“So when is your boy gonna show up?” Mary asked.

“Not sure,” Megan said. Centering the n-tatt on her upper arm with its app. Freddy 4 Life, it read. Four fake gashes glowed behind the words. Satisfied, she opened another app so that she could shorten her skirt just a tiny bit more. She sported a slinky maids outfit for the Halloween festivities. Mary wore a pretty witch’s costume, complete with pointy hat, and black cat on the shoulder. “Joe said he’s waiting for his dad to get home. He’s babysitting his little sister.”

“Yeah, right. He’s probably fucking July Reynolds,” Mary scowled.

“No. He told me they were done.” 

“He said that last time too,” Mary laughed.

Megan didn’t want to face this argument again. “Anyway,” Megan changed the subject. “His dad was on earth, and found him a ‘bitching killer clown suit,’ I quote.” She smiled. “Real fabric too, not these glitch suits.” She gestured at their holo-clothes, which covered, and concealed well, but would short out at the worst times. Like when you’re with your brother, and all of his tween friends. The price of fashion, she thought with a sigh.

“Holy crap, is that him?” Mary pointed to the other side of the clearing. Megan followed the finger, and saw Joe. His outfit was made up with the same yellows, and blues that made up the makeup on his masks face, and what a mask. From jesters cap and pointed ears, to bloody-fanged grin, and beady eyes.

“Yup, later.” Megan got up and started to walk towards her clown. Mary said something, but between the music, and the crowds around her, Megan didn’t hear. The closer that she got, the more creepy detail she saw in his suit. It scared her and tapped some unknown fetish at the same time. Joe caught her looking at him, and locked on her. She grabbed his hand. “We need to go for a walk,” she shouted, smiling as she led him back into the woods.



“So-” She turned, looking at Joe in the light of the twin moons. “That’s one hell of a costume you’ve got there.” He didn’t reply; just stood staring at her. She guessed that he was playing a roll. She liked it. “That’s fine.” She flipped a button on her wristband and her clothing melted away from her. “I really don’t want to talk right now anyway.” She reached up to take off his mask but he stopped her. “Leave it on?” Her voice purred. Joe nodded. The insane grin on the mask seemed to grow wider. Just shadows, she thought. Megan began to pull down his suits, zipper hidden by a Velcro flap, and puffballs, pushing her hand inside of the flap. “This is what I…” She pulled her hand out of the flap like there was a snake in the suit, but there wasn’t. There was nothing there. She looked into the face of the thing she thought had been Joe, and looked inside the flap. There was no flesh, just muscle and blood encased in some form of clear plastic shell.

She turned screaming, and started to run back towards the cars, the crowds, and the safety of the bonfire. Her scream cut short as an oversized glove grabbed her hair, and pulled her back. It pulled her head back, and a second later a sharp pain lit up her throat. The thing that she had thought was Joe let her go and she fell to the ground, gasping, and holding her throat. She looked back and saw the faint glow of the Plasma knife in its hand. A smile impossibly wide now and she understood why. It wasn’t a mask.

She tried to crawl; to call for help, but she was already losing consciousness. Little blood leaked from the cauterized slice. She felt the clown climb on her as darkness fell upon her sight. She was still alive when Gregor started to cut.


Gregor stood in the library of his maker’s mansion. Megan’s heart in one hand, and a thick swatch of her skin in the other. One other stood before him until he could present his gifts. She was dressed in a Victorian dress of mourning complete with bonnet tied tight around her unfinished skull. Nancy’s face was white as flour. Her eyes, and the area around them, were as black as coal. She pushed a stroller as black as her clothing, and from the same period. From within, a little hand was receding back into the basket. Two eyeballs fresh and glistening within the infant's hand.

“Very good,” the maker said. Nancy nodded and pushed the stroller away, following the others down to the stalls. Gregor walked up to stand before his maker, holding out his pieces for his maker to scrutinize. “Ahhh Gregor,” His maker smiled at him. “Yes, such a good eye you have my boy. These will do nicely,” Gregor beamed with the pride that he always felt when the maker was proud of him. “Please place your pieces within the preservative solution, and return to your stall to charge. I will make your additions within the next moons.” With that, Gregor followed Nancy out of the room.


When they were all home and safe in their stalls, he could relax. He was worried for their safety, not their capture. His children were very smart after all. Darian thought of the beautiful pieces that they had brought him tonight. He looked over their schematics floating around the room on the wall monitors, and studied them, thinking of the placements that he would begin in the morning. Soon, they would be complete, alive as those from which they had harvested their parts.

He thought of a story his father had told him when he was a child, Pinocchio, and Geppetto. He thought of how much he was like the man. For he was Geppetto bringing his children to life.