PDA

View Full Version : The Closet Monster. 1,140 Child



hvysmker
October 16th, 2014, 08:14 PM
Jennie heard a noise in her closet.




"Daddy! Daddy, somethingís in my closet again. Hurry Daddy, before it hides."




Since she did the same thing every night, without fail, it took a while for her father to respond. He finally came in, looked in the closet and moved things around a bit to placate his daughter.




"Itís all right, honey. Whatever it was, itís gone now. Iíll put this chair in front of the door so it canít get out."




The next time she heard that shuffling sound, Jennie was ready. She had a toy baseball bat handy, sitting right next to her bed. The monster had been there for about a month. Every night she could hear it moving around in the closet, bumping and muttering. In the morning sunlight, it would be gone. She knew because she checked.




She was angry but she wasn't stupid. From the way her father checked, the little girl could tell that he didnít believe her.




After he went back to the living room, the three-year-old picked up her toy bat and tiptoed to the closet door. She stood there, bat held - - somewhat tentatively -- while fighting growing pangs of fear. The girl was resolved to find out for herself. She knew she wasn't imagining things.




A few minutes later, she heard a dull thud in there, followed by sighing and grumbling.




With the bat in hand, she jerked open the closet door.




"Uhhhhh! Please donít do that," a big green monster with a horn in the middle of his forehead admonished her. "I have a bad heart, you know?" It cowered in a corner, obviously afraid of the bat. "Donít hit me, please."




"What are you doing in there? You werenít here a month ago," Jennie asked the beast, even more bigger than her Daddy. Even so, now that she saw it, it didn't seem all that scary.




"Your last closet monster was fired for sleeping on duty," the creature told her in a gruffly monstrous but somehow gentle voice. "My last little boy grew too big and didnít believe in me anymore, so I was assigned to you."




"But I donít want a monster," she told it, angrily.




"I donít know anything about that, kid." He shrugged a monstrous shoulder. "I just go where Iím told. Itís a job."




"Well, are you here to hurt me or something?"




"Oh, no. No way, kid. I'm to watch over you and to make sure none of the 'under the bed monsters' move in. They cause all kinds of trouble, like make you wet the bed and stuff. I wouldnít hurt anybody."




"I donít think Iíd want to wet the bed. Mama would be angry. Besides, itís yucky to do that." She paused a moment. "I donít like to be called Ďkidí. You better call me Jennie."




"Okay. My nameís Tim and you can call me Timmy if you want."




After that night she never called her father in again. In fact, after bedtime, she and Timmy talked a lot. The monster and her became friends. Every night he would make sure to check under her bed for the bad monsters. Her mother even complimented her on how clean she kept her closet.




Eventually, she talked Timmy into showing her where he lived -- in Closet Monster Land.




After waiting for her parents to go to sleep, he showed her a secret door in the back of the closet. You know, the one that only monsterís, gremlins and mice know about?




They stepped through into a hallway. It was very long and went under every house on the block. The corridor was lit, though, with chairs to rest on and water fountains every once in a while. When they came to an elevator, Timmy pushed a button that said just "There," and they went there.




There was Closet Monster Land. It was full of green, blue, yellow, red and every other color of closet monster. Some had one horn, like Timmy, and others had more than that. There were even little kid closet monsters.




She saw a monster school, and monster parks, even a monster library. Jennie liked libraries. They were full of interesting books. She could even read a little. Jennie had some books in her room at home, mostly pictures, though.




Finally, they came to a small green house. Timmy took her in and showed her to Mary, his monster wife. He also had monster children.




One, named Tammy, was even her own age. Tammy was even in school already, a monster kindergarten. The two girls went out and played in the backyard while Timmy had his lunch. Tammy said she would come over and play sometime.




It was getting late and Jennie needed her sleep, so they had to go back. When they returned to her room, Jennie went to bed and Timmy returned to his closet to guard her while she slept.




Jennie woke up later that night. She had to go to the bathroom. When she got back she saw Timmy looking under her bed.




"Get out of there. I see you," Timmy said, still looking under her bed.




"Ainít nobody here," someone said.




"Oh, yes you are," Timmy told the voice. "Now you git. We donít want you here."




"Darn it, Sam," the voice said to someone else, "you told me there wasnít any closet monsters here."




"I know, I know, Larry. There wasnít any before. Come on, we better go to Tommy Johnson's house."




Two little yellow creatures came out from under the bed, still arguing with each other. They glared at Jennie and Timmy and just walked through the wall. Timmy said they must have come in while Jennie was at Timmyís house.




