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The Rivals by Michael Harris Adrian Belfast, a young and aspiring author, chances upon the works of one Lucas Slaughter, a person... [5,415 words]
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20 Dollars To Fear

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20 Dollars To Fear
This story hold a special place in my heart. A story of a strange night in a bar
[1,437 words]
Jimmy Mason
Jimmy Mason is 29 years old. He spends his free time from being a stay at home father writting. His work has never been published and he's only now begun to rewrite rough drafts. His world is one of fantasy and insanity.
[June 2007]
Ageing Is Psychosomatic (Poetry) - [66 words] [Mind]
Either You Or I Or Both (Poetry) If writing is present for anything. It's to have the ability to explore all the landscapes of emotion within ourselves. There is no light without Dark, no good without Evil. [189 words]
Gravity X 4 (Poetry) - [93 words] [Mind]
Judgment Day In Eden Hills (Short Stories) Hell on earth, starting in a small town. [3,733 words] [Adventure]
Locked Away (Poetry) A poem I wrote in the days before I was in love. [124 words]
Narcissistic Fairy Folk (Short Stories) A tale of the darker nature of fairy folk [1,824 words]
Stanley (Short Stories) A short story of a woman and a boy caught in reversal of life. [721 words]
The After Life & Beyond (Poetry) You decide [94 words]
The Hell Monkey�S Revenge (Poetry) Evil, Twisted, Lewd, Crude, Don't read unless you like to be disgusted. I was in a odd mood [233 words]
The Monsterboys (Short Stories) This is a story not to be read by those who are easy to offend. A gritty story of a group of friends who get thrust into the bussiness of Monster hunting, and uncover some of the truths of humanity [5,298 words] [Fantasy]
The Search (Poetry) Humanity through my eyes. How lost are we? [102 words] [Mind]
20 Dollars To Fear
Jimmy Mason

Devlin Baker jumped out of the twenty five foot U-Haul on to the sheet rock shoulder. The hood of the truck was billowing white noxious steam, coming from the cracked radiator. Devlin looked around at the little town he had found himself on the outskirts of, and released a whistling sigh. He turned back to the open door and fished out the card with the 800 number, and then slammed the door shut. Sticking the card in his pocket he began trotting towards this godforsaken little hamlet in the middle of the all too featureless plains of Illinois.
Coming into town Devlin saw a restaurant and made that his destination. He muttered to him self.
�A phone. Maybe a beer.� He judged the distance at about a mile.
�perhaps a shot even.� Devlin finished smirking to himself. The town seemed to consist of this block with the restaurant, and four other blocks, the surrounding area was corn and soy bean fields. Devlin couldn�t recall seeing a sign as to the town�s name or population, but in his opinion there were probably twelve living people in the town of �Nowhere�. A strong wind blew across the cornstalks and the dry sound mixed well with Devlin�s laughter at this thought.

Above the door was a sign reading McLanagil�s Eatery & Tavern lettered in bold dark red letters with green trim. Devlin opened the door and a set of brass bell rung him in to McLanagil�s. Five tables peopled the floor along with four booths, From one of these a young couple regarded Devlin with curious eyes. Along the bar counter their were 14 stools, five of witch were occupied. Devlin already liked the atmosphere in McLanagil�s the multitude of neon beer label signs added a colorful light to the interior.
Standing behind the bar watching Devlin approach, is a rough looking, barrel-chested red headed man, with glittering emerald colored eyes.
�Something I can help ye with stranger?� Asked the bartender with a thick Irish accent.
�Do you have a phone?� The man looked him over.
�Aye, the telephone is back there.� Devlin fallowed the cocked thumb and saw the pay phone on the wall next to the bathrooms. Devlin slapped the counter lightly.
�Thank you.�

