Tuesday, June 19

(photo courtesy of Aaron Barnes)

Wednesday, June 13

Tuesday, June 12

Monday, June 11

Friday, June 8

The Midnight Mailman and Mr. Happy Puppet Head in:

"Price Check on Aisle DANGER!"

Chapter TWO

(start from the BEGININNG!)

* * * *

When he’s done pissing on the water monster in the toilet, Mr. Happy Puppet Head says, “It’s all yours,” and bobbles away, leaving me alone in the most terrifying public bathroom I have ever been in. I’m about to follow my friend out when I realize my bladder is suddenly painfully full. Too much tangy lukewarm water fountain, I guess.

I look at the toilet and the angry monster. It snaps its translucent teeth at me and thrashes about. It briefly occurs to me I could just piss on the floor, but I disregard this as totally out of the question. I’m in a grocery store.

I stand a few feet from the toilet, just out of bite’s reach. Junk in hand, I raise it to the demon. My entire body is taut, eyes blinking furiously behind my goggles.

I can do this. I can.

Urinating on a monster sounds easier than it actually is.

Seconds crawl. I strain to listen for anyone else who might come into the bathroom to catch me in my cowardice. If someone were to come in, I’d pretend to finish and leave quickly without making eye contact. But I can’t hear anything over the creature’s insistent splashing.

I can do this. I expel liquid waste through my urethra all the time. Why should it matter if something’s trying to kill me as I do it?

I sigh heavily. I can’t do this.

I zip up and back carefully out the door. It’ll take maybe twenty minutes to get home. I can handle that.

I’ll be happy as long as I never have to go into that bathroom again.

I find Mr. Happy Pupet Head in the Damaged Aerosol Food section. Four severely dented cans of Spray Cheese for the price of one. Amazing.

Thursday, June 7

It's hard to breathe because of the smell.

"Knock yourself out, kid," says the man. "I'll be back in a few minutes to check on you."

Cinder stands staring at the lump of decaying carcass. "Soother? Is that you?" His friend doesn't answer. Things without faces rarely respond when their names are called, as our hero is fast learning.

Despite the stench, Cinder grabs a hug on his corpse friend and cries a little. They had had such great times together.

"Goodbye, Soother," he sniffs. "See you later."

The sun outside burns his eyes. He wipes away his tears and looks up at the man. "I'm ready."

"Hop in then," the door to the van swings open and the pair drives off to meet their destiny at Squiggly Jenny's Packing Plant.

(photo courtesy of Victoria Warren)