Another time, a few years later, a bully named Peter was bothering Jennie. He would follow her home from school, sneaking up and pulling her hair. He ran faster than her and would run ahead, laughing. Sometimes he would push her down on the grass and try to kiss her. She told Timmy about it and the monster got mad and said he would take care of it.




The next day, when Peter tried to grab her from behind, he heard a loud voice.




"Boo! Roooorr!"




Peter looked over and saw the huge Timmy, much bigger than him, green, and with that big horn. Timmy waved his arms, and Peter ran away. The boy didnít bother Jennie again. Well, at least for another ten or twelve years.




In fact, Peter and Jennie married and had their own kids.




***




It was time to put little Johnny, her baby boy to bed. After tucking him in for the night, mother Jennie knocked on the closet door.




"Now you take care of him tonight, Tammy."




"I will, Jennie," came the reply.




The End.

Charlie

Jamboree
October 16th, 2014, 11:06 PM
Excellent short story here Hvysmker.
The story is so simple and easy for a younger reader to understand. Your use of vocabulary is very good, although I think that admonished is too advanced and warned could be used instead just to keep it simple.
You use the names Timmy, Tommy and Tammy and it gets a little confusing especially if you aren't paying close attention to the names. It made me miss the moment at the end where you replace Timmy with Tammy (which is a lovely touch may I add).

Apart from those minor details I think that this is a brilliant story and I'd like to read more like this.

hvysmker
October 16th, 2014, 11:57 PM
Thanks, Jamboree. I'll make those changes on the original.

I don't do many children's stories. I'm an old man who's been cussing all my life and find it hard to avoid swearing and adult situations in my works.

Charlie

EmmaSohan
October 20th, 2014, 01:34 AM
Charming

MousePot
October 23rd, 2014, 01:11 PM
Hey hysmker

this is a really fantastic child's story, you get the tone and plot perfect in my opinion, and I loved the final line!

in terms of vocabulary, I think you can get away with some advanced words as it can be a nice way for children to be introduced to them, but it has to be consistent. Having admonished so close to 'more bigger' was a little bit jarring ;)

but it I really loved this, had me chuckling all the way through, great job!

Greimour
October 26th, 2014, 12:40 PM
Agree with the Timmy Tammy thing at the end, and the slight confusion.

Also agree with the slightly questionable "more bigger" Mousepot mentioned but I decided it was sort of cute and didn't pay much mind to it.

I loved the story and it is definitely something I could see in a published market for children's bedtime stories. I could also see this being read in a classroom so I really have to hand it to you.

There were a few other lines I questioned though, so I will give them mention now:



She saw a monster school, and monster parks, even a monster library.
She saw a monster school, monster parks and even a monster library.


Jennie liked libraries. They were full of interesting books. She could even read a little. Jennie had some books in her room at home, mostly pictures, though.


"They were full of interesting books." is a fragmented sentence. Many will overlook it as fine but if it were to take a published route I expect many would call it into question.

Example:
Jennie liked libraries, they were always full of interesting books. She could even read a little and had some books in her room at home-mostly pictures, though.



Finally, they came to a small green house. Timmy took her in and showed her to Mary, his monster wife. He also had monster children.
This just a personal peeve, but I hate the past tense show written as showed. I prefer past perfect "shown" and despite its common usage making it acceptable, I just can't seem to overlook it. >.<

Personally I would change showed to 'introduced'.



One, named Tammy, was even her own age
This to me read almost like an after-thought: extra information that is cute and helps create the scene. It becomes relevant at the end too when Tammy replaces (her?) father, Timmy. Either way, I think it reads better if you remove the commas.


Excellent stuff, thank you for sharing.

Regards,


~Kev.

hvysmker
October 26th, 2014, 03:06 PM
Thanks for commenting, Kev. I made some of those changes on the original. From what I read of the rules, I hesitate to change the posting itself. I wouldn't want to "bump" it. I'm new here and am only trying to follow rules. I do make changes on postings on the same day I post them, though.

Charlie

Greimour
October 26th, 2014, 03:41 PM
Nothing in the rules that I am aware of when changing the original post. :)

Editing the original post wont bump the thread, so no problem there. If anything, I'd consider adding a little disclaimer at the top. Something along the lines of:

"Edited and revised based on comments below:"

