Horror Short Fiction | More Misery by Daniel Norrish

Daniel Norrish lends his trademark second person perspective to a disturbing horror short story. Read in the dark. Read under the covers. Just don’t read alone.

Horror Short Fiction

More Misery

by Daniel Norrish

For The Misery Award


“Good, you’re awake. I’ve prepared something special for you while you were sleeping. Let me just remove that blindfold. There we go. Now you can see my creation perhaps you’d like me to put the blindfold back on.” The big woman says as she leans over you. She has a huge round head propped on a tall, bulbous frame.
You’re lying down. Layers of porous white blankets are folded neatly over your chest. The sun sneaks into the room in long, thin rectangles from around the sides of the curtains. The light is dull; maybe it’s late in the afternoon. Maybe early morning.
You flick your head from left to right to assess your surroundings, but when you try to sit up, nothing happens.
“Why can’t I move?”
“Oh you dirty birdy, the painkillers are very strong,” the big woman laughs, “but trust me, you don’t want them to ware off.”
Oh god, what’s going on?
You begin to burn up. It’s not hot; at least you don’t think it is. You can’t feel much of anything. What the hell happened? Where is James? Your breathing quickens and you can see your chest pulsing up and down.
“Where’s James?”
“Relax.” The woman ignores your question and places a hand on your forehead. You jerk away and a look of pure revulsion flashes over her. Her lips contort into a murderous grimace and her stare sharpens.
“I don’t know why your acting like this!” She barks, “I’m trying to be kind. I wanted to be NICE and you won’t even thank me.”
She turns and steps away. There’s silence for a second. Maybe she’s waiting for a reply. You open your mouth, but she starts to scream.
“Not even a thank you! All my hard work, AND IT WAS HARD YOU KNOW, and you don’t even care!”
You need to say something, anything. You need to stop her.
“Well, if you don’t like me being nice… Maybe I’ll be mean instead. WOULD YOU PREFER THAT?!”
“Just… just wait a sec.” You stutter. She freezes, then turns to glare down at you again until you continue, “It’s the medicine, the painkillers are slowing down my mind. I’m very tired. Please, lets just be friends again.”
A grin stalks back onto her face.
“Oh that’s nice, I’d really like that. So what do you think of the gift I made you?” She points.
Your gaze follows her finger until you see the thing. It’s horrible. Shaped like a person. A mannequin? A plastic doll? Whatever the bones consist of, the body is covered in wild stitches. Long, violent slashes. There are wide sheets of some strange organic material sewn like fabric in the shape of a human. Weird twisted arms and legs. There are no eyes, no teeth. Just a peculiar patchwork of drapery that almost looks like sectioned farmland seen from an aeroplane.
“Where’s James?”
“Would you like more light?” The woman asks as she throws open the curtains. You can see the ocean outside. Are you on a boat? The beach? The beach would be good, there are always people on the beach! Someone will see you and call the police and they’ll come and help and James will be fine and everything will be alright!
You look back to the middle of the room and the thing is highlighted by the open window. A standing carcass in the spotlight, ready for applause. You can’t possibly look away. There are tiny, almost invisible hairs all over it. Brown dots, freckles everywhere.
Oh god, it’s made of human skin.
“Do you like it?”
“Where is James? Tell me where he is!”
“Do you recognise it?” She says as she pulls back the covers on your bed. You look down at yourself, and you scream. You’ll never stop screaming.


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