A scrap written for practice. Loosely inspired by Stephen King's On Writing. Second draft.
|Mick turned the key and opened his front door. Something wasn’t right. His spine suddenly seemed colder than the sweat patches on his back would suggest. The warm summer sun outside had scarpered away from whatever was lurking inside his house. There was a presence in there that was best left alone.
Slowly he stepped through the open door into his hallway. Nervously he checked his surroundings. Nothing seemed out of place. But at the same time it was all wrong. There was some detail, some tiny clue, that he wasn’t noticing.
He sniffed. The air smelt the same as ever. Slightly musty, unventilated (he didn’t dare to leave a window open any more) but otherwise homely. It was quiet except for the hum of the fridge, just audible from the kitchen at the end of the hall.
“You’re being paranoid”, he told himself, more for reassurance than out of belief.
He walked into the lounge, quickly looking around the room for any sign of something that was out of place. Last night’s takeaway boxes were still on the table next to a couple of empty beer cans. His jeans were exactly where he’d left them this morning when he woke and realised he’d slept on the sofa again and was late for work. He cast them onto the floor and slumped into the comforting cushions with a sigh.
“Hello Mick”, said the familiar female voice.
Mick scrambled to his feet, swirling around to face her as his brain seemed to spin in the opposite direction. Kate! But how did she get in? How did she find him?
Dizziness and panic grabbed him and pulled him backwards onto the floor. Immediately he tried to scramble up. All his limbs seemed incapable of coordination. He fell again before managing to reach the relative security of the wall where he stood for a moment with his back supported against the brick and his breathing rapid, deep and, at the same time, ineffective at gathering oxygen.
“My poor dear boy”, Kate giggled. “You never could control yourself around me”
“What do you want? Why are you here?” Mick splurted.
Kate took her time to answer. She took a step towards him. Beneath the shortest of short skirts her long, slender legs moved with a confidence and elegance that had at one time excited his lust.
“Why do think Mick?” she answered in an almost musical questioning tone. “I’ve come to take back what’s mine.”