Ashes to Ashes — A CREEPY teaser ;)

AshestoAshes.v9-Final.2.1So I asked on Face­book if read­ers would like a creepy, cute or sexy teaser and it seems like creepy one won this round! Glad to see every­one is ready to be scared because, I gotta tell ya, it’s creep­ing the shit out of me hav­ing to write this.

BUT the other choices were a close second…so before I hit pub­lish in about 8 days, I’ll also release a sexy one and a cute one. Sound good? Good!







Well, let’s go,” I said. “We don’t have all night.”

He nod­ded and aimed the cam­era in front of him. “I’m assum­ing the tun­nel runs diag­o­nally along the length of the build­ing. The very top prob­a­bly lets out above the far cor­ner of the west wing.”

I felt the dark­ness sit­ting on either side of us, the chill of the tun­nel seep­ing into my clothes. I quickly jabbed Dex in the back. “Hey, we’ll worry about that later. Let’s just get to the sec­ond floor.” It never left my mind for one sec­ond that the ball had rolled some­where behind us, toward the end of the chute, and there was no telling if the thing that kicked it there had gone after it or not.

In other words, I didn’t know what was worse – the void in front of us or the black empti­ness behind us.

Thank god I was sand­wiched between the two of them as we care­fully made our way up the pas­sage­way. I felt all my senses on fire as we went, my eyes happy to be watch­ing my feet instead of the unknown that lay in front of Dex and his cam­era. The only sounds were our foot­steps, echo­ing faintly from the closed-in walls, and the ragged­ness of our breath.

Every­one hold­ing up back there?” Dex whis­pered. As if he couldn’t feel me hang­ing onto the back of his jacket like a lit­tle kid.

Uh, huh,” I man­aged to say, my mouth dry.

We waited to hear Rebecca’s response but she didn’t say any­thing, though I could feel her breath and pres­ence at my back.

Feel­ing claus­tro­pho­bic yet?” I prod­ded her for an answer. When she still didn’t say any­thing, I dared to look behind me.

Despite feel­ing her breath a sec­ond ago, I could barely see her. She’d stopped in the mid­dle of the tun­nel, about ten feet away, her fig­ure back­lit faintly from the resid­ual light of the hallway.

R-Rebecca?” I asked, my voice shak­ing. I stopped and pulled Dex back. He imme­di­ately shone his light on her.

Are you all right?” Dex asked. “Why are you being creepy?”

Shhh,” she said softly. “I’m listening.”

To what?” I whis­pered as goose­bumps prick­led my arms.

She didn’t say any­thing but remained absolutely still. I could hear my own heart thud­ding in my chest, Dex’s breath­ing, the whir of the cam­era as it tried to focus.

I was about to ask again what on earth we were lis­ten­ing for when I finally heard it.

It was a few notes of music. But more spe­cific than that; it was a xylo­phone, like the kind I used to play around with as a child. I held in a gasp as my brain tried to rec­og­nize the faint melody in it. The notes would come and go, as if being swept away by an imag­i­nary breeze, so the song never felt fully formed.

Ring around the rosy,” Dex said in a low voice. I turned to look at him, winc­ing at the light he was hold­ing in his other hand. “Listen.”

He was right. I could pick out the tune and once I did, I got pum­meled with that get the fuck out of here feel­ing. We’d made it about fif­teen feet into the tun­nel and I’d already had enough.

Of course, I didn’t tell them that. I could feel Dex watch­ing me closely, wait­ing for me to freak out.

Let’s keep going,” I said quickly. I looked over to Rebecca who slowly nod­ded. I could see the music was intrigu­ing her and that her ratio­nal mind was try­ing to attribute it to some­thing log­i­cal. I wished she could have passed some of that logic onto me because her mind seemed like a safer place to be.

We resumed walk­ing and as we did the tune began to fade until we were left again with the sound of our own breath and blood pump­ing within us.

Okay,” Dex said slowly, com­ing to a stop. He shone the light for­ward, illu­mi­nat­ing noth­ing but the never-ending tun­nel as its gray­ing walls dis­ap­peared into the black. I was ter­ri­fied of the dark­ness that lay ahead, get­ting that same pecu­liar feel­ing I’d got­ten ear­lier in the day when I had stared up at the house. See­ing noth­ing but feel­ing – know­ing- that some­thing was hid­den in front of your eyes and watch­ing you.

He looked over my head at Rebecca. “Do we want to try com­mu­ni­cat­ing in here or on the sec­ond floor?”

Com­mu­ni­cat­ing?” I repeated, my skin danc­ing with raw nerves. “In here? No way. Not tonight. We should do that after the tour tomor­row so we know what the hell we’re deal­ing with.”

There’s obvi­ously some­thing in this tun­nel with us,” he said, his voice an octave lower. “Don’t you feel it?”

At that, a loud, gritty scrap­ing sound rushed up from behind us. Dex imme­di­ately shone the light down the chute, illu­mi­nat­ing the door to the first floor.

It was clos­ing on us. Slowly.

As if some­one on the other side was push­ing it shut.

Oh god,” I gasped as the door closed with a groan, seal­ing us inside the tunnel.