Deadly Ever After

The Writing Adventures of The Undead Duo–Julie Hutchings and Kristen Strassel

Thief

Today’s Brew:  Yellow Cake with Chocolate Frosting.  It was calling to me from the cupboard.  What was I to do?
Thief–Mari Wells
“She’ll hurt herself.” They both looked up at the ceiling, “Stop her. Whatever she’s doing.”  He stood up and went up the stairs to his bedroom. Cara was pushing the crib across the room until it pushed against the bed. The baby inside wailed.     “What are you doing?” He pulled the crib slowly a small ways from the side of the bed.

“I need him close to me.” He wrapped his arm around her and led her to the bed.

“You’re going to get hurt. You aren’t ready to exert yourself like that.” He sat her down and tucked the blankets around her legs. “The baby was fine where he was.”

He bent and picked the crying bundle up out of the bed. She opened her arms to him.

“She’s coming for him. I have to keep him close or she’ll take him.”

He reached his hand out to caress her cheek. “Cara, no one is coming for him.”

She looked up at him with tears welling in her eyes. “I’ve seen her Rick, she tries to take him.”

“You’re tired, Cara, you’ve been through a lot in a few days. No one wants him.”

Tears rolled down her cheeks as she held the baby tighter to her chest. She rubbed her chin on his soft head. “I won’t let her have him. If you won’t keep her away, I will,” her eyes focused on him, before her vision focused on the large mirror in the dresser. He leaned forward and kissed her forehead. He rubbed the baby’s cheek with his index finger.

“I’ll bring you some water and something to eat,” he stood up, “and your medicines,” he said under his breath.

“I will protect you little one,” she cooed rubbing her cheek softly against his. “She won’t take you.”

She laid the baby in front of her and began to undress him. “I see her and you see her,” she reached for a new diaper, “it doesn’t matter if he can’t see her.” She redressed him and held him close to her body.  “I don’t need him to protect you. I can.” She looked up into the mirror. A smiled played at the corner of her lips. She looked tired. She held the small bundle in one arm as she patted the right side of her golden hair. “I need a shower, little one.”

The reflection in the mirror blurred. A woman with wild black hair, and dark circles under her eyes appeared. She held her arms out, her long white sleeves swayed. She moved closer. “Come.”

The baby began to wail.

“No!” Cara screamed. She picked up the empty baby bottle on the nightstand and threw it at the woman. She continued to scream, “No, he’s mine. You can’t have him. No!” It landed on the dresser top with a thud.

“What is it? Cara?” Rick sat down beside her. He tried to pry the baby out of her arms. “Cara!”

Her eyes filled with tears. “I won’t let you have him.” She squeezed the baby closer. Rick placed his hand on her cheek. “Rick, please! She’s going to take him.”

Her shoulders heaved as she sobbed. He took the baby from her arms and handed him to his mother who had been standing in the doorway. She tenderly rocked the newborn and offered it a bottle.

“Cara, I don’t understand what’s happening.”

Cara wrapped her arms around him as she sobbed into his chest. “She’s coming for him. Rick, she wants my baby.”

He patted her on the back. “There isn’t anyone here who wants your baby, Cara.” He looked at his mother.

“It’s the hormones, or Post partum depression,” she whispered to him.

“She will take our child, and you can’t even see her.” Cara cried into his shoulder.

“Cara, you need to rest. Here take your medication.” He pried her arms from his shoulders and picked up the bottle of medicine the doctor had given her, he held the cup for her. She swallowed the pills and lay down. “Please sleep. I will keep him with me. I won’t let her get him.”

Cara closed her eyes, “She comes from the mirror,” she picked her trembling hand up and pointed towards the mirror.

“I won’t let her get close to him,” he whispered. This is crazy. Is she going insane, he thought. When he was sure she was asleep, he got up and looked into the mirror. His hand ran across it. He shook his head at his reflection and chuckled. He spent the rest of the evening downstairs with his mother and the baby.

