Tom's Late-Night Movie

Tom’s girlfriend’s hair appointment ran extremely long, and though he sped to the Warner, the oldest movie theater in town, they were ten minutes late for the late-night movie.

​“Just go on in without me.” He needed to pee so badly his bladder ached. “I’ll find you.” Finding June wouldn’t be too challenging since her new haircut was fairly unique. June’s new style ran to her jaw and had bright-red highlights cutting from her scalp to her ends. She resembled some sort of wicked tiger, and Tom couldn’t wait to get her home. He could only dream what she might do to him with hair like that.

​The restroom was empty, and the trickling of his urine hitting the porcelain echoed. He washed his hands extra long afterwards in an attempt to rinse away the ick that seemed to stick to him from the sound.

​Tom rushed out of the men’s room, hooked a right, and popped into the theater. The film had already started. A distraught woman mumbled something into the camera--looked like June tricked him into another boring drama.

​Shrouded in the theater’s shadows, the faces in the audience blurred into nothing more than featureless spots. Even with the light the screen cast over the seats, finding June’s jaw-length hair proved to be a challenge. After peeking down several rows, Tom found her. “Miss much?” He squeezed her hand. She squeezed back.

​On screen, the old woman cried short, uncontrollable sobs that made Tom’s stomach twist. The camera stayed focused on her for an unnatural length of time. It was one of the longest shots Tom had ever seen, and it was all devoted to a crying grandma. Finally, Tom said, “What the hell did you drag me to?”

​June turned. No, not June--this woman’s hair fell too far and had no stripes. Tom choked on a scream. This woman had no jaw. The remains of a rotten tongue dangled in the open space. Her skin hung from her cheeks. The empty sockets of her eyes festered with sludge.

​Tom stumbled out of his seat and into the aisle. He tried to stand, but his legs lost the strength to hold him up. He rolled down the walkway, smashed his ankle into one line of seats, and bashed his tailbone on the edge of a stair. Other audience members stood. A little boy with half a crushed face stepped towards Tom. A woman just to Tom’s side whispered, “You shouldn’t be here.” She reached a hand out. The noose tied around her neck dangled and flopped across Tom’s arm.

​The scream lodged in Tom’s throat finally found its way out. He scrambled to his feet and sprinted out of the room. He screamed as he charged into the lobby and crashed into June. He pointed behind him, tried to warn her of the danger following just beyond the swinging doors, but there were no doors. In their place, only a brick wall stood.


Words: 497   Noun: spots   Verb: dream




R. D. DeMoss is a horror writer from Seattle. He won “Judge’s Favorite” in the 2012 Frisco Public Library Flash Fiction Writing Contest. His short stories also won him a Reynolds Scholarship two consecutive years. Other works of his have appeared in The Reynolds Review, The Carillon, and House of Horror Online Ezine. He teaches English composition and is working on a horror novel. He prefers gloomy weather and resides with his Golden Retriever. Find him on Facebook, Twitter, and blog.


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2 comments:

  1. Nice descriptions! Did I say 'nice', I mean, gross and creepy, haha, and definitely vivid and fun to read. Thanks for sharing your work with us!

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  2. Haha, I'm still thinking about this one days after I read it initially. Love the girlfriend's hair! As Denise said, great and gory descriptions. Thank you for guest posting!

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