The Ladies of Horror Flash Project – #Horror #author Tiffany Michelle Brown @TiffeBrown @Sotet_Angyal #LoH #fiction #WiHM10

The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!


Lost and Found

by Tiffany Michelle Brown

Emma tiptoed across the Bauman’s front porch. When she twisted her key in the lock, she held tight to the heavy unicorn keychain Addie had gifted her just last week. It was a glittery thing emblazoned with NATALIE, the fake name she’d assumed when she’d moved to Minnesota. The name the Bauman’s used each and every day to address her.
The Bauman’s foyer was uncomfortably warm. Selina Bauman, soccer mom extraordinaire and Emma’s employer, ran cold, so the heat was always cranked up. Emma had learned to plan her wardrobe accordingly. She wore layers, so she could simply peel off a cardigan, an extra T-shirt, or tights when she grew too warm.
Or when feelings of loneliness, grief, and failure made Emma feel like her skin was boiling. That had been happening a lot lately.
Emma would be braiding Addie’s hair before school, twisting the girl’s silken locks between her fingers, and thinking, Why isn’t she mine? I could give her so much. When this happened, she’d pause and remove a scarf or a pair of socks. She’d finish Addie’s plait, her fingers shaking all the while, then watch the little girl bound off to find her mother, sadness ripping a hole in her chest.
Emma padded down the hall to the kitchen, a stuffed bear tucked gingerly beneath her arm. She kept her eyes forward, refusing to look at the family photos that lined the walls. The crystal-cut memories displayed there, the happiness frozen in time—it was all she’d ever wanted. And now, she was doing something about that.
In the kitchen, Emma set the stuffed bear on the linoleum. Only then did she remove her gloves, granting her hands, which were sweaty and sticky, much-needed reprieve from the heat.
Addie would be up soon, Emma knew. The child had an internal alarm clock that woke her, without fail, at 4 AM every morning, much to her parents’ dismay. They paid Emma extra to show up early.
She and the little girl’s routine would be different this morning. Emma had a gift for Addie, the plush, huggable teddy she’d propped up on the floor. She knew Addie would scoop it up immediately in her little-girl arms to squeeze and nuzzle it, pressing her cherubic face into the artificial fur. And then, within fifteen minutes or so (according to Emma’s dealer), Addie would fall into a deep sleep. A sleep that would take about twelve hours to shake off.
Addie wouldn’t feel anything as Emma scooped her up and retreated quietly down the hall, gazing lovingly into the little girl’s slumber-soft face. She wouldn’t notice the change of temperature as the two slipped into the chill of the night. And, of course, she wouldn’t hear a thing when Emma locked the door behind them, leaving the Bauman’s home nearly as she’d found it.
Fiction © Copyright Tiffany Michelle Brown
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com

line_separator2

Be sure to check out the other fantastic events and peeps participating in
Women in Horror Month 10

WomenInHorrorMonth.com

line_separator2

Advertisements

About Nina D'Arcangela

Nina D’Arcangela is a quirky horror writer who likes to spin soul rending snippets of despair. She reads anything from splatter matter to dark matter. She's an UrbEx adventurer who suffers from unquenchable wanderlust. She loves to photograph abandoned places, bits of decay and old graveyards. Nina is co-owner of Sirens Call Publications, co-founder of the horror writer's group 'Pen of the Damned', and if that isn't enough, put a check mark in the box next to owner and resident nut-job of Dark Angel Photography.
This entry was posted in Authors, Dark Fiction, flash fiction, FREE, Horror, Ladies of Horror, Women in Horror Month, Writing Project and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to The Ladies of Horror Flash Project – #Horror #author Tiffany Michelle Brown @TiffeBrown @Sotet_Angyal #LoH #fiction #WiHM10

  1. afstewart says:

    Very ominous and creepy, a terrific story.

  2. … and then the nightmare begins for Mr. and Mrs. Bauman. Good tale!

  3. Pingback: Ladies of Horror Prompts Continue #WiHMx | AngelaYSmith.com

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.