PREY (Happy Valentine’s)

Horror Stories
8 min readFeb 14, 2023
Young couple in a dark room. A photo from Pexels.

We were sailors. I’ve been knowing this guy named Joel Wills & we both were thirsty young men. With the less of options on board, we were always looking forward to meeting women back on the land. Lucky me, I was always best at picking girls, someone who could get any fine young dame off her feet and blow her out. On the other hand, Joel was not much of an experienced guy on these types of things.

It was our first night back on land. Joel convinced me to let him tag along on my night hunt. I had a reputation on the ship as a ladies’ man or a pick-up artist so he needed a sure thing tonight. And there’s never a better time to find a sure thing than Valentine’s Day. All the couples will be out for dinner, and the singles will be out for dessert. I was predicting lots of two-three girl cliques, nothing more. Which was perfect. We wouldn’t approach the groups made of three though, that always left one of them to get bored and convince the others to leave.

Joel arrived, a big stupid grin on his face. He already looked buzzed. “Fuck”. Slurring was not a way to approach women. Maybe I can dump him off somewhere early and hunt by myself. I didn’t want to waste this night. There was a lot of girls out in the city. Bringing Joel was a mistake, but I couldn’t blame him too much. He was there now, so I led him towards our first stop, which was Ralph’s.

Ralph’s would be packed tonight with the kind of singles we were looking for. After approaching girls many as we could, we realized this wasn’t going to work. Every girl we approached, even the ones I approached by myself, was uninterested. I’ve never had so many rejections. It was embarrassingly impressive how badly we did at the first bar.

We left Ralph’s, almost getting laughed out of the place because Joel slipped and spilled his rum and coke down his white Oxford cloth. He took the shirt off outside and chucked it in an alley. He was now walking around in a windbreaker and a crew neck t-shirt.

The next two bars were the same, only worse. Joel got drunker and less intelligible. I needed to pull the shoot. It was just past midnight now, and I should have poured this guy into a cab and tried to pull a late-night scramble for the remaining prey.

However, we ended up at the “White Rabbit” and missed the DJ I wanted to see. The bar was just playing lounge music now, and there were only groups of couples hanging around. I was tired and drunk, and Joel was about to slide into unconsciousness.

Then I saw them.

Two figures in the back of the bar, sharing a small booth. Two women, roughly our age, maybe a touch younger. And attractive. I think. This was one of those bars that were way too darkly lit, so it was difficult to tell who was good-looking or not. I guess that’s why they say blind people have better sex. Either way, these two were our last kick at the cat. There was a brunette and a redhead. Although, the redhead looked like she was wearing one of those bob-cut wigs.

They were staring at Joel and me. One of them, the brunette, locked eyes with me. Then she broke, looking at the ground now. Bingo. That’s the sign, She’s interested. I got up, telling Joel I was going to the bathroom. I hooked around the bar and made my way over to the booth. I introduced myself to the girls and asked if this was the singles table and if I could join. They smirked at each other, giggled, and motioned to take a seat.

The brunette was named Jess and was vibing on me, hard. The redhead was named Crystal. So I guessed she was probably a stripper. She seemed less interested in the conversation… Until Joel arrived.

From his drunken puddle across the bar, Joel noticed I was at the booth with the girls and flew in. Crystal pulled him down beside her, getting very close and friendly. Jess ordered a round of tequila shots, and our world started to spin.

Joel was somehow still functioning, and he accidentally pulled on Crystal’s hair. It was, indeed a wig, only there wasn’t hair under it. It was just skin. The side of her head was bald. Crystal freaked out, rushing to the washroom, Jess following closely. I slapped Joel across the face, hard. He was shocked by it, but I knew he wouldn’t remember.

I attempted some damage control. I left Joel in the booth and went to the bathroom. I waited for the girls to come out. Jess appeared first, and I apologized for Joel. Jess said it was fine, but wanted to tell me the truth. She and Crystal had met a few months ago in chemo. They were both bald. Both were in remission.

Crystal came out and asked if Joel and I wanted to come back to their place to eat. I asked them if they were sure they wanted Joel to join, and they both nodded.

I half-carried Joel out to a cab we all piled into. About thirty minutes later, we were pulling up in front of an old, pre-World War two apartment building. I wasn’t familiar with the neighborhood, and this was about as far north as I’d gone on the island.

