The bus rolled away as Stacy walked up her driveway. Her big white house was just like every other house on her cookie cutter block. Each house was just as boring as the other, white with red trimmed windows and a sullen grey rooftop. But Stacy’s was special with its lone flower patch in the front of the house.
The suburb was quiet and the tight knit community was hardly ever disturbed by worldly affairs because they weren't large enough to attract the attention of other towns. Ashley, Illinois was a charming town that was known for its old fashioned buildings that captured a single moment in time. As people drove by, they’d know exactly what it would’ve looked like in the 1970's because nothing in this town ever changed. If anything, it was as if the town was a photograph lost in time and if you looked at it right you could find yourself in the picture but only if you tried. All in all the town of Ashley was stunning, in its own way. Stacy thought of this as she mounted the white concrete steps of her lovely home on a warm summer day.
Stacy was a small,with quiet girl who was no older than eight years old when she moved to Ashley with her parents. She was now fifteen, the smartest girl in her class, not to mention the most beautiful. She was the skinny girl with stunning blonde hair that every girl aspired to be. She lived with a loving family and surprisingly had never gotten anything negative on her school record. But even with all of her extravagant qualities, she still never managed to make any friends while she attended middle and high school. She didn’t mind of course, friends only distracted her from school work and the modeling job that she had worked so hard to obtain. She didn’t make many friends because she had drawn into herself after her family had died. She didn’t talk much and no one could blame her.This story however does not begin with Stacy at the age of 15; it starts off with the little seven year old Stacy who was just about to turn eight.
Stacy was sitting in her room when her five year old brother Johnny walked in and slammed the door. He promptly sat down on Stacy's pink comforter.
“They won’t let me go,” Johnny pouted, “They said I wasn’t old enough for the movies.” He crossed his arms and lay down on her bed looking at the white ceiling. “Will you go with me?” He just looked at Stacy with his big puppy dog eyes silently begging her to say yes. After five minutes of desperately begging, Johnny got her to agree to go with him.
Stacy's parents agreed, but only if they went to the theater that was just across the road and they came straight home after. No dilly dallying. So they set off toward the movie theater on the dark sidewalks where it was almost impossible to see. The dark enveloped them as cars whizzed by ignoring the speed limit. The cars passed not knowing what would happen later that night.
When they got to the theater they looked up in awe at the strangeness of being there at night without their parents. The whole place still looked as if it was straight out of the 1970’s and it was enchanting. They took their seats in the very middle to get the best view of the movie that would be playing. Soon the lights dimmed and they looked up at the screen as the opening music played.
After the movie they started to walk home. The sun was gone completely and the moon was out but it wasn’t bright enough to make the sidewalk visible. They looked both ways before they started to cross the street with Stacy leading Johnny across the road back home. That’s when the headlights appeared. They blinded the children as the brakes of the car screeched to a halt. The man got out of the car his horror filled face was illuminated by the headlights in front of them.
“What are you doing in the middle of the road!” he gasped in fear, “You shouldn’t be out here alone, where do you live?” Stacy knew not to talk to strangers, but she thought that this would be an exception and pointed to her house across the street. The man smiled at them as the panic of almost killing them resided and walked them back to their home. “You had best be careful being outside at night alone, who knows what could happen.” He eyed the house with a strange longing that sent chills up Stacy’s spine. And with that the man turned and walked back to his car and drove off.
The next morning Stacy and Johnny got a scolding of a lifetime. They were grounded for talking to the man and telling him where they lived. Obviously the parents were just scared that their children had almost died because they had been out of their sight for only a moment, but soon after everything returned to normal. The Turners went back to their routines and life went on.
Weeks later, Stacy was being driven home after she had spent the night at her best friend Sarah’s house. She was looking out the window as the trees and houses passed by. All the houses passed looking just as dull as the next; white and red, then white and red. She couldn’t care less, but she knew one thing, she wanted to make their house special. She had gotten some flowers from Sarah’s house- out in the country- and was bringing them home to show her mom so they could plant them. They were red gold and white and would compliment the house with such beauty that she could hardly contain her excitement.
