NOT JUST THE DEAD WHO HAUNT : Scary Stories – Short Horror Story

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Finally Tara gave up. She felt she would die if she listened to Dad’s nightmare about alligators and crocodiles hanging down from the ceiling one more time. She called her siblings, they made the arrangements that they had been planning for the past year, and by the end of the month, Dad was out of her house in the nice seniors’ home where it had become clear he would end up since his decline began.

Tara cleaned out his room, although she couldn’t quite get rid of the smell of piss and poo. She had loved her father deeply and had tried hard to keep him out of homes- she was determined that she could do it herself once it became clear he couldn’t live alone anymore. Everybody told her how hard it would be, she didn’t believe them. And what had made her give up finally wasn’t the fact that she was about to lose her job from running home at all hours to deal with some minor household crisis involving her father, it wasn’t the extra never-ending chores, it wasn’t his tendency to wander naked into the yard. It was the nightmare.

She wondered if he was still having it in the home where he was.

“Tara, they’re here again. Their teeth- their tails.” It wasn’t every night- but enough. Even the strongest sleeping pills didn’t keep the crocodiles and alligators out. He would call her. “Tara! Tara!”

She’d run to his room, where he’d be lying, stiff as a corpse on the bed, staring with wide open eyes at the ceiling. “They’re here Tara. They’re not going to hurt me though, I know. They can’t reach me. Can you hear them clacking their teeth together?” He flinched and twitched. “Ugh, saliva dropped on me. At least move the bed woman! Get me out from under them!”

She’d get him up, get him to walk around, give him a hot drink and chat with him and soon enough he’d go back to sleep. She’d lay awake until close to dawn.

Now his room was empty. She lay in bed, staring the dark.

Clack… clack… “Tara! They’re back!”

She jerked out of her own nightmare to the sound of her father’s call. The house was quiet.

She turned over and tried to go back to sleep.

Clack… clack…

She sat up straight in bed, wide awake. She knew what it was. She shook her head, and then got out of bed.

She was determined not to go the room, just to the living room to watch Netflix for a bit. But as she passed the closed door of the room, she heard it clearly.

Clack… clack…

She opened the door.

Alligators and crocodiles hung by the tails from the ceiling, their snouts pointing down to the floor. They twisted their thick dark bodies to free themselves, and their big jaws snapping open and shut, saliva dripping on the floor. The moonlight glistened on their saliva and sharp clacking teeth.

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