Asylum: Random 'Sentence' Generator Short Story Challenge
Another Spooky Story
If you've been part of the blog for a while now, you know I love writing a good spooky story. Perfect for All Things Spooky this October!
Over the last several months, I've been using prompts from my latest book 45 Writing Prompts for Basic, Intermediate, and Advance Writers, but this time around, I decided to go old school and use a random sentence generator to give me my prompt. Let's see how I do!
Sentence: Especially when garlic ice cream was her favorite.
The last bit of light fell behind the outline of trees surrounding grounds. Without missing a beat, the outdoor sconces flickered on illuminating the man’s silhouette standing at the top of the staircase.
“Welcome Dr. Reed, it’s so nice to finally meet you. I’ve read many of your studies…fascinating,” the man said putting out his hand.
Henry gripped it with a firm shake, “Pleasure is mine, Dr. Conrad.” Henry could only assume the man as the head director. “Thank you for meeting me so late, it’s unfortunate for the sudden train delay.”
“Ah yes, those things tend to happen. Come this way now and we will get you settled in.” Henry followed the doctor towards the large wooden doors decorated in iron. He didn’t have to assume it was heavy since Dr. Conrad huffed as he pushed the door with his shoulder. Unlike the darken brick stained with age which surrounded the building’s stature the inside was quite contrast. Henry squinted as the white of the tile floors and walls bounced the fluorescent light in every direction. Even still, he could see the women at the reception desk.
“Sarah, this is Dr. Reed. He will be helping in Miss Turner’s case.”
The woman looked up. Her cheeks flushed with the slightest pink and eyes widen taking in him in. She flipped her hair over her shoulder placing her hand out as if he was supposed to kiss it, “Good evening, Dr. Reed.”
Dr. Conrad seemingly confused by her more seductive greeting turned, finally seeing Dr. Reed for the first time in the light. He took Henry in for a split second his mouth gaping slightly. After a pause, he shook his head as if to get out of a trance. “Uhum,” he cleared his throat. “Just down this hall.”
Henry gave a small wave of acknowledgment to Sarah as he followed suit, unbothered by their reactions. In fact, he was used to it by now. His strong jawline, bright blue eyes, and dark hair always caught both women and men off guard.
“This will be your quarters during your time here,” the doctor gestured into a dimly lit entrance. The sterile atmosphere evaporated stepping into the quant room. Along two of the walls large wooden bookshelves were filled with novels Henry only assumed contained studies and educational material he most likely had already read. A massive window stood at the opposite side giving him a view to the small courtyard and centered directly underneath a husky desk paired with a leather chair. A bed, adorned with a quilt and an even smaller room containing a toilet, sink, and shower were off to his side. It would do during his duration at the asylum.
“Get settled in, Miss Turner’s file is on the desk for you there. If you need anything, please inform Sarah.” Henry gave a nod setting his briefcase on the desk. When he looked back, Henry saw Dr. Conrad still within the doorframe entrance looking him up and down. When their eyes meet the doctor fumbled for the doorknob finally pulling the door shut as he took his leave. Henry gave a slight giggle.
It had been a few hours since he had been left to his quarters when a light knocking announced a visitor. He wasn’t surprised to find Sarah on the other side. “Dr. Reed would you like to join me and a few of the other nurses for our lunch break?” She leaned against the frame twisting her hair around her finger. Henry glanced at his pocket watch. 12:30 am. The typical lunch hour for the overnight shifts.
“Thank you for the invite, but I like to dine alone while working on cases. I find it helps me connect with my patients.”
Sarah narrowed her eyes, nodding her head slowly as if to see the deeper meaning behind his work. “Well, if you need anything you know where to find me,” she lingered a little more before sauntering down the hall.
Henry who hadn’t been keeping track of the time suddenly noticed the quench of thirst at the back of his throat. Grabbing his traveling thermos, he took a few gulps and took a seat at his desk, Miss Turner’s patient files scattered.
According to her paperwork, she had been admitted to the asylum two weeks prior. Hannah had been found hiding in the basement cellar, covered in her parent's blood, whose bodies had been drained, ripped apart, and scattered around the house. It was a gruesome scene to say the least but what frightened the police the most was the girl's odd behavior. Between the hissing, quick darting movements, intense need to stay out of the sun, and desire to kill and drink someone’s blood one would say she had clinical vampirism.
