Chapter 14 – The entrance [S]
Wednesday, October 5th, 2016
I browse through a book that is about the history of Miller Town and might hold more information about the forest. So far, there’s not much in there.
In the mean time, Annika is doing research about cults, witchcraft and any other supernatural things she can find, that previously have been linked to the forest. She found out there was once a group that appeared to worship the devil in the woods called the Doe’s. It’s unsure if they wanted to remain anonymous and picked “Doe”, after John and Jane Doe, anonymous bodies in murder investigations, or because they held their rituals in Deer Trial, and Doe’s had been rare, but present in the woods back in the days.
Though option two seems too sweet and nature-loving for a bunch of devil-worshippers.
Davy is on my other side, still reading into all 25 missing kids, and focusing mostly on those who have never been found.
He maps the locations they have all last been seen, trying to find a pattern. But some files aren’t very helpful, and it means he has to dig in deeper in the early cases of disappearances – like with Angie’s – to find out the locations and events surrounding the disappearances.
It’s endless of hours of work, all to try and figure out what is going on, if there’s anything about sightings of a dark figure like the one haunting me – I swear I saw it a handful of times today, always in the corner of my eyes.
I grab hold of Annika’s hand every time I either think I see it, or feel as if I’m being watched, calming down instantly.
Combining all information we found so far, we can conclude some dark rituals took place in the woods, all centred around Hunter’s lodge or at least in Deer Trial.
Another part of the forest that has a dark mysterious history is The Pits, where there is on particular ditch that appears to be large enough to hold a big group of people, and according to records, there always used to be camp fires in the middle of it, while later they uncovered traces of satanic worshipping in the forms of signs, carved into the ground so many times they’re now permanently there.
“We should investigate this ditch, and Hunter’s Lodge.” Annika taps on a map where the little red dots indicate locations of the last sightings of kids and those places seem random. There’re green dots that indicate bodies of kids found, there’s blue dots that indicate spots where worshipping found place, while dark blue means devil worshipping, and light blue is simply wiccan rituals of less evil backgrounds.
The fact the wiccans kept busy with innocent worshipping, doesn’t mean it never could’ve unleashed something malicious.
Most certainly because the wiccans, over the timespan of nearly 100 years, seemed to prefer the same locations to hold their rituals, as the darker ones.
Annika found areal pictures of the ditch that hold the signs they uncovered and I stare at them, half fascinated, half shocked.
“I also found a picture that was famous about 70 years ago,” she tells me while shoving the printed picture towards me. “It was in all papers because it supposedly contained a ghost, but there’s nothing there…”
I shrug, not watching towards the picture, still taking in the signs.
“Could you place a red sticker right here?” Davy taps the map and I do as he asks, shortly looking at the red dots, before looking at a sign of anti Christ again.
“It’s…” I mutter, pulling the map closer. “I think it is a pattern.”
“It is?” Annika frowns, now leaning over, ignoring the photograph of the supposed ghost appearance captured in the early fifties.
“It’s the Anti Christ sign…” I grab a red marker, dotting the pattern that I suddenly see, forming from red dot to red dot. “The outer dots are the circle. These…” I tap the inner dots. “Though a bit wobbly, are close to the stripes of the star.”
As I finish up the lines, Davy and Annika are both leaning in to see that I’m right. The dots represent the last locations the kids have been seen, not the actual place they ended up getting in trouble. But the sightings are all close to the lines of the Anti Christ sign.
“There’s enough kids who gone missing to form the entire sign. Is that why it stopped?” Davy asks allowed.
“It never stopped.” Angie suddenly looms over us and Davy and I jump up surprised while Annika rolls her eyes. “It just didn’t have new victims.” She stares at me. “If I wouldn’t have followed you three in the woods, either one of you, supposedly you, would’ve been the next.”
I bite my lip nervously, knowing she thinks I was going to be the next because I’m the one who’s hunted by a shadow, not Davy or Edward.
