Flash Fic – Eyes Without A Face
New flash fic challenge, and I sprung off of Rebecca Douglass’s opening line. Because how could I not? (Please note – no relation to the French horror film or the Billy Idol song.)
Eyes Without A Face
“Harold! Harold! Hurry, the eyes are back and they’re in the pantry!”
Harold groaned as he levered himself out of his cozy armchair, and walked towards the closet to retrieve his golf club.
He and Randy had gotten a great deal on the house. It was good sized, with a big garden for Randy to work in, and a nice distance from the nearest neighbors. Not that he expected any harassment, but you never knew. After all, Randy found “qweer” (sic) spray painted on the door of his last apartment, and he lived in downtown Chicago. But – and wasn’t there always a but? – there was a catch.
This great house, on this great piece of property, had a flaw that made it hard to move. It had pests.
Harold dug the golf club out from where it was lurking behind the umbrellas. He’d never played golf in his life. He’d picked it up at a thrift shop a lifetime ago in the name of “protection” , and he never could have speculated on its final use. His knee cracked as he walked to the pantry, reminding him how old he was, as if the aches and pains in his joints when it got cold didn’t do that job.
Randy was there, peeking in the pantry doorway, afraid to go any farther. When they decided to get the house, it fell to Harold to take care of the pests, because Randy just couldn’t. He was a vegan and a Buddhist, and he refused to hurt any living creature, although he made the occasional exception for really big insects, and homophobic brothers in law. “Maybe we need to look into getting an exorcist,” Randy whispered, not for the first time.
“Even if they weren’t all charlatans, I don’t think they’d cover this,” Harold replied.
That was a very good question. “The X-Files?”
Harold pushed open the pantry door, and saw the eyes on the counter, and one on the floor.
They looked exactly like human eyes, except they were the size of apricots, had no optic nerve, and seemed to have very tiny legs, not unlike a centipede. But otherwise they had an iris and a pupil, possibly a cornea, but eyes had never been his specialty. He’d just been a radiologist for twenty five years, and never once did he x-ray an eyeball. In retrospect, it seemed like a wasted opportunity.
Harold stepped into the pantry, and said, “If I were you, I’d leave now.” One of the eyeballs on the counter shifted, but not far. They never did leave. He warned them, he collected them in a bucket and a threw them in a ditch on the edge of the property, but it never did much good. They either refused to learn or couldn’t learn, and there was no way to tell which.
Harold then practiced his golf swing on them. They exploded into semi-translucent jelly when hit. There was never any color, any obvious guts, nothing that would suggest these things were living creatures, even though they showed signs that they were. These things were bizarre in a thousand different ways. He sent one to a friend of his working at St. Joe’s, and he thought it was a practical joke.
Randy had done some Google surfing, and found out this house had many strange rumors around it. Amongst the most popular was it was a former murder house, the site of some strange pseudo-Satanic cult, and supposedly was an epicenter for cattle mutilations and strange lights in the sky in the ’80’s (reports tapered off and died in the ’90’s). Did any of it mean anything, beyond the fact that a lot of people seemed to think this was a fucked up place? The funny thing was, there was no solid proof that any of these things were true, just a lot of hearsay and speculation. Randy liked to think the alien thing was true, if only because it might be the best explanation for a bunch of wild, living eyeballs.
“Are you done?” Randy asked. He may have wanted the eyeballs gone, but he never watched Harold kill them.
“Yep.” Harold checked under the table, looking for any hiding eyeballs, but it seemed he got them all. This time.
“You know, when they said pests, I thought they meant mice,” Randy said.
Harold nodded. “So did I.” But in spite of this weird infestation, it was a nice house, and they were getting it for a song. He really felt like he couldn’t complain.
Besides, it could have been worse. It could have been testicles.