Secrets Don’t Wake Up
“The blade of death you love so much…stabs so sweetly!” the female hero touted in the final scene. Crazed applause and cheering drowned the dying villain’s screams. It all continued during the end-credit music; after which many stood up and chanted, ”More, more, more…”
Up in the movie projector room, a weight lifted off Sharice’s shoulders, the movie-house manager. The tally from tonight’s movie ticket sales exceeded costs for the third week in a row, saving the small screen venue from foreclosure for one more month, maybe longer. The town’s interest in the hometown star and her new movie quickly created a buzz for this small town’s entertainment sector. Her dream of making this movie house a success had all but evaporated one month ago, until this gem of a movie showed up with its hometown starlet in attendance. How long the run would last would be anyone’s guess. For the moment, she smiled. It was a good thing to renew ties with her longtime friend and movie star. Persuading her to visit her roots seemed easy. And to top it off, the film company also moved into town, fashioning its next series of movies to be produced locally. Lady luck seemed to be smiling down, finally.
Downstairs in the movie house VIP room, the star of the show was surrounded by old and new fans. They broke out the champagne and cheers. The swarmed starlet soaked in the appreciation for several hours before asking for a small reprieve to the ladies room. She stumbled in, half drunk and managed to find an open stall on the far end of the lavender scented lounge. Alison emerged to look at her reflection. Make-up had started to rub off. Mascara drooled where dark bags under the eyes might have been. However, her youthful glow showed no signs of aging, at least not yet.
“You were amazing on screen,” a soft voice offered behind her.
“Oh my, you’re a sneaky one back there!”
“Sorry, thought you saw me when you came in.”
“Looks like I drank too much to notice, sorry, hun.”
They both shared a giggle.
“So you liked the movie?”
“Your lines were the greatest.”
“So sweet of you to say. What’s your name? “
“Hi Sharon, I’m Allison.”
“I know, I just saw you on screen.”
“Hehe, oh yeah….the booze…oops. Listen, Sharon, Is it? If you’re not busy why don’t you come by to my house party tonight?”
“Really… I mean…if it’s not too much of an issue.”
“What issue? 15 Sycamore Lane. 1AM, ok?’
“Alright. See you there!”
AROUND 1:30AM THAT NIGHT
The night deepened with creepy black shadows dancing their way between homes and trees. The moonlight beamed in between passing clouds parading this eerie display. Most homes were dim or completely dark on this neighborhood block. One house lit up the after- movie celebration, continuing into the night.
Sharon chose to park a block or two away and braved the night walk alone, toward the party. Upon her arrival, everyone roared at the presence of yet another fan joining the fun. Allison announced her friend.
Within seconds the chanting of “Sharon, Sharon, Sharon…” echoed with every step she took.
She tried her best to hide her smile.
Allison took Sharon aside and offered her a drink of the latest brew. Joining in the fun, the chanting fell off and everyone broke off into groups, carrying on with their own boisterous ways.
“So, Sharon, are you new in town? I don’t remember you from the school year book.”
‘I moved in alone few months’ back, still settling in. Not many talk to me. It’s alright I suppose. Your town was the perfect fit for my scholastic needs. My parents are dead and left some money behind so I could move on.”
“Oh no, sorry about your mum and dad, hun. You have a huge new circle here now. They all know your name, ” Allison added with a consoling smile.
After a few sips of her drink, Sharon thought about her response.
Can’t talk of tragedy. You’re with a celebrity. Be smart about this, Sharon.
Sharon shook herself out of a momentary thought trance, blinking twice and slightly shaking her head.
“You’re the big name in town, Allison. Everyone here already has already forgot about me. By the way, do you write those snappy lines in your movies or…? You’re quoted around here all of the time.”
“Oh that. It’s nothing really. It’s scripted. Come on, let’s get some air.”
“Just a sec, Allison. I want to refresh my drink.”
“Alright, I’ll be out on the deck, k?’
Sharon nudged her way through the crowd and to the kitchen, where more beverages were waiting for consumption. While pouring herself a new shot of something called “mixed sunrise, “she noticed a baby monitor with a screen and light indicator. Someone was in a bed. Whoever it was seemed to be struggling. The red light on the device blinked urgently.
Sharon tried to wave Allison down, who seemed to be wooing a very handsome admirer.
“Damn, nice catch.” Sharon conceded with a whisper.
Shrugging, Sharon decided to find whoever was being monitored.
Someone bumped her into a door while walking out from the kitchen, knocking it open. It looked like a cellar door. She peered down a long stairwell illuminated by a single wall light.
Maybe someone is down here. I’ll just check it out and see if I can help. Afterwards, I’ll excuse myself.
After double checking on Allison and seeing her kissing the stud on the back deck, Sharon shook her head in embarrassment and descended the stairs, closing the cellar door behind her.
The stairs were covered by dull green matting which cloaked the sound of her footsteps. Sharon felt thankful. Making noise would be rude. But then again, the party’s volume erupted at times. What was she so worried about?
At the bottom of the stairs, a nearby room light lit up the small hallway.
Sharon crept inside.
The sight of a drip bag and medical bed caught her eyes first. She noticed the restraining belts and dried matted hair on top of what she thought was a woman’s head. All of it took her by complete surprise.
“Hello…hello, are you alright?”
While moving closer to the bed, she saw the woman’s face. It was frozen in expression. a blank stare.
A hint of pain or suffering seemed to scream from this person’s eyes.
“Hello, are you alright?” Sharon asked again in a whisper.
No response came back.
Now questions started to pop in her mind.
Who is this? Why is this person here? Why are there restraints? Is there an illness being treated here? Why is there no caregiver here?
The drip from the IV bag somehow sounded louder than her thoughts.
Something wasn’t right.
(Part Two Imminent)
Bill Bistak, Author, Producer of Bestshorthorrorstories.com & Founder of Friedrich Imagines, Ltd. a media production company