Welcome to the all new, official website for Dave Benneman. I am a spinner of tales, and as such I feel it is my duty to tell them here. It is not my job to pontificate about writing as I have much more to learn than I have to pass on.
I will share my experiences, frustrations, and encouragement. And of course I will do my best to entertain. That is the job of an author. To give the reader a respite from daily life. To make them laugh, cry and (if I’m doing this well) scare the lint right out of your belly button. Those are the best days.
So I encourage you to visit regularly to see what my malignant imagination has cooked up for you. I command you to be boisterous should I become a bore. Of course it’s nice to get the occasional attaboy as well.
Today I will share this bit of flash fiction. I hope you enjoy.
Life’s A Carnival
By Dave Benneman
Will’s cash reserves were thinning faster than the crowd on the midway. Barkers called half-heartedly from their games. Vicky clutched an immense stuffed panda he’d won popping balloons with darts. It cost him a small fortune. He was good at darts, a relatively easy skill he’d honed in his fathers basement, but the crooked men who ran those games counted on that. They had tricks Will would never learn. He steered Vicky between the Wheel of Fortune and the Shooting Gallery toward the rides.
Screams battled for room in the night air while ‘Layla’ leapt from the tortured speakers at the Bob Sled. Fried food, and cotton candy scented the summer air that clung close to his skin. A fat man on a stool at the entrance to The Tunnel of Love leered and winked as he took Will’s money. Vicky’s look of dread hit him square on.
“It’s not scary, it’s a boat ride in the dark.”
“I’m not scared, it’s just…they’re kinda creepy.” Vicky nodded toward the fat man and the assistant in his greasy wife beater t-shirt who steadied the boat. When she stepped up, he smiled showing a few crooked teeth.
Will stepped between her and the carney with a false show of bravado. He took the panda and helped Vicky sit. Once he settled next to her, he nodded.
“Enjoy the ride.” With a sinister laugh the carney pushed off the boat.
The temperature dropped when they bumped through the heart-shaped tunnel entrance. Will pulled Vicky close. Water dripped from the dark. The heavy air smelled stagnant. . Ominous music played from everywhere at once. It was a short loop or stuck, he wasn’t sure which, but the repetitive melody made his muscles bunch.
“Something’s off,” she whispered. “Can you smell that?”
He sniffed. An odor gathered under the dampness. Road kill. Something died in here. Probably a rat, not something he’d share with Vicky. She was freaking already. “Yeah, it’s that guy’s body odor.”
She pulled away from him.
“Relax, we’ll be out soon.”
The weird music got louder. The stench intensified. The boat bumped along in the endless darkness.
He pulled her close. “Better?”
They should be out by now. He reached out to insure they were moving. The wall recoiled at his touch as if it were alive. He swallowed back vomit and jerked his hand away. “ Sorry. Cramp.”
“Vicky? You okay?”
Nothing. He gently shook her. “Vicky.” He turned and grabbed her shoulders. “Vicky!”
She slumped forward. Cold, she was too cold. He lifted her chin as if to kiss her. Her flesh fell off in his hand. The stench of death filled his nose as her decomposing flesh dripped from her face. His scream lifted from his throat like a rocket searing through the atmosphere.
The boat bumped along the infinite tunnel. The eternal music played. Will’s scream joined the legion.
I hope you enjoyed this little romp through my twisted mind. Because writers are a notoriously insecure, please take a moment to tell me what you thought.
It is my custom to end each blog with a quote, how else would you know you’ve reached the end.
Todays Quote comes from the equally twisted mind of Steven Wright.
“The early bird may get the worm, But it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese.”
Thanks for stopping by,