Sunday, October 26, 2014

Idea Garage Sale: Running Down the Hill

Worst Nightmare Ever.

Excuse me if I've done this before. It's hard to believe I haven't, but searching relevant tags, I can't find it.

I had this dream when I was in first grade. Maybe younger, but I think it was first grade.

My little sister and I are being pursued by a Monster. Nothing wildly original about this Monster - it's just the Frankenstein variety, and it's slow, but it's tireless. We're not. My sister is so small and I'm running so fast down the hill in the unfamiliar suburban neighborhood that she flies out behind me like a ragdoll as I'm holding her hand, running, and we're both screaming at the top of our lungs, no words just screaming, the most penetrating continuous little kid screams we can muster as we run down the hill, in the dusk, down the middle of a quiet street faced by two rows of neat quiet houses with lights in the windows.

And as we run past screaming and the Monster lumbers after us, at each house, the curtains are drawn and the lights go out.

That's where I woke up. But that's where the story starts, isn't it?

Because no one will help these children and they are too small, the Monster is too big, slow as it is they will be too tired to run anymore, the little sister and big sister will lose their grips and the little sister will fall on the asphalt, get all scraped up, and the screams will change and the people inside those ordinary neat quiet houses will hear the change, and remain safe in their quiet neat dark houses, dark as their hearts that did nothing -

And there will be consequences, and the story is about the consequences.

And I am afraid to write it because when I was little I was running down that hill. But to be a grownup is to be the person turning the lights off.

And anyway I can't really write horror. I'm not ruthless enough.


  1. Ooooo... if I wrote horror that would be a good place to start, indeed.

  2. Most nightmares you just get over. This one gets worse every time I remember it because I understand it better as I get older.