Prey trying to escape the monsters chasing it.
|Blurring colors fall behind her as she runs. Blonde hair whipping behind her, tangled with dirt, leaves and grass. The new blue sundress torn and smudged with the filth of the woodland floor. They are coming, their panting breaths close in. A tree root jumps up and catches her foot and she tumbles. More smudges on her dress and face. Their barks of laughter float up behind her.
"Accept defeat," a voice in her head whispers. "Stop fighting the inevitable."
Her fingers claw into the damp soil, dirt collecting under her nails. She bolts up and continues her run with renewed vengeance. She will not let them win. Up ahead the moon shines down through the trees and illuminates an abandoned barn. The rusty bolts groan in protest as she struggles to open the door. The smell of mouldy hay and diseased water is pungent in the air. Her lungs seize in a coughing fit.
Rusted hooks, tools and chains hang everywhere. They sway like hangmen in the breeze. Clattering together the chains chime a melancholy song no one understands but her.
A rotten ladder leans against the loft, a torn stained blanket rests over the railing. Putting her foot up high to compensate for two missing rungs she begins to pull herself up the ladder. The third step from the top gives way and a scream is ripped from her throat as she almost plummets. She catches herself, splinters tearing into her flesh and she bleeds. Again.
The echo of the haunting carnival music and the laughter of children torment her memories. Bile threatens to rise up and she has to push them away. Later she can remember, right now she needs sanctuary. She grabs the tattered blanket and curls it around her.
The door hinges squeal again and her world shatters again as terror takes a hold of her by the throat. The ladder moves, trembling under the pressure of their weight. One dark head peers over the floor. Cold black eyes scan the loft and settle on her. His dry broken lips spread into a cold smile, exposing rotten yellow teeth. She scrambles to a sitting position and scoots as far away as she can.
Two more bodies join the first, they lick their lips, ready to devour her. They form a semi-circle and pace around her, she stands, keeping her front to them, then backs up as far as she can. Pressed against the weathered rail looking down her soul breaks more. Hope dies a slow, bloody death. Nowhere to go. A dirty rough hand reaches out and strokes her muddy cheek. Two paths streaked from her tears show her once beautiful porcelain skin.
The hunter pounces and the prey scatters away. The railing gives way with an ear-splitting crack. Time for a soft mew of surprise then nothing. Nothing but the clatter of chains swaying. Blue eyes forever frozen open, never seeing. Her shadow swaying against the wall.