Insincere Apology Monster

As a child, his mother had told him there was an Insincere Apology Monster.  He’d believed her too.  Come on, she was his mom and mom’s didn’t lie.  The IAM as he had come to think of it, was said to stalk people who offered insincere apologies.  Once they had said so many, they snatched them, never letting them back into the world again.

He’d grown out of the belief as a teenager.  Learning that moms did lie once in a while and monsters only existed in the minds of “creative people.”  He was not a creative person.  He was a logical person and in the logical world, monsters didn’t exist.

As an investment broker, and a crooked one at that, the insincere apology followed by an explanation that not all investments panned out, especially in today’s market were tools of the trade.  He had mastered the technique, his own mother, God rest her soul, would believe his insincere apologies now.  He’d gotten very good at it and it made people feel better to know that he was apologizing, sincerely, for their unfortunately financial downturn.  Today, it had worked on two old people who had lost most of their retirement for his new yacht.

That night, as he downed a couple of beers while watching the TV, a noise caught his attention.  Something was moving just beyond his front window, slinking through the dark.  He peeked out the shade, but saw nothing except darkness.  Wait!  A movement by the bush.  Someone was trying to break into his house.  He grabbed a shotgun that he kept by the door just for these occasions and stepped outside.  The bush moved again.

I’ve got a gun!  He shouted lamely at the movement.  It stopped.  A noise escaped from the area of the bushes.  It was almost like a laugh.  He wondered if the burglar was crazy.  He ran back inside and grabbed his phone, dialing 911 as he went to his front door.  He reported the emergency.  The bushes moved some more.

He berated himself for not grabbing a flash light.  Whatever it was, it was moving closer to him.  He moved into the yard, putting distance between him and his house.  The police would catch him inside.

The person didn’t go inside.  The bushes moved, coming back towards him.  The dark was pierced by the screech of sirens and rotating lights.  The thing in the bushes leapt, slamming into him.  He dropped the shotgun and rolled to the edge of his yard.  The largest cougar he had ever seen crouched down.  His chest was bleeding from the long claws.

The deadly predator pounced again, but he was ready.  He took off running.  The squad car responding to his call couldn’t hit the breaks fast enough.  As he lay dying in the streets, he remembered his mother telling him about the IAM.  It might not exist, but karma sure was a bitch.


©Hadena James 2014

This is a work of fiction, any resemblance to persons living or dead or actual situations is completely coincidental.

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