Amy Hunter was sixteen years old with gorgeous long chocolate brown hair and big brown, doe-like eyes. She was quite petite, although very athletic. She was a swimmer for the Crystal Falls High School swim team and was head of the yearbook committee.
She was also the most trusted babysitter in the entire town.
More often than not, Amy spent her weekends and Friday nights looking after the children of Crystal Falls, with the exception of when a swim meet fell on one of those nights, in which case, the parents often cancelled their plans to go and cheer Amy on.
Everybody loved her.
Amy stared at her Algebra book. The numbers and letters blurred. She glanced up at the clock, checking the time.
It was nine o’clock one Friday night and she was babysitting the Craven children, Dawn and Whitney. For the last three hours, Amy had played every kind of board game the Craven’s owned, read the last Harry Potter book aloud and had created a home for the girls’ Barbie dolls that would have had architects hanging their heads in shame.
Now the girls were asleep in their room, snoring softly, while Amy was trying to complete her homework. But she couldn’t concentrate.
Getting up from the kitchen table, Amy moved to the fridge and searched the contents before deciding on a diet soda. She popped open the can when a creaking noise overhead caught her attention.
Thinking one of the girls had woken up and was going to the bathroom, Amy shrugged it off, sitting back down and tapping her pencil against her textbook.
The creaking noise returned.
Sighing, Amy stood up and made her way upstairs to the bedroom. Quietly, she opened the door and poked her head inside.
The two girls were sound asleep. Their pink princess nightlight lit up part of the room. Amy’s eyes scanned the room. Toys littered the floor along with a couple pairs of shoes. A sweater that belonged to Dawn was draped over the desk chair while Whitney’s teddy bear had fallen from the bed.
Amy tiptoed into the room and picked up the bear. Placing it back in Whitney’s arms, she turned back towards the door and let out a startled gasp.
Standing next to the door was a clown statue that Amy had never seen before. It was hideous, and its horrible painted smile, with jagged teeth, sent shivers down Amy’s spine.
She had always hated clowns, ever since her sixth birthday when her parents had hired one. Nothing traumatic happened to her that day it’s just that Amy didn’t like him. She didn’t go near him at all and refused to accept a balloon animal from him.
That was always the issue whenever she babysat the Craven girls; Dawn loved clowns. She collected dolls, figurines and stickers. Now, Amy guessed, she had moved onto statues. Large ones at that.
Shaking her head in disbelief over the size of clown and how Mr. and Mrs. Craven agreed to buying it, Amy walked out of the room, closing the door behind her.
Back downstairs she tried to focus on her homework, but her mind kept drifting back to Dawn’s latest collection addition.
Amy had never seen a clown statue like it before. The red velvet jumpsuit with big orange buttons was most unusual, especially when paired with large floppy orange and black shoes. Its hair was stringy, dyed bright blue and combed out to the side of its head. The eyes were black and expressionless. And that smile. Amy shivered, running her hands up and down her arms to warm herself as a sudden chill crept over her.
Glancing up at the clock, she saw it was only 9:07PM. She sighed. This night seemed to drag on. Mr. and Mrs. Craven had told her that they would aim to be home by nine. Where were they?
A noise upstairs had her jumping, and just like the responsible babysitter she was, Amy flew up the stairs, taking them two at a time.
Poking her head in the bedroom, she didn’t notice anything different, other than the girls had changed sleeping positions and that Whitney’s teddy bear was back on the floor.
Creeping into the room, trying not to make a sound, Amy picked up the bear and tucked it in beside Whitney. Dawn snored loudly, causing Amy to stifle a giggle. She pulled the blankets up over Dawn, tucking her in tightly before turned and walking out of the room.
Once she was back in the kitchen, Amy packed up her textbooks. She wasn’t really getting any decent studying done, so she might as well watch some TV until Mr. and Mrs. Craven returned home.
Loading her books into her bag, Amy picked up her drink and made her way into the living room. She plonked down on the couch and began channel surfing.
Just as Amy drained the remaining few drops from her soda can, the phone rang. Jumping slightly, Amy scrambled to answer it.
“Craven residence,” she said, breathlessly.
“Amy? Is everything alright?”
Amy sighed. It was Mr. Craven.
“Yes, Mr. Craven, everything’s fine. Just a little jumpy. Are you going to be long?”
Mr. Craven sighed, explaining that they were on their way home when the car got bogged down with a flat tire. “We’ve rung Triple A and are just waiting for them.”
“What? You didn’t carry a spare?” Amy teased.
Mr. Craven laughed. “No, we took it out when we picked up Dawn’s birthday present. Damn thing was so large that it didn’t fit in the trunk.”
Amy’s mind flashed back to the large clown statue.
“I can see that,” she mused. “But how did she talk you into getting it? I mean, I know she loves clowns but that one just looks so evil. It’s a wonder she and Whitney don’t have nightmares.”
Mr. Craven paused. “What do you mean, Amy?” he asked, his voice filled with confusion.
“The large clown statue that’s in their room?” Amy said, chewing on the ends of her hair. “The creepy one with the sinister smile and the hair that’s sticking out in forty-five different directions?”
Mr. Craven drew a deep breath. “Amy, get the girls out of the house. Run next door and call 911.”
“But…” Amy protested, not understanding what was going on.
“Do it, Amy. Now!” Mr. Craven sounded hysterical, yelling at his wife that they had to get home now.
“But, Mr. Craven, the girls are fine. I just checked on them. They’re asleep.” Amy was confused, and now a little concerned with the way her employer was acting.
“Amy, listen to me,” Mr. Craven said, trying to calm his voice. “We didn’t get Dawn a clown statue. We got her the trampoline that’s in the backyard,” said Mr. Craven.
Amy’s eyes widened as the phone fell from her hand.
Out of instinct, she turned her head towards to the stairs.
Standing behind her, covered in blood, grinning that sinister grin, was the clown statue.