Free Fiction: The Buck by Sam Clattenburg

The Buck

When Amanda awoke all she could think of were those sharp hooves breaking through her windshield. Lying next to her in her overturned pickup truck was a bloody mess of hair, glass, and blood. So much blood- everywhere. She felt a prick in her arm. Antlers. Attached to those antlers was a set of stone-cold dead eyes. Life completely drained; pupils mid-dilated. For a very brief moment, she felt compassion because this wasn’t in her plan. As she admired those eyes and lifted a hand to stroke its face, an unexpected kick of the beast in her car knocked her out once again.

This time when she woke, the buck had disappeared. Like it had never been there in the first place. Broken glass shards remained but no blood. Had she dreamt it all? Didn’t she just hit a deer?

She unbuckled her seatbelt brushing off bits of glass shards, all the while looking around to get a sense of her surroundings. But there was nothing particular that stood out as familiar to her. In fact, when she looked one way it was just a  crumbled up unkempt dried out old paved road lined with a multitude of trees with multicolored leaves all in varying stages of decay. A glance in the other direction offered the same exact view. Same cracks in the same dried-up old pavement. Same trees. Then she saw it. Standing across the road with not a scratch was the buck. Easily a ten-pointer. She knew because her Daddy hunted her whole young life and the ten-pointer was the coveted prize of hunters.

How can that be? Must be a different deer. She looked over to where her car lay crumpled up in the ditch. Damn Japanese cars ain’t worth a shit, she heard her father’s voice in her head. He had died three years prior from lung cancer. Then she saw it. She saw herself lying on that seat, face pushed up against the driver’s side window. She was still in that car. 

Amanda looked herself in the eyes. One had started to turn black and bloody- clotted with blood. Lying next to her was the eviscerated buck. She turned quickly to where she had just seen the buck only seconds before. It was gone. 

She heard what sounded like hooves clacking on that crooked busted up road. She turned around slowly in fear of what she may see…

Expecting to see the deer she had seen only moments before, instead stood before her some kind of blasphemous beast. Something straight out of the Old Testament. It… He must have been at least eight feet tall. From the waist down it was almost humanoid, only more grotesque. Transparent skin revealed giant green and blue pulsating veins in those muscular legs housing hooves at the ends instead of feet. The top half could only be described as a wolf/man, easily five-six hundred pounds of pure powerful, frightening muscle.  On top of its head were those giant horns, the ones that belonged on that buck.  A long dog-like snout drew her eyes up to meet its own yellow shining eyes.

The smell hit her in the face like a pound of sulfur, wet dog fur, and feces. It leapt forward stopping inches from her face where it let out a terrifying howl. Emitting the foulest smelling breath you could imagine. Like hot garbage, complete with fish rotting out in the desert sun. It took Amanda’s own breath away as she coughed, gagged, and screamed. 

Out of instinct, she turned to run. She would run into the woods amongst the trees for safety. Before she got six inches away she felt the hairy, inhumanly strong arms of that beast pull her back. Back… back… It was now running with her; her face being gashed open by branches and foliage. She had no idea where she was going… But she knew she wasn’t going to be coming back. She knew she only had herself to blame. She had been killing since she was a teen. Her Daddy showed her how to hunt and gut.  Hunting became her obsession. It began small with neighborhood cats, dogs, then finally and inevitably that escalated to some children going missing in her small town.  No one will ever find them.  That was her plan. Her plan was to leave before she was caught. People were talking and in small towns…  Rumors hold weight.

In the end even, when her Daddy was sick, she felt the most compassionate thing to do would be to slit his throat and end his suffering quickly. She knew he appreciated it even though he seemed unprepared, maybe even a little shocked. But she knew.. He knew. He always knew. 

This was her fate.

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Sam writes mainly short fiction and horror reviews. I’ve been previously published in the 2013 Anthology by HorrorAddicts.net titled, “A Horror Addict’s Guide to Life”. I can be found posting movie review reels on IG lesgeek or on TikTok or blog  shereallyneedsapriest

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5 thoughts on “Free Fiction: The Buck by Sam Clattenburg

  1. Pingback: My Short Story, The Buck- Published. – She Really Needs a Priest

  2. Pingback: Let’s Talk About Scream! – She Really Needs a Priest

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