“Hunter’s Lodge is in the exact middle of the sign.” Annika taps. “Everything keeps coming back towards Hunter’s Lodge.”
“I’ve been exploring the surroundings with Angie in my dreams for a while now. And it’s clear that we will have to go there once we’re going to try and solve all of this once and for all.
Not that I’m excited for that at all. I dread the moment we’ll enter those woods again. Who knows what’s going to happen in there? What if we become the next victims and end up at the bottom of a long list of kids who went missing in the woods?
All because we couldn’t contain our curiosity, having to trespass and go into the forest.
If we wouldn’t have been such thrill seekers, we wouldn’t have been in this situation in the first place.
Why couldn’t I just be interested in anything that has to do with kittens, or romance, or comedians? Why did I have to be born with an intense interest for the paranormal, the mystery, the thrill of horror?
“I’m telling you, Cory.” I follow him around through the library, where he’s putting back some books he borrowed for a paper in literature. “You should trust her. Talk to her…”
“She’s a ghost that’s been haunting my sister and me for years. I can’t trust her. If she would be nice, then she wouldn’t scare us to death half the times.” Cory eyes me suspiciously, while Angie sticks out her tongue towards him.
“When did I ever do anything to him?” She frowns, crossing her arms, awaiting me to re-ask her question so that he actually gets to hear it.
“Think about it, Cory! Did she ever harm you in any way? If she was malicious, she would’ve killed both you and Kim by now, right?”
Cory shrugs, putting back another book, again walking away from me. “Why are you suddenly this invested in her anyway? How can I be sure she isn’t taking over your mind to control you, trying to make me believe I should trust her? What if you’re just her puppet?”
“Auch.” Angie’s face turns into a snarl. “Seriously, I will end him if he keeps talking garbage about me like this.”
I can’t help but chuckle over Angie’s response, but I do understand why Cory is cautious about this. “Just think about it. Think about giving her a chance. I promise, you won’t be disappointed. Besides, she’s been protecting me…”
“Protecting you, from what? Ghost’s hunting you?”
I pull up an eyebrow, knowing he’s being a bit sarcastic because he can’t see the bigger picture after years of night terrors and spending nearly two years in a psychiatric ward because of Angie. “There is something evil, Cory.” I mutter, grabbing his wrist to prevent him from walking away from me. “And it’s been following me. Angie is keeping it at bay until we figure out a way to get rid of it in total.”
“Let me guess, a ghost of a boy she hates?”
“No, Cory…” I whine, yanking his wrist in annoyance. “I’m serious. There’s a shadow following me around,” – which is currently in the far back corner on my right side – “and it’s been trying to get to me in my dreams. Whenever Angie leaves me, it’s there to pull me in…”
“Is that why I haven’t seen or heard Angie for a while? Because she’s with you?”
I slowly nod, sharing a look with Angie shortly. “If she leaves me, I’m unprotected. It’s hard to explain, because Annika touching me is enough protection too, but none of us understand exactly why that is helpful. Davy is in on this too, he sees and talks to Angie just as much as I do. Tonight, Angie is going to show us the tunnel…”
“No, Sid!” Cory calls out loudly, earning us a shushing sound from Mrs. Bell, the old librarian. “Don’t go into the tunnel, promise me.”
“Not in reality, in my dreams.” I chuckle awkwardly. “Angie has been showing me the forest for a while now. She wants Davy and me to know how to walk, where to walk, and what to do…”
“No, Sid.” Cory pulls out of my hold. “I want nothing to do with Angie, The Miller Woods, or anything worse then Angie out there. I can’t do it, not again. I’m sorry.” He shakes his head, and while dropping the last book into my arms, he turns around and leaves me behind.
Thursday, October 6th, 2016
Since Davy opened up to Angie and allowed her to talk to him, she suggested for us both to sleep in the same room so that she could talk to us in the same time in our sleep.
She wanted to show us the way into the woods that she already previously showed to Cory.
