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EXCERPT: “White Rabbit”

April 1, 2020 in Patreon
Cover image for my short story, WHITE RABBIT.

It’s April 1st and I’ve got a brand new story for those of you who are Patreon supporters. This one is my feminist Easter-themed horror story, “White Rabbit”.

This month, I’ve decided to provide my non-subscribers with an excerpt. If you enjoy the excerpt, you can read the rest of “White Rabbit”, along with my other exclusive stories by joining my Patreon at the $5 tier. Subscribers also get access to ebook copies of my work, along with exclusive blogs.

Here’s the synopsis:

On Easter break of 2017, college student Ashlynn revisits the flood-ravaged suburb of her childhood, confronting not her nostalgia, but the mistake she made as a misguided teen.

WHITE RABBIT: An Excerpt


My childhood home stands before me. Its fake Victorian facade managed to hold through the High River flood of 2013, but just like every other house on the block, it simply waits, its windows black and its grass yellow and sepia-stained with memory.

It’s nighttime now. An April breeze sweeps over the cul-de-sac, scattering debris. The dead oak tree in the front lawn twists and writhes, the branches like fingers calling me home.

I don’t dare step onto the driveway.

Nobody lives here now.

Beachwood Estates was built over floodplain that should have never been developed. After the flood, the neighbourhood was condemned and all the families were forced out, the houses put up for auction under the stipulation that buyers would have to relocate the homes.

Behind me, Darren and Alex light fireworks on the abandoned street. The crackling fuses sounds like angry crickets in my ears. Red explosions flicker across the house’s blue vinyl siding as their laughter roars up into the empty night.

We’re all too old for this, really. I didn’t want to come but Lilly begged me, saying that she’d drive, that I could drink and smoke as much as I wanted to dull the memory.

“Hey, Ash,” Darren calls. “You should check out your old bedroom.”

Alex laughs. “Oh shit, yeah!” He slurps his beer and sets it down to light another roman candle.

“Don’t laugh,” Lilly says, slapping Alex’s arm as the fuse flickers.

I drop my dead joint on the cement in front of the house, staring up at darkened window that used to be mine. Another explosion sparks red across the house, casting glare over shattered glass. The hole reveals the black inside. It’s a void that I stare into, an emptiness that tenses all my limbs.

A streak of light moves beyond the glass. It looks like glare, but then it shifts, human-like against the wall inside.

A small firework explodes right against my bare ankle.

“Fuck!” I cry, scrambling out of the way, dropping my beer in the process. The liquid spills from the can and drips down toward the storm drain.

The boys laugh. Lilly laughs.

“Fuck you guys,” I snap, tucking my hair behind my ear. I glance at the window again.

The white’s still there. It’s taken form.

A bunny. A costume.

A fucking mascot.

It moves into window. Its giant plastic eyes stare down from the place where everything went wrong. It smiles. Grimaces. Accuses. It raises a hand, extends its reach through the shattered glass.

I try to swallow but its thick furry pointing finger extends, curls, luring me in from the night. I cry out. I try to turn. A pressure forms right where my silver heart necklace used to hang.

My scream erupts with the next explosion of red behind me.


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Rebecca

Rebecca is a neo-noir author from Kamloops, British Columbia. Her first collection of gritty short fiction, Vile Men was published by Dark House Press in 2015. She also writes about her writer lifestyle on her blog at rebeccajoneshowe.com.

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I'm Rebecca Jones-Howe, a neo-noir writer and author of the short story collection, VILE MEN. My work has been featured in [PANK], Pulp Modern and Punchnel's, among other magazines. This site houses my writing profile and my blog, which features posts on writing, fashion, lifestyle + more. Want more?

- RJH

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