Saturday, 4 June 2011

Watch out for Ralph...

Constance knew she had to leave the house. There was no other option. She hitched up her ankle length nightdress and pulled on her running shoes. It wouldn’t be long before he found her. And when he did?
“I will not think about it.” Constance yanked the shoelace tight and it snapped. She told herself to be calm. She had time. All she had to do was get out of the house and run towards the sugar cane fields. She shivered as she thought of the evil lurking in the cane field at night. “From the frying pan into the fire.”
She had no idea how he got in the house. Ralph swore the house was secure. He insisted on checking each door and window himself. At the time, Constance thought it was sweet. But now? There was something not right about the whole situation. And where was Ralph? He said he would stay the night. Surely, he heard the windows smash and the creak of floorboards. Constance shook her head. Now was not the time to sit and think. “I have to move.” She grabbed the flashlight she kept beside her bed and moved to the bedroom door. To her horror, it started to open. Constance swallowed the scream that came to her lips. With nothing but a flashlight to defend herself, she knew she was doomed.
“Constance…where are you Constance?” That was Ralph calling. It sounded like he was calling from downstairs. Her bedroom was upstairs. So who is at my door? How had they gotten past Ralph? As the door swung open wider, Constance readied herself for a fight. She rushed forward and slammed the flashlight into the arm that appeared. She heard a man swear as the door swung wider, crashing into the wall behind. Constance screamed. Her intruder was tall, dark, and muscular, as well as covered in blood.
“You have to come with me.”
Constance backed away from him. “My boyfriend is in the house.” Ralph wasn’t her lover but it made it sound more solid and threatening.
“Yeah, I know, he’s the one who slashed my shoulder.”
“Ralph?” He declared he was against forms of violence.
The man winced as he slammed the door behind him. “If that’s the name of the deranged lunatic downstairs, then yeah.” He ignored her and went to a nearby dressing table. “You’re going to have to help me. My arm is useless at the moment.”
“I didn’t it hit that hard.” The sudden look of bemusement in his eyes surprised her. “Oh, you mean the knife wound.” It looked ugly, raw, and deep.
“Yeah, from your boyfriend, Ralph.”
“Well, he’s not actually my boyfriend.”
He pushed at the dressing table. “Glad to hear it. I expect presenting a homicidal lunatic to your parents would not be the thing to do. Now help me out here.”
“You may be a homicidal lunatic.”
“Honey, I’m the only one who can save your ass right now, so arguing just wastes time.”
“Constance, Constance, where are you Constance?” Ralph called out in a sing-song tone, interrupting her. “I have a big surprise for you.”
“I don’t think you’ll like whatever he’s offering.”
It was then that all the pieces fell into place. The terrifying words in the notes sent by ‘anonymous,’ the garroted cat on her doorstep, and the slashed tires. “It was Ralph.” He was supposed to be her friend. He acted so concerned when terrible things happened to her. “But why?” Constance raced over and helped the man drag the dressing table against the door.
“Let’s just work on getting out alive.”
Suddenly, there was thumping against the door. “Let me in, Constance. I’m here to make everything better.” Thump, thump, thump. “I have a present for you.”
The man grabbed her hand and dragged her towards the window. “How do you feel about jumping out windows?”
And then the lights went out...