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Bowlingpins by dDamian Foreman - 12 years old


Bowlingpins by dDamian Foreman


Editor's Note: dDamian is 12 years old and his Muse shines through in this story. All stories submitted by children 12 and under are published as is, minor edits are done.

It was crickets.  The weird, high-pitched rheet-rheet sound was crickets, at least according to his dad, but to J.R. it could be anything but crickets.  It could have been the weird, slimy thing that lived under his bed, or it could have been the screechy alarm of some freaky alien spaceship, but his dad said it was just crickets.


J.R. wondered if his dad had ever been out of Tampa before.  J.R. hadn't, and he suspected that his dad, Jack Fields, who helped to publish the Tampa Bay Herald, hadn't ever been out of the city before, either.  His dad usually liked to watch movies and read books, and J.R. had never been camping before, though he was already nine years old.

So how would his dad know what a cricket was?  Or what it sounded like?


And he had to pee.

Which was no good.

Because if he was going to get up and pee, he had to leave the safety of his sleeping bag and walk at least ten feet away, to where the trees were.


Bears, I could be eaten by bears, or abducted by aliens, with their big silvery black eyes, or be kidnapped and killed...he thought.  He looked at his watch. 
Eleven o'clock...I can make it through the night...maybe...


Or what if it's the slimy thing...that thing under the bed.  Just a mere thought of the creature made the bones of his spine rattle.

Some time after this , he dozed off into dreamland, except; it was more like horrorland to J.R.

J.R. was lying in his bed.

"I...I was asleep?" J.R. said in a low, quiet, voice.

"We've missed you, J.R.," said a scary, freakish, deep voice.

"Yes, yes we have."  A big monstrous horror rose next to the bed.  J.R. screamed as the thing opened its mouth and heard something he didn't expect...


"Wake up J.R., wake up," said Jack.

"What...what's happening?"

"You had a bad dream, sport."

"Only a dream, thank goodness."

"Let's go fishin' while ma cooks up some breakfast."

J.R. nodded, and swiftly got into his usual jeans, white t-shirt, and his hiking boots.

They sat there, waiting, pleading for a bite.  Then J.R. had a question. "Dad, where do babies come from?"

"Oh you ever seen the...I shouldn't put it that way...when a man loves a woman they --"

"Breakfast is ready, boys."

They rowed back to shore and ate breakfast.  Their breakfast consisted of pancakes, eggs, bacon, and orange juice.

"Thanks, mom."

"Yes, Barbara, thanks"

They rowed back out and J.R. was watching the ripples bounce off each other, overlapping each other.  The thought of babes didn't cross his mind


He looked closer into the water...and saw something...strange.

It looked mainly human, but it wasn't entirely human.

"Dad, look at this.  I think it's dead, but I don't know."

"Let's take it out."  They took it out gently and put it on the boat.  "What is it?"

"A mermaid...or merman."  J.R. replied.  He couldn't see breasts, so it wasn't a woman, but the facial features indicated that it wasn't man.


J.R. looked in the water again. A large figure rushing up from the bottom of the lake very precisely.  A spear busted through the bottom of the boat.  It pierced through the skin, but didn't puncture any organs.

Jack got knocked back and landed on his finger, breaking it.  It made a loud snap!  This sound reminded J.R. of the crashing of bowling pins, but he didn't know why.  The best theory he could think of for this thought was when he and his family went bowling last Saturday, but he still couldn't figure out why he had thought this at this moment.

"AAGGHH!" he screamed.  Another one went through the boat and barley missed J.R.'s head.

"We have to swim away!" J.R. screamed.  They leaped out of the boat into the water.

J.R. and Jack started to swim through the water.  J.R. looked back to see that the merfolk were too amused at destroying the boat to try and attack them.

"What were those things?" asked Jack.

"Like I said, mermaids and mermen," J.R. looked at his watch, it said twelve o' clock sharp.  "Dad?"


"Remind me to thank you later for buying me that waterproof watch."

The man and boy sat there laughing, though the father was in excruciating pain.

As they sat there, giggling, Barbara walked over to then with a casserole dish.

"Time for lunch," she said

Now it was ten o clock.  J.R. and Jack were as quiet as a feather to each other for the rest of the day.

Because it was ten, J.R. was falling asleep into the horrorland again, but this time, he wasn't in his bed, he was in the boat, fishing with dad.

Jack had his back turned, J.R. couldn't see him.

"Dad, where do babies come f --" J.R. started to say, but his dad tuned around before he could finish talking,  Jack turned around.

The left eye of Jack was hanging from the socket like a man hung by a rope.  It dangled disgustingly from the socket, with blood dripping out.

Then, from behind Jack (who was trying to scream but was muted) rose one of the merfolk, sword in one hand, and shield in the other.
J.R. searched for a weapon frantically as the merfolk drew his sword higher up.

