Yellow Bird Pt. 3 [By MuffinMantis]

Part Two

Pan was at a loss. He didn’t know what to do. Daddeh didn’t believe him, and every night the monster grew more bold. Every night he was certain it was going to kill him, and somehow it grew more and more disappointing when it didn’t happen. When he knew he’d have to face it again.

The TV didn’t help. At all. If anything, the flickering shadows made it harder to spot Mr. Laughy until he was right up in Pan’s face. Hearing that awful laugh and smelling that awful smell, but being unable to see his tormentor, was even worse than before. But he didn’t care to tell daddeh.

Paaaaan!” the voice came from behind him, louder than ever before, and he was shocked it didn’t wake daddeh up. He tried to turn, but his muscles were like wet noodles, and he couldn’t muster the strength. The grasp on his throat tightened, until he could barely breathe at all, until holes into darkness drifted across his vision.

“Pwease. Jus’ wet Pan sweep,” he groaned.

“Oookay. I’lllll just have to kiiiiiill your daaaaaddeh, then.”

“Nu! Du wut wan tu Pan, bu’ nu huwt daddeh!”

“I doooon’t need to listeeeen to you. I caaaan do what I waaaant.”

“Pwease. Pan wiww du anyfing.”

“Admiiiit it, theeen. Admit you killed your mother. Teeeeell your daddeeeeh.”

“Pan wiww! Pan wiww teww daddeh!”


August winced as he sat up. Another long day at work, another fitful night of sleep. He realized he’d drifted off to sleep on the couch. Well, it couldn’t really be helped, after weeks of poor sleep.

“What is it, Pan?”

“Pan am sowwy, bu’ Pan nee’ teww daddeh. Pan nu am gud fwuffy. Pan wun 'way, wet barkie-munstah kiww mummah. Pan am sowwy!” the dejected fluffy sobbed.

“No! Pan, you can’t blame yourself! You were just a babbeh, there was nothing you could do.”

“It am otay. Pan nyo Pan nu am gud. It am otay if daddeh nu wan Pan nu mowe. Mr. Lau-” the fluffy cut off.

“Mr. what?”

“Nuffin! Fwuffy nu sae nuffin!”

That was new. Pan had never attempted to lie to him before. The fluffy seemed genuinely hurt, genuinely afraid. Something was wrong. Maybe it was more than just nightmares.

Pan, you can tell me the truth. What’s wrong?”


Now August was really concerned. Pan was terrified, in fear for his and August’s lives. It could just be nightmares, but he’d never heard of night terrors being so bad. True, the fluffy had some trauma that August hadn’t had time to help him work through, but this seemed…too much.

Maybe he should let Pan sleep in his room tonight. Maybe just one night without the mask would be okay.

Pan huddled up to daddeh, both comforted and afraid. What if Mr. Laughy found out? What if he came in here to kill daddeh? Pan seethed with self-hatred. He’d put daddeh’s life at risk, because he was too afraid to face Mr. Laughy alone.

He lay there, fighting sleep instead of chasing it. He would be the one Mr. Laughy took. He would protect daddeh. He wouldn’t let what happened to mummah happen again.

But Mr. Laughy never came.

Pan awoke and rolled over to face daddeh, dread and hope both mixing in his heart. Then he saw it. The steady rise and fall of daddeh’s chest as he slept. He was alive! Mr. Laughy hadn’t taken him!

Pan’s muffled sobs caused daddeh to awaken with a snort. He opened his eyes and looked around groggily. “See, Pan? Nothing to worry about. It’s all just bad dreams.”

Part Four