that he was alright. But it was clear Frieda did not want
to talk about it. Crass wasn’t all that interested in Frieda’s
wellbeing anyways, as long as he performed his duties at the
hospital. Crass took a gentle sniff of the air.


Paul?”


Yes sir?”


You haven’t been smoking in here
have you?”

Frieda
scoffed.


What? No way sir, definitely
not, I
know
better than that. No, I think it’s coming from outside.”

Crass eyes
glance
d past
the closed windows, with rain streaking wildly down them. Looking
at Frieda he decided he would not push the subject.


Ok Frieda I believe you, but
what
are you
still doing here? You should had been finished hours
ago”


Oh yes sir, I just wanted
to do a couple of things before I left, I’ll be leaving soon
enough.”

Frieda
had no intention of fulfilling this
statement, he just wanted rid of Crass.


Ok, very well then. I will call
you if I need you to speak with Connor.”


Sounds good sir.”

Crass looked him up and down. Frieda’s
eyes were locked on Crass’s. After a quick glance downwards Crass
headed towards the door. Frieda breathed a sigh of relief as it
seemed Crass was finally leaving. The old doctor opened the heavy
brown door then turned back to his shaky colleague.


Oh, and Paul?” Crass
asked as if he
forgot to mention something important.


Yes sir?”


Your trash can’s on
fire!”

As Crass
closed the door he could heard Frieda
furiously stomping at the garbage can, trying to put the small
paper fire out. Most people would find this situation quite
amusing, but not Crass, not right now. He headed further down the
corridor still and stopped in on MacNamee who was just finishing
the last of his paperwork.


All finished
Greg?”


Almost
.”

MacNamee
signed the last of his forms and
closed a binder, trapping all of his papers inside.


Done”


Good good. I stopped in on
Frieda, damn fool was smoking in his office. I let him know we
would be out of town for a couple of days.”

MacNamee
was shaking his head.


Oh Frieda! Well good, that’s all
the loose ends tied up then. Time to go home and get some
sleep
.”


Will Greta be waiting up for
you?”


Oh shit, I forgot to call her
and tell her I would be home late. Oh
that’s alright I’m sure she’ll have
figured it out. She’ll probably be in bed by now anyways. We’re
both out by ten-thirty these days.”


I’m not surprised”
said Crass as they
left the office, heading down towards the exit, with MacNamee
dropping off his files on route.


We’ve had a tiring few days”
Crass
continued.


Yeah, Greta
has been really good throughout
it all too.”


She’s a good
woman
.” Crass
said just before they exited the main door into the rainy parking
lot.


Yeah, she
is.” MacNamee smiled
fondly.


Ok Ben, I’ll pick you up
tomorrow, at seven thirty, we’ll go meet Jacobs from
there
.”


Ok Greg, get some
sleep
.”


You too
.”

The two split up into the car park, moving
quickly to their cars they tried to avoid as much of the storm as
they could.

