Tuesday, October 9, 2012

October Carnivals are best avoided

Pic of the Day:

Vid of the Day:
Excerpt of the day

From Alive on the Inside

The Phantasmagoria by twilight felt different than it had by day. It had been creepy by day. Now it felt downright sinister. Cyn laughed at herself. Just virgin jitters. She didn’t plan on going
home a virgin. In the back of her mind, a small voice asked if she really planned to go home at all.

Maybe, it suggested, you could get a job with the carnival. They could use a tall, pretty girl either in the hoochie show or selling candy. Cyn dismissed the thought. She had her life planned.

She’d already sent her college applications. She was going to breeze through her senior year, graduate with honors, spend most of the summer with her dad and get the hell out of Peculiar. Then it was just a matter of how far and fast she wanted to go. Traveling carnivals, no matter how appealing, didn’t figure into her future.

She coasted down YY by the duplexes. She and her mom had lived on Shari Lane for a while, before Lee. The Phantasmagoria gleamed topaz and ruby ahead. She parked her bike, locking it to the rack near the gate, ignoring her better judgment which told her to keep on riding, spend the night at her grandparents’ house and call Mom when she got there.

For a brief instant, the lights all went out. The soft breeze stirred the flaps of canvas and whistled among the metal skeletons of the stopped rides. No people moved in the dead stillness. She looked down the Midway and saw only empty booths and rides. She shivered, remembering the way Fairyland had been so dead on her last visit right before the amusement park had closed. She shut her eyes at the sight of a skeleton propped against the side of a booth, still dressed in a ragged striped shirt and crumbling straw boater.

When she opened them, she saw the lights had come back up and she wondered how she could have missed the throng. The skeleton was the cute duck pickup guy, who flirted shamelessly with Suzie. Atop the Ferris wheel, Debbie and Michelle screamed in their high, squeaky cheerleader voices to start it back up. People she knew roamed everywhere, shooting at targets, picking up ducks, spinning around on the rides, and lined up for attractions. At least now she had an alibi.

She hurried over and joined Suzie at the booth, putting the thought of the man’s bright blue eyes burning from empty sockets in a bare skull out of her mind. “Hiya,” she said. “Look, Suzie, I’m out illegal-like. I left a note saying I was staying at your place. Can you cover for me?”

They headed to the snow cone stand. Suzie pumped her with questions and Cyn gave evasive answers.

“It’s a guy, isn’t it? One you don’t want the folks to know about.” Suzie smiled and gave her a wink. “Your secret is safe with me. Just come on over after you see him. We never lock the side door. You aren’t doing anything goofy like eloping, are you?”

Cyn laughed and squeezed Suzie around the waist. “Darling girl, why would I elope with a mere man, when you know you hold sole and only possession of my heart?” Suzie giggled and Cyn went on. “Hark, what dark in yonder window grows? It is the east and Suze the approaching night.”

“All right, all right already. Sheesh. Someone’s gonna snitch if you keep acting like that.”

Cyn nodded and let go of her. “The last thing I need is for Mom to find out I like girls, too.” She gave Suzie a wicked grin. “I have a free pass. You want to crash the adult show? I’ll go halvsies if you come along for immoral support.”

Suzie giggled. “I have the car. Sure.”

“I have to go by the piercing booth beforehand, though. Meet me at the tent when it’s time.” Cyn hurried off to see Torturo.

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