And that’s where we’re currently at; the old Mill just outside of town, in front of the main building.
Angie already went inside, but I share a nervous look with Davy, unsure if we should do this.
But then Davy takes in a deep breath, shrugs, and follows her inside.
I reluctantly follow since I really don’t want to be outside on my own – even it’s a dream and I know there’s nobody else in this world.
I still have a feeling of being watched and I can’t help but think it is the black mass lingering in the background, awaiting its time when Angie isn’t there to protect me.
“Come on, we’re almost there.” Angie giggles and walks, or pretends to walk, towards the stairs, leading towards the basement.
The stairs creeks underneath our footsteps as we decent into the darkness, still following Angie as she guides us through piles of unused wood and old materials.
“It’s right here.” Angie gestures towards a wall where piles of boxes are stacked.
“There’s a hatch behind the boxes. This is how it really looks. It’s hidden behind the boxes and you have to look very careful to find the hatch.”
“You want us to move the boxes now?” Davy grumbles, staring at the boxes annoyed. “This is child labour.”
Angie smirks and chuckles. “Close your eyes.”
I hear her snap her fingers and giggle. “And ta-da.” She cheerfully calls out.
I frown as I notice a hatch is opened into a tunnel.
She flies straight through the small hole; Davy and I crawl after her. The first two meters are tights and we can’t do other then crawl. But then there’s a ladder and the tunnel suddenly is two meters high, and enforced with wooden beams.
“Wow, awesome!” Davy stares into the tunnel fascinated and I feel impressed too. “We should’ve known about this sooner.” He shortly looks at me before he starts walking through the tunnel, following Angie’s lead once more. “Would’ve saved us from community service and having to pay back the damage to the fence.
“Edwards parents are probably going to cover the damage to help the three of you out of trouble, and debts the rest of your lives.” Angie smiles widely. “I overheard them talking when I was haunting Edward. He’s really boring by the way. When he’s not with you guys, all he does is watch TV.”
“What about hanging out with Amara?”
“Not a lot of times.” Angie looks at me amused. “They’re a dull couple. The only ever hold hands. I mean, I’m nine and even I had a boy kiss me on my mouth once.” She giggles, but then looks sad. “I miss him… He was my best friend.”
“What was his name?” I curiously look at her, since she rarely talks about her life.
“Evert…” She sends me a sad look. “Evert Laru.”
“Wait, Laru, isn’t that one of the first kids that went missing in the woods?” Davy frowns and I’m impressed by the fact he remembered some of the names.
Angie clears her throat. “I was looking for him… He was the first that went missing.” She shrugs, and then she flies forwards faster, out of hearing range, but still in sights.
“I guess she doesn’t want to talk about that…” Davy shortly looks at me and I shrug, as I walk further, picking up speed because I want to stay close to Angie. But as I try to find her again, she’s out of sight.
“Dave, we need to catch up. I don’t want to lose her out of sight…” I drawl, looking over my shoulder to find an empty tunnel behind me too. “Dave!?” I call out, as my heartbeat picks up speed. A second ago he was here, and whenever I was looking over my shoulder, I could still see some light at the end of the tunnel, but now it’s entirely black.
And the darkness is getting closer as I stare at in, frozen in my spot. “Dave!? Angie!?” I shout out in fear. As the darkness is closing in, I wake up from my stupor and before I know it, my feet are carrying me further into the tunnel, towards the woods. “No, no, no.”
Where did Angie go?
Where did Davy go? Are they in trouble?
I know I am, but are they too?
I run as fast as I can, but then there’s a feeling as if something is pulling on different parts of my body, as a darkness surrounds me like a whirlwind. I manage to break through the door at the end of the tunnel, stumbling into an old empty wooden cabin – different from the one Angie showed me before.
But as I fall to the ground, the cabin disperses into darkness, sounds disappear. As if there is nothing else but darkness, and anger that is rising deep inside me. I scream in anger and fear at once, as waves of wind are around me, and then I think I black out.