“I hate clowns,” Roy said flatly. Each year, he shelved his irrational fear of those fuckers right up until the end of September. Then, all the clown related stupidity resurfaced and he was forced to stare down his terror.
“C’mon, who hates clowns? You didn’t seem to mind the clown outfit I wore last weekend, as I recall,” Beth said, batting her eyelashes.
“That was a clown?” Roy asked incredulously. He’d thought she was dressed like a character from the super hero movie they’d gone to see a few weeks ago.
She slapped him jokingly and pinched his nipple while she smiled that teasing smile he loved so much. Roy grinned back, though his nipple stung like a bitch.
“Besides,” Roy said, “clown movies are nothing but half-naked women getting chopped up by psychos.”
“Not always. Let’s watch a movie with clowns in it,” she said, still smiling.
She was always a little crazy and a bit ‘out there’, but she must have completely lost her marbles to think she could charm him into this. Nothing she said or did could get him in front of a television with some psychotic asshole wandering around cutting people all to hell.
He turned his head to tell her but she was already up and moving toward the television.
“Wait!” he blurted in a panic. He didn’t want her to realize how afraid he really was. Beth was by far the most beautiful, sexy, sensual, and amazing woman he’d ever met. How would it look if she could sit through a horror film and he couldn’t?
She stopped, arched an eyebrow, and shimmied out of her jeans. Her top followed next as she pulled it over her head and let it drop to the floor. The red and black lace she wore underneath stole his breath. All thought washed away as he pictured the two of them spending the next few hours not watching a clown movie.
He stood up and reached for her but she stepped back, dodging his advance.
“Not yet. I want to slip into something first. Think of this as therapy; I promise you’ll be completely cured when we’re done.” She winked at him.
She eased him back toward the couch, grabbing his ass as she did. The back of his knees struck the cushion as Beth pushed him down into his seat. Leaning over, she kissed him long and slow. When the kiss broke, she told him the movie was already in the player, then strutted out of the room.
“How did you…” he blundered.
“I was going to watch it anyway. Don’t worry, it’ll be fun. Besides, you might be a bit too preoccupied to be afraid,” she remarked with a giggle.
Roy clicked on the television and surfed channels for a moment before picking up the DVD remote and hitting the power button. Sports news was replaced with an image of a terrified woman screaming and covering her face as she ran. Some fat dude, shirtless except for a black rubber apron, was chasing her down with a chainsaw. He wore a red clown wig and white face paint. His features had been drawn in with exaggerated black grease pencil and he his grin was full of sharp teeth.
Roy had second thoughts about watching the movie. Beads of sweat popped up on his temples as he squirmed in his seat. He loosened his necktie and unbuttoned his collar, but it didn’t help.
He reached for the remote, wanting to turn off the movie when he heard Beth giggling; she was coming back into the room. Time to man-up for this beautiful woman and deal, he thought.
“I know this is going to be hard for you,” she said with another tinkling of laughter as she walked up behind him, “but I want you to know how pleased I am that you’re doing this for me.”
Roy began to stand, he wanted to see her, but her hands pressed down on his shoulders. He sat again and tried to crane his neck around to see her. He wanted one more look before they started the damn movie.
“Not yet, lover. Keep your eyes on the screen and if you get scared, think of this.” She flung a black and red lace bra into his lap.
He grabbed for it, feeling the warmth of the material. He wasn’t going to like the movie, but thought he might enjoy movie time nonetheless. He smiled.
Beth turned off the lights and Roy pretended his heart rate went up solely because of her lingerie.
“Hit play, lover,” she said and giggled from behind. She was enjoying this. He did as she instructed and eased back into his seat.
As the movie started, the screaming woman from the promo shot was having what appeared to be a normal day. A few minutes later, her car broke down and she called for the local tow company.
Beth played with his hair and whispered in his ear. He couldn’t understand what she said, but the fear he expected to feel was replaced by slowly building excitement. Maybe the clown movie wasn’t going to be that bad after all.
Predictably, night arrived before the tow truck on-screen – the man in the cab was the same man from the promo sans chainsaw, face paint and pointed teeth.
Beth continued to play with his hair and bite his ear lobe while the movie played on. Roy reached for her several times but she kept slipping away, still giggling.
All at once, the woman on TV was screaming; Roy jumped. She ran down a dark street in the middle of nowhere, one shoe off. The fat fucker from the truck, now dressed in the rubber apron, was tearing after her with the smoke-belching chainsaw. The buzzing sound was so loud it must have startled him awake. Had he dozed off? God, he hoped not.
Beth, who had been doing something behind him, stepped around the couch and in front of the screen.
“Welcome back, lover,” she said as she smiled. She was naked and Roy could see the outline of her breasts in the dim light coming from the TV. He moved to get up, but she quickly straddled him and kissed his lips. Her face felt greasy like she was wearing too much makeup. Maybe she’d donned that sexy costume she’d worn for him the other night…
Roy smiled and kissed her painted lips. She bit his in return and he pulled away sharply.
“Beth, dammit, that hurt.”
She didn’t say anything, but let out another of those purring giggles; it was starting to annoy him. She seemed to laugh at everything that got under his skin.
Roy ran his tongue over his lip and tasted blood.
