Firelocked Funhouse Excerpt


A bell rang, like a casino machine ringing in loads of cash. And the ceiling opened a panel and down dropped a long pink stretch of fabric. It fell all the way to the floor like a long rope. Immediately kids began to grab at it and try to climb it. Until they heard the loud booming voice.
On the long silk scarf was a clown. She had big pigtails that were pink. Her face looked happy. She had the brightest freckles painted on her face. Her laugh was like a tinkling fairy. She held on to the scarf with only her legs and slowly spun down it. She was juggling three pink balls as she slid down the scarf. “Hello children! Do you want to play a game?”
Everyone stopped manning the ball guns, and dropped what they were doing. They slowly gathered at the base of the scarf, enchanted by this new clown. She had striped stockings on her legs and a fluffy yellow skirt.
Miles, Lorelei and Gregory stood back nervously. They didn’t trust clowns anymore, and at this point in the day it was only about to get worse.
She stopped juggling as she got to the bottom of the scarf, her feet daintly set upon the top of the balls below. It was like walking on water. One arm still wrapped around the scarf as she balanced seemingly on nothing.
“Do you want to play a game?” The children cheered. Miles stuffed Colorado back in his pocket, so he wouldn’t get lost. Then he gripped his sister’s hand. The three of them stepped backward again.
“Come closer, children, this game is going to be super fun.” She said again, but there was a look in her eye, when she glanced at Lorelei that was frightening.
“It’s a game of hide and seek. You hide. And we will find you.” She said. And then the ceiling panels opened again and the fat, scary clown rolled down in his own scarf. He was holding a knife. The long legs of the super tall clowns started to slide out of the ceiling. Their face paint had been smeared so their eyes and mouths were running down their cheeks and up their noses.
“We are going to count to ten.” The children shuddered underneath. Several screamed, and at least three of the kids were crying.
The clowns were talking together in unison now.
“One”
“Two” The girl clown covered her eyes with her feet, still dangling from the scarf.
“Three.” Gregory whispered, “Let’s try to get back into the bouncy room. And then up the slide.”
“Four.” The three kids backed up quickly, looking for the soft wall that they had climbed through.
“Five.” Lorelei was too frightened to cry, and too frightened to scream. She held tightly to Miles. He was shivering again, and had wet his pants.
“Six.” The super tall juggling clowns were on the ground now, tossing sharp knives back and forth. One of them paused, and threw a sharp knife into the wall next to Gregory’s hand. Gregory screamed.
“Seven.” The children that had gathered underneath the girl clown were now scrambling away on platforms. A small girl was sobbing and pressing the big red button, trying to dump the funnel of balls.
“Eight.” Lorelei whispered frantically to Greg, “I can’t find it. Where did we come in?”
“Nine.” Greg looked at her, and said, “We will have to fight them.” And he pulled the sharp knife from the wall.
“Ten.” All four clowns started laughing hysterically, in shrill terrifying noises. The fat one wasn’t laughing, he was roaring.

And the floor beneath them fell.

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