The Late Shift

*Author’s Note: I had posted this here before in parts, but I was unsatisfied with it so I deleted the posts and reworked it.*

She hated late night shifts the most. She never understood why a coffee shop should be open until 4 am, especially when it opened at 6 am. She glared at the clock which read 3:26 am. She looked at the empty shop in front of her and huffed. She untied the apron and pulled it off of her. If she was going to have to stay here longer, she might as well do it comfortably. She began to work on making herself a cup of coffee when the bell at the entrance rang.

“Hey, how can I hel–” she stopped short when she looked up and saw a small pale girl standing at the front, “um. Hi?” she cautioned, moving out from behind the counter to stand a few feet away from the girl.

She looked her up and down taking in the wet, pale skin; the frailness of the girl emphasized by the mint green peacoat that hung on her frame, her big black eyes dazed as if staring off into a daydream, and the general waywardness of the girl.

“Hey, are you okay?” she asked and moved forward slightly, “Do you need help?” she moved to place a hand on the girl’s shoulder when she moved suddenly and stared at her with her big eyes.

“Help?” she nodded at the sudden shrill voice, “Oh, no one can help me. Not from this. I’m going to die and you’re going to witness it.” she replied, suddenly grabbing her hand and gripping it tightly in her boney hands, “Are you ready to witness a death, Gabby?”

“How’d you know my name?” Gabby struggled her hand free and stared at the surprisingly strong girl, “And what the hell are you talking about? Witnessing your death? Is someone after you? Is someone coming here?” She found herself annoyed and scared of the girl and the girl’s sudden silence, “You need to leave.” she pushed the girl back gently towards the open door.

“You wouldn’t dare.” the girl replied.

“Oh I’d totally dare,” she gave the girl one final gentle push, “Now good-fucking-night.” and closed the door in her face. She locked it to be sure.

Gabby looked out the windows at the girl. She looked away when she saw a small glimmer of red in the girl’s eyes, “This is fucking awful.” she moaned and began to turn off the lights. She wasn’t staying any longer than she needed to.

She grabbed her bag and coat and was about to turn off the lights in the back half of the shop when they went out on their own.

“That’s weird…” Gabby said out loud quietly to no one. She looked around the shop and her eyes connected with the open door. She felt a chill run up her spine as she walked closer to the door and noticed that the door handle was practically broken.

She looked around outside and saw no one but her car on the other side of the street. Her heart pounding in her chest, she gripped her key in her hands and ran for her car. She pressed the “Unlock” button on her key and slid in quickly before locking the doors. She stared back at the coffee shop and saw the girl standing there only this time she wore a long sleeved black dress with a white Peter Pan collar and white knee socks with saddle shoes. She just smiled at her and waved at her. From behind her, Gabby could see other shapes, as if there were people inside of the coffee shop.

The girl began to walk towards her car and without giving it a second thought, Gabby started her car and took off back to her house. She checked her dashboard clock 3:55. She hoped that one of her housemates would be awake. She didn’t know if she could sleep after that.

She could see her house in the distance, the lights in the windows beacons in the cold night, welcoming her back home. She parked and quickly went inside. She closed her eyes and leaned back against the locked door.

“Welcome home.”

Her eyes snapped open at the girl’s voice. She was sitting at the top of her stairs smiling down at her, her hands wet and red. Except for the bright red of her hands, the girl looked so innocent smiling at her like that.

“I thought you’d never get here.”

“How the hell did you get in here?” Gabby yelled, her hand searching frantically behind her for the doorknob, “Where are my friends?” she added as an after thought.

“Oh, you’ll see them soon enough.” the small girl said as she stepped down the stairs, “I wouldn’t try opening that. The others might get in.”

Gabby’s hand froze just millimeters from the doorknob, “The others?”

“They’re like me, but not fully there so they’re a tad more reckless.” she came to a stop in front of Gabby, and stared up at her with those black holes for eyes. She stretched out her tiny red hand towards her.

