“This is a bad idea,” I said to my brother, Tyler, as we walked to the abandon carnival.
“Don’t be such a sissy, Rosa. It’ll be fine, nothing’s going to happen,” he replied as he ran to catch up with his friend, Connor. We arrived at the rusty chain-link fence and crawled in through one of its many holes. The skeletal figures of old roller-coasters stood guard on the horizon, while rusty swing-sets squealed in the wind. The carnival had fallen into disrepair after the mysterious death of its owner and his employees 30 years earlier. Only one survived; a simple circus clown. He refused to leave and still lives here to this day. At least that’s what Tyler told me.
Which is why my older brother and his idiot friend to dare me to spend the night at the carnival, alone, without a phone or a flashlight. At least the moon was full and gave off enough light to see by. Connor cleared his throat, “Well, we should probably leave. Someone needs to tell your parents an excuse for where you went.” Both Tyler and Connor started to back towards the hole in the fence.
“See you in the morning... if you make it,” Tyler said ominously, before he burst out laughing.
“It’s great to know you care,” I shouted back sarcastically. I ran my hand through my hair and continued to walk towards the center of the carnival to find shelter for the night. Suddenly, I heard a loud scream. It was Tyler. I ran back towards the fence. Tyler may not have even been a good brother, but he was still blood and my parents would be pissed if he died since he has always been their favorite.
When I got to the gate, Tyler and Connor weren’t there. The fence and the ground were covered in a dark liquid that looked eerily similar to blood. There was a long trail of the liquid that led around the corner. I was torn: half of me wanted to turn around, to go home and make up some excuse about what happened to them; the other half however wanted - no craved - adventure. I had made my choice. I took a deep breath and began to walk forward. The trail lead to a trailer with a bloody hand print on it. I heard noises coming from inside. I slowly pressed my hand against the doorknob and turned. The door opened.
The inside of the trailer was dimly lit and smelled faintly of mildew. I thought I heard something scurrying in the walls but that might have just been my imagination. Everything in the trailer was tidy, but covered in a thin layer of dust, which was the creepiest thing about the place; except maybe the man dressed in an old beaten up clown costume standing over my brother and Connor. I looked around for something to use as a weapon. I saw an old, rusty shovel by the door. I reached for it and froze. A voice pierced the silence. The man started talking.
“Dead, all of them dead,” he muttered. “Right in front of my eyes, they all died!“, he said a little louder. I realized he hadn’t seen me yet, so I grabbed the shovel and gripped it tightly in my hand. I began to slowly creep up behind him.
He turned on me fast, with a knife in his hand and a grin on his face. Then, Connor started laughing. Tyler punched him lightly in the shoulder, utter annoyance gracing his usually arrogant features.
“Dude, seriously we almost had her. Why do you have to ruin everything?” he complained.
“I’m sorry,” Connor replied, “but the terror on her face was so real. I can’t believe she actually fell for it.” The two boys and the clown started laughing just as what they were saying finally caught up with me. This had all been a prank!
“Jacks?” I asked, looking at the clown.
“The one and only,” he said with a laugh. Of course, I thought sourly, biting back tears, it all made sense.
Tyler, Conner and Jacks had been friends since fifth grade. Well, more of a team, their only goal to harass me. For years, they had spent their allowances on special effects to turn themselves into the monster under my bed.
“I came back for you,” I said turning to my brother. An expression of guilt flashed across his face, but it was gone as soon as it came, replaced by his usual smirk.
“And who’s fault is that?” he said. The boys started laughing again. I felt hot tears stream down her cheeks, I tasted salt on my lips.
“Oh, look,” Jacks sneered, “we made the little princess cry.” I couldn’t take it anymore. After all these years of torment, of being second best to this monster, I finally broke. I lifted the shovel and bashed their heads in.