The summer of 2016 was unseasonably warm in northern England and Alistair Craddick a ruddy cheeked eight year old is outside enjoying the sun.
His favourite place to play is down by a creek that runs behind the house that he shares with his mother Beatrice.
Alistair sometimes hangs out with a couple of school friends but today he is on his lonesome.
A position that he prefers.
Some of the kids at his School are cruel to Alistair calling him nasty names like creep,weirdo,crybaby and mummy’s boy.
But Alistair is none of these things he is just a little shy and a bit different.
This morning he is collecting tadpoles and frogs from the creek and putting them in a jar to take home to cut open with a sharp pocket knife that he nicked from a neighbors shed a few months back.
Every time Alistair uses the knife he thinks about the kids who are mean to him and wishes that he could get some payback and hopefully one day he will.
The dark thoughts that are swirling around his brain has made him very hungry very hungry indeed.
So he puts the lid on the glass jar and heads towards home ;I wonder what mummy has made for lunch?’
They say that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree and in Alistair’s case the saying is somewhat true.
He likes to read and watch cricket on the telly just like his daddy did before he left home when Alistair was five.
And even though he want admit it he is a bit like his mother having a mean streak and a liking for all kinds of fatty foods.
Beatrice Craddick is a built like a brick outhouse with a temper that could scare the paint from the walls.
She has been described as a cross between nurse Ratched and Agatha Trunchbull a character in the movie Matilda.
And if you ever have the misfortune to meet her you will find it hard to disagree.
Alistair is well aware that his mother can be a little moody so he sneaks inside on tippy toes to try and avoid her wrath but a creaking floorboard gives him away’Is that you Alistair?
‘I hope that you have taken your shoes off because you know that i hate dirt in the house’
Her son cowers at her voice because he knows that she hasn’t finished yet’What are you hiding behind your back Alistair? Don’t you dare tell me that it is another jar of critters because you know what happened last time’
Alistair begins to shake uncontrollably because he remembers all too well what happened the last time he made his mother upset.
His body still hurts from the beating she gave him with a wooden spoon before throwing him in a heap beneath the stairwell.
Alistair looks down at his sneakers afraid to meet her eye then he sneaks a quick look over to the stairwell’Please mummy not the stairwell you know i can’t breathe in there plus last time i saw a cockroach as big as a bird’
‘Stop your whining you little shit before i skin you alive and feed your bones to the dog’
Alistair tries to run but his mother grabs him by the scruff of the neck and drags him to the cupboard door and shoves him inside the stairwell.
The door is locked and Alistair is now in complete darkness with nothing but a jar of critters and his thoughts for company.
Beatrice spends the rest of the day watching the soaps on TV as she devours glass after glass of her favorite red.
The wine muddles her mind and scrambles any rational thoughts until she reaches the point of no return.
Her boyfriend Joe has been nagging her for weeks about moving in with her and Alistair.
But Joe and Alistair have never got along so Beatrice knows that if she is to live happily ever after with Joe than her annoying son will have to disappear forever.
She crushes ten sleeping tablets into a glass of water unlocks the cupboard beneath the stairwell and hands the concoction to her son which the gulps down’Goodbye little one i shall see you again when i to reach the other side’
Alistair has no idea what his loopy mother is talking about but he smiles ‘Goodbye mummy’ than he closes his eyes and drifts into an eternal sleep.
But before he departs this world he whispers’Why mummy why? All i ever wanted was love’
Alistair’s body might of left us but his lost lonely soul is still very much alive.
Six months later
Beatrice Craddick the she devil who murdered her own son and had him entombed beneath the stairwell in her home is a troubled being because her diabolical deed is coming back to haunt her.
A week after she killed her son Beatrice she had a brick wall built to completely seal the stairwell and vanish any thoughts of her son forever.
But yesterday while she was doing some housework Beatrice almost died of fright when she heard a strange noise coming from the stairwell.
Now this morning as she prepares breakfast the same noise emits from her sons final resting place.
She slowly walks over to the stairwell and places an ear to the brick work.
Scritch scratch scritch scratch scritch scratch.
