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Bernie Jackson found his daughter wrapped up in her sheets, whimpering mutedly as her pillow was shoved into her mouth. He shook her awake, and she lashed out, kicking him in the rib cage with her one free foot.

Melody opened her eyes wide, and stared at him as though in terror. A moment later the girl relaxed her expression as the image of her father, and not a saliva-producing Wolf, was standing over her.

“I'm going to let that slide because you seemed to have been in the middle of being eaten by a monster.” He was clutching his midsection as if from pain, the squashed remnants of a soft brown cookie squeezing between his fingers as though dough from a pasta machine.

“What time is it?” she asked, yawning. She leaned over to switch on her lamp.

“Two A.M.-ish,” he said.

She leaned on her elbows and shook her head at him. “Cookies at this time of night?” she scolded.

“Midnight snack,” he defended. “It's a thing.”

“Just don't get crumbs in my bed,” she said, putting on her glasses.

“I won't if you don't give me any more sleepy-time roundhouse kicks.”

“Promise,” she said, and held up her hand, clearly showing him her fingers were crossed. She reached for her lamp again and paused. “Wait. You came in here to check on me?”


“But you first went to the kitchen to grab a cookie? Even though I was screaming in terror?”

“To be fair,” he said, “I started keeping a bag next to my bed.”

Melody's face turned to a drowsy grimace, but then relaxed. Finding that answer acceptable, she finally switched off the light and set her glasses on her nightstand.

“So,” Bernie said, “I guess you're okay, then?”

“Goodnight, Dad,” she said.

“You don't want to talk about it?”

“I think I hear Mom calling you.”

Bernie sighed. “You're making that up,” he said. “But don't let it ever be said that Bernie Jackson can't take a hint.”

He turned, bid his daughter goodnight once again, and closed the door behind him.

Melody opened her eyes and stared into the darkness. It had been a long time since she had had a nightmare. Though when she did it was usually someone trying to break into the house, or finding the bathtub had been overflowing for hours and the flood waters were ruining her First Edition Dickens collection. She wished she knew what had triggered such a horrific dream, although she suspected the leftover mac and cheese might have been slightly past its prime.

“Dad!” Melody called out.

Bernie opened the door quickly as though he had been waiting on the other side of it. “Yes, Darlin',” he said.

There was a pause, and finally Melody said, “Nothing.”

Bernie smiled at her, and closed the door.

Melody listened for the sounds of his footfalls upon the squeaky floorboards. Annoying as it was, she had to admit to herself it was nice to know that her father would still come running if she were distressed. However, she didn't want him to make a habit of it publicly.

It Happened on Lafayette Street

Season One: Episode One

Melody Jackson

vs. The Hound from Hell

by BMB Johnson

Scene 1

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