Posted in Short Stories

Carousels and Nightmares (Part VIII)


Tom took his seat on the carousel’s duck then looked up ahead at his wife and daughter and smiled. Connie’s expression relayed worry, but Sheila’s excitement shown through as she bounced up and down in her seat in anticipation of the ride. It warmed his heart to see her happy. Anything for his little girl.

The carousel lurched forward. At first the sensation of movement struck him as though he were floating. He passed the clown, who smiled. The floating of the carousel moved faster now but not by much. Then the outside environment of the carousel changed as though a paint brush, with one swipe, created a mountain side all in one stroke. The circular motion of the carousel stopped. Now he wafted up and down swishing this way and that. A loud “Quack, quack,” sounded from behind him. White wings flipped up from under where he sat and flapped. He turned his upper body left then right then patted the sides of his seat. Feathers. He sat on feathers. No. He sat on a real duck, who floated on a lake. Gazing out into the distance, mountain ranges stood in every direction. Shiny, yellow, billowing grass waved as a light breeze jostled it.

“Oh yeah,” said Tom. “I could get used to this.” He propped his legs in front of him, crossed his ankles, and cupped the back of his head in his laced fingers then closed his eyes.

“Then get used to it you shall,” replied a deep male voice behind him.

Tom sat bolt upright and glanced around. “What? Who said that?”

“I did,” said the duck.

“You talk?”

“Ummm, you just heard me speak, yet you still asked that question? So silly.”

“I’m not used to animals speaking as humans do.”

The duck ignored Tom’s statement, “So you are choosing to live here.”

“What? No. I never chose to live here. What are you talking about?” asked Tom
scratching his head in confusion.

“Yes, you did. You said, and I quote, ‘I could get used to this’, remember?”

“Well, yes, but that isn’t a decision to stay here. Nonetheless, you said it. Here, it is taken as such. So you are never to leave.”


The Clown

The clown looked on and smiled as Tom vanished from the carousel.

(To Be Continued)


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