A sword, a gun, heck, a knife.  Then he looked in the water, a sword floating there, he grasped the item, and held it in the air, triumphantly.  Jack went behind J.R. (still trying to scream, but still couldn't) and J.R. swung at the thing's head and went in, but not all the way through.  Some blood came out, but not much.  Again he swung his sword, but still didn't go through the neck.  At this point the blood was oozing out the neck like the water at Niagara Falls.  He swung his sword a third time and finally lopped off the head.  Finally, with the head off, J.R. had time to rest.  As he sat down he had time to observe that he was drenched from waste up in blood.

But then something very unexpected happened.  Its head grew back...but there was two heads.  Once more he swung, and appeared four heads.  J.R. parted from the boat and swam away as fast as he could.  He reached shore and lay down, noticing he was alone, then looked back and saw the four-headed thing swinging its sword at Jack, beheading him.  J.R. turned around and sprinted into the forest, then tripped, and then he looked to his left.


Then to his right.


Then he looked straightforward and saw something's feet.  He looked up.  It was that slimy thing from under the bed, staring at him with the black holes in its head, then it opened its mouth and shrieked a high pitched tone.  Then the mysterious, cruel  said something.

"My name is Bowlingpins," the horror said

J.R. woke up in a fright.

"Breakfast, boys" called Barbara.  J.R. got dressed and went to eat.  "What's the matter honey, not enough sleep?"

"I had a bad dream," replied J.R., nervously.

"What about, Sport?" asked Jack, reinforcing the band-aid on the stub of his finger.

"Nothing...nothing at all...Dad, where -- never mind."

In about half an hour after eating breakfast, Jack and J.R. started  playing there favorite card game, Black Jack.

"Can we go for a walk, dad?"

"Sure, son," replied Jack.  "After this game of cards."

They started walking into the woods after the game was over.  "Let's count trees," Jack said

"No, I don't want to,"

"Well, I will."  One.  Two.  Three.  Four.  Five.  Six, and on he went to count on his head.  He stopped at almost seven-hundred sixty-three about an hour later.  "We should head back now."

"Okay."  They headed back to camp for lunch.

"Bologna again?" J.R. said in a bad sounding voice.

"Yes honey" said his mother.

"I don't want bologna this time," said J.R.

"Well that's too bad," said Jack.

"Now eat," said Barbara.

"Okay mom..." he said, though he didn't want to.

About an hour passed, and J.R. was taking a nap, but it wasn't horrorland, though Bowlingpins was there.

"Hello J.R., how are you?" asked Bowlingpins.

"Quite be honest, " answered J.R.  "Why are you so nice all of the sudden?"

"Mood-swings," it replied.  "To be honest, I'm a nice guy and all but some hard stuff has been happening at work lately, the wife is filing for divorce,, I have a list of this stuff.  Oh!  Sorry for scaring you so many times and what not."

"Don't worry about it," said J.R.  "But I know how you can repay me..."

"How's that, little man?" asked Bowlingpins.

"I remember one time in one of my dreams you said you could grant wishes."

"Um...I was kind of drunk when I said that."

"Oh..." said J.R., who then formed an idea in his brain.  "Can you make things appear outside of dreams?"

"Yea, why?"

"I need three swords, and three shields."

 "Presto…need anything else?"

"I need to wake up," said J.R. A second later he woke up with three swords and three shields.

"Dad," J.R. said.  "Mom, come here."

"What is it sport, another ba -- OH MY GOD HOW DID YOU GET THOSE!?!" shouted Jack in astonishment.

 "Bowlingpins, I'll explain later," he said, and gave a sword and shield to each parent.

"WHAT THE HELL ARE THESE!?" exclaimed Barbara.

"Weapons, to fight the merfolk with."

 "So we're getting back at them for my finger?"


"Let's do this…" said both parents in chorus.  They all ran as the merfolk came out of the water.  Their shoes splashed in the water, bathing then in pollution filled water.

J.R. looked left.


Then right.


Then forward.

He saw Bowlingpins on the water...           

J.R. sat up and looked at his calendar.  His calendar had a black and white picture of spider man he drew by himself.  May, Wednesday the 17 it said.  Then he looked at the clock, 7:30 AM.

"Time for school, son.  Are you sure you want to go camping?" Jack asked.

"No.  I don't," J.R. replied, getting dressed, and getting ready for school.  He noticed a tentical slither under the bed.  "Thanks, Bowlingpins."

"Thanks who?" his father overheard J.R. talking to himself.

"No one at all."


Far ahead of him was his Christian friend listening to his watch that had a radio in it.



Editor's Note: dDamian shows an obvious muse for fantasy. dDamian, keep writing but make sure to read lots of fantasy and sci-fi books and stories to improve your writing. Reading well-known authors will help you define and structure your stories. Well done.