When she got home her mother helped her plant the flowers over by the front porch. Now they were the only house that was distinguishable from the rest. As the sun set that day they watched the flowers look like they caught fire.
A couple of weeks after that, the man who had mirrored lenses on walked up to the door to talk to Stacy’s parents.He was the man who had almost hit them with his car weeks ago. The conversation was short and the parents were beaming afterward because the man had complimented the flowers adding some originality in the boring old neighborhood. Stacy’s parents often wondered what it would have been like not to have put the flowers out front. People rarely needed directions to their house since it stood out so much from the rest of the neighborhood. Life had been made easy and it felt like summer would never end, but it did.
When school started, Stacy had to go to school on her own like always, but Johnny was still adjusting to the thought of being alone with strangers. He’d often fuss over not wanting to go to preschool, but had to go anyway. Stacy had to ride the bus because her parents didn’t have the time to pick her up like they used to. They were too busy with Johnny at preschool. Stacy didn’t mind though, she loved the freedom of riding by herself and making friends as fast as she could.
One day, as she was walking to the buses after school, she noticed a man she thought she recognized waiting outside the school by a car. His mirrored sunglasses made it hard for Stacy to tell if he was looking at her or someone behind her. It took her a few moments before she realized- it’s the man from the night at the movies! She ran over to him to say hello, but stopped as she remembered her mother’s warning. Just because you’ve seen someone before doesn’t mean they’re not a stranger. She pondered the thought until the buses started up and then walked toward them not looking back at the man who was staring at her. His mouth was turned up ever so slightly into an awkward smile as he watched her leave for the bus.
A couple of days had passed and every day she would see him out there waiting for one of her friends Tony to get in and then they’d drive off. But he would always wait until Stacy had gotten out of the building and onto her bus, even if Tony was in the car waiting for him to go home. He was always there after school and Stacy was young so she didn’t question it. That is until he wasn’t there. It had been a couple of weeks after she had first noticed him standing outside the school gates.
It was a Thursday when he had stopped appearing, Stacy went to school on the bus and left on the bus, but the man wasn’t there. Tony had been at school that day and had gotten a ride home from his mother, who should’ve been at work. Stacy thought nothing of it as she walked up the stairs to her house, stopping first to admire the flowers she and her mother had planted not so long ago.
Stacy opened the door and walked inside. The house seemed normal enough, but it was oddly quiet. She crept up the stairs as she went to her room and put her backpack on the white carpet and turned to walk downstairs to the kitchen because she was hungry. But then something caught her eye, from the top of her stairs she could see a big man with mirrored sunglasses open her front door and walk out into the daylight, leaving a blood soaked trail of footprints. He had seemed tense and on edge as he stepped out the front door his movements rigid and unnatural. Stacy walked down the stairs and followed the footprints to the basement. She had always loved the basement’s cool refreshing atmosphere, but this time it felt hot and sticky. When she got to the bottom her lungs filled with the hot sticky air and she screamed at the sight in front of her.
The dim light alone wasn’t bright enough to capture the grotesque scene that was on the ground before her. Her brother was mangled on the floor, eyes gouged out and hanging by his ears. His face was pale and had been beaten to an almost unrecognizable soft squishy mess. His hair was matted with blood and it stained the concrete with the thick syrupy liquid. His arms and legs had been torn off at the hips and shoulder then placed just inches apart from where they once were linked to his body. His torso had been cut open and dissected as his guts spilled out in front of him in a stringy tangled mess. His blood splattered the walls around where the major arteries had been severed. His white and purple body sat in a pool of dark red blood like a rose in the snow. His face was still twisted in agony.
The blood trail from her brother lead her to the bodies of her deceased parents. They had been torn limb from limb as well and their faces showed that they had felt every part of it. Their bones were made visible on every part of their bodies. The meat had been pulled from the bone by someone’s bare hands. The blood was still flowing from their bodies, but they were dead.
