The Prompt: Begin Your Story With:
"Half the names on the list had already been crossed off."
Deborah Reed 235 words
Half the names on the list had already been crossed off. The rest…mmm, the rest…
I always left the sweetest for last. It was more satisfying when they were young, when their innocence created a veil between their mind and the harsh truth staring them in the face. They did not realize yet that I was something most humans feared. It made the horror of realization that much more rewarding.
“Abigail,” I whispered, stroking her cheek with one long talon, my robe trailing along her thin arm.
The child stirred, face flushed with sleep. Her countenance contained nothing but purity as she woke slowly.
“It’s time to come home, Abigail.”
With the innocence only a child can possess, she put her small hand in mine.
“Who are you?” she asked, rousing just enough to realize I was not her mother, nor her father.
“Someone to whom you belong,” I said reassuringly.
“But what do I call you?” she asked, bare feet padding softly along the floor.
I remained silent.
“Does my mommy know you’re here?”
“Not yet, Abigail. But she will soon.”
“What do I call you?” She became more insistent, her hand tightening in mine. Already it was fading away, the purity I craved.
I ushered her into my world, the sweet scent of innocence fading as the veil dissolved and Abigail looked full in my face.
“You may call me Death, my child.”
The Prompt: Begin Your Story With:
"The entrance to the tunnel was the only way out..."
Chelsea Gouin 343 words
The entrance to the tunnel was the only way out...that phrase had been ringing in her ears since they entered the caves, the slick, oily voice that had first whispered the sinister words repeating in a never ending reprise.
Jessica glanced at Jenni, huddled in a ball near a stack of rocks in the corner. Her breathing had evened out and her shivering had dulled to an occasional shake. Jenni's leg was still jutted out awkwardly, the makeshift cast they'd constructed from their hiking gear and hoodies giving a misshapen shadow on the rocky walls.
"The entrance to the tunnel..."
"Yes, I know!" Jessica hissed, her eyes scanning the dimming light for a sign of voice's owner. No luck, the phantom continued to elude her.
Jenni and Jessica had decided to explore the caves on the edge of town on a dare...a dare neither of them remembered issuing but somehow felt compelled to complete. And it all ended with one disaster after the next. The cave-in that altered their path, their phantom taunting their journey, the mountain lion whom they narrowly escaped thanks to a discarded pocket knife, and Jenni's injury. Her leg was swollen from infection thanks to a jagged scratch.
Jessica twirled the pocket knife in her grasp... she'd have to carry Jenni down the cliff, drag her back into town...all the while fighting her own fatigue, hunger, and thirst.
"Or, you could leave her here...one flick of the blade and you're free...out the sole exit and back into fresh air..."
That voice again....Jessica shook her head to rid the whisper from her ear, screaming as fingers grasped her shoulders. She plunged the knife into the body pressed against her back with a scream. A few heavy breaths and her vision cleared to the now bloody body of Jenni.
Stumbling in horror at what she'd done, she scrambled for the light at the entrance of the cave, gasping in fresh, clean air.
"Congratulations..."the voice whispered in her ear. Glancing at the knife, Jessica saw only her own smirking reflection staring back.
You'll find some interesting stuff here... some Op Eds, some Information, Book Reviews, and More. Poke around the categories and see what ruffles your feathers... in a good way!