“My frigging lip is bleeding.” Roy tried to free his hands so he could find out how badly it was split.
“I know,” she said. He could feel the whisper of a smile dance across her lips.
“I’m done with this game, Beth. If you want to mess around, I’m all for it, but that last bite hurt.” He could hear the whine in his own voice; he doubted they’d be having sex tonight. He wanted to get the lights back on and turn off the television.
He reached for the remote but Beth grabbed his hand. She kissed his inner wrist, letting her lips caress the soft flesh of his arm. She stopped at his bicep. Roy’s anger faded as he closed his eyes and drifted on waves of seductive pleasure.
Just as he surrendered completely, searing pain ripped through his muscles. Beth was tearing his arm to shreds with what felt like some sort of garden tool from Hell.
Beth screamed along with him, then lapped up at the blood pouring down his forearm.
Roy struggled to get out from under her but was pinned in place. It felt like a three hundred pound weight rested on his chest.
Roy thrashed around and tried to free his other arm; his leg connected hard with the coffee table.
“What the fuck?” Roy screamed. He glared up at her dimly lit silhouette trying to understand what was happening. Beth just giggled and started on his chest. She held an insanely large knife that she continually nicked him with as she cut the buttons from his shirt one by one. Her smile looked utterly demented.
“You know how in those movies it’s always the man that gets to be the clown and it’s the woman who’s always chopped into little pieces?” She started to stab at his chest, thrusting the blade in about two or three inches, then pulling it back out again. Each time it pierced his skin, Roy screamed louder and her laughter intensified.
“In this movie, it’s the other way around.” She cackled, her face now fully distorted. She stopped long enough to lick blood off the tip of the knife before she began another round.
Roy struggled to breathe. He gasped, feeling like a fish yanked out of water. His face began to turn a deep purple as blood dripped from the corners of his mouth.
“Oh dear. I must have hit a lung… let’s see what kind of damage I did with my little knife,” Beth said, tittering in his face. She shifted her weight down a bit and pulled open the tattered remains of his shirt and tie.
“If you died too fast, nobody would ever watch the movie. We need to make it last a little longer,” she said and produced a scalpel. “I know this hurts, but I have to admit, it excites the hell out of me, if you know what I mean, lover.” She winked at him.
Roy tried to scream as she drew the blade down his chest to his belly button. He was helpless to do anything other than watch as she ripped his chest open.
“I can see your heart, Roy. You said I could have it, right?” She giggled insanely while she tugged at his rib cage.
As the sound of her deranged laughter peeled through his brain, his last thought fired—I fucking hate clowns.
~ Christopher A. Liccardi
© Copyright 2016 Christpher A. Liccardi. All Rights Reserved
As Mathew entered the storefront, he hung its key from the tooth of a snarling dog. The statue of the hound had been on that table since his childhood and time had seen fit to leave it. His hate for the place flared in each muscle the second he entered the building, but it was a strangely enticing feeling. The old room looked deliberately ramshackle, intended to add to the mystique, no doubt. ‘Shabby chic’ people called it; rundown he called it, but it was his business now.
He knew his father had been into some really terrible things, but he never stuck around long enough to take part in the ‘family business’. He’d left home at eighteen and never looked back. He’d tried to forget all of it and had managed to succeed until a letter arrived by courier last month; it was addressed to the proprietor of The Old West Wax Works. The woman who delivered it was attractive and left not only her number, but the lingering scent of her perfume on the delivery receipt along with his father’s will. They’d begun seeing each other almost every night since. She’d asked about The Old West Wax Works a few weeks into the new romance, but he never explained and she never pushed.
When he told her he needed to take care of family business down south, she hadn’t asked to be included which was a good thing; maybe she was ‘the one’ and his impending bad mood would seem unattractive. They talked about weekend plans and she mentioned heading down the shore to surprise him for a visit, but he barely listened; he’d been preoccupied with his father’s will. The tasks he needed to complete weren’t complicated, but they were going to be messy and time consuming.
Mathew spent that first day cleaning counters and getting rid of the old dust cloths and boxes, and something shifted.
The place didn’t need to be spotless, but it did need to be presentable when his first guest arrived. He felt the cold fingers of anxiety grab hold of him and fought them off. This place was in his blood and always had been. He saw that now and felt – proud.
He thought about the delivery woman, Claire, as he toiled about the place, and wondered if she would like it here. He genuinely liked her and hoped she would. He looked forward to seeing her again as soon as he could.
The bell over the door jangled its discordant tune.
“C’mon in, we’re open for business.” Mathew said.
Mathew caught the scent of a woman’s perfume; it was familiar to him by now. He hesitated, fought the urge to be like them, to turn into the monsters his predecessors had been. He smiled when he saw her, all doubt faded, then he stepped on the button that opened the trap door. The fight was over.
The sound of the heavy door slamming shut cut off the screams from below. He knew she had broken both legs and cracked several ribs when she fell, but that was all fixable. His father’s tools were already sharpened, ready for use after so many years of neglect in the storage boxes.
He liked the delivery woman, Claire. He hoped she liked it here, too.
~ Christopher A. Liccardi
© Copyright 2015 Christopher A. Liccardi. All Rights Reserved.