She slowly looked down to see the inches deep pool of blood soaking into her now red stained socks covering the skin on her feet with the thick goo. The horror she had seen was too much for her and she ran screaming into the street. When they found her she was crying, running through the street trailing blood with her arms open wide screaming for help.
The adoption process didn’t take long and because she was so young they had decided that moving her might make it hard to adapt to her trauma with all of her friends being in Ashley. Her family's bodies were so mangled the funeral had to be closed casket and short altogether. Stacy doesn’t remember much from that time, but she did remember the man who walked out the door after killing her family.
Years later, when she was 15 years old, she was walking up her the steps of her house thinking about the town she had grown up in, pausing to look at the flowers by the stairs before entering. It took a while because she had to climb in through the window. After the house was abandoned because it wouldn’t sell with the murders surrounding it. Someone had taken the time to board it up, so she had to get in through the window, but she had to take care of things here and only here.
She walked around the house slowly going up the stairs over to her room and dropped her bag onto the white carpet. She turned and walked down the stairs to the basement.
The air was hot and sticky and she loved the feeling. As she slowly descended the stairs she saw the grotesque bodies of her foster parents. They had been ripped apart, their bodies cut open and dissected.
Stacy had lured them here asking them if she could plant flowers for her family like she had when she was little. When they got there, Stacy promptly climbed into the window and her parents followed confused at Stacy's behavior. Then she murdered them after they had followed her into the basement. Stacy suppressed a giggle.
Sometimes she was a little 8 year old girl again, walking through the halls of her house finding her family torn apart mercilessly. She would sometimes think of why he hadn’t waited for her to come home from school as well, but that would just make her laugh. Slowly she walked into the hidden closet next to her parents’ dead bodies. She opened the door and found Tony’s father tied to a chair struggling to escape. She looked at him with a smile full of malice. She had lured him just as easily as her parents, asking about Tony and if he’d seen the house lately. For her it was all just too easy, especially when you have a tragic back story. His sunglasses had a small crack on them from where she had pushed him down the stairs to get him to comply with her orders. Stacy picked up a knife on the table next his struggling form. She smashed the glasses where the crack used to be the glass now jutting from his eye blood leaking on to his face. She laughed out loud as she brought the knife to his eyes.
She pushed the blade into the socket and worked her hand back and forth until there was a satisfying pop and the eye fell out and dangled by his chin. He was screaming, but you couldn’t hear him outside the soundproof room. She slowly walked over to the other side of his body and slowly inserted the knife working it back and forth until the eye fell to his chin. His face was red and covered in blood.
She walked back over to the table and grabbed a bigger sharper knife. She walked over to his shoulder and stabbed it ripping the flesh and muscle. Blood dripped down his back as she dragged it ever so slightly down. He squirmed, which filled her with joy as she ripped the knife down and around cutting down to the bone. She grabbed the maimed arm and pulled with all her might as it popped off into her blood soaked hands.
Next she walked over to his other arm, but didn’t go as fast with this one. She dragged the knife in a painstakingly slow manner causing him to start screaming again. Rip! The arm came off, cleaner this time. She walked back toward the table and grabbed a knife similar to the one she just had but clean and walked to the front of his legs.
She stabbed into his leg and cut it clean off. At this point he was losing consciousness, so she grabbed a syringe full of adrenaline and shoved it into his eye socket and pushed it in pulling him back from the edge of death. She walked back over to his other leg and cut that one clean off. She walked over and pushed his limbless body to the floor and cut a long line down his stomach. She pushed her hands into his gut and pulled the organs out, spilling them onto the floor. Her entire body was covered head to toe in blood and she was laughing hysterically. Stacy walked up the basement stairs, passed her parents’ dead bodies, and went up the stairs to the bathroom. Turning on the shower she got in, still clothed, and watched the blood run down the shower.
That was fun, she thought giggling. I want to do that again.