Friday 27 March 2015

Horror Bites - Love Me

The new Horror Bites challenge is up and I had to think about what I wanted to do with this one. Took a while for a story to surface, and it's not really classic horror, or supernatural horror, more horror of the mind, or the intention, or the disturbed. Echos of 'We have to talk about Kevin' (the book) came to me as I wrote it.

Jeffrey had seen his dad buy the fireworks and put them in the shed, but his dad wouldn’t let him touch them, said they weren’t for children to play with, that they had to be ‘handled with care’. Jeffrey knew all about ‘handle with care’ it’s what they’d been doing with him all his life.

When he was little he wondered what it was they were afraid of. What it was he did that sparked so much fear in their eyes whenever he was around. Why they barely touched him, or came near him. So he’d started experimenting, and found quite a few things.

The first time the police had shown up he’s acted as sweet as pie, but by the fourth he didn’t care anymore. The empty threats were just that: empty. His parents never followed through on any of them, they were too afraid, afraid of what he might do next time – ironic really. And the older he got the more ways he discovered - no matter what they hid to stop him.  

But the fireworks his dad had tried to sneak home, fireworks for his baby bother Jeremy – the golden boy, the one who got all the love and affection - did they really think Jeffrey would keep his hands off? He was sixteen now. His dad knew better.

Social services had been round that morning, talking about taking him away. His mum had cried a lot. First time he’d ever seen her do that. He knew he was hurting them, and he tried to care, but he didn’t know how, plus he knew how to make it all better.

He snuck out that night. Put the wheelbarrow ready in the middle of the garden. Then he found his dad’s hiding place – it wasn’t hard. And then he placed them round the inside of the wheelbarrow in easy reach, with him in the middle. He’d create one hell of a bonfire. He added paraffin, liking the smell of it on his clothing. Then he counted down … 1, 2, 3 … maybe they’d love him now. 

349 Words


  1. Brilliant piece, Miranda. Well done. :)

  2. I love this. Now I'm anxious to see what happens next.

  3. One of those psychotic types, with no moral sense, wasn't he.

    1. Well, damaged by his parenting I would say.