“WE ALL SCREAM, PART TWO” by Scott Donnelly #MicroTerrors
BE SURE TO LISTEN TO PART ONE FIRST! https://weirddarkness.com/archives/15988
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“Micro Terrors: Scary Stories for Kids”™ 2023
SHOW OPEN: Welcome to Micro Terrors: Scary Stories for Kids, where it’s always the spooky season – full of chills, thrills, and spine-tingling spooks! Micro Terrors are family-friendly frights for those ages 8 and up. And while our stories are for younger ears, we are still talking about things that go bump in the night, and some children may not be able to handle what others can. Parental consent is recommended. Now… for tonight’s MICRO TERROR!!!!
WE ALL SCREAM: PART 2
Billy didn’t hesitate. After watching Mr. Strawser’s skin slip off of him like the top layer of stale pudding, he raced up the stairs and slammed the hatch shut. He rushed out into the shop, huffing and puffing.
“Um, what are you doing?” Tina questioned her brother, annoyed and confused by his frantic actions.
“Mr. Strawser…” he gasped. “He…he’s…”
“He must be sick or something,” Tina said. “There’s no other reason why he wouldn’t be here for the first day of summer.”
“He is here,” Billy was finally able to get out. “He’s in the cellar. Something happened to him!”
“What are you talking about?” Tina asked. “Why would he be in the cellar?”
“I don’t know. He was hideous. He had these throbbing green bubbles all over him. Then he just up and melted!”
Tina cocked her head and smiled. “Is this a joke? Did you even look for the Chocolate Marshmallow Crunch?”
“He’s gone, Tina!” Billy exclaimed. “He’s just sludge and bones now!”
“Ugh,” Tina rolled her eyes and grumbled. “If you weren’t going to take your first summer job seriously, I would have never recommended you to Mr. Strawser.” Tina turned around and walked to the back room. “I’ll get the ice cream myself.”
“Wait! Don’t go down there!” Billy shouted, chasing after his sister.
“We need the Chocolate Marshmallow Crunch, Billy,” Tina complained. “Mr. Strawser likes to keep the bar stocked and full at all times. And he was very specific about this new flavor. Now go unlock the front door.”
Tina shot her finger toward Billy, locking her annoyed gaze upon him. He felt like he was being scolded by their mom. He put his hands up in a surrender-like fashion and took a couple steps back.
“Fine. Go get the ice cream,” he calmly said. He hadn’t even mentioned to her what Mr. Strawser had said. Something about, “Get out or it’ll get you too.” Billy didn’t know what the old man was talking about, but he assumed that whatever Mr. Strawser was referring to was the same thing he heard skittering across the floor.
She’ll just have to find out all by herself, Billy thought. Billy lowered his arms and let his sister open the hatch in the back room. She turned on her phone’s flashlight and disappeared into the icy depths of Strawser’s Creamery’s dungeon of horror.
Tina crept down one step at a time. She aimed the light in front of her, bringing out the shimmering sparkles of the icy coating on the walls.
“Hello?” she called out, but only heard the hollow echo of her voice in return. “Mr. Strawser? Are you down here?”
There was still no answer. The air in the cellar was cold and still. But the longer the silence continued, the more she started to feel as if something abnormal was lurking within it. She felt chills, but not from the cold. Then she heard a pittering scamper across the stone floor. She gasped sharply and spun to her left. Within the beam of her flashlight, she saw what her brother was talking about. There were clothes that she recognized as belonging to Mr. Strawser, soaking in a thick puddle of what looked like pea soup.
A repugnant odor quickly rose from the disgusting mess on the ground, forcing Tina to cover her mouth and nose. “Mr. Strawser?” she gagged. There was no answer. Then she heard a click on the stone. And then another. And another. Quickly, the clicks and taps were coming in wicked succession, getting louder, closer.
She erratically looked around the frozen crypt with her flashlight. There was a hole cracked into the wall where she could see something moving within its shadowy chasm. There were what appeared to be beans, or something, on the floor — some of them were split in half and appeared empty, as if they had hatched…
Panic set in. The clicking noise sounded like it was right beside her! She slipped on the floor, possibly even in the goopy, green clot, and landed on her butt. Tina let out a helpless yelp and immediately tried to regain her composure. She faced her light out in front of her and that’s when she saw it. A bug of some sort — the size of a full-grown cat — pounced out of the darkness and extended its six spindly arms like a wide-open hand; its stinger-like tail writhing behind it as if to propel the creature faster through the air. Tina screamed. She put up her hands to defend herself but the bug wrapped its arms and tail around one of her arms. It flashed a set of fangs which it then sunk into her arm. Tina screamed again, thrashing her arm back and forth, trying to release the creature. But that only made the creature tighten its grip. It lifted its tail and jabbed the stinger into her arm. Tina howled in pain. Finally, the bug loosened its grip, dropped to the floor and disappeared into the shadows.
Tina stood up, holding her arm in pain and then backed herself up into the wall. “Billy! Billy, help!” she hollered. Just then, something long and white extended from the darkness next to her. Shaking in fear, she sensed it and slowly turned her head. It was a skeletal arm. Its fingers wriggled, cracking and popping as they did so. She saw the skull next, followed by the rest of the skeleton emerging from the dark.
Upstairs in the shop, Billy heard his sister’s screams. He lunged for the open hatch on the floor and got down on his knees. The cold air rushed up into his face. He couldn’t see anything.
“Tina!?” he called out. He thought he saw her light waving around, but it quickly stopped and went dark. “Tina?”
Suddenly, bursting out of the cold, silent darkness, his sister’s hand reached out and grabbed onto his. Billy’s eyes widened. “Tina !” he exclaimed. With both of his hands he grabbed onto hers, trying to help her out. But he had a hard time getting a grip on her skin. It was soft and wet. It loosened in his grasp and then slid off her bones, making Billy stumbled backwards and into the wire shelving.
Tina’s boney hand grabbed the floor and then her other one shot up, doing the same thing. She lifted herself up through the hatch, her eyes still in her head. She leered at Billy. Then, a second skeleton rose up from behind her. It was Mr. Strawser! Both skeletons crawled out of the cellar and began to stagger toward Billy. He stood up and ran to the front door.
Commotion outside stopped him from leaving. People were running and screaming. There were cracks all over the parking lot, with more forming as he watched. Massive bugs were crawling out from them and leaping onto the people closest to them. Some people were already staggering around with their skin falling off to reveal their skeletons. The skeletons kept moving, kept walking and crawling.
Billy was speechless, stunned. His mind couldn’t focus. What on earth was going on? he repeated over and over in his head. Hearing a sharp crack behind him, Billy spun around. Both skeletons loomed over him, reaching their hands out.
Billy thrust all of his weight into the skeletons, knocking them down and shattering their boney forms all over the floor. Before Billy had a chance to breathe a sigh of relief, one of the bugs shot out from the debris of crumbling bones and wrapped itself around his face. Billy barely had time to scream before he felt the stabbing pain of the bug’s stinger sinking into his neck.
More than three-hundred and fifty miles away, Strawser’s Ice Cream, Pop and Candy Shop sat on Broadway in Grove City, Ohio. It was nestled between two other local hotspots, giving it the perfect location to thrive on this very hot day. Inside, Mike Strawser served a triple scoop of Chocolate Marshmallow Crunch to a pair of young boys.
They each paid and then took licks from the frozen treat. Their eyes widened and satisfied smiles took over their faces.
“Delicious!” one of the boys said. “Do you guys make this here?”
“No,” Mike laughed. “It’s imported. My father, who owns our flagship shop out in Chicago, made sure to supply our two locations with it this year. Some kind of top secret new partnership he struck up with someone somewhere. I haven’t tried it myself, but from what everyone has been saying today, it’s to die for.”
“Well, you should definitely try it!” the boy said before turning and leaving the store with his friend.
The bell chimed against the door as it closed; a surge of the summer heat slipping in before it latched.
“Well, maybe just one little taste,” Mike said. He grabbed a tiny white sample spoon and dipped into the tub of creamy, Chocolate Marshmallow Crunch ice cream. He lifted the spoon and studied the sample. Its dark consistency was mouth-watering and the swirls of marshmallow cream made it almost irresistible not to just stick it straight into his mouth.
But it was the crunch he was excited about. Something so soft and sweet needed that little extra crunch. That would be the memorable part of the flavor. Tiny little — what almost looked like beans or kernels — sat within the sample. Mike didn’t know what they were, but it didn’t matter.
All that mattered was that crunch.
SHOW CLOSE: Thank you for listening to Micro Terrors!!! Join us each Saturday for another scary story! For more fun, visit our website at MicroTerrors.com where we also have spooky games you can print out and play — like wicked word searches, mysterious mazes, and more! MicroTerrors.com is also where you can find us on your favorite social media and even send in your own scary story for us to tell! Plus, you’ll learn more about our author, Scott Donnelly, who has other horrors for both young and old! I hope you’ll join me again soon for Micro Terrors: Scary Stories for Kids!