Read Inanimate Online

Authors: Deryck Jason

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

Inanimate (9 page)

BOOK: Inanimate
4.45Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

How could I not have seen it

His whole domestic life
was immersed in
anger and pain for years and he did nothing about it. As his heart
rate rose, his emotions rushed to the surface.


screamed and with a solid square
right he attacked the bedroom door. Splintering the white timber,
he bloodied his knuckles in the process. Standing, fighting for
composure Andy’s shallow breathing made it hard for him to get
oxygen. The fist opened the clouds in his head, allowing clarity to
shine through for just a moment. Interpreting it as best he could
he headed down the stairs and snatched his car keys which were
hanging on a push pin by the door. He needed to get out; he was
suffocating in his own house. He convinced himself he was not
running away from his responsibilities as a father, he genuinely
felt he would be serving people better if he were out of the way.
Andy pulled the door shut behind him, leaving the cat clicking away
in the house alone.

Connor Williams looked up at the
two Doctors standing before him. The older Doctor Crass stood in
the doorway observing as the younger Doctor MacNamee pulled up a
chair beside him. The boy’s mind felt a little clearer than it was
few days earlier.
“Beth’s passing”
-as he called it-removed a weight, a weight that
had dissolved itself and dissipated back into his subconscious
until such time that it may be required again.

Hello Connor…”
said the younger
Doctor in a low voice. “I’m Doctor Greg MacNamee, and this is
Doctor Benjamin Crass. How are you feeling today?”

The high pitch of
pre-pubescent voice only served to feed MacNamee’s fear of
how young the boy actually was. “Fine. How are you?”

Before MacNamee answered, his psychologist
brain took note of the boy’s tone, and how it didn’t seem like he
was aware of what he had done.

I’m very well thank

turned to Crass.

And you?”

Crass had been studying the boy
intently and almost stuttered when he was engaged by the

I’m good, thank you for

Connor, do you know where
MacNamee asked, smiling at Crass’s reaction.

I’m in hospital”

Very good
. But this is a special hospital;
here we help people who have problems with their mental health.
Myself and Doctor Crass here were your Doctors”

I have two?”

Yes, you happen to be a very
lucky boy
Connor. You have both of us to help you here.”

switched his glance back to Crass who
stood by the door. Uncomfortable with the boys stare, he forced a
smile and a nod. Connor just stared back at the awkward Doctor for
a moment before looking back at the much warmer


Yes Greg?”

Do you know why you were
brought here?”

’s question was more for his
knowledge of the boy’s level of awareness than anything

Yes” Connor
looked down at the floor. “I did
a bad thing.”

MacNamee breathed

Yes son. Yes you did. But
e here to
help you through it. I’m going to set you up with a colleague of
ours, a Doctor Paul Frieda, he’s a very nice man and he’ll talk to
you some more ok?”

got up and put his chair back against
the wall as Connor simply stared at the floor. MacNamee was walking
out the door when he heard Connor say something, it was quiet and
his brain had to replay it to make sure he heard it right. He was
sure he heard Connor utter:

It was fun

MacNamee stopped dead and turned around,
trying to be friendly but not accusing.

Did you say something

Connor slowly
turned and lifted
his head to meet MacNamee’s.

My bad thing
… I said; it was

MacNamee held his breath and
focused on composure. His eyes never left Connors. Later he would
think about how he had misjudged the youngster, lost sight of the
fact that although this was a child in age, the crime he had
committed was purely monstrous. At the time though, his mind had no
thoughts except
. All he decided to say was:

Dr. Frieda will talk to

Connors eyes
MacNamee’s as he left the room. When Crass turned the key in the
lock he saw the shock in his young colleague’s eyes.

Try not to think about

think about it Ben, he’s so young.”

have other children in here Greg, and we
have had others in the past…”

I know Ben but not like

MacNamee interrupted “We’ve never had a kid who basically committed
matricide in his own home.”

He’s a very disturbed little boy
Greg, nothing more. Let
’s get him in with Frieda; he’s the expert on
children here. He’ll help the boy more than we can.”

Walking away from the
MacNamee couldn’t help but glance over his shoulder at
“101” getting further away. He wondered if he would ever know what
was going on in Connor’s head.


Andy Williams approached the city limits.
Driving far, he hoped, would quell some of his guilt. Still
partially intoxicated from his all-night bender his driving was
fast and erratic. He didn’t stop to think that if a police car saw
him he almost certainly would have been pulled over, and if so then
he would have been spending at least a night behind bars. He just
drove on, past the city limit sign, leaving, he hoped, all of his
problems behind him.

