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Not Going Home Tonight
By atfm


"I don't think I can go out there."

Scribbs stood on the doorstep of Ash's house, rooted to the spot, and looked out into the darkness doubtfully.

"Of course you can." Ash gave her a gentle but slightly impatient shove, causing Scribbs to stumble down the single step.

"No no no." With surprising agility, Scribbs leapt back into the safety of the hallway. Peeking over Ash's shoulder and out at the gloomy street, she whispered, "The axe murderer is out there to get me."

Ash gave her a wry look. "It was just a movie, Scribbs. No one's lurking in the shadows, waiting for a chance to dismember you."

Scribbs' eyes grew wide with the horror of that particular mental image. She turned on her heel and fled to the lounge.

With a resigned sigh, Ash shut the door and followed Scribbs. It seemed like she had dug a hole for herself with that comment when she had really just tried to be reasonable.

However, Ash's matter-of-factness regarding the potential dangers of a man with an axe roaming the streets didn't sit well with Scribbs. When Ash returned to the lounge, Scribbs had already tossed her coat over a chair, kicked off her boots, and made herself comfortable on the couch. The determined expression on her face aptly conveyed her intention to stay right where she was.

Still hoping to be able to spend the rest of the evening quietly on her own, reading a good book or, if she was feeling adventurous, eating crisps in bed, Ash made another attempt at convincing Scribbs that there was absolutely no need to pitch camp at her house. "You're just creeped out by the movie. If it had been a witch, you'd swear someone was trying to cast a spell on you; if it had been a monster, you'd insist that you can smell its foul breath from miles away, but because it was an axe murderer, you think someone's trying to chop you up. Proves how silly it is."

"You're too gullible, Ash. It's Halloween, the night of psychopaths."

"Actually, that's not true."

"But you can't be sure who or what is out there! Our lives might be at risk in this very moment."

"This is Middleford. We have no mad serial killers with axes here."

"How do you know that? Horror films are always set in inconspicuous small towns. Middleford's not safe. Perhaps I should move to Little Stempington," Scribbs mused.

"Little St—listen, you can't spend the night here."

"Why not?"

"Because…well, you just can't! Besides, your car's parked right in front of the house. I'll even escort you there if necessary." Ash tried to make Scribbs rise from the couch with the mere power of her thoughts, but, unsurprisingly, Scribbs didn't budge.

"I can't drive home, I drank too much."

"You had one glass of wine."

Scribbs glanced at the half-full bottle of white wine on the coffee table, and, before Ash could make a move for it, she grabbed it, raised it to her lips, and emptied it with big, noisy gulps. Wiping her mouth with the back of her hand and setting the bottle back onto the table, she looked up at Ash innocently.

Ash rolled her eyes. "Fine, you can stay. But no diag—"

Scribbs grinned and interrupted. "I know the rules."

"And absolutely no spooning."

"We'll see about that."

Ash wrinkled her forehead. It was going to be an interesting night.

The End

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