Feigning a Fine Fettle

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Horror Haikus


Okay, these aren’t actually haikus in any sense of the word, but the title was snappy.

These were inspired by a writing challenge at terribleminds.com.

Write a horror story in only three sentences. I submitted one of them, but I was having fun with the challenge and wrote several more.

The one I posted is first, followed by the others. Enjoy!

Diana was working late, long after her coworkers had gone home and the sun had gone down, the rattle of the vents and the buzz of silence alternately accompanying the clacking staccato of her keyboard.

She turned her office chair slowly at the sudden tapscrape, tapscrape, tapscrape on the window behind her, only to see the silhouette of a man outlined through the gauze-thin drapes, filling the entirety of the window.

Two facts crept into Diana’s thoughts as she sat petrified in her chair under the spotlight glower of a solitary overhead light: the windows were at least nine feet tall and four feet wide, and her office was on the 12th floor.

Ben slowly woke to the feeling of a tongue sliding across his dangling foot.

“Cut it out, Duncan,” he mumbled to his dog.

He opened his eyes at the sound of a whimper, seeing Duncan pressed into the corner, eyes rolling in terror, as Ben felt a large, cold hand wrap itself tightly around his ankle.

He fumbled for the switch and turned the light on. There, not two feet in front of him, it stared back, its lips removed so that its teeth and gums were revealed, a maniacal grimace torn on its face, its eyes bloodshot and manic looking.

Reeling in horror, he punched the mirror, shattering it, letting loose a horrible keen in abject terror.

He’d run out of his house at the sound of his car alarm blaring incessantly in the early morning hours.

There was some sort of strange mound in his yard right next to his car, a dark mass about the size of his car.

Stopping short, he saw the mass move like it was taking a breath, and then two glowing orbs suddenly appeared, reflecting the porch light like the eyes of a cat.

Jon could hear the honking of car horns and the sounds of voices echoing up from the sun-drenched street below, all signs that the day outside was perfectly normal.

The man in the suit stood with his back to Jon, his hands clasped behind his back, staring out the window at the cars and people crawling in the street below, threaded between the high rise buildings like a stream at the bottom of a sheer canyon.

Jon dropped his keys and bag of groceries as the man slowly turned his face towards him, revealing a lack of features: no eyes, no nostrils, no lips or mouth or ears… just skin.

Their food was missing.

They’d tied it up in a tree about 30 feet from their tent to prevent a bear from taking it while they slept.

They’d tied it 30 feet up the tree; the footprint pressed into the mud at the base of the tree was at least as large as their tent.

There were three things he knew about hunting: silence, concealment, and patience.

He’d practiced these fundamentals, even through his hunger, and had just been rewarded with a kill.

He dragged her body into the brush, her left tennis shoe coming off as it caught on the concrete path.

Dave hated the dentist and he’d never been to this one, but his tooth was killing him.

As the gas drew him down into unconsciousness, the dentist opened a large cabinet across from the chair Dave was reclining in, revealing several bodies propped against one another; all their mouths hung open and none had teeth.

The dentist grinned, walked back over to Dave, and stroked his hair, whispering into his ear, “Come now, it’s not your tooth that’s killing you.”

They’d taken all the precautions when they went out hiking, making sure to go in a group of four and bringing plenty of rations.

Tim wasn’t normally one to panic, but the situation called for it.

Turns out a group and rations don’t count for anything when the rocks slide, killing all your buddies and pinning your arms against your sides.


Give it to me straight.

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