Farm Diorama

Submitted into Contest #43 in response to: Write a story about an unlikely friendship.... view prompt

2 comments

Kids Fantasy Mystery

Sir Giorgio, self-proclaimed world-famous artist, was having a field day. He was showcasing his latest creation in an exhibition hall. He was posing for photographs in front of his work. The camera flashes always had a calming effect on him despite having left black spots in his vision. The feeling was almost therapeutic. He could never have enough of the taste of fame and fortune.


“All right everyone, it’s time for Sir Giorgio’s briefing. Hurry up. He only has two minutes,” his publicist announced.


Reluctantly, the reporters shuffled to the front and shoved their recording devices forward. 


“Tell us more about your latest masterpiece, Sir,” a well-placed reporter by the publicist asked. 


“This, my friends, is a diorama of a farm where a mysterious creature rose from the ground to attack the farmer and his family...” Giorgio explained with a broad smile. It had taken way more than the promised two minutes. It was closer to an hour when he finished.


When the brief was done, the reporters immediately shifted their attention back to the diorama behind him - a life-sized model of the drama that he had described. It was definitely more interesting than listening to the artist going on and on about his work.


The whole scene was set in front of a barn house. An imposing dark triangular figure with burning red eyes, and baring sharp teeth was terrorising a farmer, his wife and daughter. The humans did not look too scared. In fact, they were intentionally created to look adorable with rosy cheeks, large eyes, big heads and small bodies. On the other hand, the creature was surreal, which brought about a certain coldness and fear to the spectators. A cow and two chickens were apparently running away.


Intimidated by the attention given to his work instead of him, the artist cleared his throat to remind the reporters of his presence, “Ahem! I don’t have all day. Are there any questions?”


The reporters’ constant chattering drowned his voice. Sir Giorgio became increasingly irritated by the non-attentiveness of the press toward him. He stormed out of the hall, but no one seemed to notice.


On the other end of the hall, curious passersby were queuing to see what the commotion was about. The standee at the entrance with the title ‘Experience Life Like Never Before by World’s Greatest Artist Sir Giorgio - FREE Entrance’ did help to attract some attention, especially when the word ‘FREE’ was emphasised in bold red. Besides that, the publicist‘s regular deal with a local preschool ensured that a long queue of children was enough to raise interest and attract people to go in and, hopefully, buy souvenirs.


At five sharp in the evening, security ushered everyone out of the hall. Surprisingly efficient during closing, the guards secured and locked the place down under ten minutes. Unknown to them and the school teachers, a pudgy little girl and her chubby little twin brother were hiding in Giorgio’s model barn house. Snickering, they crept out of their hiding place, behind some haystacks, into the dimly lit place, ready for some adventure.


When they emerged, their eagerness was slowly washed away by the eerie atmosphere. Shadows cast by low lights sent shivers down their spines. 


“J... Jill, I think this is a b... b... bad idea.”


“D... d... don’t be a chicken, Jack.”


“Jill, where did they all go?” Jack exclaimed.


The twins froze in their tracks. The diorama was empty - the monster, farmer and his family had disappeared. Suddenly a hand touched Jill’s shoulder. A scream started to well up in her throat but came out muffled as a hand covered her mouth.


“Be quiet or the monster will eat you,” the farmer whispered. His cute face turned sinister.


“You... you are not real!” Jack backed away but bumped into something or someone. It was the farmer’s wife. Her face was cheerful, but the dim lighting turned her and her disproportionate body into a disfigured fiend. Jill and Jack could almost feel creepy crawlies inching up their skin, giving them goosebumps.


“Be quiet or the monster will eat you,” she warned.


“Be quiet or the monster will eat you,” her daughter, standing beside her, repeated.


Jill squeezed Jack’s hand. They stared at each other and shouted simultaneously: “Run!”


They both turned to run, but the farmer was suddenly upon them, blocking their way. Jill turned left while Jack turned the other way, but the wife and daughter were waiting for them.


“Follow us to the barn. You will be safe there,” said the farmer. He grabbed Jack’s left hand and gripped it so hard that it hurt. He turned toward the barn, dragging the little boy with him.


“Follow us to the barn. You will be safe there,” the wife said. She tried to catch Jill, but the girl just managed to avoid her outstretched hands.


“Follow us to the barn. You will be safe there,” the daughter echoed, but she, too, failed to get a hold on Jill by mere centimetres.


Jill did not dare look back. She had to get help to save her brother. Jill ran and ran and ran. Finally, she risked one look. The farmer, his wife, daughter and a screaming Jack melted into the darkness of the barn. She forced herself to turn away so she could run and find help. To her horror, standing in front of her was the creature, its crimson eyes burning into her. Jill wanted to just scream and scream and scream, but no sound came out. 


“Don’t be afraid. I won’t hurt you. I’ll help you,” the creature said, it’s voice too quiet for a monster. Despite its red eyes and sharp fangs, Jill felt comfort and security in the monster.


They turned back and crept toward the barn. Peeking in, they saw the farmer and his wife holding down a crying Jack. The daughter and another figure towered above Jack.


“First meal of the night,” the figure said, stepping into the light. It was Sir Giorgio but his face was wrinkled and haggard, his eyes were bulging out of their sockets and blood red. Saliva dripped out of his fangs in anticipation for human flesh.


“First meal of the night,” the farmer said.


“First meal of the night,” the wife repeated.


“First meal of the night,” the daughter hissed.


Sir Giorgio raised his right hand, claws emerged from his fingertips. He was about to dig his clawed hand into Jack when he heard something shuffling towards him from behind.


Moo!


It was the cow. It raised its legs like a horse and kicked Sir Giorgio. He flew across the barn and landed unconscious, right in front of Jill and the creature’s hiding place. The cow rammed its head into the farmer’s wife. She landed on top of Sir Giorgio.


Meanwhile, the two missing chickens came out from the dark and pecked at the farmer and his daughter. While trying to fend the chickens off, they bumped into each other and fell unconscious.


“Jack! Jack! Are you all right?” Jill ran to his brother.


“Jill! Jill!” 


As the siblings hugged, the creature, the cow, and the chickens dragged the four assailants out of the barn. The ground trembled and more triangular creatures emerged. They dragged Sir Giorgio, the farmer and his wife and daughter into the ground and disappeared. 


“Thanks,” Jill waved to the creature.


“You’re welcome, my friends,” the creature replied before disappearing into the ground with the cow and chickens.

May 28, 2020 14:24

You must sign up or log in to submit a comment.

2 comments

Aarshia Ray
13:41 Jun 04, 2020

I liked the beginning of the story. But at the end would have liked more action from Jill and the creature portraying their unlikely friendship.

Reply

Adrian Tan
10:55 Jun 05, 2020

Thanks for your feedback!

Reply

Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply