Get Free Copy

100 free copies left

This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.

0
Free copies left
You can choose from our best books below
bilbous would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

Pursuit

By bilbous All Rights Reserved ©

Horror

1

Your breath comes in ragged gasps, your throat stinging with every intake. Sweat beads from your forehead, streaming freely to mingle seamlessly with the hot tears from your tired eyes. You sob and spit ceaselessly, no longer caring about your appearance. You are the most desperate, exhausted and terrified you have ever been in your entire life or ever will.

Every process inside your body has been sublimated to the overweening, urgent need to force oxygen down your throat through your lungs to your screaming muscles. Your pulse knocks at your ears; in between all you can hear is the roar of the ocean in a seashell. Your vision swims drunkenly as you steal a glance behind. Even so, it's unmistakable.

Three at least. Maybe more.

They have been following you for some time now. How long you are not exactly sure. A few days and nights at least. They probably picked up your trail at the river. They probably wait to see what shows up.

Two nights out from the river was when you first heard it. A series of ululating clicks and whistles. They are letting each other know where they are. They are letting you know where they are. That there's no escape. But they don't attack. They wait.

You sit with your back to the fire; bolt awake and alert all night. Even so, the dawn reveals one of them crept in close during the night and left you a present hanging from a tree. There is no sight nor sound of them about.

You know you are in mortal danger, that your only hope lies in escape. You have to try to throw the trail. You know this is probably futile.

Even so, you have to try.

Your course winds haphazardly for many tens of miles. It leads through dense brush and doubles back along streams. Several times, you bolt suddenly, then silently slip aside and hide yourself. You spend several hours lying down in the undergrowth. Not moving, hardly daring to breathe. Just listening. You cannot hear a thing.

A bird calls sharply. Was it disturbed? It does not call again.

Night lengthens, and you must seek shelter. You cautiously unfold yourself from your hiding place and make for the base of a cliff you know to be nearby. You know you could be cornered there, but it also offers your best defense against encirclement. While you still have strength to fight, at least.

You prop your back against solid rock and do not risk a fire. The sounds and smells of the night roll over like a wave. It's as deep as the ocean. On the brink of dozing, cold reality returns to snatch away your rest. Click click click. Click click click. An answering whistle. The whole forest is breathing. There must be so many of them.

The calls have a strange melodious quality to them. Individual voices tend to get bound up together and lost to the whole. You force yourself to listen carefully.

How many are there?

It's difficult to penetrate; misleading, perhaps intentionally so. A lot of the calls chase their own tails, or answer themselves. Painstakingly, you separate out individual voices by timbre, tone and range. It only confuses you further. You'll hear a call from one direction, and then another that sounds exactly alike from a completely different direction answering it. Nevertheless, you notice that when the calls rise together in sudden, unpredictable crescendo, there is a binding, constant voice that leads them. You grip your flint so tightly your hand bleeds.

Dawn breaks on your final chance. Forced march and no rest or food have taken a terrible toll on your strength. You will not be able to defend yourself for very much longer. And that's when they'll come. They would probably prefer to continue this tiring game of running and hiding.

The hell with that.

The gradient increases, and your tired legs give silent protest. You grit your teeth and follow the line of the ridge. You have been climbing steadily for an hour now, and the slope here is somewhat sparser. There is no truly open country around here for hundreds of miles. There is also no sign of them, although only a fool would think they weren't nearby. You hurry, worried they will see your mind and move to stop you.

The ridge rises, and tapers to a promontory where it meets the narrow gorge. Sheet white water echoes beneath. You hesitate on the brink. Below seems certain death.

Certain death behind you for sure.

You shut your eyes and plunge down, a needle in the funnel. As you fall, the forest erupts into song.

Continue Reading Next Chapter
Chapters
1. 1
Further Recommendations

Bradley Darewood: I really really really liked this. I just voted for you!The voice is flawless-- I can't write men as well as you do and I have a penis. Maybe I'm narcissistic but I particularly enjoyed the moment where he muses about how artists would do better in such a solitary job. But my favorite moment ...

Jason Phang: I'm pretty new to Inkitt (this is only my 4th book) and I must say I've been thoroughly impressed by the quality of the authors here. Remnants of Chaos is an excellently written book that hooks the reader, and doesn't let go. There are some grammatical and typographical errors, but nothing too se...

danijelstoilkovic: I really like this story. The characters, the mysteries, that bonding in the end, but I would really like to see what happened next. Is there a second part? And this would really be one cool horror movie and if I was the director, I wouldn't change a thing.It's awesome!

Deleted User: I loved this story. It was so great that I did not expect it to be this awesome. I swear to you this deserves more than just 5 stars. Beyond amazing. Kept me wanting more and I felt exactly like Emma felt while reading. Although in the beginning I did not expect anything to happen. Then, when som...

shotgundriver: As with all horror fiction, the reader must be able to suspend disbelief to digest this story. Fortunately, the first-person style of the story is so casual, and the protagonist, Ashley, so familiar on many levels, that I found myself sacrificing sleep to stay up and read, as if I was anxiousl...

M. Drewery: I was scrolling down the story list and stopped on Happy Days because I was briefly reminded of the TV show. I started reading the blurb and thought 'oh no another Zombie story' except it ended in the best possible way. Now I'm drawn into a fresh take on the zombie apocalypse, which takes a much ...

C.K. Bachman: Just read the first chapter. Love how the main character thinks and is conflicted over his wife and the trickery he uses on her.

BFIrving: A first rate story and well crafted, the blend of horror and action worked very well indeed and had me turning page after page. When not actually reading it, I found myself thinking about it which is always a good sign.There are quite a few grammatical and spell-checker errors but nothing anothe...

Kiz16: After a truly shocking start to the story, I found the style and content slowed down as the author introduced a varied group of characters who I thought were fleshed out very well. After a slow couple of chapters, I found this story difficult to leave with the tension growing within the house. Yo...

More Recommendations

Kayresia A. Bass: Again, the author has amazed me. Very good story right from the beginning. As the story begins, curiosity keeps you reading just to find out what is going to happen next. Gabriel is an average guy who finds out later he is not so average. He meets and falls in love with a woman named Tanya. I lov...

Pam Lobato Ceja: The plot is interesting although for me the ending feels a bit rushed, since a lot happens in very few pages. I did notice a few grammar mistakes here & there, but nothing too noticeable.Overall, I enjoyed this greatly.

Sharon Bergevin: iIt was a good story line...The characters were very colorful and i liked the various direction of each character.. The direction of the story was very smooth and direct.....i would recommend it for others to read this. .....great job ending it with hope......i was impressed by the way each char...

Shelley Miller: The ideas and the set up and this are amazing! The feel of the story goes from science fiction to horror to suspense all in a big, thrilling ball. I really like your character so far and her powers and the idea of the ark being a person. The world is intense and gritty and clever as well. While a...

kotabsavage91: This young author really knows her stuff. From the 1st chapter I was sucked in and entertained the book. The characters are rich and well thought out and the plot keeps you guessing all the way through to an imaginatively well exacuted showdown. Keep up the great work, I look forward to more of ...

About Us:

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered book publisher, offering an online community for talented authors and book lovers. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books you love the most based on crowd wisdom.