The Night I Killed the King (other entries)

Other Entries in the Finish-the-Short-Story Contest


Richard Alan Kaapke, Las Vegas, NV
Second Place

It was a dark room, all glowin' with this freaky blue light, comin' from what looked like a dressin' mirror at the other end of the room. A kind of smoky fog was creepin' down either side of it. Elvis was standin' just beside it, smilin' a nervous grin.

"Now don't get riled, Mister," he said. "I told ya that I'd get ya your money. Got it all in here." He gestured with his thumb at that weird mirror.

That damn thing's some kind of vault, I thought. Why would anyone keep money in a broken-down shanty aways out here? "Just fetch it and be quick about it," I said. Maybe I could lock him inside once I got the loot. Sure'd be easier than shootin' him and then luggin' that fat carcass all over creation.

Elvis stepped through the mirror, just like Alice. Thing was, I couldn't see him on the other side. I waited a few minutes, feelin' like I'd just been had. I couldn't hold back any longer. I rushed into that mirror-thing.

I could feel a tingle all over my skin, like chill bumps. I couldn't see anything but swirlin' mist, blue cloud shapes. I felt like I was fallin'. I didn't know up from down. I guess I yelled from panickin'.

The mist cleared, and there sat Elvis, talkin' to this grayin' man with an angry, steel gaze. I recognized him, too: James Dean. Standin' to their side was this attractive older gal wearin' a long white scarf 'round her neck, and this short feller in a butcher's apron—no, it was a lab coat, like those scientist guys wear on TV.

I was still makin' out the details of the room when the scientist guy says, "Amelia, would you be kind enough to get a drink for our guest?"


Ray Rexer, Essexville, MI
Third Place

Geraldo nosed around the house a bit and must've happened upon the front door 'cause soon he started poundin'.

"Hello!" he called. His voice was just like you'd imagine. "Hey, I know you're in there. I just want to talk."

I looked at Miralee.

"Come on, people," he said. "I can keep the police out of this, but I want to talk to Elvis."

I gazed down at the gun in my hand. It looked just plain stupid there, so I shoved it in my coat pocket. Out of sight, out of mind, y'know. "Looks like the jig is up," I said, lookin' right at Miralee so as she'd understand.

"No, Dwayne! It ain't fair! That damn...talk show host!"

I started thinkin' fast. Elvis was just standin' there like he was waitin' for a bus or somethin'. "You wanna sing, right?" I said to him. My idea was takin' shape in my head.

"I do. I wanna sing."

"We can help. You need a coach to get you singin' like you used to. That's me. I'm the best damn Elvis impersonator in the whole state of Arkansas. I can have you soundin' just like you in no time."

His eyebrows rose.

"But, Dwayne," Miralee said, her face screwed up like someone had cut the cheese or somethin', "he's so fat!"

"You can make him lose weight, I know you can." Miralee had picked up lots of diet tricks while doin' hair at the Sophisticated Lady. I turned to Elvis. "She's always tryin' to make me eat right."

"Organic," Miralee said, noddin'.

"Yeah, right. She can have you back in singin' shape by Christmas." That was pushin' it, I knew, but I was gettin' excited. Geraldo pounded on the door again and I snapped, "Just a damn minute, Jerry!" He stopped in mid-knock. "So whattaya say, Elvis? Whattaya say?"

Read Ray's entire conclusion here


Mark A. Edwards, Columbus, OH

The King stepped back. Outta the floor came a rectangular block that looked sorta like an elevator. Me and Miralee, we 'bout fell down dead from shock, but the King, in all his slickness, looked at me and asked, "You ever seen Star Wars, kid? I loved that movie." He waddled over to the thing.

On one side there was the green outline of a hand, like a special lock. He put his right hand on the outline and a door opened up, like on a spy movie they show real late at night. On the inside of the thing there was a lot of lights. He stepped into it.

"Come on, now," he said. I stayed back, but Miralee went into that thing as fast as a bullet; then I followed. When I got inside, the King pushed a button, the door shut, and we started goin' down. I knew it was down 'cause I got that floatin' feelin' ya get when ya fall, y'know?

Well, after a minute or two, the thing stopped and the door opened.

"Home, sweet home," the King said and stepped out. What the elevator opened up on was a place that was the spittin' image of Graceland. I could hardly believe my eyes, it was so beautiful! Miralee was out an' lookin' around like she already owned the place.


G. Lew Choules, Salt Lake City, UT

All of a sudden, Elvis started clappin' out the rhythm in the middle of my number like he was the audience, sayin', "More! More, Elvis!" His clappin' and stompin' loosened me up, and from then on, it was easy. I let go and gyrated around, fallin' on one knee—and I was all that'd made Elvis Elvis. He started to smile, and then a big grin came on his face as he saw himself young again.