He laid the baby in the crib and walked around to his side of the bed. He kissed Cara on the forehead. She would be better tomorrow, she had needed rest, and today she finally got it. He heard the baby whimper, the floorboard creaked. He opened his eyes. The room was much colder than it should be.  A woman in a long white nightgown walked toward the crib. He watched for a moment as she bent and picked up the baby. Her black hair whipped around her face even though there wasn’t a breeze inside. He sat up.

“Put him down.”

Her face twisted into a horrific smile as she sat on the dresser top. “Come get him,” she cackled. She slid into the mirror. She beckoned him with her finger on the other side of the glass.

He jumped from the bed. He paused for a split second before pushing his arms through the glass. She cackled again. The glass shattered. He fell backwards as the shards of glass landed on the floor beside him. The world spun as he tried to get up. He couldn’t stand, when he looked down at his body his arms, his hands were missing.

“Cara!” he screamed.

His mother ran into the room. She screamed when she saw him. She shook Cara, but she wouldn’t wake up.

She felt her pulse, “Cara’s dead!”

Bio: Mari Wells a homeschooling mom four children and homemaker steals hours or forces moments from her hectic day to write. She has been known to wake at dawn to write and continues into the late hours of night. She keeps a notebook and flashlight on her nightstand for the words that come to her in the wee hours.
She can be found at www.mariwells.wordpress.com where she blogs about vampires, witches, and writing.
She spends unreal amounts of time on Twitter. @Mari_Wells4 or http://on.fb.me/YPQ50R
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14 thoughts on “Thief

  1. Pingback: It’s My Turn! « Mari Wells

  2. Yay! Great job, Mari!

  3. Hi! It’s Bobby using my own Blog-account now! I’m first to comment too (hopefully)! Yay! 🙂

    No worries, Mari! You did just great, I could easily imagine it all and thought it to be a 19th century setting. I’m guessing she cut a deal with a witch once.
    That poor baby… I’m glad Rick lost his arms, clearly he had no use for them when push came to shuff.

    Good work, Mari! Keep it up, no worries! Just pride and fun!

    Your friend,

    Bobby

  4. Aaaah! Creepy! I like how you build a sense of dread. We’re not sure at first whether Cara is hallucinating or whether it’s real, and then – SURPRISE! – her husband’s arms are lost to the mirror-land! Totally didn’t see that coming.

  5. Wow! yup, Im a bit speechless. Well Done Mari!

  6. The story kept me interested. I had to know what happened! Totally didn’t expect it & that’s a good thing. 🙂

  7. Thank you everyone. Rick thought she was suffering from Post Partum Depression.

  8. Aw man, I got chills when she came out of the mirror. This is why I don’t read horror, lol. I’m a total wimp when I read this sort of thing. Still, nice job on the story 🙂 I like the post partum twist!

  9. It wasn’t so long ago in human history that S.I.D.S. was attributed to malevolent entities, or even cats sucking the breath out of babies.

    Making this a classic folklore horror story told anew…

    Great job, Mari!

  10. Copious Corpses on said:

    Great use of the mirror. Her daring Rick to pursue her, and him reaching through to get the babe, then—ah, dang!—the portal closes and…farewell to arms! Really good sequence.

    ~CC~

  11. Thank you. Michelle, I’m a big chicken too. Daven, I was aiming a bit towards that S.I.D.S. thing, but losing my kids is what scares me most, so that’s where this story went. CC, I wanted him to suffer for not taking Cara seriously. He lost 3 times over. His baby, wife and arms.

  12. dylanjmorgan on said:

    Really good story, Mari, nicely delivered and paced well. I too liked the role the mirror played in the story, its mystery and devastation at the end. A creepy tale, with a bit of gore at the end.

    Well done. I liked it a lot.

  13. J C Michael on said:

    Very creepy, and highly effective in so far as keeping us guessing. Personally I expected Cara to be suffering from some kind of paranoid split personality, so the ending came as a surprise. The only problem is that you left me wanting to know just who / what the entity in the mirror was.

  14. I’m not really sure what mirror lady was. A ghost, or banshee sort of thing. The Portugal’s white woman or Latin America’s Llorona. All I know is Rick didn’t believe Cara, and lost her, his baby, and his hands.

So what do you think?

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