...the BEST English-Learner's site on the 'Net!
Summary || Page 1 || Page 2 || Page 3 || Page 4 || Page 5 || Page 6 || Page 7 || Full Story || Printable || Quiz 1 || Quiz 2

The Monkey's Paw

The Monkey's Paw
by W.W. Jacobs
The 13 Best Horror Stories of All Time
The 13 Best Horror Stories of All Time

Part I - Page Three

 Continued from PREVIOUS PAGE

"If the tale about the monkey paw is not more truthful than those he has been telling us," said Herbert, as the door closed behind their guest, just in time for him to catch the last train, "we shan't make much out of it."

"Did you give him anything for it, father?" inquired Mrs. White, regarding her husband closely.

"A trifle," said he, colouring slightly. "He didn't want it, but I made him take it. And he pressed me again to throw it away."

"Likely," said Herbert, with pretended horror. "Why, we're going to be rich, and famous, and happy. Wish to be an emperor, father, to begin with; then you can't be henpecked."

He darted round the table, pursued by the maligned Mrs. White armed with an antimacassar.

Mr. White took the paw from his pocket and eyed it dubiously. "I don't know what to wish for, and that's a fact," he said, slowly. "It seems to me I've got all I want."

"If you only cleared the house, you'd be quite happy, wouldn't you?" said Herbert, with his hand on his shoulder. "Well, wish for two hundred pounds, then; that'll just do it."

His father, smiling shamefacedly at his own credulity, held up the talisman, as his son, with a solemn face somewhat marred by a wink at his mother, sat down at the piano and struck a few impressive chords.

"I wish for two hundred pounds," said the old man, distinctly.

A fine crash from the piano greeted the words, interrupted by a shuddering cry from the old man. His wife and son ran towards him.

"It moved," he cried, with a glance of disgust at the object as it lay on the floor. "As I wished, it twisted in my hands like a snake."

"Well, I don't see the money," said his son as he picked it up and placed it on the table, "and I bet I never shall."

"It must have been your fancy, father," said his wife, regarding him anxiously.

He shook his head. "Never mind, though; there's no harm done, but it gave me a shock all the same."

They sat down by the fire again while the two men finished their pipes. Outside, the wind was higher than ever, and the old man started nervously at the sound of a door banging upstairs. A silence unusual and depressing settled upon all three, which lasted until the old couple rose to retire for the night.

"I expect you'll find the cash tied up in a big bag in the middle of your bed," said Herbert, as he bade them good-night, "and something horrible squatting up on top of the wardrobe watching you as you pocket your ill-gotten gains."

He sat alone in the darkness, gazing at the dying fire, and seeing faces in it. The last face was so horrible and so simian that he gazed at it in amazement. It got so vivid that, with a little uneasy laugh, he felt on the table for a glass containing a little water to throw over it. His hand grasped the monkey's paw, and with a little shiver he wiped his hand on his coat and went up to bed.

17. Did Mr. White pay any money for the monkey's paw?
Yes. He paid a lot of money.
Yes, but only a little bit of money.
No. He stole it from Sergeant-Major Morris

18. Do the Whites believe that the monkey's paw will work?
They believe that it will work for sure.
They don't really believe.
No. They don't believe at all.

19. What is the first wish on the monkey's paw?
He wishes for a house.
He wishes for a piano.
He wishes for 200 pounds.

20. What happened when he wished?
The piano broke.
The monkey paw moved.
Mrs. White screamed.
The monkey paw changed into a snake.

21. Did the wish come true?
Yes, it did.
No, it didn't.

Continued on NEXT PAGE 

Previous Page -English-Zone.Com Main Page-
Copyright (C) Kaye Mastin Mallory / English-Zone.Com