He walked back to the phone pulling out the card, He nodded to the five men sitting together at the end of the bar, and they nodded back. As he picked up the receiver and began dialing the helpline he herd the bartender call.
�Are ye kids alright over there?� Devlin plugged his other ear with his knuckle but still herd them reply.
�Yes Mr. McLanagil.� Devlin then herd one ring, two rings, then three and the line picked up. An automated woman said crisply.
�We�re sorry, all lines are busy right now, please hang up and try your call again.� Devlin slammed the phone into it�s cradle, catching a glimpse from the bartender. He held up his hands and then tried the helpline once more. This time it didn�t even ring she just came back.
�We�re sorry, this call can not be made at this time, please hang up and try again.� Devlin looked at the card puzzled and the voice came again, � Please hang up and try again.� Devlin gently hung up the phone this time and walked back towards the bar. He took a seat away from the other five men, the bartender walked over and jammed his hand across the counter at Devlin.
�Name�s Shamus Nathaniel McLanagil.� Devlin took the hand.
�Devlin Baker.� Shamus smiled.
�What can I get ye to drink?�
�A beer and a shot of whiskey.� Devlin figured he couldn�t drive, so why not have a drink? He looked down the bar as Shamus got his order and saw that the five men were all looking at the same thing. The man in the middle of the group has a farmer�s almanac out and open on the bar, they all seemed intrigued. The man closest to Devlin said to Shamus.
�It�s an evil moon tonight Mr. McLanagil. You may want to close up shop early.� Devlin laughed along with everyone else at the bartender�s reply.
�I pay no mind to that kind of blarney, Mr. King. Now eat your peanuts and shut up.�
A beer bottle and a shot of whiskey was set in front of Devlin.
�Thank you Shamus.�
�Your welcome sir.� Shamus leaned on the bar.
�So tell me Mr. Baker, What brings ye to me tavern so late in the afternoon?� Devlin slammed the whiskey and walked it home with the beer.
�I broke down just outside of town. I�m on my way to Ohio and now I�m trying to contact the U-Haul people.� Shamus stood back up.
�Well there is a hotel here in town. Just in case you don�t contact them.� He headed down the bar ready to serve. Devlin took another drink of beer and looked out the window. Dusk had come to the world and a large orange hunter�s moon was already working it�s way above the horizon. A thought occurred to him. Jane would be worried about him, this breakdown was going to set him back a few hours. He got up beer in hand and walked back to the pay phone.

McLanagil came over and refilled Devlin�s empty shot glass. Devlin dialed his phone card number and then Jane�s number, as it rang, he drained the beer and set the bottle on top of the phone. The line picked up.
�We�re sorry, this call can not be made at this time, please hang up and try again.� Devlin�s temper began to boil, then the automated voice came back.
�Please hang up and try again.� Then Devlin began seething.
�Hey! Hey there boy-o! Be careful with that phone!� Shamus called. The noise that ensued sounded as if Mr. Baker ripped the phone off the wall. Shamus was about to say something to the effect of get out, then his voice dried up like an October leaf.
From the hall to the bathroom came a hulking muscular form. Torn jeans still hung on to it�s privates but the rest of it was covered in course dark fur. McLanagil�s eyes widened and locked with the yellow eyes of the beast. Then he saw under the long snout a gnarled sneer filled with mean looking teeth. McLanagil could barely breath but said softly.
�Oh my Mary, Joseph, and Christ. It�s real. Grandma always said they were real. It�s here.�

The five men turned around in their seats and the creature looked at them, the men were petrified at the sight as it lumbered to the seat at the far end of the bar. The girl in the booth let out a short yelp before her boyfriend slapped his hand over her mouth. The beast sat down and put it�s heavy claws on the bar, it�s tail swished back and fourth. Shamus was standing right there in front of it. His heart was ready to pound it�s way out of his chest and the sweat that ran down his neck was ice cold. This stranger was an omen to the end of days Shamus was certain. The creature slid his left claw over the bar leaving deep grooves and curly long wood shavings. The creature took a deep breath and released a small guttural growl.
Every one was as still as statues as they watched in fascination. The beast picked up the shot glass and tilted it�s head back slamming the shot of whiskey. Setting the shot glass upside down on the bar the beast stood up locking eyes once again with Shamus. Shamus thought for sure his life was over. He shut his eyes tight and awaited the death blow that was inevitably coming. The creature faded from his sight and he saw only darkness and the brass bells rang. Shamus opened his eyes in time to see the creature drop down on all fours and bound off into the night, releasing a howl toward the moon.
To Shamus�s surprise there was a twenty dollar bill on the bar. The young girl spoke up.
�It took it out of his back pocket and laid it there.� Shamus picked up the bill and looked at it as if he�d never seen legal tender before in his life. He then took the shot glass and placed it on the shelf above the bar visibly shaking.
�Well Mr. McLanagil. Do you believe in that blarney now?� Mr. King said.
Shamus looked over to the man and smiled with relief, and came to refill the men�s drinks.
�Aye, Mr. King. I�m now a believer. Now shut up and eat your peanuts.�

The End



"I thought this story was very well written, but a little too short. Why was the creature there? Why did it leave? But i still enjoyed it immensely" -- Candy Rhodes.
"I want you to know I plan on using the quote, "Now shut up and eat your peanuts" often and for a long time. I really enjoy the non-typical end. " -- Jayme, Shelby, NC.
"This is a good story I think. It's imaginative and diffrent." -- Shamus, none ya.


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© 2007 Jimmy Mason
June 2007

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