Personally however, I avoid doing that because I like people to see what was originally there and what comments followed. It helps people see things that may help them with their own writing. If you wish to post your revised piece, feel free to do it in the same thread. We all help each other grow in our writing abilities so throwing out a revision in the same thread isn't a problem and people will be able to compare the before and after.

~~~

Again, personally, I just make the changes to my piece on my computer as it appears you are doing. If you do want someone to read the revision though, it's not an issue. :)

Ajoy
February 21st, 2015, 04:33 AM
I find this story pretty delightful. I like the voice you give to Timmy as well as the under bed monsters.

I do feel that the section where Jennie gets to go to monster land could either be cut or further developed. As it is, the events/new monsters are introduced very quickly, and the story has moved on before you have had a chance to really get acquainted with any of it. Possibly add some dialogue here?

The other thing that stands out to me a bit is Jennie's dialogue as a three-year-old...possibly a bit too sophisticated? This was a fun read, and I could see it appealing to a wide age range.

hvysmker
February 21st, 2015, 12:37 PM
Thanks, Ajoy. Jennie was an exceptional three year old. She ran the marijuana connection among her companions by stealing from Daddy's stash.

Charlie

Ajoy
February 21st, 2015, 06:50 PM
Thanks, Ajoy. Jennie was an exceptional three year old. She ran the marijuana connection among her companions by stealing from Daddy's stash.

Charlie

Haha. :) They do exist.

JustRob
March 11th, 2015, 09:46 AM
Hi Charlie. I've only just got around to visiting this thread as I have a story in my own mind that I may write down here. Having read your piece I saw that others had already pointed out things that had occurred to me. I agree that "admonished" was too advanced a word to use but I saw "even more bigger" as being the thought in Jennie's mind, so quite acceptable. I was disappointed that she didn't find out what lurked in the monster children's closets to protect them, so perhaps you missed a trick there and would be caught out by some inquisitive child asking you that question. With children's stories you've got to stay ahead of the game or they'll get you cornered. I agree about the challenge of writing in a different style and this is an interesting deviation from your other work that I've seen and I think it's well done. I've yet to discover what sort of a mess I can make of this genre though.

Regards, Rob

hvysmker
March 11th, 2015, 03:14 PM
Yeah, Rob. I'm going to change that admonished. I have even more problems with YA stories. When I was in junior high, all the boys I associated with cussed among each other, though I didn't at home. We also traded "dirty" pictures. Another point is that I'll bet if a shrink asked every sixth-grade boy, they'd almost all produce pocket knives and cigarette lighters (for the most status, you needed a Zippo with inscription.) Many of the knives would be illegal for an adult to carry these days.

Boys grew up with at least the idea of violence back then. It wasn't unusual at all to walk down school hallways and hear the "pop" of cap pistols or be hit by a spray from a squirt gun. In warm weather, there were epidemics of squirt guns. At home, we kids would play "Indians" with real bows and arrows (Some with points.) A boy expected a BB gun around the age of twelve and a more powerful air rifle by fifteen.

Being a life-long bachelor, I was surprised when going into a local Toys-R-Us store. I could find absolutely NOTHING of the above toys. Nada! Everything seemed to be made of soft plastic, too soft to put out an eye and too large to stick up your as... anus. Not even one solid iron riding fire or dump truck. Nothing small enough to swallow and probably all microwave safe.

Things have changed so much for what's termed Young Adults that I have no way to judge what IS acceptable anymore. *S0b!*

Charlie

JustRob
March 11th, 2015, 03:57 PM
Yes Charlie, I guess I'm much the other way though. My teenage years were mostly spent in a traditional English boarding school that was somewhere between a medieval monastery and a military academy. The boys there were fair but no quarter was given when you failed to come up to the mark. Almost every hour of your day was regimented and fifteen minutes to do your own thing was bliss. On the other hand I can remember my earlier years, when we bought garden canes from the local hardware shop to make our bows and arrows and a proper steel pop-gun was a lot more lethal when loaded up with gravel. Of course our parents had just lived with WWII right on the doorstep and expected their children to understand the basics of survival and we did. I've no idea what the YA crowd make of life now. In some ways they are better prepared for it than us but in others I worry about them. As a retired computer technology specialist I wonder whether they fully understand the power of the Internet to make or break their lives, but that's not my problem any more. Personally I'd rather be back in those days when the threats were visible ones and not intangible. Nice talking.

hvysmker
March 11th, 2015, 07:54 PM
I worked many years with computers, mostly with mainframes. Sometimes I wonder about the evil effect they've had on society. Even after retiring, I kinda kept up until cellphones. With them, I'm a neophyte. Being an old guy, I welcome owning one in case of emergency. Otherwise, it's kept off. I value my privacy. At some of my past work I had to carry those old beepers and they drove me nuts. No way I'm going to carry around something that can interrupt me any time, 24/7. I can always unplug or ignore a landline. Is it a matter of technology outgrowing me or me outgrowing the need for new technology?

Charlie

R. Mountebank
April 2nd, 2015, 06:46 AM
Fun and easy to read. Could imagine it as a picture book or comic style too.
Great job.