“You can’t really expect me to hold your fucking hand.” Gabby spat out, leaning heavily on the door. The girl frowned and quickly grabbed Gabby’s left hand, “Ow!” the girl’s hand gripped hers tightly, “Fuck! You’re gonna break my hand!”

“That’s the least of your worries, ” she led her to the living room. Gabby didn’t have time to look away before her eyes connected with the empty eye sockets of one of her roommates, “She was nice. Her eyes were too pretty though. I got jealous.” Gabby looked down at the girl holding her hand and fought down the urge to hurl her late dinner when she saw that the girl was playing with what looked like two eyeballs.

“Are those…” Gabby questioned as the little girl looked up at her and smiled.

“Oh yes. Lookit them,” she presented them to Gabby, “You can see the little flecks of gold in her hazel eyes. These’ll make fun rings.” she looked away from Gabby then. She stared at the eyes in her hand and smiled, “Come on. I have more to show you!” Gabby cautioned one more look at her roommate. She was sitting in one of the chairs, her body posed to look like she was reading. Except for the empty sockets and forty or so stabs to her torso, she could have just been reading.

Gabby allowed herself to be pulled by the little girl, her eyes never leaving her roommate’s. She had just moved in with her and her friends that week. Her name was Lily. Gabby liked her and hated her for her red hair, her pretty eyes, her flawless skin, and her perfect as hell personality. Gabby frowned at the small satisfaction that rose up in her heart.

“You’re happy she’s dead.” the little girl spoke as she led Gabby from the living room down the hall to the dining room, “You’re happy that she’s gone and you’re still here.” Gabby said nothing at the girl’s accusation. She couldn’t admit that.

“You wish.” she spat out quietly as they came to a stop in front of the dining room door, “What now?”

“Well, everyone was home when I got here,” the little girl smiled again and this time, Gabby caught sight of her teeth. They were sharpened so that her teeth looked like the mouth of some carnivorous beast, “They weren’t very cooperative.” At that, she opened the door.

Gabby tried to pull away from the scene before her, but the girl’s grip on her hand was tight as ever.

“Look at him.” The girl pulled Gabby down to her knees and forced her head to look up at what was left of her roommate Peter.

His torso hung from the chandelier as though the object was pushed through him while his hands and feet were pinned to the four corners of the room, his legs and arms and the muscles within them acting as streamers, connecting them to his torso at the center of the room. His rib cage was split open and his intestines and organs hung from his body like he was a pinata and they were the candy. Gabby stuffed her free hand to her mouth and nose as the metallic smell of the room was finding its way into her stomach. She couldn’t even fathom how the girl got all of that blood out of Peter. Despite the gruesome mess before her, Gabby looked longest at the space where his head should have been.

“Where’s his-” she started, crawling forward, her hand falling from her face to land in a sopping, red puddle. Gabby ignored the sickness pushing its way up her throat.

“Were you looking for this?” she turned to her right and saw the little girl standing, her clean shoes untouched by the red. Gabby saw Peter’s head then, “He was being loud. Wouldn’t stop screaming. Lookit how scared he was!” she knelt and rolled Peter’s head to Gabby.

Gabby moved backwards as Peter’s head came to a stop a few inches away from her. She looked at his once handsome face, now contorted into an expression of pure pain and terror. His brown eyes were open far too wide and his mouth hung open awkwardly. Gabby almost laughed. She reached out a cautious hand to touch the head.

“Aw, you liked him.” the girl said matter-of-factly as Gabby stared, dumbfounded, at the head, “You don’t need him. They’re disappointing. Always making promises they can’t keep…always leaving.”

She didn’t give Gabby a moment’s notice before she grabbed her hand once more and dragged her body away from the head. Gabby began to struggle when she realized that the girl was dragging her through the bloodied dining room and into the kitchen. She could feel the wetness seeping through her pants and touching her skin. She screamed and struggled to get away from the girl then.

