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Saturday, 24 May 2014

Willow Creek Chapter 9

Anna stared at Andrew, her stomach sinking down into her legs as the full meaning of his words sunk in. he would only help HER get out- not Sean. Horrified, Anna wondered, yet again, what she had gotten herself into. The realization was completely missed by Sean. “Okay,” he said, hopping up from the bench- “what do we do to get out?” Andrew finally looked at him, a sly smile playing on his face. “Well,” he said slowly, as if savoring the word- “we have to find the opening.” He stopped there, watching the cogs work in Sean’s mind. Anna watched his face, worry etching itself into the creases of her mind. Why had she promised he could stay with her? She knew the answer- he had seemed, when she was in the altered state, like any other child. But now, his dark, strong energy betrayed him- he was no child, and definitely not vulnerable and innocent like he had seemed before. As if in response to her thoughts, his cold hand gripped hers suddenly hard. His head twisted around, and his wide red eyes met hers. She smiled at him weakly, but he wasn’t fooled. Reading the thoughts from her mind, his mouth pulled down at the corners, his eyes narrowing. He turned away, betrayal showing plain on his face. He dropped her hand, walking away down the sidewalk. Sean and Anna, confused, stayed rooted where they were, looking back and forth from one another, to the demon’s retreating back. “Andrew?” Anna called hesitantly, a new worry rising up from the pit of her stomach. Would he leave them there- with no way to get out? But the little demon turned back, his face now back to the little boy’s expression that had reigned for most of the time she had known him. “I’m gonna find a place for you to rest, Mommy.” He said sweetly, turning back towards the row of houses that could be seen, faintly, their windows reflecting the lights of the movie house, far down the street. Haltingly, the two left their places, and followed Andrew down the brightly lit street. Guilt rode high in Anna’s heart as she followed the little demon through the night. She knew, without question, that he had risked something precious to get her body out of the hotel. As they neared the end of the street, Andrew turned suddenly, catching the two humans by surprise. Sean tripped over his own two feet in an attempt not to knock him over. Andrew narrowly avoided being stepped on, hopping up on a tall step that led up into a tall, square, grey building. It looked like a bank- but as Andrew held the door open wide, Anna could see that it was an apartment building. A man stood at the front desk, looking out at them and interest plain on his face. “Hi, Roger,” Andrew said casually, walking up to the desk. “Hey, kiddo,” he said, looking not at Andrew, but at the man and woman who followed him. “Living people?” Roger asked, his head tilting to the side. “My friends, Andrew said, a little louder than was necessary. Roger looked down at him quickly, gauging the look in his eyes. After a moment, he seemed to decide, all at once, that it wasn’t worth it. “Need a place to hide out?” he asked politely, a wide smile replacing the earlier weedy interest. “Yes, please” Andrew said, holding his hand out. Roger dropped a key into his palm, nodding at the two humans who followed him. Andrew led them down the hallway to the elevator. “Can you hit the button?” Andrew asked Anna, turning her head to address her without looking at her. Wordless, Anna pressed the elevator button, standing back to watch as the dial worked down to the bottom floor. There were 10 floors; the elevator worked down from 9, stopping briefly at 3. Suddenly, Anna felt Andrew’s cold hand slide into hers again. Sean, standing behind them, shifted his weight from foot to foot. He wasn’t sure how much he liked the attachment that was plain between the two.
The elevator slid open, and as they loaded, Anna crushed herself into the far right corner- for there, leaning against the wall, looking up at her own reflection, was the bleeding woman from the bath tub. Her hash tag wrists still dripped, steadily onto the floor. “hi.” Andrew said softly, staring up at the naked, bleeding woman. She glanced down quickly, giving him a withering stare. Without answering, she returned to studying her own reflection above her. Sean, his forehead wrinkling in confusion, moved to stand with Anna, curling his warm hand around hers. Her fingers were still cold- the lingering cobwebs of death still clinging to her. He lifted her hands to his lips, blowing on her fingers to warm them. She smiled at him, moving a little so that he was between herself and the dead woman. Andrew, still standing close to her, now inspected her slashed wrist. The doors slid shut, and the four were alone in the small, square elevator. Suddenly, he grabbed on to her wrist- making the dead woman jump, a screech of pain wrenching from her gut. “Andrew!” Anna shouted, darting past Sean, wrenching her hands from his. She grabbed onto Andrew’s hand, trying to make him let go of the dead woman’s wrist. But he held fast, glaring at the whimpering, tortured woman he held. “Don’t EVER,” he hissed, punctuating his words by gripping her wrist even tighter, “EVER come near my mommy again.” With this, he released her wrist. As the doors slid