Happy spooky day!
It’s my favorite holiday. I LOVE Halloween.
What are you going to be for Halloween? I’m a cactus.
She woke with a choked gasp, her fingers clawing at her throat, before she fell back into her pillows, realizing that she was still in her bed. She waited for her heartbeat to settle, gloomily accepting that she likely wouldn’t be able to go back to sleep. She curled up and tried to get warmer beneath the mound of blankets, the nightmare already slipping her mind.
She was in a daze, in that quiet space between waking and sleeping, when she heard a soft creak, like footsteps on old floorboards. It must’ve been imagined. It must’ve been the first whispers of a dream. But she was alert now, listening and tense beneath the sheets, her eyes still closed.
What am I doing? she thought, with a short burst of laughter that more resembled a sigh.
A door slammed.
The footsteps came faster. Quicker. Urgent.
She rose slowly out of bed, wrapping a quilt around her shoulders, letting it drag on the floor behind her. She went downstairs, listening looking terrified. She flicked on the light, prepared to find something sinister and relaxed a bit when there was nothing. She was about to go back upstairs, to write off the sounds as figments of her imagination, when she heard a voice in her bedroom and froze, her foot hovering over the stair.
The sound wasn’t in a language she could recognize. It flickered at the edges of her mind like she should’ve been able to comprehend it. Yet it didn’t sound completely right, either. Something was off. A hissing undertone that wasn’t possible on the human tongue.
She climbed up the stairs, softly, slowly, coiled up and ready to fight or flee as soon as the cue was given. She flipped the light switch in the hall. She breathed a soft curse as light didn’t flood the hall. A moment later, the light at her back from the kitchen plunged into darkness, leaving nothing but shadows and silvered moonlight.
The quilt drifted to the floor behind her as she used touch and memory to find the hall closet. She pulled out a flashlight, praying it to work as she switched it on, and a dull glow filled the hall.
She followed the sound of the whispers, the sound rising and falling in chaotic waves, to her bedroom. To her bed.
She fell to her knees and pressed her face to the floor. Her hand shook against her will as she directed the flashlight beam underneath the bed.
The darkness seemed to swallow the light.
A solid mass of shadows.
Roiling and swallowing and shuddering.
She squinted and pressed closer. It couldn’t be. The light. The darkness. Her imagination. Her eyes. They were lying.
Her eyes widened.
A gasp escaped her lips. What did she see? What did she see?
She scrambled backward, lunged for the door.
Something pulled her back.
Something took her.
© ARACHNID WEAVER 2018