Playing with Dolls

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The sun began to set for the day and with it sixteen-year old Ben's hope of finding his father, Spencer Davis. As Ben pedaled home, a familiar sound caught his ear. A running engine. The unmistakable sound of his dad’s car sputtering. He scanned the area quickly, spotting tire tracks that veered off the road and into thick brush. Oh God. He crashed! The thought raced through Ben’s mind. He sprinted to the vehicle and threw open the car door. No one. He turned the car’s ignition off and silence grasped the air. Ben stopped to think, but a faint sound disrupted his concentration. A tiny tune played in the distance and Ben turned to face it. Lights, breaking through the woods. Ben made his way toward the lights, reaching a large carnival hidden by the surrounding forest. An old wooden shack in the corner of the carnival caught his attention and he approached its threshold. Puppets lined the shelves of the shack, each one engraved with two letters. Heart racing, Ben turned to leave but accidentally knocked one of the dolls off of its shelf. As he reached down to pick it up, he noticed the initials “S.D.” were stitched into the doll.

“My, my. I didn’t even have to leave home for this one,” were the final words Ben heard before four frayed strings grabbed his limbs and pulled him into frigid darkness.





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