Friday, February 21, 2014

The Mountain of the Frozen Bus by John Ledger (Random Title #20)

They saw the bus coming up the mountain road from deep within the woods that they called home, not that they understood what it was they were seeing. Their kind was just as afraid of planes, trains and automobiles as the operators of those machines would be afraid of them. The large yellow object had stopped in place, remaining there for quite some time. A man got out and checked on several parts of the machine, waving his arms around in the air and making unintelligible noises out loud. This attracted more of them; the children were disturbed by his yelling and screaming. This upset mommy and daddy as they didn’t appreciate their baby’s sleep being interrupted by anything. They approached the bus.

    George didn’t have a clue why the bus had stopped running, nothing was working and he had no way to call for help. He was stuck in the freezing cold with a bus full of elementary school students on the side of a mountain. George was lost without an answer, two weeks away from retirement. The children were scared and cold, huddled together tightly inside the bus as George stood in the falling snow smoking his last Marlboro. This night can’t get any worse he thought as he saw them. George was an old man and he’d heard all the legends about Bigfoot and he’d read plenty of stories and watched plenty of movies but none of them prepared him for this. George ran quickly around to the other side of the bus and jumped inside, closing the door behind him. The children were screaming and yelling, some of them crying for their parents as George yelled at them to shut up. George went to the driver’s seat and took his place, watching the monstrosities and waiting to see what would happen. As fate would have it they turned out to have more patience than George.

    As they got closer they smelled the man’s fear before he even noticed them. The scent only intensified as he took them into his vision and scurried away like a rodent. They got fairly close to the machine and stood there waiting. Staring and waiting. After hours the pair of them approached the machine and circled it, looking inside. They realized enough to know that the beings inside other than the man were young like their young. They didn’t know or understand words like ‘children’ or ‘young’ but they understood things on their own level. They tried to get into the bus and this frightened the beings inside, the smell of fear was now overwhelming. They didn’t realize the children were scared to death of them; they only wanted to save the young. They weren’t concerned about the man, they wouldn’t save him. They wanted to eat him. The pair of them backed away a bit and sat in wait for what may have been hours or days, time was irrelevant to the beasts. They began to worry when the young had stopped moving around. No one except the man looked out at them and at one point they saw him eating ravenously as if he was one of their kind. It wasn’t until they saw many bright lights from other machines making their way up the mountain that they ran back into the woods.

30 years later…

    “So what’s this ridiculous adventure going to be called?” Sarah asked her boyfriend in her usual mocking tone.

    “The Mountain of the Frozen Bus” Brad proudly announced in response and he continued rambling on before giving Sarah or the others a chance to interrupt him.

“The story is, about 30 years ago a bus driver went crazy and shit man, he was taking a bunch of kids on a field trip when the bus broke down on this mountain in the middle of a snowstorm. Instead of letting the kids go or going for help he held them hostage there on the bus. When the cops showed up they found all the kids frozen to death but that wasn’t all. The driver was still alive and he was crazy as hell, they found him covered in blood and his hands were both frostbit. George Sommers was his name. He was babbling about monsters and a family of Bigfoot’s, turns out he had started eating the kids on the bus, so needless to say his ass is locked up in some asylum somewhere.”

    “Great story, creepy shit, but what the fuck are we going there for dude?” Kyle inquired from the backseat of the old Chevy.

    “To check it out man, they claim if you’re there at night sometimes you can hear the children screaming and crying.”

    “That doesn’t even make any sense Brad.” Sarah argued with him as she looked out the window very uninterestedly. “How are we supposed to hear dead children screaming and crying and why the fuck would we want to?”

    “Yeah what are you, some kind of creep, Brad?” Leslie chimed in from the back as they all started laughing except for Brad.

    “Yes I am and you all already know that. Sarah did we just fucking meet today or something, do you not pay attention to anything I say? If we hear the children it’s their ghosts that we’re hearing and that’s the whole point of why I do what I do but you should already know that.”

    “Jesus Christ, Brad, settle the fuck down dude. We’re just messing with you man” Kyle added as he was used to having to calm his friend down. Brad was always on edge because of Sarah and her bitchy attitude. Kyle never did understand what Brad saw in her, she wasn’t even attractive? She looked like a rat as far as he was concerned.

    “Alright, this is the spot.” Brad proclaimed as he pulled over to the side of the mountain path and put the old Chevy in park.

    “So now what, we’re getting out or something? Fuck that, I’ll be right here in the car.” Sarah protested as she crossed her arms and stared at Brad.

    “Have fun waiting then.” Brad replied as he and the other two passengers got out and surveyed the land. Sarah didn’t like that one bit but she stuck to her word remaining planted in the passenger seat. Brad, Kyle and Leslie walked across the clearing towards the woods as Brad pointed and explained to them where the bus was parked, reliving his knowledge of the story once again for his companions. Then Sarah started honking the horn. The trio turned to look at the car and Brad figured Sarah was just being her usual annoying self until he heard Leslie scream behind him. Sarah was trying to warn them but it was too late. Brad turned around to see Leslie being lifted into the air by some animal? This wasn’t any animal he had ever seen or heard of before though as it stood on two legs like a human, shaking Leslie around above its gigantic head with its long arms. The beast had long scraggly, grey hair and the face of a baboon. Its hands had sharp, yellow claws and as it opened its mouth Brad noticed teeth that looked like that of a shark. It seemed as if the creature was trying to stuff Leslie into its mouth as Kyle ran at the beast, punching and kicking to no avail. The beast became irritated and tossed her into the snow, setting his sights on Kyle. The only thing making it apparent that it was indeed a he, was the frightening and oddly shaped, baseball bat sized penis hanging from between its legs. It let out a primal scream as it lunged at Kyle and he never stood a chance as the beast was on top of him, ripping him to shreds with its claws and teeth. Brad was helping Leslie up when he noticed more of them running towards him from the woods, another big one and at least a dozen smaller creatures. Mommy and her children joined the massacre and that’s exactly what it became. Brad and Leslie couldn’t run fast enough; the mother went straight for Brad, eviscerating him in quite the same fashion as Daddy did with Kyle. The young were all over Leslie like a pack of rabid wolves and Sarah sat in the car watching all of this.

    Sarah saw her boyfriend and her friends mutilated before her eyes as the only thought that crossed her mind was the fact that she was safe. At least that’s what she thought. Brad had the keys so she couldn’t go anywhere; she was stuck in the Chevy. She had to wait for them to go away and then try to get to the keys. Unfortunately for her, that never happened. They saw the car and Sarah now understood what truly happened to the kids on the bus.


John Ledger lives in Central Pennsylvania with his queen Erica and their four children; Carson, Kaila, Logan and Layla. John likes punk rock, serial killers, dogs and Chinese food. You can find him on Facebook talking a bunch of nonsense.

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