A WAYWARD SUMMER'S DAY
by ALEXANDER SLOTKIN
Dulled lemon and lime striped wallpaper flanked the door and double-hinged window of the quaint upstairs sewing room. The window let in cool wafts of air from the garden below as Ms. Wayward worked quietly into the night. The seamstress was busy with a new project, as she often was when frustrated.
Ms. Wayward was particularly stressed that summer day, which called for trying a different kind of project: taxidermy. She didn’t have to look far for a body; the animal she had ran over that afternoon would do just fine.
A workbench within arm’s reach held tools she would need and then some. Her “How to” book was among them.
After salting the hide, she read, create a mold of the head. It should be accurate and detailed for the best results, with the animal’s muscles and veins carved into place.
She poured the mold until a cicada flew into the rubber-like waterfall, singing until it went under.
“Damn,” Ms. Wayward said. She may have to start over.
With messy hands, she locked the window and shut out the night sky with a quick swoosh of the curtains. Then she moved the animal closer to the window where the light was best in the room.
From across the garden, Ms. Wayward’s neighbor eyed her and her project’s silhouette.
“John,” the woman called. “Who’s that sitting across from Sheryl?”
“It looks like Mr. Wayward to me,” her husband suggested. “Maybe he decided to stay with her after all?”
Alexander Slotkin is a enrolled at Drew University and loves to write by the Fort Lauderdale beach. He is passionate about reading and writing, and hopes to become a big name writer one day. In Alex’s mind, the best story is the one you think about hours after reading it— the one that you’re still in awe over.
The authors published at HelloHorror retain all rights to their work. For permission to quote from a particular piece, or to reprint, contact the editors who will forward the request. All content on the web site is protected under copyright law.