So, I got challenged–sort of–to the #MonsterMash #MM2018 Blog Hop flash fiction challenge to celebrate Halloween. I’m linking this post to the POST at GET WORDY. It’s my understanding you can click the link and go visit there to get links to all the participants when the links go live. It’s all in good fun, plus I wrote a bonus scene for Sade’s book in the deal. #GETWORDY #GUTSANDGLORY I hope you enjoy this bit of insight into the monsters who live under Sade’s bed.
Sade, curled in a fetal ball, kept the covers pulled tight over her head. She’d made sure all the edges were tucked in before she shimmied between them. Everyone knew that the monsters under the bed couldn’t get you if you were covered up.
What was that? She tried to regulate her pounding heart, listening hard, shifting all the possibilities in her mind as she scrambled to identify the sound.
She soooo wanted to peek, see what was making the noise. No, she reminded herself. The monsters will get me.
Pressing her hand against her mouth, she stifled the scream gathering deep all-the-way-to-her-toes down inside her.
Her mattress bounced as something heavy pounced.
Claws scrabbled at the pillow where her head rested, pawing and digging. She clutched the sheets tighter in her fists. Her brain conjured all sorts of monsters—trolls with stinky garlic breath and rotting teeth that were still sharp, ghouls with curved claws they used to dig up dead bodies in cemeteries—
Hot, fetid breath filtered through the sheet over her face followed by more digging.
“Wake up, wake up, sleepyhead!”
Sing-song voices cut through her fear and she blinked against bright light as the sheet was ripped from her hands. Glowing white eyes stared down at her though the faces remained in shadow. Her instincts were to burrow back beneath the covers, but she wasn’t a coward. Nor was she a child.
Wincing as her legs cramped, she stretched them out. Lips dry, she didn’t have enough saliva to lick them. Eyes adjusted, she took in her surroundings. Not her room—not the one she grew up in nor the one in her Washington apartment. And it wasn’t Sinjen’s. Shadows moved across the room, drawing her attention. Where the fucking hell was she? And what the fucking hell was she doing here?
“That language doesn’t become a lady, Sade,” the shadows sang.
Wait. What? She had not voiced those thoughts aloud.
“You are in our realm, Sade, and magic is more…potent here.”
They could read her fucking mind? Crapcrapcrap. She searched her memory for the most annoying earworm of a song she could remember the words to. She put her mind on a loop—Lady Gaga, Queen, The Monkees, and finished it off with “It’s a Small World.”
The shadows winced and the light pressure in her head disappeared. Even kitten paws had claws. She needed to remember that while she figured out what the fuck was going on.
Now that she was awake and functional, as the last vestiges of her nightmare faded, she took stock of her situation. She was dressed. Sort of. Who the hell wore diaphanous nightgowns? Shit. The bedroom was illuminated by hundreds of candles—all shapes and sizes. Flimsy lace curtains hung at an open window and danced with each breeze entering the room. Yeah, that wasn’t dangerous.
Tucked back into a dark corner, the shadows watched. She knew this because their eyes glowed laser-white continuously now. While singing “Small World” in her mind, she sorted through the monster drawer in her mental file cabinet. Not ghoul, goblin, or troll. Not a zombie. Nachthexens and bansidhes were female and if her jailers were female, Sade was a fae courtesan. Not wendigo. Werewolves? Maybe, if they were rogue. She was under the protection of Romulus Jones, the Texas pack alpha. Not gargoyle. All those rogues had died in the battle of New Orleans, not to mention that Le Vieil, Roman, and Varrick had the Sentinels on watch. Fae didn’t do that woo-woo shit with their eyes. Vampires? Shit. That would totally suck.
Vamps were always on power trips. Mathias De Vries, the baddest of the bad-ass master vampires, was her godfather. And she’d been sleeping with Sinjen St. John for— She nipped that thought in the bud as her heart constricted. Then another thought hit her. Dragon. Oh to the fuck no! Granted, the Drakon of Clan Kholikikos, Nikos Constantine, really wanted in her pants, there were those—like Stavros, whom she’d caused to be exiled for a time—who weren’t too keen on their pairing. Shit.
Darkness crashed as all the candles winked out. The strains of a song filtered in. “Total Eclipse of the Heart.” Her worst nightmare and she was reliving it in her dreams.
Her alarm went off. Thank goodness the only monster under the bed was her radio.
And as a bonus earworm, here’s the video. 😉