north americaeurope


amy downum
page 03:04

The dog backed away, snarling between mouthfuls of blood, my severed hand clutched in his mouth. The matches that had been held so tightly in my hand were gone; my hope was fading faster than the dying candle.

Now I clutched the candle close to my chest, along with my bleeding arm. Blood soaked my shirt, my hair, my sheets, but I was immune to the pain. All I saw were the beasts beyond the light; all I felt was the throbbing of the fear in my heart.

Fear is also an odd thing. It made me brave, brave enough to do what no mere human could do. I sprang from the bed, shrieking like a wounded animal, and leapt clean over the mass of horrible things that stalked me.

Shrieking with terror, I flew down the hallway, all the foul beasts in all of Mortanegra behind me. Then it happened. The event that I was silently praying to the undead to not happen happened; the candle died.

For a moment I stood, still as stone, my eyes fixed upon the only thing that could have saved me, and was now worthless.

I looked past the dead candle that was dripping hot wax upon my hand to the creatures that were advancing like wolves upon me. Their hungry, glowing eyes looked into mine, and then they sprang forward.

The ghost dog took my throat, the dust fiends settled for ripping my skin from my chest and arms. I screamed, I shrieked, and I fought. Creature after terrible creature piled themselves upon me, blocking off my air, and my hope, but just when a common human would have given up I prevailed. I stood, the awful monsters hanging from every limb, teeth and claws ripping bloody gouges in what little skin I had left.

From the kitchen counter I grabbed a frying pan and swung with one hand at the merciless beasts that plagued me. Screeching at the top of my lungs, I swung until the last ghoul was gone, then I turned and ran.

Down the porch steps and across the graveyard I flew. I sprawled head over heals over a broken headstone, and cried out in anguish as the nasty teeth of some horrible beast beset my leg. As I passed the ancient burial ground the spirits awoke, and joined in on the chase.

Through the forest I ran, my lungs burning and my chest heaving, all the while screaming. The things that bore down on me from the trees I flung away with the frying pan still clutched in my hand.

And then they were gone…

I realized this only when I had stumbled again over a raised root, and though I flung my hand up to shield my face from a barrage of attacks, they did not come.

Chest heaving, I peered through my blood soaked hand and past my bleeding stump into the dark forest, but not a single creature there stood. Still, I did not wait for them to come; I turned and stumbled through the forest till I came to rest in a misty clearing just outside of town. Here I could continue no longer.

No hunting cries of the dreadful beasts drifted towards me, and from this I stole hope. But not for a minute had I stood to catch my breath when a whispering voice terrified me back to the present.

“Tarry not…” whispered the voice, so close it raised the hairs on my neck. I whirled around, eyes wide and heart hammering away in my heaving chest. Not a tree stirred, nor a soul was seen.

“Run….” Whispered the disembodied voice, so faint I could barely hear it over the frantic beating of my heart. I didn’t move, nor could I, for what I was seeing rooted me to the spot.

Drifting through the trees towards me was a silvery apparition, but no such apparition had I seen before in Mortanegra. It came still nearer, floating above the ground like a phantom. A single, inaudible squeak issued from my bloody lips as the thing neared.

It was a girl, a girl who was so terrifying I had to look away, but found I could not. She came upon me, clearer than before. The shining silver dress that floated at her ankles floated right through me as she came right up, face-to-face.

Her nose almost touching mine, I looked into her empty eyes, and my body felt like ice. Only a mere inch away from my face, she opened her mouth wide, and for a moment not a sound came out, then, “RUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUN!!!!!!!!

So shocked was I that I fell over backwards, my heart beating so fast and hard it hurt. I scrambled to my feet and ran, the ghostly girl behind me still screeching in one high, unbroken note, “RUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUN!!!!!