“STOP,” the girl bellowed as they came to the kitchen. Gabby froze at the voice, “You don’t want to end up like your friends, do you?” Gabby looked up at the girl and would have screamed if she weren’t so terrified.

Gabby couldn’t even think of any words to describe what the little girl looked like. It was as if she was both small and big, dark and light, weak and strong, gentle and cruel. The little girl was a walking contradiction and for some reason, that frightened Gabby more. She couldn’t think anymore. She felt her body slacken and suddenly the little girl was just a creepy little girl again.

Gabby knew who was next. After Lily and Peter was Cal. Sweet and mischievous Cal. Gabby didn’t know she was crying until she tasted salt on her lips. She couldn’t see Cal all torn up like the others. She shut her eyes tight and allowed herself to be pulled and dragged along until she could feel grass in her free hand.

“Now, this one is much cleaner because he was so much quieter so I was nice,” Gabby refused to look, “Look at him Gabriella. Look or I’m going to rip your eyes out of their sockets and make you eat them.”

Gabby opened her eyes because she quite liked being able to see. Even if it was painful.

And there was Cal. Sitting calmly in the middle of their backyard in his pajamas. Gabby’s heart leapt as she noticed the subtle movements of him.

“He’s alive?” she cautioned at the little girl.

“Go say hi.” she commanded and let go of Gabby.

Gabby ran for him. She hugged him and wondered at his ability to not run and scream, “Cal, are you okay? Did she hurt you?”

He looked up at her with wide eyes, “Cal?” Then she noticed his mouth. It was sewn shut. She didn’t know how she could have missed that. The blood was dry and she could see how it hurt Cal to even move any part of his jaw, “Oh Cal.” she gingerly touched his jaw, careful to not prod it too roughly.

“Well isn’t that touching?” before she had any time to react, the little girl had appeared next to Cal and stabbed him hard through the skull, a small cracking sound resounded through the quiet backyard. Gabby fell backwards and watched as her friend died, “That was kind of annoying.” There was a sickening crushing sound as the girl pulled the knife from his skull with some difficulty.

Gabby stared at the knife-wielding little girl and the hungry smile that graced her lips. Before she could say anything else, Gabby got up and ran back towards the street entrance. She could hear the little girl laughing in her ears as if she were floating alongside her. She saw the street gate and again, she felt her heart go light with hope until she saw the red and yellow eyes that seemed to line the gate.

“No…” she breathed as she came to a stop in front of the gate. There were people, or what looked like people, standing on the other side of the gate. Gabby couldn’t see their faces but she saw their eyes. Then she saw their smiles. It was the same hungry smile that the little girl wore.

“We’re not done yet Gabriella.”



She stared at the computer screen in front of her, her green eyes squinting at the bright light in the dark. Pulling back, she leaned back into the couch and stretched. She took off her glasses and rubbed gently at her eyes, trying to rub the sleep away. It wasn’t working.

She felt her stomach grumble and got up. She felt around on the wall for the light switch to her apartment. Feeling the plastic switch, she hit up and light filled her apartment. She squinted and walked to her kitchen, stepping over her laptop’s power cord. She flipped the switch to the kitchen and went to her fridge, pulling it open with a huff. She looked over the contents and picked out some left over ravioli from lunch as well as a small package containing left over eel and rice from dinner. She carried them over to her microwave and piled both dishes onto the same plate before throwing them into the microwave and letting them cook for the next two minutes.

Walking back over to the open fridge, she pulled out three cold bottles of water and shut the fridge. She walked over to her couch and set the bottles down next to her laptop. She glared down at the screen before glancing away at the flat screen television across the room. She grabbed the remote and turned it on, flipping the channel to the Syfy network. 


She walked back to the microwave and took her food out. On her way out the kitchen, she grabbed a spoon and a fork, before flipping the light off. 