open for the fourth floor, the woman stumbled out into the hallway, curling up into the fetal position on the floor. “Andrew!” Anna’s voice rose and fell with distress. “Don’t ever do that!” the doors slid shut behind the dead woman, and her cries of pain died away. “She hurt you,” he said simply, staring straight ahead. “That doesn’t make that okay!” Anna cried, kneeling down beside him. As soon as she did, he turned suddenly, grabbing a piece of her hair. He stuck the end of it in his mouth, as he had done earlier- and once again, her whole body went cold. “Why do you keep doing that?” she asked, trying to pull it out of his fingers. “You’re tasty.” He said, and flashed her a megawatt smile. Her anger seemed to put him out, though- slowly, the smile receded. He dropped her hair, and his chin dropped to his chest. “I’m sorry, mommy.” He mumbled the picture of shame. “What is it with this mommy thing?” Sean blurted out, snapping his jaw shut as quickly as the words tumbled out. Andrew’s head snapped up, and he stared at Sean, his lip curling up in disdain once more. Anna ignored him, lecturing the little demon. “That wasn’t okay.” She told him, tilting her head to meet his eyes. “Hurting people- no matter why- isn’t okay.” Andrew nodded, his glum expression returning. The look on his face, made her heart ache for him. The elevator’s bell sang out, and the door opened on a glum, industrial looking hallway. It was long, the hallway disappearing around a corner about 150 feet away from the elevator door. Doors lined the hallway on one side, each one looking out on a barred, dirty window. Dim light slanted through here, spilled across the dirty, multicolored floor. Andrew grabbed Anna’s hand, taking off down the hallway. Anna jumped up from kneeling, bending way down in an attempt to actually stay on her feet. “Come on, mommy!” Andrew shouted, suddenly so excited he could barely modulate his voice. A door opened suddenly wide as they passed, and a woman stuck her head out. “Would you be quiet! I’m trying to get my baby to sleep!” she shouted at Sean, her eyes flashing multicolours with her anger. “Sorry,” he said, mustering as respectful a tone as he could. Suddenly, from behind her, a gut- wrenching, bone chilling scream sounded- making Sean’s hair stand on end, a shudder extending from the bottom of his spine all the way up into his brain. The woman rolled her eyes, turning back into her apartment. “Great. Thanks!” she shouted, and the door slammed shut. Sean stood still, rooted to the spot- his mouth hanging open in shock. “Sean! Come on!” Andrew shouted back, hopping up and down beside one of the doors. Anna, rubbing her shoulder, stood beside him- a severely annoyed look on her face. Sean hurried down the hallway, and Andrew handed him the key. “Open up!” he demanded, staring up at Sean with the most innocent look on his face. “Okay…” Sean turned to the door, looking for the key hole. The door was a faded brown- paint peeling off in places, a long scratch extending from the handle to the floor. The number was set into the wood with brass- 9H.
Sean pushed the key in, turning it hard. Within the workings, the gears tumbled into place. The door opened with a snap, sliding noiselessly open to bump against the hallway wall. Laughing, Andrew ran into the dim apartment. “Hey, wait!” Anna ran after him, disappearing into the darkness as quickly as he had. Sean stood, warily, at the door. He reached along the wall, feeling for a switch. Finding none, he stepped in… and the door slammed shut behind him. “Boo!” Andrew yelled, jumping out from behind the door. Sean jumped, his feet actually leaving the floor in his alarm. The light snapped on, and Anna stood at the end of the hallway, grinning widely. “Chicken!” she laughed and Andrew ran past her hip. Sean looked around, taking everything in. the smell of mold was strong here, but it didn’t seem to be coming from the apartment- it seemed to come from everywhere, especially around the door that led into the hallway. There was a closet on his left side, the door apparently missing. Across from this, there was a closed door- and opening this, he revealed a bedroom. There was a window here, large, square- and completely, solidly covered with chicken wire. The frosted glass let light through, but allowed privacy from the was odd, Sean thought, pressing his hand against the wire- he didn’t remember seeing a window that led into the hallway. Behind him, there were two beds; one large double, and one small twin. “Sean, come on!” Andrew’s voice echoed from outside the room. Sean left the room quickly, carrying on down the hallway to the small, condensed kitchen- a fold away table on the wall, all the appliances tall and narrow to fit. The kitchen had a hutch through which you could see into the tiny living room. A huge window covered the opposite wall- the only one that was not covered with chicken wire. A door stood on the wall that Sean faced now, coming in from the hallway. Andrew stood, smiling brightly, in the living room- holding tightly onto Anna’s hand. “So what do you think, Mommy?” he asked, looking now, and only, at Anna, “will you stay with me here?”
Look out for next week’s installment of Willow Creek

-This blog belongs to Horror Author Cheyenne Leo. All outside contributions are credited. Thank you for supporting Darkness Reigns.