At times I try my hand with works of fiction. This is an idea that was spurred from my memories of "the moster in the closet" as a child. Being a dad now, I imagined how I might respond if one of my lil ones needed rescuing from such wild imaginations!
The creaking of the closet door was sobering as James peaked in. He was prepared for battle this time with a renewed confidence of age and experience. This foe was a familiar one to him but they had not met since the early 80’s when he was just a mere child. Back then, James would cower under the covers or even run, screaming down the hall to his parent’s room for protection and solace. Those were comforting days but childhood was over for him and it was time to meet Skayleon without anyone’s help.
He turned and whispered into the room, “Don’t worry about me. I’ll be back soon and everything will be alright”
James shut the door and faced the darkness alone. At first there was nothing but deafening silence slightly interrupted by the beating of his own heart. But then the darkness took shape and the hissing noise was audible. Tired of waiting for theatrics, James boldly shouted, “Come out…you COWARD.”
“Ssssooo, we meet again Jamesssss. And I ssssuppossse you think thisss time will be different.” Skayleon had many forms but his favorite was a long serpent-like body, gleaming with dark, metallic scales, razor sharp teeth, flickering tongue, and a dragon type of head…nostrils constantly puffing a foul, green cloud of sickness. His eyes were a glowing yellow. As piercing and scary as they were, it was also the only source of light available, growing every brighter as his rage would intensify.
“That’s right my old friend…things will be different. I’ve had many years of training since we last met.”
“Sssso daddy isssn’t here to ressscue you thisss time?”
Laughing at the irony of that question, James exclaimed, “In certain terms, you are correct. My dad won’t interfere…that I promise.”
“Enough of thisss folissshnesssss. Let’s finissssh it!”
As usual, Skayleon pulled a fast one, lurching with mouth wide open before completing his sentence, slightly catching James off-guard. Just as his fangs were about to snap shut around James’s head, a bright force-field surrounded his body.
Skayleon lit up the room with his rage, having chomped down unexpectedly on the most solid of shields he’d ever encountered. With bones still reverberating in pain from his mistake, he coiled back into the corner of the room putting some distance between he and his newly energized foe.
“Nice trick, Jimmy Boy. Where’d you learn that one?”
“It’s one of many, Slime Ball!”
Skayleon lurched again but this time with talons poised for piercing. He hit the force-field with magnificent force, each claw actually breaking through the glass-like barrier. James stood, bracing his right leg behind him, with arms extended outward, trying ever so hard to keep the energy field in tact. The talons were so powerful that his barrier began to crack under the pressure. Knowing that it would be just a matter of seconds, James switched from a defensive strategy to the offense. Intentionally allowing the field to turn off, James jumped fifty feet into the air with a blazing sword whipping around furiously in circles. He landed with a thud and stared down his enemy. For the first time, he saw fear in Skayleon’s eyes. Taking inventory of his wounds, the old serpent was in shock, clawing at the huge gash in his side.
“Imposssssible. You are just a human!” he snorted in pain.
“I learned from the best…you know.”
“But…but…your father is long gone now, a faded memory. It took me ssssoo long to return from the Abysssss. It wasssn’t until he passsssed, that my powersss became sssstrong again. I’ve only jusssst returned and WILL NOT GO BACK.”
Sensing another burst of energy from Skayleon, James prepared for the full-on attack. He flipped backwards as a scaly tail cracked the ground beneath his former standing point. Soon the two were wrapped up in a whirlwind of motion, nothing visible to the naked eye but a flashes and blurs. Grunts, clanging, snorts, and growls soon filled the air as the two gave it their all. Every talon swipe, blocked. Every fireball, extinguished. Every chomp of his teeth, dodged. In a last-ditch effort to crush his enemy Skayleon broke free soaring high over head. James could just make out the faint outline of his body and wondered what was to come of this move. Then…with a flurry unlike anything previously seen from the old demonic monster, Skayleon shot downward with the momentum of a bullet. His target acquired, he met with success as his body slammed down on top of James’s head, forcing both of them through the floor. They fell an immeasurable distance, landing with a thud. Jamess body lay limp under the large heap of Skayleon’s form.
The Old Serpent was gleeful as he let out an evil-sounding cackle. “Ssssso sssssorry, my friend. All thingssss musssst come to an end.”
Suddenly his yellow eyes narrowed and his mouth fell agape with surprise. He looked down, only to see James, crouched in kneeling positon, gleaming saber half buried into his belly. Green ooze trickled from his wound emitting a most foul odor. Hanging onto life ever-so-fleetingly, Skayleon whispered into James’s ear, “But how? How have you become sssso ssstrong?”
“You were right. My dad is long since gone. But you failed to realize one thing.”
“What’ssss that?” he said even more hushed and strained than before.
“I. AM. A. DADDY. NOW!”
With each word, James thrust his sword ever deeper into Skayleon’s gut until the giant slumped over his shoulder and sighed one final breath. James pushed the beast to the side allowing the now hollow shell hit the ground. He watched as the demonic form evaporated into a green mist and disappeared. Climbing back up through the depths and into the closet again, James turned the handle and stepped back into the room. Somewhat out of breath and weary he approached the bed and pulled the sheet down, exposing a little boy outfitted in Super Man PJ’s.
“Is he gone daddy?” Catching his breath, he whispered, “Yes sweet-heart…he is. Sweet dreams Michael. Sweet dreams.”