Settling down into the couch, she felt a stickiness on the bottoms of her feet. Looking back behind her, she saw trails of red footprints all over her wood paneling floors. Surprised, she set her plate and utensils down before examining her feet. There was dried red liquid there. She got up from the couch and began to walk to her small bathroom when she noticed an arm in the middle of her hallway. It was attached to a body that was just so conveniently inside of her bathroom. 

Dread pooling in her stomach, the woman flipped the lightswitch for the hallway. Light shone down on the pale arm engulfed in a small, but growing, pool of blood. Swallowing back bile that threatened to release itself from her, she gingerly reached around the corner to turn the light on for the bathroom. When that was done, she took a deep breath before rounding the corner and looking at the lifeless face of the arm’s owner.

She looked down at the mangled body of her roommate Sophie, before switching the light off and walking down the hall to the kitchen. She returned with a bucket, gloves, and cleaning supplies. 

She needed to clean this mess up before Sophie got back from her holiday in Greece. 


He needed her. Ever since he first saw her when she graced his little shop with her daughter a month ago. Her image was seared into his mind. Even now, as he waited outside her daughter’s window, hiding in the shadow of the tree, he could only see her.

She was beautiful in a haunting sort of way. For a little girl, she held herself with a certain air, as if she were older than she actually was. He ignored the thought and continued to watch her, want filling his body and spreading out from his gut. He couldn’t wait anymore.

He slowly made his way to the back of the house, careful not to step on any fallen twigs. He looked up at the mother’s room, the light out, and smiled. He walked towards the back door, his hand automatically reaching up onto the door pane and feeling around for the spare key that the  mother kept there for emergencies. He had been watching her for weeks.

He turned the key and gently pushed the door open, a feral smile gracing his features. He stepped in and closed the door behind him. He listened to the stillness of the house, his heart racing in his chest as he realized just how close he was to his little jewel.

He navigated his way upstairs, drawn by some invisible string to the little girl’s room. He paused outside a door with a “Ula’s Room” sign hanging from it. He smiled once more, slowly turning the doorknob, and pushing the door open.

And there she was.

She was lying on emerald green sheets, curled up on her side, facing the window that he had been so focused on just minutes ago. He watched her; the way her red hair had settled in a halo around her her, the way she curled her hands up close to her chest, and the way her pale skin seem to glow under the moonlight.

He walked into her bedroom, shutting the door behind him.

He set his pack down and quickly sat on top of the little girl, covering her mouth with his palm. She thrashed under him, her eyes opening to reveal opulent pools of crystal blue. She grabbed at his hand with feeble hands, as he stared at her, happiness clouding his better judgment. He didn’t notice when her grip on his arm tightened. He did notice when her eyes changed colour.

Before he could react, the little girl threw him from her, his body slamming hard against her bedroom wall.

“What the fuck?” he sputtered out, blood dripping from the corner of his mouth. He stared at the seemingly weak little girl, now standing in front of him, her eyes no longer the stunning blue that caught him, but a deep maroon that terrified him to his core.

He backed up against the wall, wanting to be away from the girl. She smiled at his attempts, her teeth pointed and sharp. She stepped closer to him, giggling as he tried in vain to escape her. She didn’t even give him time to scream before jumping on him, her little hands clawing at him.


“Ula, you’ve made a mess,” Ula looked up from what was left of the man, licking blood from her fingers and putting a sliver of meat in her mouth, “Blood is difficult to get out. How many times have I told you? Kitchen is the best place.”

“I’m sorry mommy.” Ula took on last glance at what was left of the man and walked towards her mother, “He came into my room. I couldn’t wait any longer.”

“Fine,” she hugged the little girl to her, “Let’s clean this up and get back to bed. You can sleep with me tonight.”

“Okay.” Ula replied looking up at her mother and then at the pile of bloody clothes and meaty pieces.

