Sunday, May 28, 2017

I Typed This Slowly But It's My First Fiction In A While

I'm rusty, but I hope this is at least SEMI-okay; I don't expect it to be much good- it's been a while since I have really written. Hopefully tho you will enjoy!


Thomas looked around the park quickly, green grass growing in neat squares. Aside from his daughter and son he could see no other children, hear no other parents. Just the wind, a few birds, and some dogs barking in the distance. Then, panicked, quickly back to his children and thank God. Johnny was still eating his peanut butter sandwich and Susan was just setting her crust down, jam still smeared on one young cheek. His throat ached as he watched.

“Now remember,” he heard himself say and wanted to choke off his words but he couldn’t stop- his mouth spoke even as his mind tried to stop. “You promised.” Shut up, he thought to himself as Susan rolled her eyes. Johnny, a full year younger than her, merely looked away, bored.

“Daddy,” said Susan and she stood up next to the blanket. Thomas moved to stand as well, hating his movement. Stop it, he thought. You’re going to scare your own children. He held himself in mid-crouch, watching his daughter out of the corner of his eye.

That’s when he heard the laughter, children’s laughter. Getting closer. He felt his heart beating faster, fear growing.

“Daddy,” said Johnny as he heard the children getting closer and Thomas wanted to scream.

“No,” he rasped. “You promised. You promised Daddy.”

“Daddy,” said Susan as she took a step from the blanket, toward the growing sound of laughter. Nowhere could Thomas see any children except his own but the laughter grew louder. It was innocent, playful; Thomas wondered about the parents, wondered if they were still alive.

Thomas hadn’t seen any children, save for his own, for a little over two years, ever since They arrived.

They. No adult knew what they looked like; no adult had ever seen one. The children though... any child that had not yet reached puberty could see them. Could see them, hear them, talk to them... and learn from them. And learn they did. They taught the children and the children learned while the parents could not even see the creatures that mingled with them. That taught their children.

That took their children.

They didn’t steal the children away, no; in fact, they gave the children more than the human race could ever give them. Form and function was relative, and learned; when taught properly, the children could act as They did. Thomas’s friends had 2 children and no matter how they tried, the children learned from Them and when they finally figured it out- Debbie first became a patch of grass, a blowing wind, a beam of sunlight- then fading laughter and gone. Little Bertie simply stared at the sun for almost an hour and in a flash that almost blinded Thomas and the two parents, simply- left.

“Susan, remember,” he whispered, throat tight, as his children stared toward the laughter, unmoving. “You promised-”

But Johnny was gone and Thomas couldn’t remember if he’d walked away or-

“Daddy,” he heard Johnny say as he headed toward the laughing children that Thomas couldn’t see, then silence.

“Johnny,” whispered Thomas as he reached toward Susan, Susan, his six-year-old daughter, staring with her head cocked. “Sue,” he said and hated the whine he heard. “You promised-” When his fingers touched her shoulder, she turned so quickly he couldn’t see the movement, suddenly facing him and smiling. “Daddy,” she said. “I love you.”

“Sue-” he said, staring past his empty hand into the grass. Susan was gone- just gone, no longer under his hand. “Susan,” he said. He could hear her and his son’s laughter amidst the laughter of the others, still unseen. He staggered quickly to his feet, stumbling toward the unseen laughter.

“Susan,” he called as he walked, heart thundering in his chest. “Johnny? You promised- you promised me. You promised Daddy!”

Not even a week after Debbie and Bertie had left with the other children, Thomas’s  friends were gone too although they didn’t learn from Them; like many parents whose children had Learned and Left, they couldn’t take the pain and helped themselves to heaping portions of rat poison.

The laughter was fading into the distance as Thomas staggered after the unseen children. Some of them, as they traveled, would quickly become a tree, a patch of soil, a beam of sunlight; they never stayed long in any form and within minutes were gone.

The afternoon was fading into evening, the park becoming dark. Electricity didn’t run anymore. Thomas could no longer hear any laughter, could see no play from the children he had tried so hard to cling to.

“You promised daddy,” he whispered as night fell.

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