I tried out a little experiment, but it's up to you to decide how successful it might have been!
I tweeted out for people to name a job, and the first three that I received would become horror stories. None of these stories existed before people sent in suggestions. I created them right there, on the spot.
Read them on Twitter, or below! If you like this idea, let me know, and maybe I'll do it again sometime!
He’d lost track of the gimmicks he’d seen come in and out of the ring over the years. Clowns, “badasses,” and pretty boys.
The Necromancer was a spin on a classic.
Everyone eats up the horror gimmicks, but this time the guy in the creepy makeup had a unique trick up his sleeve.
Less than 5 minutes into the match, The Necromancer knocked out both Boulder Brothers. I did the count, announced the win, and waited for the twist we’d been talking about it all week. The Necromancer would announce that he wasn’t done punishing his foes.
He’d use dark magic to “resurrect” the guys on the ground just so he could kick their asses a second time. What we hadn’t practiced was the ritual.
The Necromancer was hungry. Eager to make his debut memorable. Unbeknownst to the management, he’d actually researched his role, and learned a bit of dark magic.
The “resurrection” began when the Necromancer pulled a small punch out of his costume and sprinkled some sort of powder on the first brother. I could see the guy wince as some of the white dust landed in his eyes.
It’s all about staying in the moment. I stared and shook my head, gestures to Necromancer to leave the guy alone, but inside I was baffled to hear Necromancer mutter something under his breath.
And then the Boulder Brother’s eyes opened, red and bulging.
My first thought was that the dust Necromancer had used had hurt the poor guy. Stung his eyes.
But the smile that spread across his face sent a chill down my spine.
He rose to his feet, staring around the arena as if surprised to find himself watched by hundreds of eyes
He clocked his surroundings, looking at each of us in turn, and then the Necromancer stuck out an arm and ran at the guy, clearly believing the match could continue as planned.
But I knew something was horribly horribly wrong. Something inside me screamed “RUN”
The Necromancer made contact, but the man with the bulging eyes didn’t play along. At first it seemed like self preservation. He knocked the Necromancer’s arm out of the way.
And then he grabbed the new guy’s head, jammed a hand into his mouth, and wrenched down.
I heard a snap.
The Necromancer, in front of hundreds of new fans, screamed through gurgling blood, and fell to his knees before the silent, but intently staring monster he created.
The resurrection had been real.
He’d brought something into his innocent opponent’s body.
The screaming started, and I knew the cameras must have cut away, but the match was only just beginning. The second Boulder Brother stopped pretending to be knocked out, but seemed too stunned to move. Like me, he had sensed this wasn’t his brother anymore.
The creature in front of me knelt down before the Necromancer, who frantically clutched at his broken jaw, and with a groan of joy, the creature jammed his fingers into the kid’s eyes.
Squeezed until he fell silent.
And then he noticed me.
With blood dripping from his hands, the thing came toward me, ignoring as a metal folding chair slammed into his back.
Someone was trying to save me the only way that made sense in the ring.
The last thing I saw was its smile. The insane grin of someone rudely pulled into the land of the living, eager to take out all their anger on whoever is closest.
As it went dark, one thought crossed my mind: “
They say wrestling is fake.”
“Hot enough for you?”
Sometimes I hate this job.
Mostly its the dads. They all have the same routine. They hop out of the driver’s seat, yawn, stretch, and grunt as everyone pretends not to see their ass crack.
Then the orders: “Alright, out of the RV, kids. No screens.”
On the busy days, I might have five or six different groups at once. Littering, screaming, asking me the same questions over and over:
“What’s a good hiking spot? Nothing too hard”
“Can we start a small campfire?”
“Do you have Wi-Fi?”
They can’t just…exist.
I came here to get away. Ironically, now society comes to me. Most of the time I don’t mind it. Plenty of sun, air, and most of the time it’s pretty quiet, usually during the week. Weekends are when the parasitic city dwellers show up, treating the great outdoors like a novelty.
The weekend goes largely as expected. Parents drag their kids to go fishing, and the kids whine and drag their feet, only to come back smiling. Every now and then, I catch a glimpse of the families recapping their day as they settle down to bed.
Sometimes they catch me looking.
In those cases, a little damage control is in order. It’s only if they won’t chill out that I bring out the big guns: “Sir, just wait until the other RV’s leave on Sunday afternoon, there’s a great spot your kids will love, but I can’t take everyone.”
It doesn’t always work, of course. But sometimes one of these embarrassing fathers, eager to win their kids’ affection gets suckered in.
I just can’t afford for them to return home with stories about the creepy guy at the campsite. I can’t be forced to leave another site.
As soon as the other RV’s leave, it’s right to work. I keep a few tools on hand: a couple knives, some lighters left by the nasty smokers, even an old fishing hook or two.
Who knows what I might find in this last RV, anyway? Besides a few bodies to add to the count.
The dad opens the door with that dopey “hot enough for you” grin on his face, just before he sees the knife in my hand. Just a little hunting, and the whole family will get to see the secret place where I keep the others.
Sometimes I love this job.
Two more hours. Two more hours, and I can go home.
I might be getting a little too old for the overnight shift. It’s exhausting. A year ago, this used to be easier, but now all I can do is daydream about getting to bed.
On a small monitor, an old beat up truck pulls up to order.
“Welcome to Steakburger, what can I get you?”
Through my headset, all I hear is static, and a distant rumbling. The truck’s engine probably.
