by D. Thorsson
Quick reference to HP Lovecraft's "Herbert West: Re-animator" == 493 words
|David, just find a place for your things. I'll be home about 5-ish. Love, Grams.
David glanced at the Ryder truck in out front, deciding it could wait another night. Maybe Grams could loan him enough to rent a storage unit. He turned on the TV and immediately fell asleep, his 900 mile drive catching up to him.
He checked his watch. 11:00pm. David staggered into the kitchen and found another note atop a cold turkey sandwich. He carefully removed the pickle. He smiled. She always forgot that he didn't like pickles.
I didn't want to wake you. Go up to your room and I'll see you in the morning.
Not a bad idea. He turned around and noticed a feeble light around the basement door. The padlock hung on a nail to the left. David quietly opened the door and heard a man's voice. David frowned, then smiled. Grammy has a boyfriend. Good for her. He just as quietly closed the door and went to his room.
David enjoyed a luscious breakfast as he and his grandmother reminisced. Yes, there are jobs – if you aren't too particular. No, your loser friends haven't gone anywhere. Yes, there are a number of eligible young ladies – if you aren't too particular. He grinned. Despite the circumstances it was good to be home.
He returned from dropping off the truck. The forbidden door was open. For the briefest moment he hesitated, his childhood fears returning. As quick as they came they were replaced by fear for Gramma. He carefully navigated the narrow steps, banging his head once on the low ceiling.
“What the hell?” The small room had obviously spent most of its life as a root cellar or pantry, but now the shelves were filled with jars of powders of various colors, liquids of indeterminate nature, and – animal parts? He peered closer. “Holy shit!” This looks like a tiny brain. A pair of eyes? And in this jar, a rat in some thick greenish liquid. Alive! Wires extended from the animal, through the lid of the jar, terminating at a nine-volt battery pack.
“What the fuck is all this?” David shrieked looked around in horror. A large book lay open on the canning table. He flipped to the title page. “Notes of Dr. Herbert West.”
“It's been so lonely since your grandfather passed away,” Grams said. “I miss him so much.”
“Gramma, he can't come back. Even Grampa said West was insane.”
She seemed to not hear. “You're the spitting image of him. I speak to you and he talks back. I've thought about that since you told me you were coming.” Her voice hitched.
“Grams, let's go upstairs and talk about this. Please. I'm worried for you.” David took his grandma's hand and felt a small sting.
“I'm sorry, Davie.” her fading voice sounded sad, “but you're the perfect fit.”