In a small room cleverly concealed behind
a one-way mirror the two doctors observed Connor’s interaction with
Doctor Frieda. Compared to the much larger room where Connor sat
this one was dark and very functional. Crass was right, they did
have other children in the hospital but they were not often
permanent guests. Children with illnesses like autism or severe
learning difficulties would come to the larger room to be treated
by Frieda. MacNamee did not feel right here. He did not like the
fact that children were tricked into feeling safe and comfortable
while they were secretly being watched from the next room. However,
this was one of Dr. Crass’s generally praised initiatives, designed
to allow the Doctors to observe the behavior of disturbed children
while they themselves were completely at ease. This ease allowed
the children to be able to talk openly without feeling the
uncomfortable presence of eyes upon them. Connor sat, in a room
surrounded by colorful toys. A selection, chosen by Doctors who had
kids themselves in order to get away from the banality of the usual
garbage toys you would normally find in GP’s waiting rooms or
low-brow pediatrics departments. Nothing here was second hand or
broken beyond repair. Connor sat reading a book entitled “The
Tastiest Squirrel” under the quiet observation of Doctor Paul
Frieda. An expert in child psychology, Frieda knew the best way to
open up a child was with patience. Noticing the rate Connor turned
the pages he decided to open with a compliment.

You’re a very fast reader
Connor; you must be a very bright boy.”

With a
flick Connor turned another page. He
didn’t acknowledge the doctor at all.

I know that
book, it’s very good; I read it
to my kids.

This comment did get Connor’s attention
and he looked up from his book.

You have kids?”

replied Frieda “I have a girl and a
boy about your age.”

And you read them

We read it together yes. We
read together often.”

This comment drew
anger from behind
the mirror.

is he lying about having kids?”
MacNamee asked Crass sternly

I don’t know.
To get the boy
talking perhaps?”

What do
think of the book?” asked

searched his memory banks. Despite
the fact he lied about having children, he had read the book, in
fact he had read all the books in the room just so he could talk to
the kids about them.

I liked it”

I like it because it’s a simple

You like simple

Things don’t need to be
Are you a good father?”

Yes, I think so,
I read to my kids
every night.”

es your wife not read to them? Or do they
have a bad mother?”

No, my kids have two good
parents, my wife and I take it in
turns to read to them.”

Aware that this line of questioning was
leading them off topic Frieda tried to change it.

But let’s get back to the

Connor had noticed that the doctor’s story
seemed to be changing. First they read together, then he read to
them, then he and his wife took turns. His answers seemed to change
to appease Connor.

ou don’t wear a ring” Connor interjected
as he looked at Frieda’s hand.

Frieda cleverly
tried to dodge the
boy’s probe with another lie.

, I must have left it at home. Now let’s
talk about the book.”

Do you enjoy lying to children
Doctor Frieda?” Connor asked sternly.

Pardon me?”

I asked you if you enjoy lying
to children.”

I don’t know what you

Behind the mirror MacNamee
on his
fist while Crass watched intently. Both knew this was a crucial
breakthrough in Connor’s treatment that Frieda may be about to mess

Yes you do Paul. You’re not
married, and you don’t have children.”

I don’t know why you would think
that Connor but I can assure you I am married. I must have taken my
ring off when I was washing the dishes last night. I left it at
home, I told you that.”

tried to remain composed while he dug
his lie in deeper.

I don’t think you did

was looking right through him

You see my Dad
used to take me
fishing, which meant we would spend hours on boats or wading in
rivers. Before we left the house he would always take his wedding
ring off to make sure it was safe. When he did there was always a
tan mark due to the fact he almost always had it on, stopping the
sunlight from getting to it. You don’t have that mark, which means
you don’t have a wedding ring which means you are not

Frieda shifted
uncomfortably in his
seat, with no answer to give.

And since you lied about being
married I’m going to assume you lied about having children also. So
I’m going to ask you again, do you enjoy lying to

Half garbled words slipped out of
Frieda’s mouth. He was making no sense. Connor’s shrewd observation
had left him absolutely speechless.

Well that’s it isn’t
!” yelled
Crass from behind the mirror.

has screwed it up, the boy won’t talk

Crass slammed Connor’s files on
the desk and walked out
, followed by his younger colleague. Coursing up
the hallway MacNamee knew to keep his distance for a moment until
Crass vented his frustration.


yelled uninterested in how many other
staff could hear him.

I’ll have him disciplined for
this! Why would he lie about having kids?”

Come on now Ben you said
it was an ice breaker and how could he have known Connor was so
perceptive. None of us knew.”

But that’s why we use
Paul Frieda Greg! To
find this stuff out, so we don’t make any rookie moves like that!
But what the hell’s the point in using him if he can’t even hold a
simple conversation with a ten year old without blowing

BOOK: Inanimate
4.45Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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