Joel pass out for the whole drive, but woke up when we arrived and seemed to have a second wind. The girls’ apartment was on the third floor. No elevator, so we took the stairs. It smelled stale and old like it hadn’t been cleaned or aired out in decades.

Their apartment was nicer. It smelled like incense and patchouli and was clean. Blankets, drapes, and carpets hung from the walls. It was dark though, with only one lamp in the back corner lighting the entire entrance, living room, and kitchen.

Crystal took Joel’s hand, and lead him through the living room to a hallway. Jess and I stood at the entrance. She grabbed my collar and pulled me close. We kissed and she bit my lip, enough for a bleed. Fuck… This was gonna be an interesting night.

I followed Jess to the hallway, where there were two doorways. One to the bathroom and one to the bedroom. She told me she and Crystal shared a room but separated it into two by hanging blankets and carpets. Music drifted in from the covered side of the room, behind the makeshift wall. I could hear moaning from Crystal.

Jess opened a bottle of red wine and poured us each a glass. She turned on some music, and we sat on the bed and listened and drank.

The music from the other room got louder. It turned into heavy metal and was almost overwhelming now. Jess said Crystal can get pretty loud, so she’d be pumping the music the whole time. I didn’t really care. I figured Joel would pass out soon enough, so It’d just be Jess and me. Hell, maybe Crystal could join our party.

We were sitting on Jess’s bed when she climbed onto me. My wine was awkwardly still in my hand, so when she swung her leg over to straddle me, it shattered the glass and wine sprayed the sheets. She laughed and didn’t make an issue of it, but got up to find a dustpan for the glass.

While she was gone, I decided to strip the bed, and pulled the sheets off… But, I really wish I hadn’t.

The mattress was filled with stains. And I don’t mean stains, as in there were a couple of dots. The mattress was covered in huge blotches on top of other blotches of stained fabric. Stains of a color I knew too well. That brownish-red color screamed dried blood. The different shades made me realize… these stains were all from different times. In fact, multiple times.

Then I noticed the handcuffs, covered in dried blood. The bed was an old, metal frame, with tall legs that reached up to the ceiling. Each one of the legs had a set of cuffs locked to it.

I heard a floorboard creak behind me. Before I could turn, I felt a crack at the back of my head. Glass from the wine bottle shattered around me… and everything went black.

Sounds drifted in, bringing me back to consciousness. It was that heavy-metal rock again. But it was quieter. Thank God… my head was throbbing. My eyes opened and I was alone on the bed, naked. But the blankets and carpets separating the two bedrooms had been pulled down, and I could now see into Crystal’s. Vomit rushed up my throat.

Joel was tied, ankles and wrists, to the four posts of Crystal’s bed. His abdomen was covered in blood, and his chest was ripped open and exposed. I could see the bones of his ribcage jutting out in different directions like a blooming onion. Crystal was kneeling over him, cupping blood from his empty chest cavity and washing her face with it.

But it wasn’t Crystal. At least not the one we met. Her wig was gone, and she had frightening, open sores along the top of her scalp. I couldn’t see much more, the rest was in shadows.

There was the creak again. My attention turned back to the room I was in… and Jess stood in the doorway, naked. Her wig was gone too, and she had the same open sores on her scalp. Her eyes had sunken back into her skull, and reflected like a cat’s in the night. Her lower jaw jutted outward, creating a frightening underbite with teeth that weren’t previously there. Her arms looked like they had elongated, her claw-like hands now hanging down below her knees.

“What the fuck was this thing?”

Jess… or whatever… approached the bed. I tried to get up, but found my wrists and ankles cuffed to the bed legs. I struggled and pulled, but the metal wasn’t bending. Jess crawled onto the bed, and straddled me. She dragged her nail down my chest, opening the skin and exposing my rib cage.

Crystal was now present, watching with a smile.

Jess pulled my chest apart, and the last thing I remember before passing out, was her biting into my still-beating heart.

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Hey there, I just wanted to take a moment to thank you all for reading my horror stories. If you’re interested in more bone-chilling tales, please feel free to check out my website. I’m still getting used to blogging, but I hope you’ll enjoy them just as much as I enjoyed writing them. Thanks again!