Horror Setting: Dollhouse

Horror Setting: Dollhouse

A Story by Ciara Di Salle

inspired by Catwoman: Dollhouse, a project for my writing class


The house was severed, split in two. It was held together only by hinges and thin, flimsy plywood. It was a dollhouse of fine craftsmanship. In a room within the stunning cross-sectional, an elegant sofa lay askew, with one of the dolls splayed out across it. The detail was stunning, even when mangled and out of place. The warm purple upholstery seemed to embrace the cool, smooth tones of the doll’s skin, which was verging on blue. She appeared to have been dropped like the plaything of a careless child, and had since been undisturbed, untouched. The doll sat slumped in her position, head lolled out to the side allowing brilliant red locks to swirl in thick waves along her prominent collarbones. Her eyes were placid, eternally gazing straight ahead. 

The next synthetic room appeared to be the scene of a party, well suited to the rooms extravagant size and decor. It resembled a ballroom, luscious curtains and tapestries of blood red velvet draped across majestic brass rods against floor-to-ceiling windows. Clusters of dolls stood all over the room, permanently engaged in riveting conversation. Each body was dressed for a black tie affair, with gorgeous fabrics draped across their slender frames. The dolls were supported by shining, silver stands so as not to collapse. 

Shattered glass littered the carpets, where martini glasses had slipped from hands in decay. Even still, each doll remained unfazed, although the jaws of one or two had gone limp,leaving their mouths ajar. 3 crystal and gold chandeliers cast shadows across their faces, darkening their under-eyes and elongating their features, aging perfection. 

The dazzling lights were a strange sight in the neighborhood at 2AM. Although by now the area had been taped off and whirling siren lights of blue and red brought motion and life to the house, neighbors began to appear in their doorways. People gathered at the scene as first responders finished covering the upper levels in black tarp. Civilian gasps echoed against the 50-foot display as a crowd grew, and sobs could be heard not too far off. As I drew nearer to the severed home bathrobe clad, curiosity overwhelmed me. Had the house been cut in half for a holiday attraction? Was it a show room? The crowds and poplar trees shrouded the attraction from my view. 

I hastily rushed up to what seemed to be an oversized dollhouse, looming over the gathered neighbors. As I reached the police tape, my stomach began to turn. Against the house rested a sign, that in red cursive read “Play with the pretty, pretty dolls!” Another of the party goers jaws went slack with a sickly noise of muscle release, and then silent hanging. I bent over to throw up as blood began to drip from his chilled blue lips. 

© 2013 Ciara Di Salle

Author's Note

Ciara Di Salle
Only draft 2, some small grammar edits to make still

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Added on October 5, 2013
Last Updated on October 5, 2013
Tags: dolls, horror, setting, vague, illusion, death


Ciara Di Salle
Ciara Di Salle


My name is Ciara, I am 17 years old. I am an artist, a student, and a writer. I am currently working on my first novel. I love Doctor Who, Sherlock, Harry Potter, Star Wars, Torchwood, Supernatural.. more..