Too Cold For Ice Cream
She glanced outside her window. “It’s still out there! I can hear it. The music doesn’t stop anymore. It just doesn’t STOP!” Phoebe cried into her phone.
“Why haven’t you called the police?” Her friend Marissa asked.
“I have!” She shouted, slapping a hand to her mouth and glancing between her curtains. She could see the ice cream truck headlights piercing through the fog. It hadn’t moved. She breathed a sigh of relief, slumping down on her couch.
“Why didn’t they do anything?” Her friend asked.
“No, they did when I called last week. They couldn’t find him. I had pictures so I think they believed me. That stupid music and these stupid clothes.” Phoebe growled. Itching at her uncomfortable work uniform. The discordant tone of the ice cream trucks’ Greensleeves music vibrated in her head.
“Are you still watching the truck!?”
“Of course, I am! What if it does something! It’s been following me all day. All this over stupid ice cream. Who’s going to pay 200$ for ice cream!?” Phoebe growled, shaking her head, trying to get the song out.
“Ar- --u -l-me?” Her friend asked.
“Marissa? I can’t hear you. You’re breaking up.” Phoebe’s voice shook. She tapped her finger on the phone to check the call. A beep signaled the end of the call. Phoebe redialed her friend, checking outside. The lights were still there. So was the fog. The phone attempted to call, then disconnected.
“Oh, come on!” She whispered at her phone. She tried calling 911. A tone played, then it beeped off. “What is wrong with you!?” She looked the phone over, checking her connection. It couldn’t connect. She scanned through her messages for any unpaid bills
Buy or die
A voice called into her head. It was eerie, yet familiar. Phoebe glanced around her living room. She stood and looked around. Her wide eyes stared vacantly at the window. The discordant Greensleeves playing outside her window sent cold shivers running through her spine.
Buy or die
The voice called again. Darker than before. She recognized it this time. It was the ice cream truck driver’s voice. Phoebe glanced out the window. The headlights had moved. They were now in her driveway, beaming through the fog and into her living room window.
Phoebe checked her phone once more. No connection. She tried calling 911 but couldn’t get through.
BUY OR DIE
The voice called louder than before. His tone shifted. The truck's engine revved. A chill ran down Phoebe’s spine. She heard it a second time and lost her nerve. Phoebe sprinted to her front door, made sure it was locked, turned right, then ran up her stairs, desperate to get out of sight. She heard the truck rev a third time followed by a heart-shatter crash. The truck smashed into her house.
Phoebe paused and looked down her stairs. Thick white fog clouds drifted across the ground, frosting her wooden floors as they rolled over them. She turned around and ran towards her bedroom. The discordant Greensleeves grew louder as she ran. The noise of the song made her feel uneasy and nauseous. She heard another sound. A chanting noise came from the floor below.
“Buy or die.”
“Buy or die.”
“Buy or die.”
Multiple little voices chanted.
“Okay! Okay! I’ll pay!” She screamed, jumping forward and searching through her room for any spare change. She found a few loose bills that totaled 10$. Phoebe sprinted out of her room and searched the bathroom, then the guest room. She now had only 20$
The chanting reached the stairs and began climbing. She ran back to her room. Certain she had money stashed somewhere. In less than a minute the chanting reached the top of the stairs, but she couldn’t figure out where her stash had been. Fog covered the floor in an icy white mist. The chanting clambered across her hall.
Phoebe ran to her closet, trying to remain still and quiet. Her body shook from both a sudden cold and her terror. She tried her phone once more, using her clothes to keep the bright screen from shining out of her closet. No signal. The chanting reached her door.
Something hit the door once.
One the third hit it cracked. She couldn’t see what was outside the door. Only listen as the chanting that moved into her room along with the sound of something wet and sludgy hitting the floor. Phoebe quietly searched her closet. The voices moved around in her room. The discordant Greensleeves playing in her head like a screeching violin. She covered her mouth, trying to keep her shaky voice quiet. The cold air turned frigid, and the fog covered her cowering body. She found a loose floorboard. This was it! This was where she had stored money. She lifted the board and searched till she found an envelope. It had only 40$ inside.
Something hit her closet door. Its impact squelched on the other side. She screamed.
The door cracked. Splinters fracturing outward. She heard more wet slopping moving across the floor, like tiny wet feet.
The third hit split the door, forming a crack large enough to see the dull light of the moon. A wet sludge moved into the crack. A small hand-formed from it.
“A Debt must be paid.”
Only a few minutes later Marissa arrived at her friend Phoebe's house. Her clothes were thrown together and untidy. Her hand clutching her cell phone with 911 dialed. She pulled into the driveway. Aghast at the gaping hole into her friend’s living room.
She detailed the scene into the phone, stepped out of the car and walked in against the cautioning of the operator. Frost covered the floor and shattered pieces of the wall. A small circle of ice gathered on each step of her stairs and led into Phoebe's bedroom. She walked through the bedroom door, the lower half splintered and fragmented with layers of ice forming at the edges.
Her room was cold with the frost covering the walls and ceiling. Her breath hung in the air like a small cloud. Marissa walked over to the closet and opened the door. Nothing. She searched the remainder of the house, but the only signs she could find of her friend was blood frozen to the floor of her bedroom closet.