“What can I get you?”
Sometimes the system doesn’t work, and you have to give it another try. I find myself shocked and alert as a deep voice abruptly barks back,
“Give me one fucking minute.”
I’m speechless, though I glance across the kitchen to spot my coworker Benny playing games on his phone.
This is the definition of a thankless job, and Benny has been here too long to be bothered. He’s not even cooking fries…
“Yes, uh, sir, what can I get—“
He interrupts, as I kick myself for calling him “sir.”
“Number one, no onions. Chocolate milkshake. You got that?”
“Repeat it back to me.”
“Number one, chocolate milkshake”
“Right, no onions.”
“I find one fucking onion in there, I swear to god…”
“No onions, sir. I promise.”
“Good, I’m pulling around.”
I punch the order into the system, typing “NO ONIONS” in all caps, preying Benny doesn’t screw up.
He’s already on his feet and working as the old truck pulls up to the window. The man in the driver’s seat isn’t at all what I expected. He’s clean shaven, wearing a dark grey suit.
Without even looking at me, he holds out a debit card, which I eventually hand back with his receipt. He balls it up and drops it outside his window, and all I want is for Benny to finish his order, so the guy will leave. Even as he ignores me, he creeps me out.
Eventually, the man has his milkshake, and a bag of food. Somewhere nearby an owl hoots, and finally the man drives off.
To say I’m relieved would be an understatement. Benny eventually comes over to get my attention, but the clueless dope just asks to borrow my phone charger.
The night, thankfully, gets more normal. Some college kids order a ton of chicken nuggets, but mostly it’s pretty dead.
Until I spot the old truck on the monitor again. It slowly creeps past the speaker system, heading to the window again.
The man rolls down his window, and knocks on the glass beside me. I see nothing behind his eyes, as I removed the barrier between us.
“Is everything okay, sir?”
“How many of you are in there?”
It doesn’t compute for a second, and he helpfully asks again, “Is it just you and that other kid cooking burgers.”
“Uh, no. No. We’ve got, um…we’ve got a manager in the back.”
“Oh yeah? Let me talk to them.”
With my blood running cold, I wordlessly excuse myself and head to the manager’s office. Benny is back to his game, blissfully unaware of the situation.
The manager’s office is locked…makes sense, she went home hours ago.
I play out a little scene in my head. I ask her to come speak to the man at the window, she tells me she’s busy on the phone, and then I finally walk back, dreading finding myself locked in the man’s vacant glare again. I just hope I took long enough to make it believable.
“You’re a terrible fucking liar,” he spits, when I tell him.
“I think you and that boy are the only people in the building. The only people around for a mile.”
He could be right. For what it matters, I feel like there’s no one else in the state who can help me.
All I want is for the moment to pass. I give the man my manager’s number, I tell him to come back in the morning, I apologize for whatever I did to offend him, but it’s no use.
And then he pointedly shifts the car into park and turns the engine off, never taking his eyes off me.
“You got a phone?”
“How long you think it’ll take for the police to get here?”
With that, the man lunges forward, grabbing onto the drive-thru window and pulling himself up and out of his car, crawling into the restaurant.
I scream, which thankfully gets Benny’s attention. He finally puts down his game, rushing to my side, then stepping in front of me. He’s a bit more heroic than I’d ever have expected. Especially as the man gets to his feet, grabbing a metal spatula off the counter.
I say the only thing that makes sense,
“Sir, if we forgot to leave out the onions, I’m sorry.”
Shockingly, this puts a smile on the man’s face. The laugh starts small, but grows until he’s shaking with laughter, head pitched back, eyes tearing.
Fucking Benny. Is it too much to ask that he reads the actual orders I enter?
“Uh uh, little kid, the cook here did a great job. Best burger I’ve had in years.”
If that’s not why he’s here, we’re in trouble. As he wipes his eyes, I glance around.
“I’m afraid there’s just more I’m hungry for tonight. You two are just in the right place at the wrong fucking time.”
Benny surprises me again. With an embarrassing roar, he jumps at the man, who takes the corner of the spatula and aims for my coworker’s eyes.
Reflexively, I look away, only having to suffer the SOUND of metal slicing into skin. The man is laughing again, loving the bloodshed, and I dream again of being home, being away from this maniac and this awful fucking job.
I think of the customers who bark at you, the world spinning without you as you sit and wait for some other over-worked kid to replace you at the end of your shift.
The fear and anger build, until I decide not to let this guy kill me without taking some hits himself.
He’s occupied with Benny, who has taken more hits from a knife in the man’s other hand. In two quick steps, I’m at Benny’s work station, grabbing a metal tray from a vat of bubbling oil.
It rains down on poor Benny and the madman, whose laughter turns into a scream of pain.
As he turns his attention to me, I grab a ladle and scoop up more oil, hurling it directly into the man’s crazed and hollow eyes.
This hit does it, and he falls to the ground, clawing at his sizzling eye sockets.
I hadn’t expected to win.
He screams for what feels like an hour, though I’ll never be certain. At some point he falls silent as I stare, and a short time later, I hear keys in the locked front door.
A kid in a paper hat opens the door, shocked at what she sees.
But my shift is over.
As I grab my purse from under the register, I decide the man deserves one last scoop of oil. An onion ring sticks to the side of his horribly burned face, and it makes me chuckle.
It’s finally time to go home and get some sleep.
I have the night shift again tomorrow.
Thanks for reading!