The foot from the first child to disappear was found floating in a water-filled ditch near the old drainage pipe on the outskirts of town only a few days after her family reported her missing. The local police spent the next several weeks investigating the murder with few leads and no results.
When young Henry Barton vanished from his bed a month later, the townsfolk started speaking of a serial killer and the local paper wasn’t kind to those that were investigating the crimes. Words like “incompetent” and “bumbling” were used and the chief of police felt the public pressure to find the killer.
It wasn’t until the fourth child went missing that the police realized all the kidnappings were occurring on the night before the full moon. When the press got wind of this, stories of “ritual killings” and “demonic cults” began appearing on the front page.
Less than exemplary police work led them to Carl Booker, a local butcher and former resident of Memorial Oaks Psychiatric Hospital. While no physical evidence was ever found, both the police and the public were satisfied the killer had been caught. The night after his arrest, the people of Terrance, Illinois rested peacefully.
Two nights before the next full moon, two glowing eyes peered out of the drainage pipe. Tomorrow night it would hunt again. This time it would have to bring home far more fresh meat than before. On the night of the full moon, the large, squirming egg sac that hung in the chamber deep in the sewer where it had been living would burst and hundreds of it’s young would crawl forth, famished and requiring sustenance.
The creature knew it’s family wouldn’t starve. It had found a plentiful supply of food.
[This is my entry into the Sunday Photo Fiction challenge, hosted by Alastair Forbes. Write a short story of 200 words or less from the photo prompt provided. I went over the word count today but I felt the story need the extra room to breathe.]