Henry paged through more notes. He found a section containing statements from close family members and friends. Hannah Turner had been a straight A student never causing any problems with peers or those around her. She was often found on Sundays volunteering at the homeless shelter with her parents and garlic ice cream was her favorite.
But what would make a girl who was normal the day before suddenly have clinical vampirism? Especially when garlic ice cream was her favorite- a known deterrent of vampires.
Henry would speak with the girl tomorrow night once he was more settled. For now, he would familiarize himself with the layout of the asylum, his new home for the unseeable future.
In the hallway, he squinted once more at the stark light. Like most asylums where he had conducted his studies over the years, this one seemed no different than the others. Stale, clean, with screams or moans of patients on the other sides of the doors as he passed. To some, this would be a nightmare, but to him, he was home.
Even though his looks were highly acceptable and approachable, Henry's attraction to the strange or unexplainable decline of the human mind often left him on the outskirts of the social circles growing up. Weirdo, freak, and a slew of other names where often words his classmates associated him with, but by the time he had made his way to college, Henry realized there were others just like him. People who also wanted to take a closer look at the inner workings of the human brain and why one might go mad.
During his studies, as he paged through a worn-out book, which had caught his attention at the university library, he had found an entry of a man who had gone mad. Villagers had witnessed him drinking the blood from the neck of the priest's daughter and was eventually staked to death. The daughter, then went on to do the same a few days later to one of the village boys but had the same demise as her lover. It was said, they had both drank from the cup of the devil with hopes of them being together for eternity since the priest had denied the man of his daughter.
Another entry spoke of a man, changed by the full moon. Terrorizing anyone who might be in his way come that night. The entries kept going and as Henry read on, the more he became infatuated. Many of the people were put to death with magic to blame for their possible illnesses. But what if it wasn't magic at all?
By the time Henry graduated, he was already in high demand for his knowledge and expertise on patients with 'unexplainable magic illnesses' that no one else seemed to be able to cure or understand. Since then, he had been traveling from one asylum to the next treating those patients with a high success rate of recovery, especially those who were thought to be vampires.
With his work mostly taking place at night, he hadn't worked a day shift in his entire career, leaving him time to wander the halls and see what other unruly minds the asylum held.
The curtains were drawn. It wasn't quite dark enough outside yet. A tiny stream of light fell onto the chair across from him and Hannah shifted in her seat irritated at the ray.
"How do you feel about garlic ice cream?" he asked. She frowned in response. "I'm not really a fan of it myself."
This was the third night in a row he had meet with Miss Turner. After the first night of monitoring her, his observation of her behavior and symptoms seemed lacking compared to the reports. Believing she wouldn't be an immediate threat to other patients at the facility, Henry authorized Hannah to be closely monitored while doing group activities.
"I see you made a friend with Mr. Lee last night. Do you feel the need to hurt him in anyway?"
"No," was all she said shifting again with just the slightest bit of hiss in her voice.
"Have you eaten anything recently?" Henry knew she hadn't eaten a single morsel since the night she had arrived. Hannah looked weak, fragile. Black circles forming under her eyes most likely due to a lack of sleep. "I have some bread for you. Would you like some?" Henry pulled a loaf from his drawer sliding it across the desktop. Hannah didn't budge. In that instant, he pushed his chair back watching as her eyes began to dart quickly over his movements, "What about this?"
He opened a glass jar waving it in the air. Hannah's fingers gripped the chair as if to hold herself back as she caught a whiff of the blood contained inside. "I see you have resistant Miss Turner. There is some hope for you yet."
Henry was wondering if he had spoken to soon when announcement came that Mr. Lee, a patient of many years and recent friend to Mrs. Turner, was nowhere to be found.
"Dr. Reed, I thought you said she would be fine around the others?" Dr. Conrad questioned Henry concerned.
"The man is missing, Dr. Conrad. There is no evidence of foul play to suggest Miss Turner had any involvement. For all we know, he has wandered off the grounds into the nearby forest. Besides, my interactions with her show she may have a breakthrough very soon," Henry was certain of it.
