Another nightmare! The same nightmare as the night before, and the night before that. Always the same spine chilling jingle wafting in through the window, enticing my Little Emily away from her tea party, enticing her away with images of ice cream cones with chocolate flakes and sprinkles. She had ran from big ted and Jemima, as they giggle innocently and joked on the television set, and ran towards the happy music. Why i left the door unlocked is still a mystery to me now – one i will never ever forget, although in my defence, back then everybody left their front doors open. I thought she was safe . Why the fuck would somebody do that to a child? To my child! She blamed me, my wife i mean , and hell i blamed myself too. I was meant to be watching her, not tinkering on that god damned car in the garage, my mind on the weekend racing.
Christ, that god awful tune! like a worm in my ear, burrowing deeper and deeper. It won’t go away, it never has in the ten years Emily has been gone, and i doubt it ever will.
Greensleeves, my tormentor, my punishment for being such a lousy father and husband. Every summer I hear that sneering music in my street, or over neighbours hedge rows, and every summer I break down. A scab that never heals, a wound that is forever being opened, my heart can take no more.
The driver told police that he heard voices in his head all day, mumbling demons that wouldn’t leave him alone, squeezing his brain, wringing his thoughts like a sponge. He fought them off as long as he could, but just couldn’t shake them all. They followed him, sneaky little bastards disguised as children demanding that he obeyed them, Sneaky little red eyed demons with pointy teeth, and clawing hands demanding free ice cream, with chocolate flakes, and smarties and sprinkles! “more chocolate flakes, more!”
When they arrested him in the street, he was screaming hysterically leaning out the Van window hatch. leering over Emily’s lifeless body. She had only asked for more flakes in her ice cream
“More Flakes!”he was screaming oh i’ll give give you more fecking flakes alright ya red eyed bastards!” he was screaming clutching his temples, and slapping his head.
His demons had fled the scene screaming by the time the police arrived, but not before he had watched their eyeballs popping as he pushed the frozen chocolate treats deep into their sockets! All that had remained of the scurrying demons on the grass by the ice cream van was my sweet little Emily, clutching her squished ice cream cone in her tightly fisted palm, the ice cream melting between her dead fingers, and two frozen milk chocolate flakes protruding from her eyeless sockets.
Carbon monoxide poisoning, that’s what they said, a faulty ice cream machine, poor ventilation, and a sick old man, who hated children.