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Web design by Daniel James Wilkinson

"Behind the X"


© 2016 Palace Projects Darren Banks Copyright © belongs to Palace Projects and the artists. To reproduce text and images please contact Darren Banks


Poster by Laura Lancaster

Text by Ben Robinson


An unnamed young girl runs across a Swiss hillside, on her way to catch a school bus. The other girls all pile on board but she’s the one who’s been left behind, all alone. We know the hills are Swiss because the national flag billows in the breeze. Also billowing about are her short skirts and her flimsy white shirt, and she looks awfully exposed up there on the hill as the bus speeds away without her.


No-one else is around. She’s shivering cold and she doesn’t know where else to go. The pretty young thing must be a stranger round here, and isn’t it always just the worst thing ever to be late on your first day at school? Out of sheer desperation she jogs up a lonely path to a strange, derelict house. Her hair is blowing all over the place and she’s panicking.


“Hello? Hello? Is anyone home?” Someone in the house is rattling chains. A cuckoo clock ticks. “I’m a foreigner and I’m lost.”


Such a lonely silent old house is surely no place to make statements like this, but the girl is already playing her role of victim to perfection. No matter what sounds strike up out of the house’s darkness, she’s destined to explore and peek around corners, trying to find the source of the terrible fear that she feels.


Then the moment we all knew would be coming, as she’s suddenly attacked by an unseen assailant. The flex of chain is wrapped around her neck to suffocate her, and a pair of scissors starts to hack away at her hand. Now all she can do is scream and try to run away, lost on a lonely hillside in a strange house with the blade still hanging out of her hand.


She recovers enough of her sense to at least take some sort of initiative, if only to prolong her agony for a few more frames. Our unnamed heroine makes a last desperate dash along the banks of the river, her off-screen attacker hot on her heels. She dashes along the pathway around the river’s edge, screaming all the while, finally arriving at a glass box within the teeming currents. Our heroine is still screaming and the blade comes back for her, stabbing her in the belly and spattering red all over her white shirt. Her head is pushed back against the window and shatters the glass. The murderer throws her corpse into the water without ceremony.


Fade out.