Coal black eyes bore down at the gently sleeping form, as steady breathing gives slight rise to a floral pattern blanket. Long black claws sticking out of bright orange gloves contrast nicely with a mop of yellow hair. A big blue nose and black sharp teeth give meaning to the chalk white face ready and willing to destroy all that is good.
Small fluffy toys have pride of place around a room filled with affection, but the brightly colored intruder knows only pain and the joy it gives performing it. Stepping back from the bed, it watches the prone form start to whimper and let out short pleading cries. It senses the moment of waking is near and in the blink of an eye the room is as it was… for now.
Molly awoke with a start. Her body, paralyzed with fear perspires freely as scared eyes jump around a still dark room. Her breathing slowly returns to normal and with a sigh flops back down onto a damp pillow. She wonders if it’s worth waking the rest of her family but just as quickly decides against it.
Her dreams have been getting worse over the last week, but not wanting to upset anyone she’s kept them to herself.
They start out in the woods not far from the tree house she played in after school. Her friends are laughing and joking, and then everyone drops to the ground, ears and eyes pouring with blood. Out of a slight breeze that moves the trees steps the most horrific clown you can ever imagine. Teeth like razors and eyes like hell. It’s fright that usually pushes her back to the safety of her room, but this dream goes further.
The clown stands in front of her using sword like fingers to make ribbons of her exposed throat.
Evening meals were a pleasure not so long ago; Molly had enjoyed laughing along with her family about things that didn’t matter. Her waking hours are now plagued with the clawed clown, the name she has labeled it. Nowhere is sacred. Its head pops up from a full bath meant to relax and revive a glimpse in the reflection of a window, inside the fridge, the backseat of the car.
Her family have noticed a decline in health a doctor has been mentioned. Molly has explained time and time again about the clown and what it looks like, but apart from soothing sympathy ignorance it would seem is bliss. Her sanity has been questioned and the sharp knives that decorate the kitchen, give confidence as they hover over up-turned palms.
The leaves play an autumn tune as another breeze makes its way though clusters of green foliage.
Sally and Joan along with Molly enjoy a happy time of talking girl talk, hide and seek, ring a ring o roses. Then as if by magic, dark clouds appear blocking out their yellow friend. Smiling faces look up in concern before the bleeding starts.
Molly watches as two dear friends fall to the ground screaming in pain, blood blurs vision and blocks out sound as hands scratch at crimson faces. The breeze has now become a squall and from the trees a face appears, a face Molly knows without thought. Black eyes burn into her very being.
Rainbow colored clothes are a distraction from the teeth and claws engrained in her mind. Frozen to the spot her heart beats faster. The friends that were her best now have the hands of the clown.
Scratching fingers become weapons that reduce once pretty faces to unrecognizable lumps of gore.
These images of destruction have failed to notice the approach of the blue nosed nightmare. The dream has moved on from previous nights, everything seeming real, and Molly is scared.
Beyond the tree line more faces appear, where before there was only one. A brightness lost in the darkening day. The rainbow is a thing of beauty, but not in the form of the monsters that wear its colors.
Open mouths descending into horrific blackness are all that is in focus, and laughter long misplaced. It seems as if they are having fun. Her friends have stopped moving; the others drift in to view the scene. They crowd around and approve of the carnage. Looking up now in unison, it is her eyes they seek.
They smile and laugh then start the short walk to where she is still a prisoner by the big one. She pinches her arm in an effort to take her home. It doesn’t work. Where are they from? Is it only her that has all the attention?
The one with the blue nose looks down at her laughing, not ashamed to show the vile rotting mouth that spills out a fetid smell making her recoil, it says that all of her questions will be answered, and not to be in such a rush. The night is still young.
Then the screaming starts and everything changes.
“Mummy – ” “Help me – ” “Mummy – ” “Help me – No – Go away…” the bed sheets lift as if by invisible hands leaving a tangled mess of legs and arms.
“Mummy – ” the voice becomes desperate.
The sound of her daughter’s voice brings an end to her terror. Untangling herself she sees an eight-year-old face filled with panic and despair. Regaining a form of composure Molly jumps off the bed taking the child into a comforting embrace, repeating that it was just a bad dream. Her daughter’s soft lips brush Molly’s ear and whisper.
“Mummy, who’s that?”
“Shush now baby it’s all over.”
As the words register Molly’s face tenses with fear.
Her daughter’s voice trembles a whispered reply.
“The clown behind you with the funny hands.”