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Red Eye, and Other Stories

by Selina Elise

 Copyright by Selina Elise 2019

First Smashwords Edition

Smashwords Edition, License Notes

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Table of Contents

Title Page

Copyright Info

Table of Contents

Red Eye

Guardians Log 1998-2000


About the Author

Red Eye

Something about the weather and how the sky hadn’t been visible all day made Jackson feel like he was forgetting something. As he attempted to relax back into the cushion, arm rest down on his left and bag tucked in the overhead compartment, he glanced up at the still lit seat belt sign, foot tapping.

“Are you okay, mister?” The boy on the other side of the arm rest had that bowl cut that every mother victimizes their children with before middle school. He couldn’t have been more than seven with that missing front tooth.

“Leave the nice man alone, sweetheart. Why don’t you read your book?” His mother shot the stranger sitting next to her son an apologetic smile, redirecting the young boy’s attention away from his fellow passenger.

Had anyone at the office been sick the past few days? Jackson struggled to recall anyone calling out or requesting days off in the weeks before his scheduled vacation. His stomach soured as he turned in his seat to rest his head against the slide-down window-blind. Just five hours of this and he would be back in Germany. With his eyes closed, he could see the trees and smell the damp earth of the forest near his grandfather’s house in the mountains. Wolves howled in his memory.

His tie was too tight, then, the plane too small. He tugged the knot of it looser around his neck.

The child in the seat next to him whispered to his mother asking why Jackson was there and saying he didn’t like him. He looks sick.

The pilot’s voice came from overhead. “Passengers are now free to move around the cabin.”

A few minutes later, the mother and son had switched seats, the child taking the aisle and the mother sitting between Jackson and the whispering child. “Todd, eat your peanuts.” But it sounded more like she had said, I just told you while we were in the bathroom to stop staring.

He wasn’t whispering anymore, but Jackson could still feel those critical eyes on him, the hairs at the back of his neck standing on end.

Children, like dogs, knew when something wasn’t right. They could sense it.

Under the scrutiny of Todd, Jackson’s chest and neck began to itch. What time was it? How much longer until the plane landed? Dragging his nails over the skin just below his ear, he raised the other hand to his mouth to cover a cough, something in his throat.

The next thing Jackson knew, his entire body hurt – a familiar feeling.

No, no no no. Not yet.

His skin itched, his jaws ached, everything was tinged red and his eyes burned as he looked to the child. His nails, no, claws dug into the arm rest between he and Todd’s mother.

She screamed.

An inhuman snarl ripped from him, and he ripped into her. Her skin tore like wet paper.

When he woke again, he was in the body of the plane. It was dark. A single ray of light swept over and then rested on him. Cops and medical personnel surrounded him. Their flashlights, some of them pointing at the seats and walls of the plane, revealed black splatters – old blood: The other passengers.

Between the legs of two EMTs, Jackson could see a child’s arm peeking out from one of the aisles.

It had happened again.

Guardian Log 1998 – 2000

Prince (Elephant), Herbert (Elephant), Mister Stuff (Bear), and Posie (Cat)

Log date: Miami – April 1998 (Herbert - Joaquin & Emilia)

My brother and I belonged to Joaquin and Emilia, though I am only with Emilia now. Joaquin is 7 years older and moved to New York to be a musician a few years ago. I am proud to say I sat front row for his first concert alongside their parents. He flew down to visit us for a week but now he’s left me with Emilia again.

She was brave at the airport when saying goodbye to him. The tear-spot on the back of my head was gone before we got back to her house. Polyester and cotton dry pretty quickly. There isn’t much here after the storm, and we’re still without a proper roof in some spots, but their grandmother and I have been holding down the fort rather well.

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