4.29.11: I do not own Nightbreed or any of the characters within. They all belong to the wonderful Clive Barker.
Please check out my other two Nightbreed stories, Against All Odds and Breed Bond.
The gas in the car he'd stolen ran out an hour after passing through Shere Neck. From there, he continued on foot, hoping to find some place to hide out.
Surely, the cops would still be following him.
It wasn't like he'd robbed a national bank or anything. So he'd sliced his girlfriend's throat. The bitch deserved it. Cheating on him in his own bed. The look on the young punk's face as Joe had come at him with a claw hammer had been priceless, though. Completely worth all this running.
It was just getting dark enough where it was hard to see, but he kept going. He didn't hear sirens, but that didn't mean anything.
Joe wasn't sure how long he'd been stumbling through the dark before he had topped a hill, and below the hill lay a dirt road, barely visible from this vantage point.
The dirt road, he saw, seemed to lead to what looked like a huge cemetery. Funny, a cemetery way out here, with no town or city nearby.
Oh well. He counted it as a blessing, someplace to hide out for awhile.
It didn't take too long for him to make it down the hill and follow the road to the cemetery, but when he reached the gates, topped with a giant "M" for whatever reason, he stopped to catch his breath and have a quick look around.
Nothing. Not a damn thing in sight. The grass was tall, but nothing ran through it. The place was eerily quiet.
Shuddering a bit against a gust of cool wind that hit him in the face, Joe turned to grab one of the gates and pulled it open, sliding through, not bothering to shut it behind him.
Once inside, he stopped in his tracks. The cemetery was like none other he had ever seen before. It wasn't just huge, it was enormous, and filled with statues and crypts, so many it was impossible to count.
Picking a direction, Joe headed deeper into the cemetery, soon becoming lost amongst the numerous stone buildings.
Everywhere he turned creepy statues were just staring at him, their eyes wide and full of accusations, like they somehow knew what he had done and why he was here.
He didn't like it. He didn't like this place at all, he got such a strange feeling from it, like he was being watched, and not just by the statues.
Joe figured he was somewhere in the middle of the necropolis when he heard something. He stopped dead in his tracks, and listened, not believing what he was hearing.
It sounded like…children laughing.
Moving slowly around a few of the crypts, it didn't take Joe long to find the source of the noise.
It was indeed children, three of them, playing in the dirt.
But as he watched them and got a little closer, he realized that these were no normal children. They were disfigured, looking more animal than human.
Freak children. No wonder they stayed in a cemetery. If he'd found one of these little freaks on his doorstep, he'd have done away with it.
Although the thought of these kids disgusted him, he had to admit that they could be pretty useful right now.
The little castle made of mud that they were working so tirelessly to build up was almost complete when Joe walked up stomped on it. Just to get their attention. He hated children anyways, so there was no point at all in being nice to these little weirdos.
The three kids looked up at him, all wearing about the same expression of surprise and hurt on their deformed faces.
"Hey!" One of them complained, raising it's head to meet him, the small black eyes in the piggish face glaring.
"Guess you just volunteered, kid," Joe said, reaching down to grab the pig-boy's ragged shirt collar and pull him to his feet.
"For what?" The kid squealed, his voice more indignant than afraid, as Joe reached into the back of his waistband and pulled out his pistol.
As an answer, Joe smacked him on the side of the head with the butt of the gun, and pig-boy wailed sharply in pain. The other two kids, rising to their feet, looked terrified as Joe held the barrel of the pistol to their friend's temple.
"You two," Joe ordered them, "Stay right there and don't make a peep. Your little friend here is going on a trip with me."
Too into the moment, Joe didn't really pay much attention to the sound of a deep, penetrating growl sounding somewhere behind him, nor to the way the other two kids seemed to relax, little sneers coming to their deformed faces.
"I don't think that's gonna happen." One of them said, pissing him right off.
"Oh yeah?" Joe shot back, twisting the barrel against the pig-boy's temple and making him squirm, "And why's that? You gonna get your freak daddy to stop me?"
"No," The bug eyed little girl, or what he assumed was a girl, told him, shaking her head, "But, Peloquin looks pretty angry right now."
"And hungry." The boy added, and both of them smiled.
"Who?" Joe, taken aback, was confused, and his grip on the pig-boy was forgotten and he let the gun fall away from his head.
His hostage took the opportunity to slip away and join his two friends, and then all three were staring at him with those same, sneaky smiles.
"What the fuck are you smiling at?" Joe shouted at them as he pointed the gun in their direction.
"You're gonna get yours," The three of them said in sing-song voices together, and raised their hands to point behind him.
"Wh-" Joe began as he turned around…
And his eyes met those of a beastly man. The bright, emerald green eyes set in a red-skinned face took the breath right out of him. They were full of rage, cunning, and intense hunger.
Joe felt completely and utterly afraid for the first time in his life…and the last.
He didn't even bother with the gun. He knew it was no use. He let it fall to the ground, and felt the helplessness take him over.
The beast man seemed to grin, or was it a snarl? Sharp teeth showing in the moonlight, already stained red with blood. Then, he lunged.
Joe fell underneath the weight of the monster, screaming. Screaming as the creature ripped into his flesh with teeth and claws, his own blood covering him in warmth even as his body was drained of it.
The last thing Joe saw was the hungry green eyes, full of exhilaration and pleasure. And the last thing he heard was the hungry growl as the beast ate his flesh, mingled with the laughter of the very children that had so recently been his victims.