Horror and Thriller Fiction posted January 18, 2017

This work has reached the exceptional level
a short tale of horror - 822 words - contest entry

Noise Complaint

by Ideasaregems-Dawn

Night falls in the country like a giant is spilling an inkwell over the land. Cheryl knew she had to be prepared. An LED flashlight rode the trunk of her Honda Civic, along with a pair of work gloves and a shiny, new spade.

All were firmly ensconced on top of the Hefty bag holding what she'd come to bury. She hated that it had to be at night, but she couldn't risk being seen, and that afternoon she had scouted the area carefully. The open meadow would be fine. She'd picked a spot far enough away from the road, and the other side of the small outcropping would keep her light from being spotted easily.

Now it was simply a matter of making the trip a couple of times. The first one would be the most difficult because what was in the bag was heavy; she'd have to drag it a fair distance and come back for the shovel. She was a bit worried about someone coming along and seeing her car parked at the side of the road, but it couldn't be helped.

It would be just my luck to have some nosy parker decide to check it out, she thought.

The trunk light beamed as she raised the lid. Her heart began to pound with fear. Shit! What if someone saw! I forgot all about the stupid light. But the only residence in the area was a farmhouse behind, farther down the gravel road, and all the lights were out. They'd long ago retired for the night, she'd thought as she'd passed it.

Still, it would have been better to park with my trunk away from the house if I'd remembered.

But no lights came on, and the silence of the night was only broken by the cheerful sound of crickets serenading. Quickly now! She removed the shovel from the bag, resting it quietly on the gravel, and with both hands, began to tug on the Hefty. Surprisingly, it seemed lighter than when she'd had to lift it into the trunk. The contents flopped over the edge of the Civic's trunk, and gravity pulled it the rest of the way to the ground. She would have to lift it off the road to avoid small rocks tearing the plastic, but after that she thought it should be smooth sailing. The grass was long and silky all the way to the rock outcropping.

What was that? The crickets sang in response.

I heard something; I'm sure I did! But moonlight revealed nothing. It was too dark... Cheryl reached into the trunk, and felt around until her hands closed over the flashlight. She hadn't planned to use it until it was absolutely necessary, but she could barely see the ditch between her car and the meadow.

The sound came again, and she felt the hairs on the back of her neck rise. She flicked the flashlight on. Nothing. The dark plastic lay motionless, exactly where it had landed with a sick plop.

Nerves, she told herself. But I could have sworn there was a sound coming from that bag. Placing her two hands around the top of it, she began the arduous task of carrying it over the ditch.

That asshole! Anger gave her strength. Just look what he made me do! Why couldn't he have been reasonable?

Suddenly, the Hefty wriggled. Dropping it hastily, she backed away, shining the flashlight on it. Once again it lay inert, this time half-in, half-out of the ditch. No way! I can't do this! Sweat dripped into her eyes, and trickled between her breasts. She was trembling so badly, the light's beam bounced, sending shadows flickering up and down, further igniting her fear. 

As if it understood her terror, the contents of the bag began clawing at the plastic. With a snarl, a muzzle, glistening wet with foam, pushed through the bag, and before a horrified girl could turn and run, the German Shepherd was free.

Cheryl stumbled and fell to her back, losing her grip on the flashlight. It tumbled away in the darkness, end over end, the bright light flashing quick glimpses of a nightmare as the dog advanced. She had just enough time to let out one terrified scream before gleaming, canine teeth clamped on her throat. Growling, the Shepherd ripped and tore, shaking its prize from side to side. Cheryl's gurgled protests were lost to swamping blood. She fought--pounding her fists into the dog's face, gripping and tugging its ears, its fur, trying to pry it loose from her throat. But the harder she fought, the more furious the canine held on, re-clamping its jaw like a sprung bear trap. The pain was excruciating: worse than anything she would ever experience, but poor Cheryl remained conscious.

Her last thoughts were regret for trying to kill her neighbor's noisy dog...I should have used more of that rat poison...The red wave closed over her.

Horror Story Writing Contest contest entry
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