Your friend Alfred was having a yard sale. You wanted to get some new decorations for your recently repainted and refurbished living room, so you decided to stop by and check it out. You found a few pillows that would look nice on your new couch, a nice little mirror you thought would fit well over the fireplace, and a beautiful wooden end table.
You were digging through some old blankets he had out when something fell out of one and onto the driveway. You set down your things and picked it up.
It was a little doll and it was in terrible condition. The pale fabric for the skin was dulled and dirty and stained with God only knows what. The yellow yarn that made up its hair was frayed, dulled so much that it almost looked brown, and most of it was missing. The black button that made up its left eye was chipped and the button that was its right eye was hanging loosely, only connected by an old, thin black thread. The red thread that was its mouth was half missing, and what was left sat crooked on its face. The toy felt limp in your hand; you could tell it had lost a lot of its stuffing over the years. The left arm had a bad tear at the shoulder and hung on about as well as its right eye was. Its legs were both worn out and void of any stuffing what-so-ever.
All in all, it was a pretty ugly, derelict little thing. You thought its outfit was cute though. It had on a little, emerald green sweater vest with a long, white dress shirt underneath and a little pair of tan dress pants on its legs. The clothes, much like the doll itself, were also old and stained and frayed.
You picked up your purse, the blankets you picked out, and the little doll and went to find Alfred. You found him selling an old video game to some kid from the block over. You waited until he was finished talking before approaching.
"Hey, Alfred." You said.
"Yo dude! You got more stuff now?" He replied with a toothy grin.
"Yeah, I like these blankets you have. Also, while I was flipping through them, this fell out." You held up the doll. "It seemed a little out of place in a box full of blankets and quilts."
Alfred's pupils shrunk. "JESUS CHRIST IT'S ARTHUR!" He exclaimed.
"So it's yours then?" you asked.
"U-u-u-uh w-w-well I-I-I" he stuttered out, trembling. What was with him? He was acting like there was a slender man behind you! "H-hey, _______, w-w-would y-y-you l-like that d-doll too? "
"Well" you contemplated a bit "I dunno. I like a little improvement project here and there, but I'm still moving things around in my house and I'd really rather not have a doll distract me."
"D-don't be silly, dude!" Alfred was sounding really desperate to get rid of this thing. Why didn't he just toss it in the trash? "T-tell you what; I'll give it to you! As a matter of fact, here" he shoved a twenty in your hands "I'll pay YOU to take it! A-and take the blankets as a gift! No charge!"
What just happened?
ON THE DRIVE HOME
You had all your new furniture in the back and kept…Arthur, was it? ...Yeah Arthur in the seat next to you with the seat belt strapped over it (him?) to prevent any further damage. You kept looking over at the doll, wondering just what Alfred was freaking out about. Sure the doll was a little creepy, but it's nothing a little effort and a sewing needle can't fix!
You did get a strange feeling from the doll though. Almost like a human presence, as though it were really watching you.
"Why was Alfred so afraid of you?" you said to it, even though it couldn't respond "Sure, you're a little worse for wear, but a bit of love and care can fix anything." Strangely, you felt like it was actually listening. "Don't worry Arthur; I'll stop by the craft store tomorrow and pick up a few things to fix you up. When I'm finished, you'll look like you were fresh off the shelves!"
This weird presence you were getting from the toy was beginning to creep you out a bit though.
LATER THAT NIGHT
You finally got everything arranged in the living room. You stood in the middle of the room, admiring your work with a smile. You let out a yawn and glanced at the clock. 9:36 P.M. A good two hours before you'd normally go to bed, but you decided to make an exception for today. You looked at the full moon outside the window, then at Arthur, who you had sat on the couch.
"I'll see you in the morning Arthur." You said sleepily.
You walked to your bedroom, changed into your favorite pair of pajamas, and quickly fell asleep under the covers of your bed.
You were awoken from your sleep by a sudden THUMP out in the hall. You sat up in bed and glanced that the clock. Midnight. You slowly got out of bed and grabbed the hammer you had accidentally left on your nightstand. You quietly crept out into the hall and walked into the living room. No one was there, nor were there any signs that anyone had been. You went and checked the front door. So signs of forced entry and it was still firmly locked. Maybe the sound was your imagination?
You walked back to the living room and laid the hammer down on the end table. You didn't light a lamp at all; the light from the full moon filled the room perfectly. Suddenly, a heavy hand fell on your shoulder. You let out a shriek and swung around quickly. And regretted it instantly.
THERE'S A FREAKING ZOMBIE IN YOUR HOUSE!!
The dirty, bloody, ugly thing limped slowly towards you. It was shriveled and disfigured, one of its eyes was falling out, and there was blood and bone sticking out of one of its shoulders. You began screaming backing away as best you could. Unfortunately, you had cornered yourself in the far end of the living room, putting a zombie and at least twenty feet between you and the nearest possible exit.
The thing moved closer and closer, moaning and groaning horribly. As it drew near, you closed you eyes and turned your head away, silently praying for someone to save you. Just then, you heard another THUMP, this time though it was right in front of you and you were wide awake. You felt two hands grab the bottom of your pajama shirt and tug on it. You opened your eyes and looked down. The zombie was on its knees holding its head to the ground and its hands firmly grasping your shirt.
"H-he-h-help m-m-m-me. P-p-pl-pl-p-please." It groaned out slowly, its voice full of pain.
You blinked your eyes and stared at it. There was something vaguely familiar about this monster at your feet. You looked over at the couch. Arthur wasn't there! You looked back at the zombie.
"A-Arthur?" you asked quietly. The zombie slowly nodded its head.
You knelt down, losing your fear for the moment, and looked at him in full. Most of his hair was missing, his left eye was missing a piece, the right one was falling out of its socket, his body was shriveled, his left shoulder had the gash, and his legs looked to be nothing more than bones. He really was the personified version of the doll!
"P-p-pl-please he-h-he-help m-m-me." He begged again, a small, red tear falling from his left eye.
"I-I don't know how."You said apologetically, placing your hands on his shoulders.
Suddenly, the light in the room faded and Arthur was instantly transformed back into the horrid little doll he was before. You sat dumbfounded, and then looked out the window. A big dark cloud had blocked out the moon. Your eyes widened.
"It's the moon!" You exclaimed. You gently set Arthur down on the floor and then you quickly ran and closed the curtains to keep the moonlight out. You flicked on a lamp, then walked back to where Arthur lay. You gingerly picked him up with both hands, wanting to prevent further pain to him.
"Don't worry." You said "I'll help you."