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In the mid 1930's a carnival called "Carnaval Heureux" was quite popular. Just before June, the tents were hitched and secured with twelve inch metal pegs, which were notorious for their red rust that formed upon their hilts.

"Carnaval Heureux" possessed all the normal aspects of any fun fair; clowns, entertainers, sugared foodstuffs, and rides. However, the carnival held much pride in their acrobats. Talented young folk from all varying crannies of France were chosen as casts for these arts.

The youngest of these able bodied performers was a young man named William Grey. Grey was very thin and stood at six and a half feet tall. He was kind, humble, and a favorite amongst the children who visited the fair at later hours, when the high-wire and trapeze acts took place. Grey naturally attracted people to him. He could, more than often, be seen with his polka-dot party hat on, and his shoulder-length auburn hair tied tightly to the side, falling onto his left shoulder. His face was a pasty white with a small, blue, upside-down spade painted just under his right eye. He was always smiling.

Grey practiced late at night on the high-wire, adjusting his balance and poise. At first he found it daunting but soon became capable of reaching the other platform at a decent pace.

One night, the air was very still and crisp, a faint breeze passed hard enough only to shift the thinnest blades of grass. Grey had napped later in the day, and found himself tardy of his usual practice time. He stood and gathered himself, then made for the high-wire platform. He climbed the ladder up to the top and focused his green eyes on the thin metal wire, then stepped onto it, adjusting his middle toes to hug around the cable.

Once Grey got to the wire's midpoint he heard a shuffle from behind. He turned his neck stiffly to catch a glimpse of three children, the oldest no more than ten. He inhaled sharply and spoke, "How did you three stumble into here?" The children half-shrugged. Grey frowned to himself and looked at the wavering cable. He inhaled once more, "Well don't move... I'm coming to get you."

Concerned for the young ones, Grey decided to turn back. He crossed his right leg back around his left and turned his body to face the children. He stepped back towards them and smiled. "Just hold on."

The oldest child looked at the wire and then back to Grey before grasping the slim cable. Grey looked up and his eyes grew large as he absorbed the sight, but before he could shout a scold, the child shook the high-wire... and Grey fell.

Descending, Grey closed his eyes. He imagined his grandmother, who raised him since he was young. Grey smiled thinking of the jester doll she made him, the one he kept beside his pillow... and with that last thought, Grey was stopped by the colored concrete floor of the circus ring. Grey landed on his right side, which concaved. The right side of his head completely smashed into the ground. His left eye was open wide, fear stricken. He was no longer smiling.

The children looked over the edge of the platform but frowned. Their favorite clown-dressed acrobat lifeless in a growing pool of near black maroon. They stared at him, not sure whether to quietly climb down the ladder and flee or to yell for aid. Time stood very still, there were no sounds, only the smell of rust which could also be tasted slightly on the tongue. But then, the sides of the tent began to curl ever so slightly, the spotlight above the children flickered violently before shutting off with a loud shattering crack, and they found themselves in complete darkness.

For a few stretched moments the children whimpered and shook in the dark. Then the spotlight came back on. The children tensed, static as they beheld the sight before them. The tent's red and white striped fabric had become blue and black. The poles holding the ring's covering up had rusted. The colorful floor had turned to aged metal plates, screwed together by thick bolts, razor sharp meat-hooks extended from the shadowed out ceiling, and before the children stood a six and a half foot clown. One side of the clown was handsome and cheerful, the other was a disfigured abomination, black and navy paint crudely caked over its swollen, exposed cheekbone and bloodshot eye. Two polka-dot ram's horns spiraling out from either side of its head. The clown smiled very slowly and spoke, "Stay still... I'm coming."


The day after, the morning's performers found three children, dismembered and hanging in pieces from meat-hooks and a message written in black facepaint on the ground.

"Stay still."

Written by MechOw1
Content is available under CC BY-SA

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