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The Eye

by on November 21, 2010

“I don’t see why it’s such a problem, Susan. This is my study, not yours.”
I polished the glass with a cloth.
“Yes, Jeffrey, it is. But that thing is very creepy.”
She raised an eyebrow and took a step away from it.
“I like it. It helps me concetrate.”
She shook her head at me and left the room.

I found it in a junk shop near the house. I hadn’t noticed the shop before, even though I must have passed it every day on my way home from work. I crossed the road and bump shoulders with a young man on his way out of the shop, his head hung low. I don’t think he even noticed me.

The shop was filled with the usual bric-a-brac you find in these places. I headed straight to the back, as though something was calling me to it. I rounded a corner, and there it was: “The Eye of Horus.” A thin layer of dust covered the painting in its simple metal frame.

Three days after I brought it home was the first time I realised that there was something odd about it. Susan was in the shower and I was sitting at the breakfast table. I was doing the crossword as I drank my coffee when it blinked.
I dropped my cup and stared at it, opened-mouthed. The painting blinked again.
“Well, I never.”
I took it off to the framing shop that same morning. Now it watches me, approvingly I like to think, as I construct my model pyramids in the evenings.

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6 Comments
  1. Creepy and hinting – I like it.

  2. Thanks!
    I like being creepy.
    🙂

  3. Really enjoyed the tone – the narrator is apparently blissfully aware of his rather unusual behaviour. Liked the way the plot unfolds with a very normal family interaction at the start and then some dark foreshadowing in the shop scene.

    I found the encounter with the hunched young man slightly distracting (pointless) but it didn’t break my flow.
    I think the way you handled the outright supernatural (blinking eye) was great – the narrator’s reaction so weird and amusing illustrates the whole idea well.

    Final line is cute – wraps it up nicely and lays any confused doubts the reader might have been harbouring to rest – also very creepy.

    • Thank you!

      I wanted to get a bit more thrall in there, but was a bit limited by space, and it felt a bit too hammy.
      I wasn’t sure if the jumping forwards and backwards would work in such a small space, but it seems like it did: yay!

      Oh, the hunched young man is sneakily and deliberately placed. I like to call it crossover. 🙂

  4. cbraz permalink

    I enjoyed this thoroughly. I think you organised it very well and the jump back in time really works. It has a great everyday feel to it, while dealing with creepy mystical stuff.

    A bit more thrall would have worked better for me. I (probably through being horribly dense, but there you go…) was unclear about the fact that he has only been building pyramids since under the influence of the eye. Without this understanding, the piece was still great and creepy (love the winking eye bit) but was not as much of either.

    I love the crossover but also didn’t cotton on to it – but the idea of easter eggs like this in our stories really tickles my fancy.

  5. Jeffrey, Our Hero, has bought himself a piece of artwork from a second-hand store. Susan, his partner, thinks the artwork is dodgy, and it disturbs her. We find out later that there is something truly disturbing about the artwork: it blinks and watches Jeffrey. Perhaps it’s also influencing him, making him build those model pyramids of his, although maybe that was already a part of his Egyptian interests.

    I enjoy the cross-over aspects of the piece, and I’m glad that you pointed it out. I wouldn’t have noticed otherwise. I think we probably have a great place to do cross-over stuff with each others work; or with our own even. I’m not entirely sure how to have made the cross-over aspect more obvious, though :-/ Maybe describing the genie’s bottle?

    I have a typo:
    > concetrate
    Should be concentrate.

    I enjoyed the mood of this piece. Felt a bit Cthulhu-esque 🙂 Nice!

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