He never cared that his feet
were getting wetter. He just wanted to get inside the house. If
that meant that the quickest route was through more puddles then so
be it he thought.
With a quick turn he checked the doorknob to see if the
door was unlocked and it was. He never liked the fact that Greta
never locked the door but tonight he made an exception. He stepped
into the hall. Shaking his head he tried to get of some of the
water in his hair. Slamming the door shut was his own personal
protest to the weather. Now the heat inside had hit him he could
feel how wet he really was. Individual droplets streaked down his
back, mixing with sweat, creating a greasy skin feeling. Dropping
off all his stuff by the door he put his hands in his hair and
shook some more of the water out. His hands also felt greasy now;
as the product he used to style his hair had now mixed with the
water and coated his hands. With a quick wipe on his pants he
kicked off his shoes, then, with a slight struggle he peeled off
his soaking wet socks, almost losing balance as he stood on
alternating feet while pulling them off. He started a slight jog
towards the stairs; eager to get into bed as soon as possible when
something stopped him. Looking down he could see prints on the
hardwood floor, paw prints. Unlike the prints he saw on the
hospital floor these were more defined, clear toes were visible and
they were smaller. Suddenly his heart sank deeper into his chest;
something was in here with his wife. He took his time moving up the
stairs, trying to be as silent as possible while his mind raced,
urging him to move faster to find out if his wife was safe. The
footprints started to fade as they headed off in the direction of
the bedroom. MacNamee followed them carefully down the hall, he
tried to remain quiet but the floorboards in the old vintage house
which he prized so dearly would give him away any chance they got.
After a few squeaks he decided the stealthy approach was over now
so he moved quickly down the hall. He wanted to call out for his
wife, but that would be announcing his presence too much so instead
he bit his tongue. Bursting open the bedroom door he saw her, lying
on her back on the bedroom floor, her face mostly dissolved. The
smell hit him right away, throwing his hand to his face he would
know that scent from a mile away. It was vomit or, more accurately,
the stomach acid within it. Over his time at Hallcombes he had been
around after they had vomited, and the one thing he noticed was
that that horrible smell was always the same. Unable to speak, he
moved towards her Streaming tears clouded his vision. Blinking
himself clear he stood over her. He hadn’t even noticed how shallow
and rapid his breathing had become, his lungs shook as they blow
out air. His wife, his love, lay before him mutilated and he had no
idea what to do. The smell was not strong enough to overwhelm his
feelings. He dropped to his knees beside her; taking hold of her he
buried his face in her shoulder. As he started to weep a thought
broke in to his mind, this was the first time he had ever
been
this
emotional around his wife. His hands found the last of the
hair still attached to her scalp, how did she ever get involved in
this? Greta provided the voice of console, of levity, of love, and
now, in front of him she laid, an innocent in the situation rapidly
unfolding before him. Through tears he pulled the soft white linen
off the bed, dabbed his eyes and kissed it softly. Carefully he lay
her down and covered her in the sheet. Stains started to form
around the horrible face he hoped he would never have to see again.
His memory, his thoughts would forever be of the woman he cherished
and her features, which he would never forget. Allowing her burned
face into his memory would mean her killer would win and MacNamee
was not about to let that happen. Now that she was covered he
slowly got to his feet. At this point he could had been attacked by
whatever attacked his wife but he didn’t care, he’d already lost
her and if he had to die he would rather it was by her side than
anywhere else on earth. Looking around the room he realized he was
alone and since he wasn’t about to die he would make a promise to
her.


I promise
. I will put an end to
this.”

He
took one last looked at the white shape on
the floor and headed out down the hall. He didn’t call 911, knowing
an ambulance was pointless and the police would ask too many
questions, probably assuming he was the killer or presuming he was
crazy for telling the truth. As he headed downstairs, the thought
of stepping out in the rain didn’t seem so bad anymore. Taking his
keys from his pocket he paused before leaving, he knew that when he
left the house, everything was going to change again. He had had
enough already but he couldn’t bring himself to do nothing. He had
to put an end to this, like he promised he would, for Greta.
Finally, he was able to take a deep breath and control his
emotions, but not for long. In one sudden rush; everything he felt
came straight to the surface once more and he broke down right
there in the hall.

In the car he
played with his cell
phone, thinking of calling Crass when his mind wandered. Blame
followed tragedy and MacNamee’s sadness was starting to mold into
anger and resentment. He called up Crass, the urge to hear a
friendly voice becoming overpowering. Unable to sleep, the old man
sat alone in his living room with a cup of tea. The storm raged
outside, but the classical music coming from his speakers didn’t
miss a note. A harmonious interpretation of a spring day was
Crass’s tipple this evening alongside a cup of green tea infused
with orange. A well-tuned ear was easily able to distinguish the
difference between strings and a cell phone ringing so he got up,
put down his tea and headed into the hall. Rummaging through his
coat pocket which was still soaking wet he found the ringing phone,
spotted Greg’s name and answered it right away.


Yes Greg?”
asked the old doctor,
comfortable in his red dressing gown.


Greta’s dead.”

The response
was a more than unexpected one,
not least because it sidestepped detail or small talk. Crass took a
moment to digest the information given to him before
answering.

BOOK: Inanimate
7.87Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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