When the moon arose the shrieking got louder. Maudal scurries towards my bedroom with blank teary eyes, mouth agape running out of breath
"We need to check that out." He asked me, consumed with fear
"No, we don't need to. It's something we have nothing to do with."
"But what if it's father?"
"Father doesn't sound like that."
Wrapping myself back in bed I looked towards him, baggy eyed and stumped.
"Just go back to sleep you wimp."
"Shannon come on!" trying his best he rocks the bed and delivers the meanest slap a little boy could do. Getting hit by a wet noodle had never hurt so much.
"Ugh!" his frustration finally giving out, leaving me to sleep once again.
Though at first I thought I finally had a night to myself, not even a moment of silence later I hear a thunderous slam on the door. Filled with anger no doubt.
With one half of my brain already asleep I thought nothing of it. Until I realized that his room had no door.
Maudal left on his own. Unequipped and clueless.
My mind immediately left the thought of a peaceful sleep. Cold sweat ran through my clothes. There's no way he could defend himself if it was a bandit attack.
Not even I could defend myself against that!
Panic was the only thing I felt at the moment. Jumping out of my bed I started scanning for any possible object I could use for weaponry, but to no avail.
On a shelf covered in dust and cobwebs I spot an unused lamp shaped like a bottle with the actual lamp being an umbrella. Taking the lamp I promptly took the cap off and gave it a few swings.
Honestly I couldn't tell if they meant for this thing to be a weapon or not. The damn thing weighs like a car.
"It's no weapon. But it'll do." I thought to myself fully aware I might die tonight. Better than having him die.
The forest was a chill, a frozen breeze was brewing that night. I could barely see my own toes without a torch. Wherever he ran, he ran fast.
I vaguely remember the direction of the noise coming from behind the cottage. Every step I took away from the house I felt my feet starting to turn blue and freeze up.
I could turn into a snow-woman at any moment but it doesn't matter. With the light of the torch I stepped hurriedly into the bush and bramble exclaiming his name at the top of my lungs.
There was no more chance to hide. It was either I find him, or whatever the cause of the shriek found me.
I came across an opening in the forest where a rather large rock rests covered in red vines. Standing in front of it I stood like a statue trying to find any sound in the forest.
My ears were buzzing. It was quieter than space. I couldn't hear a single chirp nor croak nor creak from any direction.
Slowly I trekked around again exclaiming his name, until I heard it. That same shriek. But this time I heard two. I ran as fast as my feet could carry.
My body felt itchy, from the neck downwards it felt like needles piercing through my skin. The feeling only got worse as I approached thudding sounds from a ways into the bramble.
As I ran out of breath I could hear the voice so close it was practically whispering to me. I hear crying, no doubt in my mind that it's my brother.
My skin felt like dry sand, I started scratching my neck to my back. My body is burning. I don't know what's happening anymore.
The torch fell from my hand as I kneeled down to relieve the intense itch across my body. With what little light the torch casted I saw something on my hand.
It was red like a blood vessel and slimy. It grew. It kept growing with every scratch I did to it.
It continually regrew. I took off a part of my dress and found that it was all over me. It was searing my skin. Cutting my skin open, drawing blood. I couldn't move.
I felt it around my face, on my legs, on my back.
"Get it off! Get it off!" I shrieked loud into the sky. I'm in pain and there was no one there.
From the corner of my eye a large figure loomed over. Lanky, bloated, and dirty. It looked down at me with a sharp, piercing gaze. Rolling over was my biggest mistake. I saw it.
Its eyes, hollow. Its face was wrinkled and hollow, mouth agape with no teeth in sight.
It pulled me by the hair. With all my strength I bashed its arm with the lamp repeatedly. Clunking noises as if hitting bone was heard yet it mattered not what I did, it did not flinched.
It's over, I thought. I yelled and screeched in agony as it raised my high off the ground, opening its mouth revealing a gaping void unlike anything I've seen. I looked down into it.
From inside its mouth, it was a straight shot to its stomach. In the last moments before I closed my eyes, I witnessed hundreds of figures covered in the red vines.
Attempting to crawl their way out, crying in pain. Only to slide back into what I could only perceive to be stomach acid.
It was damp, crowded. 2 figures stood out, one a partially digested old man, and the other, a small boy that called out,
In a blink, I prayed. And disappeared.