"Okay," he said, "stop." He looked at me again to size me up. "You're gonna need some trainin', but you're pretty good. Okay; you got the job."

"Hear that, Miralee? I got the job! This job will earn us more money than we ever dreamed of!" Miralee was just beginning to see what I was up to. I was so relieved, I grabbed her and whirled her 'round the room, laughin' like a jaybird.


Chris L. Kenney, Orem, UT

Standin' in the doorway was Geraldo. He looked like some sort of rabid animal. He stepped through the door and came straight into the livin' room. Leadin' the way was a gun. Like a huntin' dog pointin' down its prey, the gun followed me and Miralee.

"You made me look like a fool!" he yelled. The alcohol on his breath quickly spread through the room.

I was terrified. I couldn't move. Miralee was just as frightened. 'Cept unlike me she could move. She was shakin'. So hard in fact that I swear I could hear her bones rattlin'.

"I don't know how you did it. But you made a fool out of me." His voice was quivering with anger. "Tell me...." He paused for a deep breath. "Where is Elvis?" Another deep breath. "Tell me or die." Sweat was runnin' down from his temples, formin' waterfalls into his shirt.

"How should we know?" Miralee stuttered out.

"Then die!" he screamed in rage, as his gun hand thrust out towards us. A shot rang out. Me and Miralee both fell to the ground. I began searchin' my body for a wound. None. Time then to search Miralee's body. I quickly looked over at Miralee; she was lookin' back at me. Lyin' there on the ground we both looked up.

Al Capone's worst nightmare was lyin' in front of us. A growin' patch of red was quickly devourin' the back of his shirt. Lookin' up even further, we saw a huge man fillin' the frame of the door.

"You left this at my house. I wanted to bring it back to you," Elvis said as he stared at the dead TV show host lyin' on the floor. He was holdin' my gun. Me and Miralee's jaws had dropped so low we looked like a couple of large-mouth bass. Silence. Elvis looked up.

"I also wanted to know if...if we could be...." The words weren't comin' easy for him. "I'm tired of livin' alone" is all he said.


James L. Hoare, Calgary, Alberta, Canada

The King walked over to the far wall, went down on one knee, and pulled a metal box from under the bed. As he stood up he glared over my way. "I figured this would happen one of these days. So now I'm gonna have to find another hidin' place. I'm not ready to go back into the world as Elvis. And I sure as hell don't like the idea of your kind takin' my place."

He then smashed the oil lamp against the far wall and waited for the flames to build on the bed, then spread to the garbage on the floor. "I don't suppose you'll be needin' your car anymore." He smiled at me and then walked out the door.

As the flames grew brighter, the pain in my guts reached the point where I thought I was goin' to black out again. Just before I passed out, I could hear the King singin' "My Way" as he climbed into the Chevy.


Tonya L. Anderson, Aurora, CO

I felt Elvis take hold of my legs as Miralee took my arms. I couldn't see them anymore. I felt a chilly gust rush by as they opened a door and carried me out.

My spine bounced off a step and pain shot through my legs. My head was about to explode. The ground was wet with dew; I figured sunup was gonna break the horizon in about an hour.

Elvis was diggin' in a frenzy. I could hear the dirt buckle under the shovel. The air was cool and soothing, and I could hear a low sob from Miralee. Maybe she did care for me.

Just as I had needed to get away from the life I knew, she needed to get to the life she wanted. I couldn't be mad at her. Elvis could give her what she truly wanted. He wanted that life.

They threw me in the hole, which was barely big enough. My feet were curled up under me, but it didn't matter. Nothing mattered anymore. I felt dirt crash against my face.

I had finally killed the King.


John Barker, York, England

I brought the bust down zeroin' in on his forehead. Contact.

The bronze nose smashed into Elvis's forehead. He collapsed and I was on him. The club came down again, removin' the fleshy nose and leavin' a cavity wellin' with thick red blood. Flecks of bone and brain clung to the bust. I kept batterin': shattered teeth, pierced eyes. My mind filled with an uncontrollable rage, believin' the face of Elvis, the bronze bust, and mine were one.

My face, his face, bronze face, his face, bronze face, my face, his face, bronze face.

"We are none!" I screamed.

My face, bronze face, my face, his face, bronze face, my face, his face.

"We are whole!"

Bronze face, his face, my face, bronze face, my face, his face, my face, his face, my face, my face, my face.

"We are one," I whispered.


