Clockwork Wonderland contains stories from authors that see Wonderland as a place of horror where anything can happen and time runs amok. In this book you’ll find tales of murderous clockworks, insane creations, serial killers, zombies, and a blood thirsty jabberclocky. Prepare to see Wonderland as a place where all your worst nightmares come true. You may never look at classic children’s literature the same way again.
Laurel Anne Hill
With Foreword by David Watson
by Jaap Boekestein
Alice was coming. I knew our time was up when I heard the click clack of her heels echoing in the dark streets of the city. We heard those heels the first time in the capital XII and she nearly got us back then. We were lucky and escaped, just. The murderous bitch was still getting the feel of the Watch World and I was completely unsurprised she had discovered us living on the timepiece of her little slave lackey.
Never trust a rabbit. He had sold us out. The only surprise was that it took so long.
We fled, all over the dial. We tried to hide between the seconds, minutes, hours, and other denizens of the tick tock world. No luck. We ended up in VIII City, the most labyrinthine of the twelve metropolises. I had hoped to shake her off in the alleyways, but my hope was in vain. She found us.
Click clack. Diamond heels on white enamel stones.
Our time was up! I…
Oh, please forgive me. I have been rude. Allow me to introduce myself.
They call me the Joker, or the Fool sometimes. I am the Wild Card, the savior of dynasties. I am nurse, bodyguard, confidant, lover, and the Man with the Plan.
Forget me, I am nothing. Mary, she is important, the legit Queen of Hearts. I saved her the day she was born, the day her mother was beheaded. We drank the Drink Me, lots and lots of it, and ended up on Watch World, right under the nose of Alice.
The Plan was to take the crown back when Mary was old enough. We’d sneak in at night, rouse the army, and show them their true Queen of Hearts. After that, off with the heads for the whole bunch: Alice, the Hatter, March Hare, Dormouse, the Twins, and of course that damned Cheshire Cat. The White Rabbit would be pardoned for services rendered to the Crown and we would all live long and happily ever after.
No plan survives contact with the reality of the battlefield. We weren’t ready, Mary wasn’t old enough. Old enough for love, yes. Old enough to rule? I didn’t think so, and all that was moot now. I doubted Mary would rule anything ever.
Click clack. She was close now, that Alice. The alleyway was a dead end and there was no way out.
“Get behind me,” I said to Mary. “No, kiss me first.” We kissed as if it was our last kiss. It probably was.
“Love you,” she whispered. “Sweet fool.”
“Love you, my queen.”
Alice stood at the entrance of the alleyway, six feet, excluding the nine-inch diamond heels. She held a nasty whip braided with barbed wire and pieces of glass in her right hand, a MAC-10 with extended magazine and a suppressor in her left. Little girls grow up, and cruel little girls who bathe in the blood of their beheaded enemies, grow up to become evil PVC-clad Dominatrix bitches. Maybe it was a Victorian thing, the release of all those repressed feelings. I didn’t want to know what non-consensual things she did with Hatter, or that cat, or the Caterpillar.
I pulled both my Mauser C96’s and fired. I hit Alice, with both barrels, and down she went.
Bang, bang, bang, bang. Thud.
The Mausers jammed, a problem common with these types of guns. It didn’t matter, the bitch was dead. Behind my back Mary squealed in relief. Bloodlust runs in her family, I can’t deny it.
We kissed once more. The hot kiss of danger and death, victory and relief.
Mary froze and I turned to see why.
Alice wasn’t dead because over her shiny bodysuit she wore a bullet-proof jacket.
I should have gone for her head, but I am a fool. There I was, no weapons, no way out, no options.
Mary cried. I had told her tales about Alice and our worst nightmare came closer and closer. Step by step. Click clack.
Alice grinned as her whip sliced the air, full of expectation. The barrel of the MAC-10 was pointed at us.
I threw down my useless guns.
“Kill us quickly,” I begged.
“No. Certainly not.” Alice still sounded a Victorian governess, totally in control and without mercy. Stuck up bitch.
To read the full story and more Clock-inspired, Alice Horror, check out Clockwork Wonderland.