Saturday, 6 February 2021

The Muffin Man

 

by Lynn Clement

vodka shot

 

Jennie had an earworm. ‘Do you know the muffin man, the muffin man, the muffin man?’

Yes, she knew the muffin man. But she wished she didn’t.

Jennie looked at herself in the mirror. Mascara smeared down her cheeks. Her hair looked like a wrestler’s, and the grey bags under her eyes were packed with fear.

She took a sip from the glass. Her eyes shut, and her body gave an involuntary shudder, as her throat forced the clear liquid down her gullet. The vodka burnt, but instantly made her feel safer.

‘Do you know the muffin man…’

‘Just stop,’ she pleaded into the mirror.

            Night after night he came. His stiff arms and legs moving to the music inside her head.

‘Do you know the muffin man?’ His leering lips closing on hers as she slept. Tried to sleep.

‘Do you know the muffin man?’ His dead eyes fixed on her.

‘Do you know…’ Until she wakes.

Jennie picked up the hairbrush and dragged it through her matted brown hair. She took another swig of vodka.

            She figured it was gone 4a.m. 4a.m. was the usual waking hour.

It was cold in her bedroom and she shivered. Someone just walked over my grave, she thought. And she knew who it was.

‘Do you know the muffin man…’

The curtains quivered. In her stupor, she must have left the window open. She was getting careless. She had another drink for courage.

She got up from the mirror and moved towards the window. A shadow passed the looking glass behind her.

‘Do you know the muffin man?’

                                                                               ***

‘What on earth happened here? ‘asked Chief Inspector Carl Lester surveying the bedroom carnage.

‘The forensics have just finished,’ said his Sergeant.

‘I can see that Richie,’ said Lester – ‘but WHAT happened?’

‘She left a note, Sir. It’s here on the dressing table.’

‘Read it then Richie, what does it say?’

‘Yes, I know the muffin man, he lives at---'

                                                                                  ***

The funeral was a quiet one. Her uncle Roderick read the eulogy.

 ‘Jennie loved her job in the supermarket,’ he said. ‘She had her demons but was beginning to conquer them. She was happy with her move to the bakery department.’ A tear spilled from his eye. He didn’t understand why…

At the back of the crematorium, Jared Baker secretly smiled. Never, disrespect me, he thought.

‘Do you know the muffin man…’

About the author 

Lynn is a regular writer for Cafelit. She has just completed the final edit of her book 'The City of Stories,' to be published soon by Bridge House Publishing.
Lynn enjoys writing flash fiction and poetry and has won and been placed often, in local competitions.

 

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