So Deja’s View, the short story, was nominated for the Joan Lowery Dixon award by agent Stephen Barr at Houston’s SCBWI conference. AND IS NOW IN A PUBLISHED BOOK: “THE BAYOU BOGEYMAN PRESENTS HOODOO AND VOODOO.”
Here’s a sneak peek:
Deja’s View: A Zombie Tale
There was an eyeball in the sink. It floated in a puddle of pinkish water.
The eye, a sphere of white with a pitch black dot, was that of an eight year-old. Maybe nine. Maybe ten. Maybe even someone eleven.
Can anyone really tell how old an eyeball is just by looking at it?
A pale-skinned hand reached into the sink, gently grabbed the eye between thumb and forefinger, and swirled it in warm water. The hand shook it dry and placed it into the left eye-socket of its owner – a girl named Deja.
She stared into the mirror, wide-eyed, and pulled on her lower eyelid until one pupil aligned with the other.
A hard stare. A lifeless stare. A stare of someone not of ordinary living.
A hazy mist swept across the cobble-stoned floor as a loud BANG on the door spooked her.
A haunting moan followed.
“Hurry, dear Deja,” said a hollow voice beyond the door. “Late, we do not want to be.”
She grunted, a deep gurgle escaped from the back of her throat. “Coming, Father.”
Deja opened a small plastic case and placed contacts in her eyes, now both as blue as the sea after a storm. Big, beautiful round eyes.
She dabbed her pale face with a flesh-tone base. A pat here, some rouge on the cheeks there. The floss stuck in her teeth was easily removed with a chomp of sharp canines.
And, finally, she brushed her mouse-colored, straw-thick hair and clipped a puffy white bow on top.
“There,” thought the girl Deja, gazing eye to eye in a moldy mirror. “Ready to face the day?”
Deja caught her reflection in the mirror and noticed a nine-legged critter with bulging eyes crawling in her hair.
With the whip of a pointy finger, she snagged IT.
She eyed up her catch, her prey, and opened her mouth.
Then, she kissed IT.
“And just where do you think you’re going, Miss Tula?”
Miss Tula’s bulging eyes spun around in a hypnotic twirl. ITs furry legs pitter-pattered and danced while rubbing two hind legs together.
IT filled the room with a wretched tune, a haunting tune, a tune only a non-living ear could find soothing.
“Repeat after me, Miss Tula,” said the girl Deja. “One. You are not a monster.”
Miss Tula, a caricature of a spider and a bird mixed with maybe even a praying mantis, repeated, “Clickety-clack, clickety-clack.”
“Two,” said Deja and she twirled on one foot with Miss Tula in her palm, “it’s a bea-u-tiful day.”
A beastly bang on the door could only mean one thing.
Time for school.
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