Mitchel Whitington, Garland, TX

I guess the thing that had us spooked the most was the way this fella carried himself. Just like the first one, he had the walk and the sneer, and he even sounded like the King. At least, like he did there at the last. Yep, there wasn't no doubt in either of our minds—just like the one we had, this one had to be the King, too.

Well, when this other Elvis saw what was goin' on, he and our Elvis just started starin' at each other. Now, this new King was almost as fat as the one we had, but not quite. Kinda like he was a before-Vegas Elvis and ours was an after-Vegas Elvis. Or, I don't know, maybe there wasn't that much difference. But in a situation like that, who could be judgin' any better? Hell, no one, I think. Me personally, I was scared as a squirrel bein' chased by a tree-climbin' hound.

Whatever these Elvis fellers was doin', they must've got it all figured out 'cause they all of a sudden up and bolted through the door into the kitchen faster than a moonshiner from a revenue man.

I heard one of 'em hollerin' out the back door, and that must've snapped me out of it. I grabbed Miralee's arm and we ran out after 'em. I was halfway draggin' her along, 'cause she was still kinda in shock. We cleared the back door just in time to see both of them Kings runnin' up a ramp into this thing that couldn't be nothin' but a spaceship.


Terry Swindle, New Whiteland, IN

"No, Dwayne," she pleaded, "I don't know what you're thinkin', but all I want is for us to be rich enough not to have to worry about anything, ever! Think about it, a million dollars!"

The foolish woman. As if money is everythin'. To women like her, it probably is, but this is my life we're talkin' about. The King's life.

I pulled back the hammer and said, "If you can't see who I am, then I don't need you. I don't need a bitch to bring me down!"

I pulled the trigger, and the blast echoed through the house. Miralee's mouth formed a big "O", and her eyes opened real wide. I then noticed a red splotch form on the wet material of her blouse, right between her breasts. Her eyes closed and her mouth turned into a grimace as she fell to the floor. I stared at Miralee's fallen body, hearin' the rain on the side of the house, when a voice snapped my attention back to where I was.

"Good God, you shot her!"

My gaze went from the fallen Miralee to the other Elvis. He had lumbered up from the sofa and was standin' at the side of the coffee table. I took a coupla steps toward him and aimed the gun at his chest. We were only about two feet apart. My voice was a little shaky as I yelled, "I'm the King! Don't you understand that? I can't have you sayin' you're the King, or let anyone try and take bein' the King away from me! I can't let it happen!"


George Keith Hamrick, Bonifay, FL

"Come on, then," he said, lookin' at both of us with pure Memphis disgust. He headed back towards his bedroom; when we were almost there, Elvis turned and drop-kicked Miralee into me, settin' off the gun, and blowin' away half her pretty little head before she hit the floor.

He came out of his crouch, movin' slick-ass fast for a big old boy, reached beside the bedroom door, brought up a twelve-gauge pump, leveled it at me, and fired point blank, channelin' my ass into about three different counties.

******

"Beats hell out of roadkill," Elvis drawled, grinning to himself and humming some unwritten tune as he scooped up the bodies and took them out to his freezer on the back porch. "But I sure did want me some of them little chicken wings for a change."


Jodi Strissel, New Canaan, CT

I looked at him and said, "I have to kill ya, y'know."

"Don't do it."

I lifted the gun, but right before I squeezed the trigger he stared daggers into me and said, "I'll get you for this." And then it was over; he died like a King.

The reporter never caught up with us. And Miralee made me do some awful things to the King so that when he was found, no one would recognize him. Jeez, after I was done, they'd have had trouble recognizin' if he was human or not. I don't know what happened to me; it's like it wasn't me doin' it. But all the stuff on my hands said something different, and that seemed to satisfy Miralee, so we drove off.

******

None of my clothes fit me anymore. I went out once and bought an extra large pair of sweat pants and some huge t-shirts, and that's pretty much what I wear day in and day out. I'll go out tonight, though, all by myself. Miralee left me after I started puttin' on the weight; ran off with some guy that looked like Randy Travis. Guess she has a thing about cheekbones. It's funny—I'm never really hungry, but I just keep on eatin'.

Tonight I'm goin' to the Kentucky Fried Chicken in town to buy a few buckets of wings. And they'll be waitin' for me there. The car will be idlin' in the parkin' lot, and I'll see the two blank faces starin' out at me through the steamed-up windows. I'll walk in and she'll come in after me; guess I'm more like the King than any of them other impersonators, huh? Guess he got me back in the end, too.

© 2017 Robert McCammon Last updated 16-AUG-2017 04:37:06.03 Suffusion theme by Sayontan Sinha