In the late summer, just before school started, Veronica always went to the state fair with her friends. This year she set off for the fair early one hot, summer morning with her friends, Jane and Diane. They laughed and talked all the two hour ride to get there. Arriving at the fair, they joined the crowd of people circling the dusty midway lined with food stands, rides, and other amusements. By late afternoon, the three of them were getting bored, until they stumbled across a freak show exhibit. They decided to try it and went inside the patched tent. It was dark inside. People were all seated, and the three girls talked among themselves until the show finally began. A single blue light shone on a black curtain that parted and out came the showmen. He introduced himself, and began by explaining that throughout history there have been some men wanting to understand the darker things in life that others wouldn't risk their reputations or lives for. Then he began saying how he had spent most of his life studding black magic. In doing so he said he had made many enemies from the Christian church but also succeeded in summoning a demon from hell to aid his fight against them. "But in time the demon became too powerful that I was f***ed to lock him in a cage." I failed in my attempts in trying to send the demon back to the depths of hell from which it came." "The only way to tame the demon was to feed it human scraps, or young sexually mature girls," The showmen said in a ghoulish chuckle. "Some have even died or went insane after laying eyes upon it!" Suddenly he announced that it was time to bring out the Demon From Hell. And with that statement, he went inside the curtain. For several minutes we sat in silence. An Eerie, chilling silence that was more frightening than if there had been sounds. Then there were sounds, like scratching, then came a few hollow thumping noises. Then a faint green light shone on a caged figure. There were shocked gasps from the audience. I could see something moving in the dark shadows on the stage. I could barely make out the creatures outline figure. It was tall, b**stly, and apelike. It's head was sunken into its shoulders. Its arms were long, and the hands had long sharp pointed claws, and it waved them around as though searching for something. The demon let out a hellish screeching roar. It was a demonic scream of rage. Then suddenly, the single beam of green light used to only stare at the demon went out like an extinguished flame. Then there was a loud voice screaming for everyone to run. Veronica and her two friends all ran outside with the crowd. But after a few tense moments the horror of what we had seen had worn away. We eventually gained back out senses and realized that it was all just a show. As we saw the other people who watched the show with us began to laugh to themselves and with their friends. "It was all only a cheap-makeshift, theatrical trick to scare us," Veronica said to her friends. The group of friends were still laughing and talking among themselves about the freak show performance. About the real essence of terror, to be able to picture in our own minds the most horrible of creatures, but not really being able to see them appear. Not actually fearing what comes into our view but WHAT might come into our view. When suddenly we came across a small passage way that we hadn't noticed before. Veronica suggested they follow it to see what was at the end. The passage twisted around behind the canvas tents until it ended at a huge sign advertising something called The Tunnel of Terror. The sign showed a small boat traveling along a dark canal. Along one side of the canal was a scene with wax figures showing someone being guillotined. "Creepy," Jane said. "I wouldn't go in there." Veronica wasn't sure what put the idea into her head, but for some unknown reason she wanted to ride through the Tunnel of Terror. Maybe it was that the tunnel looked cool and she was weary of the searing heat of the midway, or the fact that its darkness was appealing to the mystic side of her. Or maybe it was that she was looking for something new in her boring life, some new experience that would be strange and different. "Anybody dare me to go in?" she asked. "Are you crazy?" Diane said. "I dare you," Jane said. "All right, I'll go," Veronica announced bravely. "I suppose you two are afraid?" "We'll pay for your way, right, Diane?" Jane said. "But a group of hot guys couldn't drag me in there." The tree walked up the ticket booth. A grizzled old man sat in it, looking over a porn magazine. "One, please," Veronica said. "Your going in alone, are you?" the old man asked, staring at her through his bushy eyebrows. "I'm not afraid," Veronica said. "Where do I catch the boat?" The old man motioned her behind the ticket booth. As she went around, Diane and Jane started to follow. "No," the old man said, "You can't go any further. You didn't buy tickets." Veronica tried to sound cheerful as she yelled and waved good-bye to her friends. But the boat was old and creaking, and she shivered as she slipped into the moldy, leather seat. The old man pulled a wooden handle beside the canal that started a gear in motion. Veronica was startled by the noise and turned around to look at him. His mouth was set in a wide grin. Then, suddenly, she saw nothing; the boat had glided into pitch-black darkness. In the dark, Veronica noticed that her sense of hearing became very keen. There was the creaking drag of the boat along the canal. There was the slobbering lap of the water against the sides of the boat. Then there was a shriek that made her heart jump to her throat. A second after the shriek, a spotlight flashed on. Two feet in front of the boat was a man stretched out on a torture rack, his arms tearing from their sockets. Veronica could see the red bl**d oozing from his skin. She closed her eyes and buried her face in her hands. How much longer would this last? The boat jerked around a sharp turn. Then the shriek Veronica heard was her own. A slimy mass had just passed over her face. She crouched down in the boat, feeling sick to her stomach. If she could stay like this until the trip was over, maybe she could stand it. Why did she ever want to come in here, she asked herself. She would give anything to be out in the bright sunlight with her friends. There was a rumbling sound in front of her. Then Veronica heard a sharp hit of metal against wood. She peeked from between her hands. It was the guillotine scene. A bl**dy head rolled from the victim's neck stump into a bucket next to the guillotine's sharp blade. She braced herself for the next scene as the boat took another sickening, sharp turn. She felt something wet, something fury, slip around her shoulders. She tried to contain her screams. It would go away, she told herself, just like the slimy mass before. But the wet fur seemed to press closer to her. She felt a weight get into the boat beside her. Veronica felt claw like hands ripping the thin straps of her tank top off. Then she was pushed down across the seats of the boat, and felt her hot shorts being pulled off from her silky body. She screamed and screamed and screamed. . . . Outside, Jane and Diane were laughing about the noises coming from inside the Tunnel of Terror. They could see that the old man was enjoying it too. He leered at them, with a strange grin on his face. But then, the noise from the Tunnel of Terror seemed to change. The screaming became constant, taking on a shrill tone of madness. The two girls looked at each other uneasily. Jane walked up to the old man's ticket booth. "Will she be coming out soon?" she asked him. "In another few minutes," he answered, still grinning. "Getting her money's worth, ain't she?" Jane walked back to where Diane stood at the end of the canal. "I don't like it. I wish she would come out." Just then the air was split with a cry of terror so awful the two girls shuddered at the sound of it. "Get her out of there!" Jane said, running up to the old man. "Nothing I can do," he said. The screaming went on in the tunnel. It was hysterical now. Then a louder sound pierced the air. An announcement was being made over the intercom of the fair grounds. "Ladies and gentlemen. It is extremely important that you all stay calm and don't panic." THE DEMON FROM HELL has escaped from the freak show. Several bystanders have already been found slain. Please find a safe place to hide until it has been recaptured. Don't go anywhere alone. Let me repeat again, don't panic." But the announcement came too late for Veronica. Her friends watched as she glided out of the Tunnel of Terror. Her naked body was sprawled out across the boat seats. She was being ****d by THE DEMON FROM HELL.

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