September '17 - Vampire Valley (Short Story).
boy is lost within Vampire Valley as
nightfall draws in. As the sun goes down and
the weather takes a turn for the worse,
hunters are on the prowl and it's not long
before the child's fear and imagination takes
over believing that danger lurks around every
corner. Not all of the dangers are within his
imagination however so it's imperative for
him to find a safe place to hide. In the
meantime the boy's frantic mother searches
the valley knowing all too well the life and
death risk she is taking. This story is told
from the point of view of the child.
* * *
remember that fateful day as though it were
yesterday yet I was no more than a mere child
when my life almost came to an end. The
fragility of life comes all the more apparent
when something as simple as getting separated
from my mother for a few hours nearly caused
my existence to cease. I was alone that day
with only my wits to help me survive as I
wandered alone within Vampire Valley.
with the inevitable panic as I rushed around
frantically calling out to my mother hoping
she was within earshot.
I screeched at the top of my voice causing my
throat to become sore, "Mummy!"
darkening sky above appeared to spin and my
breath grew shallow while I tried in vain to
attract help. The dirt ground beneath me
crunched as the gravel slid against my shoes
and the bare trees offered no protection
against the elements. My shoulders hunched
from the cold and it was sure to rain as the
grey sky darkened further.
I yelled before stopping mid-sentence hearing
a rustle within the thicket.
be my mother? I wondered, is my ordeal over?
Am I rescued? Maybe it was something else,
perhaps a monster on the hunt with me as its
prey. I didn't want to wait around to find
out if I was being stalked so instead ran as
fast as my legs could carry me practically
slipping against the loose ground. My
breathing was fast, my belly ached with each
breath, but it was essential that I did not
slow, even for a moment, until I reached
somewhere safe. I could feel raindrops
starting to fall.
I ran on
and on, as fast as I could, but could still
hear sounds behind me. The sounds of
breathing, the sounds of snapping twigs and
the sounds of snarling creatures. The sounds
echoed throughout my mind, causing me to feel
giddy, filling my head with panic, and it
wasn't long before they surrounded me. I
could see nothing, just the trees among the
darkening sky illuminated by the full moon.
But I knew of the reputation of Vampire
Valley and the monsters that hunted at night.
They were ruthless killers and could be
hiding all around me luring me into a trap.
in a heap with total exhaustion not being
able to run any further while panting heavily
trying to regain my breath. I sensed movement
from behind but the moment I turned and saw
nothing the feeling diminished only to be
replaced by sensing more movement behind. My
imagination was playing tricks upon me but my
eyes were not so easily fooled.
sound of a bird swooping from the thicket
both startled me and filled my heart with
relief. I clearly wasn't being stalked but
within a flash my imagination took over again
and I wondered as to what had startled the
just a hint of a smile of relief I spotted my
eye on a dilapidated shack among the trees,
not long for this world but sturdy enough for
temporary shelter. My ankle twinged as I
jumped to my feet but ignoring the pain I
hobbled as fast as I could towards the shack
practically diving inside. Swiftly I slid
across the creaky wooden floorboards then
huddled in the corner hugging myself for
warmth and to self comfort my shattered
long before the sky darkened further, causing
the already crisp air to bite, as nightfall
fell. The rain poured heavily tapping against
of what remained of the tin roof of my
shelter, yet it barely covered the sound of
my own breath that croaked with each
were poised listening intently at the sound
of something approach but with the sound of
the pouring rain ricocheting from the
dilapidated shack it was difficult to know
whether it was my imagination playing tricks
again. Maybe I had been lured into a trap
after all for there was no escape from my
me a while to reach the conclusion that it
wasn't my imagination and footsteps were
actually making their approach. I held my
breath while my body shook as I saw the
silhouette of a figure standing within the
open doorway. It was difficult to see clearly
within the partial moonlight. It was a woman
wearing Victorian clothing shaking raindrops
from an umbrella as she entered. A stench of
death oozed from her pours filling the shack
with the aroma of fresh blood. The woman
looked down at me, grinning widely, revealing
her razor sharp fangs that appeared to glow
within the near darkness.
I called out jumping to my feet and rushing
over to her.
hugged me tightly as tears fell from my eyes.
I was safe once more.
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