George Cooper

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-- I wrote this short story several years ago for a chapbook. To be honest, I'm not exactly happy with the end. --


George Cooper stood behind the monitors, watching the contestants on Show Me the Money! bicker about who took who’s toothbrush again. He sighed and rubbed his face, feeling very tired. Being the producer of this new reality show meant little time for sleep, something that made him quite relieved.
“Mr. Cooper?”
George looked at his assistant. “What is it, Billy?”
“Mr. Copper, I asked if you thought we should take the hairbrush those two were talking about, make another fight, like the toothbrush?”
“Oh, fine, do it while they are asleep.”
This wasn’t the first time things would “walk up and disappear” while all was quiet and asleep.
George recalled that first night his toy truck came to life. He was six, his birthday had just past and his Uncle Eugene brought him this truck. He liked to go to antique stores and garage sales to see if he could find any new treasures. One day, he saw it, a beautiful red truck with a white strip running across it. It had big wheels and the headlights flashed when you pressed a button at the top.
Little George had his eyes closed, all tucked in, when he felt something rolling on his chest. Groggily, he opened his eyes and saw the truck there, flashing its headlights.
This happened the rest of the week. George asked his parents to get rid of it, but they thought he was being ridiculous. At night, he’d sit huddled in bed, watching the truck go in circles on top of his comforter. During the day, while no one was looking, the truck would roll to a very inconvenient spot, making his father trip, or his mother kick it, making them mad at poor little George. He had to find a way to get rid of it himself.
One day, his family wanted to take him to Pizza Pizzazz, so he brought the truck along. He pretended to enjoy playing with it, and his mother said, “See? Aren’t you glad you kept it?”
George nodded and smiled. They arrived and he waited for the opportunity when his parents weren’t looking to loose the truck. He succeeded.
That night, feeling a huge amount of relief, he sighed and snuggled his favorite blanket. The house was all-quiet, except for the noise of the crickets outside. Finally, he could sleep.
The blanket moved slightly under his arm. He sighed and rolled over, pinning the blanket between himself and the mattress. The blanket struggled under his weight, waking George. He gasped as his blanket wiggled some more. George opened his mouth as if in a silent scream.
“Shh, now,” said a voice to George’s side. It sounded so close!
Panicking, George fumbled for the lamp switch, knocking over his alarm clock.
“Ouch!” came a sharp cry.
George clicked on his lamp and saw his clock try to get back up. He stared as the lamp bent over to help the clock. George screamed.
His parents would hurry to his room, only to find everything still and were it should be. They found George under his comforter, only his wide, terrified eyes staring at them.
This would happen everyday for the rest of his life.

Created: Jul 31, 2010

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