"Well, until that happens, or until Mr. Lee shows up, she's going to be placed in isolation. We cannot have her hurting someone else."
Henry nodded at the doctor's statement.
That night Henry snuck his way to the basement where patients in isolation where housed. There was a chillness in the air and a muskiness seeping through the cobblestone the further he descended.
The ward was empty except for the one closed door containing Hannah. A clanking came from his pockets as the keys Dr. Conrad had given him emerged. The lock clicked and as Henry turned the knob he felt the metal scrap together, friction which came with age.
Hannah was laying flat on her back unable to move due to the straps wrapped around her wrists and ankles. Tears were falling from her cheeks.
"Good evening, Miss Turner." He walked over to her sitting on the edge of the bed, "How are you?"
Hannah's head tilted towards him, and the raspy words escaped from her mouth, "Help me."
Henry nodded his head. "Close your eyes."
Hannah did as he requested. Taking the palm of his hand he slowly moved her face so it was now pointed away from him. He leaned in slow hearing a gasp has his teeth meet the nape of her neck. He pierced the skin, blood rushing into his mouth. After a few moments, he sat back their eyes meeting. Henry saw the fear form in her eyes has droplets of blood dripped down her neck and he wiped any remains from his mouth. Before she could scream, he whispered, "Silentium."
Now unable to speak, Hannah began to struggle. This was his favorite part as he could feel the adrenaline pump through her veins, entering her heart. Henry watched the struggle and fear overtake Hannah. Her movements becoming more forceful against the restraints. He could have watched this for hours if he wasn't certain of another doctor or nurse walking in. "Memnium."
The struggling ceased. Hannah lay still, her eyes lids flickering wildly. He knew what she was seeing then as he prompted her to remember the night of her parent's murderers. Henry forcing his way into their otherwise peaceful household where he drained her parents of blood, ripping them apart for pure enjoyment. Hannah stood frozen in mere seconds the incident took place, and as he walked up to her, she closed her eyes as if she was ready for the same fate. Instead, Henry grabbed her by the neck, bit down, and muttered the words, "Vampyrus."
An instant urge to quench her throat filled her thoughts and she began licking the ground of her parent's blood. Henry chuckled as she crawled around on all four desperate to fulfill the illusion of thirst he had distilled in her. He bent down grabbing her by the arm bringing her face to his. "Me obliviscere."
When she opened her eyes again, she was in the cellar of her parent's house, covered in blood, uncertain of what had happened. Henry's face forgotten.
But now as she laid strapped to the bed, she remembered. Hannah's eyes were open again and peering at the monster who had killed her parents and tricked everyone into believing she was a vampire, including herself.
Henry grabbed her cheeks then, bringing his face as close to her's as possible, "Vim extermina."
Hannah's eyes fluttered again the memory of the horrid night erasing from her mind. Henry leaned in once more, taking her neck into his mouth. This time not taking any blood but injecting his venom. A venom full of new memories. Instead of Henry, another man had broken in the house that night to kill the family, but Hannah had fought back. She had escaped unharmed, but the shock of her parent's death caused an onset of symptoms known as clinical vampirism.
"Memnium," Henry said once more to ensure the new memories were engraved into Hannah's mind. His eyes meet her's yet again, but this time fear did not reside. Instead, calmness and a bit of tiredness fell over the girl. "How are you, Hannah?"
"Thirsty... for water."
Henry waited for the sun to set over the tree line as he took his leave. Walking down the dark path, Dr. Conrad's words echoed in the back of his mind. "A miracle. A true genius in the field."
Henry chuckled, shifting his briefcase on his shoulder. His thermos filled with Mr. Lee's blood knocked against the cup of the devil he had found so many years ago. Mr. Lee's blood wasn't the tastiest, but it would last him until the next town where he would find his next victim, or in the case, patient.
I titled and wrote this one inspired after my favorite season of American Horror Story. If you haven't seen it yet go watch it at 3am with the lights off... you'll definitely be scared! See if you can find similarities and differences between my story and the series.
If you are wanting a writing challenge, go check out 45 Writing Prompts for Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced Writers for only $8.99 on Amazon! Stay tuned for more All Things Spooky this month!