*Note: Ula is Irish for wealthy which is what I think of when I think of diamond. Ula and her mother are supposed to be some sort of Irish faery creature but I couldn’t remember what they were ><


The young boy looked out his window at her. She was everything he wanted. Her luminescent pale skin, her rosy pink lips, her dark hair, and her eyes. Oh he loved her eyes. He loved how they shine and seemed to change from green to brown to grey in a matter of seconds. It was almost like he knew her.

No, he did know her.

She was always there at his window, just waiting for him to watch her. He tore his gaze away from her pale face and walked to his bedroom door. He tried the handle again. It was still locked. He had been locked in there for weeks, his mother and father bringing him nothing but take-out and fast food. He was grateful that they had at least thought to renovate his bedroom before and add on a bathroom. 

His brow knit in frustration as he kicked at the door, Mom! Dad! Please! Let me out! His calls went unanswered. He kicked at the door a final time, before turning his back and slumping against it. He put his head in his hands, unsure of what he had done to deserve this. He looked up and out his window. He smiled. He could still see her somewhat, although, her curtain had fallen in view.

He made up his mind. 

He got up and walked to his window, grabbing his jacket. He braced himself, before jumping out the window and landing painfully on his stomach on a tree branch. He pulled himself up and climbed down the tree, careful not to make any sounds.

He looked up at her window, she was there looking at him now. He smiled and she smiled back, beckoning him over. He had her now. He knew he did. 

He walked over and began to climb the tree outside of her window, his pulse racing with the anticipation of having her at last. 

Hey you. she spoke softly, her eyes lighting up as he came into her room. He smiled and walked over to her, his hands lightly touching her wrists, her pulse racing almost as quickly as his. 

She opened her mouth to say something before he covered her mouth with his hand and gripped her throat tightly with the other. He pushed her down onto her purple bed and squeezed harder, she was struggling too much for his liking. He didn’t want to bruise her more than he had to. Her thin hands clawed desperately at his, trying to pull his hands off of her. He smiled down at her Ssssh. It’s almost over. He waited a few more minutes, almost bored, for her to stop. And soon, she went limp, the life completely gone from her petite body.

He got up and went to her desk, opening drawers and rustling around before finding an incredibly sharp pair of scissors. He broke them, one sharp blade in each hand before turning around and walking back to the bed.

I have you now.


It was supposed to be a formal event. That’s what Megan told her. So she showed up at this dinner party dressed to the nines. She wore her favorite teal heals with bows on the back, sheer black tights, and her special green vintage lace dress. She felt like a princess and for once she was excited for a party, albeit this was a dinner party, but it was still a party.

So when Elsie walked into her friend’s house only to find that it was anything but formal, she felt the heat rise to her face and her palms starting to become sweaty, she clutched her purse tighter and faked a smile, choking out a joke about how she decided to dress up like she was in the 50s. She saw Megan, giggling in the corner, barely even getting an ‘I’m sorry’ out. Elsie felt a burning anger fill her and replace the embarrassment she felt seconds ago. She hid everything behind a smile and a laugh.

She took her heels off and set her purse down, slowly walking to the kitchen, waving off the laughs of her friends. Megan followed her, calling her gullible. Elsie laughed along with her, her hands working quickly on the small knife she found in Megan’s kitchen drawer. Without waiting a second, Elsie turned on her friend, pushing her hand hard to her mouth and the knife against the soft skin of her throat. Her elbows held Megan’s arms in place. She looked Megan in the eyes, assessing her.

Her eyes pleaded pathetically with her, begging her to stop. Elsie smiled and loosened her grip a fraction before sliding the sharp blade across Megan’s throat, spraying her with a red mist. She watched her friend slide to the kitchen floor, her hands covering her neck, trying to stop the blood from pouring out. Elsie knelt down and smiled at Megan. She gently pulled Megan’s hands from her neck and wrapped the knife tightly in her hand.

She got up and began to walk away from her friend. She paused and turned back to watch the life slip away from Megan’s eyes. Elsie grabbed a glass and broke it, cutting herself with it and screamed.