Beatrice thinks that a cat or maybe a hedgehog has somehow found a way into the stairwell and is trying to get out but she isn’t quite sure so she has another listen’Why did you kill me mummy?I always tried to be a good little boy so why mummy why?’
Beatrice let out a strangled yelp before her eyes rolled back in her head than she landed on the floor with a thud that shook the foundations.
In the stairwell Alistair’s tormented soul twirls and twists in midair whilst beneath him a skeletal finger moves back and forth along the inside of the confined space.
Scritch scratch scritch scratch scritch scratch
Joe Brummel,Beatrice’s dead beat boyfriend arrives home to find her sprawled over the living room floor.
He slaps her face a few times and soon after Beatrice comes around’What happened Beatrice did you have a dizzy spell?’
Beatrice is struck mute so all she can do is point a trembling hand towards the stairwell’What do you mean Beatrice tell me right this minute’
Receiving nothing but a strangled grunt in response Joe loses his temper and gives Beatrice a few savages kicks before storming out in a rage.
Beatrice crawls over to the stairwell and whispers’I am sorry Alistair,can you ever forgive me?’She puts her ear against the cold brick and listens but all she hears is
Scritch scratch scritch scratch scratch scratch
Sobbing in pain and regret she goes into the kitchen to make herself a cup of tea and to give herself a few quite moments to think.
As she stirs a sugar cube into her cuppa the scratching in the stairwell gets louder and more intense.
Beatrice covers her ears in an attempt to block out the noise but the scratching from the stairwell just gets louder and louder.
In utter torment Beatrice scurries over to the stairwell carrying the teaspoon she used to stir her tea and begins to scrape at the mortar between the bricks.
For hours she scrapes away until her knuckles bleed and her shoulders ache but she makes little headway.
Behind the brick wall only four foot away Alistair’s bones jangle and jump as his soul dances around himknowing that a new beginning is nigh.
Beatrice is still scraping furiously at the mortar when an angry voice stops her in her tracks’What are you doing you silly cow?’
Joe stands in the middle of the room with eyes ablaze in anger and Beatrice has had enough of his bullshit’What does it look like you stupid prick i am trying to reach my son’
Joe just laughs’Hahaha what will you do then call the police?’
But Beatrice isn’t backing down ‘Pack your bags Joe and get the fuck out of my house and don’t come back’
‘I am going to the pub’Joe retorts’And when i return i will teach you a lesson that you will never forget’
In the stairwell Alistair’s bones are still doing the merry dance but now both of his bony hands scratch the walls of his prison at a furious rate.
As soon as her arsehole boyfriend leaves Beatrice gathers up all of his clothes and belongings and throws everything out onto the front lawn.
Than she rings the local locksmith to have the locks changed.
Beatrice sobs tears of pain and sorrow knowing that she wasn’t a very good mother to her son.
Than committing the ultimate sin and killing her own flesh and blood and entombing him in the stairwell.
How could she have been so mean and stupid?
Six hours later Joe arrives home in a good mood having won a meat tray and $500 on the poker machines.
But his mood soon turns sour when he notices his stuff strewn all over the front grass.
‘What in the fuck?’
His blood is boiling as he approaches the front door and when his key fails to work he goes ballistic screaming obscenities while he kicks repeatedly at the door.
In the stairwell Alistair’s soul twists and twirls in anger at the commotion.
Twirling counter clockwise the angry soul whips up the contents of the glass jar that Alistair was carrying on the day that he was murdered and one hundred tadpole and frog husks plus an assortment of flies and cockroaches that have littered the stairwell fly through a small gap made by Beatrice’s teaspoon and Alistair’s finger tips and descend on Joe like a biblical plague.
Joe is still swearing and shaking his fists when he is forever silenced when the horde of insects enter his mouth before he has the sense to shut it.
Beatrice rushes to the stairwell as the brick wall begins to crumble and fall.
A bony hand emerges first quickly followed by a skeleton in a somewhat human form.
Beatrice screams in total horror when she recognizes the being as her son Alistair.
‘Hello mummy have you missed me?’
Keep an eye out for part two coming soon