Scary Story
or
Take That, Monster!

Prologue

The ragged teenage boy ran through the dark woods...

"You could at least give them my name," he grumbled.

I cannot give you his name. He's gonna be killed, so there's no point....

The boy stopped. "Oh, that's rich! Tell them the story!"

I didn't tell them the story. I just merely stated the obvious. When you see someone running through the woods in the beginning of a horror movie - or story - it's required that they meet some painful and sickening end to prove the deadliness of the creature and why the heroes...

"You're making a run-on sentence," he remarked impatiently.

Sorry. ...Anyways, it's the only way to set up the backdrop for the story to come. Now, shut up and start running!

"No."

I'm the author. I create a monster. You run. ...Unless you want to get gobbled up.

He raised an eyebrow. "You said I'm gonna get killed anyway, so why satisfy you by running just so you can describe the setting?"

Preventing me from describing the setting is a most serious offense, and for that you will have to deal with my describing your most gruesome death... with your blood dripping onto the forest floor...

"You're pitiful. You know that? Sitting at your computer, writing your story, and you start out with an opening scene that's already been done on how many horror movies?"

It's a classic.

"Classic's just a fancy name for 're-run.' How can you live with yourself?!"

By making the characters suffer... especially characters who do not bend to my will. This is my paper. This is my pen. This is my idea. You will do as I say. Now, run before the monster grabs you to use as a demonstration for the heroes' possible demise.

The nameless teenager started off with a jog. "Why can't I be one of the heroes?" he whined.

Because you're not handsome enough to get the girl...

"I can change," he suggested.

No, you can't because I made you, and you cannot change. Now, go faster.

"This is so not fair."

Life isn't fair. This is a story. Stories are always fair.

"Not in this case. You're killing off a good guy. You call that fair story writing?"

You're not a good guy!

"I took up a page of dialogue, and I've won the sympathy of the reader..."

No, you didn't... Curses!

"Heh-heh. Now, you can't kill me."

Grr... You know that if you threaten me with Writer's Block, the story will never be written.

"Fine by me. I'm dead anyway."

...Which means you'll never be created, and then I can't make you a hero.

"You mean you're actually considering it?"

Yeah...

The ragged boy stopped. "So, how?"

If I told you that I'd be spoiling the story...

"Okay..." he sighed. "So, what's my name?"

You'll find out in just a few seconds...

The teenager turned his gaze to the sound of a breaking twig. "I thought you said the monster's..."

"Hello, Tommy."

Tommy? That's the best you could come up with?

It means "the twin." I thought it'd be appropriate.

How so?

You'll find out later. Now, stop interrupting me and play along....

"As long as you let me live," Thomas mumbled.

I'll let you live through the beginning. I make no promises otherwise.

"But I'm a hero!"

It's a horror story. Some heroes die....

"This wasn't part of the deal..."

I'm a writer. I don't make deals. I make stories. Now, do you want me to change my mind about you living through the prologue, or are you gonna shut up and let me tell the story?

Tom's teeth ground in the back of his throat. "Fine! But I want to get the girl. I wanna live happily..."

If you call being constantly chased by a monster through about a hundred pages or so "happily"... You're not getting the girl, though. You can get a girl but not the girl.

"Will she be pretty?"

Would you just talk to the gangster?!

"I wanna know if she'll be pretty."

She won't be ugly.... Now, stop talking to me. You're spoiling the story for the reader.

"Fine," he grumbled.

You need to stop saying, "fine."

"Okay?"

Better... Ack-hem! Anyways....

"Whatcha doing, Tommy?" the gangster asked impatiently while his buddies gathered around him.

"Oh, you know..." Thomas replied sheepishly. "...Getting chased by monsters." Sheepishly?

Yes, you're being sheepish. Now, hush!

Okay... Sorry.

The gangsters laughed. "You lost your blankie or something?" the leader remarked.

Please, tell me you're gonna kill them.

Hush! You're taking up three pages of what could've been one.

Touchy, touchy!

Very! You may - or may not - be winning the sympathy of the reader, but you're making me very angry, and you don't want to see me angry.

A disgusting monster stepped out of the shadows, dripping slobber on the collar of the gang leader's black leather jacket.

Yeesh! Okay, I'm sorry. I'm sorry!

Better.

The gang leader looked up, and the monster bit off his head.

The other thugs scattered, and the monster chased after them.

Thomas, being no fool, took advantage of the distraction and hid.

Tom grabbed a fern and held it in front of him.

Ack-hem! Being no fool, Thomas hid behind that boulder!

He held the fern and looked around.

The one in the bushes to your left.

"Oh!" He tossed the fern aside and dove behind the rock.

Sheesh! And I agreed to let you live. ...Now, be a good extra and pull out that newspaper clipping in your coat breast pocket so I can show the reader something.

"This?" He asked, pulling out the crumpled piece of paper.

Yes. Now, flatten it out and let us see what the headline reads.

"It's a Wanted ad. There are no headlines."

Or... whatever it's called.

He opened it up. "Got monster trouble and no one believes you?" the newspaper clipping read. "Call us. We'll travel out to your overrun small town, small town hotel, rural road... or donut shop - Yes, we had an incidence like that. - and vanquish those pesky psychos or monsters. P.S. We don't do Elm Street, and we don't clean up after the Devil - Long story. Other than that... Here's our number. 444-H-E-R-O."

"Are you serious?"

Yes. Now, dial the damn number!

Thomas pulled out his cell phone and started dialing.