Entry for horror flash fiction (500 word max) with beasts and blood.
|Word count: 498 (max is 500)
The wolf stalked its prey through the night, mouth open and fangs gleaming. The girl sobbed and stumbled as she ran, forcing her way through the dense woods. Branches snapped, making her an easy target. In a clearing, she stopped, and the wolf crept closer, anticipating fresh blood. She sank to the ground, unable to go further. The wolf coiled its muscles and sprang, teeth ripping into her neck. The taste of blood sent the wolf into a frenzy, tearing at her flesh and gulping it down, crunching bones and licking out the tender marrow.
Stephanie woke, gasping after the vivid dream. Ominous shadows flickered on her walls, cast by the full moon which shone through the bedroom window. She turned on the lamp to banish the shadows, but the warm glow could do little to wipe away the bloody, horrific visions.
Then Stephanie sighed with relief. She remembered that her younger brother, Mark, was sleeping downstairs. He was big and gruff, but he'd do anything for his sister. When he heard about her nightmares, he volunteered to stay over. "I'll crash on the couch. Nothing's getting by me, so you can have a good night's sleep."
"You don't need to stay. I've got Rex here," Stephanie protested weakly. The dreams were more vivid than she liked to admit, and Rex was a cocker spaniel, cute but hardly protection. She breathed a sigh of relief when Mark insisted.
Snuggling back under her covers, Stephanie tried to think up a way to thank Mark. He'd probably like a home-cooked meal more than anything. Mark was a true bachelor, and hated to cook. As she drifted off, she thought about what dishes she could make that Mark would enjoy.
A low growl startled the wolf. A dog, protective of its owners, but unaware of the risk it took. With a single powerful blow, the wolf raked the dog open, leaving its heart to pump blood out onto the ground. The wolf picked the dog up in its jaws and shook it while blood sprayed around the yard, then trotted toward the dark house and the flickering blue light of a television which came from the downstairs window.
Stephanie shot up in bed. She had recognized the dog and the house, even in the dark. Rex, she thought first, and then with even greater fear, Mark! Telling herself it was only a dream, Stephanie ran downstairs, the after-image of her dream burned into her brain.
She stopped in the door to the living room, unable to accept what her eyes saw before her. Blood was smeared across the carpet, and patches of fur and flesh clung to the sliding door and the coffee table.
There was no sign of her brother. Stephanie stared at the blood and the open door. "Oh God, what happened to Mark?" she whispered.
The wolf licked its jowls clean, and trotted back through the woods, transforming as he went. No need to cook today, he thought.