Story Starter Challenge April 14 – Can I Have A Word With You?


The first part of this tale can be found here:


Today’s sentence: “Can I have a word with you?”

There was a man on the seat who had just asked me, “What can I get you today?”

I had just woken up from a nap in which I had dreamt of entering Myron’s Emporium of Dark and Ghastly Substances, which coincidentally was across the road from me and seeing it sent a shiver through me.

Now there was a man beside me sounding and looking so much like the man in my dream.

He wasn’t looking at me but rather his gaze was taking in the park and all the activity happening there.

“Can I have a word with you?” I asked curious now as to why this man who was in my dream was now sitting beside me as if we did actually know each other.

“Certainly,” he said, “what would you like to know?”

“You are from the Emporium across the road, right?”

“Yes I am,” he replied.

“But how could you be in my dream and then appear here beside me? I don’t understand?”

“It wasn’t a dream,” he said in his very nonchalant way, “you were there, as was I. I thought we offered you a fair price for your skin, but you ran off before anything could happen.”

“You really were going to take my skin?”

“Of course there’s a great demand for it, and it wasn’t going to hurt you in any way. As I said at the time you’d feel a slight prick and then it would be all over.”

“But I’d be dead wouldn’t I?”

“Well deadish, nothing you’d not recover from.”

“How could I recover from having no skin?”

“I admit it would be a challenge and in the past, it’s not been something our clients have asked about. Probably because we don’t advertise what we are planning to do. We do it, Igor has his fill, we make a handsome profit, and it’s a win-win all round. Except of course for the donator.”

“You’re insane aren’t you?”

“Not at all, just a small business man trying to make ends meet.”

“Are you saying you still expect me to give you my skin?”

“Of course, your family, if you have one, will be well compensated and you’ll be remembered for the sacrifice you make.”

“But I’ll be dead.”

“Well yes, but if you think about it what good is your life to you at present?”

“It’s a lot good, I like it, I don’t want to lose it no matter what compensation you think will make up for it.”

“So that’s a no?”

“An emphatic no!”

The man then stood up and walked off and disappeared into the shop across the road. From the window, I saw Igor looking at me, lick his lips and like the man, disappear into the shop.


Written for:

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13 Responses to Story Starter Challenge April 14 – Can I Have A Word With You?

  1. The Haunted Wordsmith says:

    Fantastic! I hope we get to see more of them!

  2. Jade Li says:

    That was downright chilling, Michael! The stuff of nightmares, your nightmare!

  3. crimsonprose says:

    That’s enough to make the skin creep. 🙂

  4. Lyn says:

    Enough to make your skin crawl.

  5. Another creepy one Michael.

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