The Shadow in the Flame

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Summary

Death resides in a house where a terrible accident occurred. Now thirty years later a group of girls struggle to survive in a house with bad memories and where the main resident is death itself...

Genre:
Horror
Author:
AndrewMc
Status:
Complete
Chapters:
13
Rating:
4.6 20 reviews
Age Rating:
16+

Chapter 1

"Please, oh my god! Please help!" The woman stood by the window, tears streaming down her face. Her blonde hair fell across her face in an unkempt manner, and her night wear was tinged by patches of sweat. She banged on the window in desperation, "Please...anyone, help us!" Behind her the sounds of panic reverberated around the room as other people pushed and forced their way through the chaos. She continued to bang on the glass as she begged for unseen and unhearing help from the outside world.


Flames licked at the walls of the room as the fire spread across the floor. Other women struggled in vain at the door in the corridor, while others threw pieces of furniture in the direction of the window. The woman sobbed uncontrollably as her hand began to bleed under the pressure placed on the glass as she banged. Tears mixed with blood from her nose and both combined and slid down her face. "Please..." she begged desperately. One woman in the corridor screamed and clutched at her hand as the heat from the fire licked the metal handle and burnt at the door. She looked at her hand and sobbed as the flesh was burnt from her palm.


Activity on the street below broke the sound of screams as the main doors of the building were thrown open. As the cold night air invaded the building, a clutch of people dressed in plain white overalls spilled out into the night air. Three men looked up toward the upper floors of the building and hid their faces as they saw the sight from the upper echelons of the building. One of the men grabbed at a necklace around his neck, closed his eyes, made a quick prayer, and then kissed the chain before turning and making haste into the cool embrace of the night. More people spewed onto the pavement and out across the courtyard close to the grassy area by the building while two women stood watching the terror unfold before their eyes.


The younger of the two grabbed at the shoulders of the elder. "You had no right to lock those doors, there are still people trapped in the building!" desperation tinged her emotions as she pleaded toward the elderly woman.


"What I did Sister Turnbull, I did for the safety of the majority" There was a coldness to her voice as she spoke, "If the fire is contained within one area, we can save most of the patients and hopefully maybe even the hospital itself"


Sister Turnbull turned from the elderly nurse with tears in her eyes, "There were children in there" she whispered. The conversation was ended abruptly by the shrill noise of the siren produced from the wail of the approaching fire engines. As more people spilled out into the night air, three large red behemoths hurtled up the gravel path toward the hospital. The engines screamed out to the survivors to move and as they came to an abrupt stop, doors were flung open and uniformed men filed out in mindless precession.


The woman stood banging in desperation at the scene below, sobbing and begging for help. Cracks appeared on the glass and as she continued to hit the glass, the window became stained with the red smear of the blood. "God help us..." she sobbed. The woman slowly turned and leant on the locked window and slowly slid to the floor and watched in defeated silence at the scene unfolding around her. As she watched the scene, time appeared to slow down to a smoky, fiery haze. Women and children sobbed and ran from the windows to the doors. Some sat rocking in chairs, while others threw objects at the window in desperation. Flames leapt and danced their way up the walls, catching the fabric of curtains and furniture before playing wistfully across the wooden surfaces of tables and chairs. The woman was aware that the sound of sobbing was being slowly replaced by the sound of screams as fire caught hold of nightwear and the smell of burning flesh began to fill her nostrils.


Then, another noise filled the room and with it the sudden rush of air which excited not only several of the patients, but also the fire. Glass erupted outward from the building as a small chair broke the tension of the surface area of the window and flew through the night air and crashed amongst the watching party below. Both fire-fighters and patients covered their heads from the deadly shower of glass from above as the window scattered in a multitude of deadly pieces of shards. The noise of the screams and pleas for help spilled out of the upper floor and invaded the still night air. The woman watched from her sitting position as another woman climbed through the open window and jumped into the night. The figure was joined by another, then another. She was stirred into activity by the sight of a woman clutching a baby in her arms leaning from the window, "please!" she called to the throng below "Save my baby..." The woman grasped at the woman’s shoulder and was forced back by the ferocity of her glare as she held her baby out at arms lengths.


She watched in horror as the baby fell from the woman’s arms and plummeted through the air, hitting the ground below with a sickening thud. As she leant out of the window she could see the carnage beneath as fire-fighters struggled under the mass of metal and plastic as they held the hoses firmly in place, directed resolutely toward the building, whilst paramedics from the hospital attempted to clear the ever growing pile of corpses growing around their feet from desperate people attempting to escape the blaze. She gripped the edge of the window in vicious anger, shards of glass forced their way through the woman’s hand and blood flowed freely over the broken window frame. Tears dried in the heat of the fire and were replaced by distain and hatred as she watched the matron walked silently across the grass, escorted by police officers away from the hospital. Her nasal passage became invaded by the smell of burning flesh; her burning flesh, but the smell and pain subsided through her own feelings.


Water soaked and cascaded across the outside of the building and forced its way into the hospital where it began its battle against the fire inside. Several windows blow outward, forcing glass and flames to mix together in a deadly cocktail and rained down its fiery fury on the spectators beneath. Flames continued to spread up the woman’s night clothes and she could feel an intense searing heat penetrate her very soul, but remained unflinching in a silent hatred. She had no more tears to give, no more screams to scream...just pure contempt. The room behind now lay as a charred battleground, in which the fire had been triumphant. Finally the woman collapsed, her heart losing the battle against consciousness and her soul giving up against life. Like so many on that fateful night she had found an uneasy peace.


The news was filled with stories of the Cottage Hospital in Ashbridge over the following days. Stories ranging from the fire itself to the actions of the matron. Repercussions spread through the medical staff and involved discipline, court cases, finance packages and legal prosecutions over negligence, manslaughter and reduced responsibility amongst others. The hospital was never repaired, never reopened, it would stand there through the rain, snow and shine as a monument to the tragedy. The local community never attempted any work at the site, even in the early days. Tales of sobbing had warned most away from the site. Several brave enough to enter the property grounds spoke of wistful figures in the building and the gardens, or noises of screams and sobbing...but these were just old wives tales surely, designed to keep away the unwary and nosey from an unsafe structure. Over the next thirty years, through the upper floors and through empty window frames a singular female form stood by the empty glass and stared out into the countryside around the property.

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Further Recommendations

nardiakgreen1: This is one of the best plots read in awhile! I love spooky things and this had me on my toes! On to book 2

francess1982: Compulsive reading! Intriguing plotlines and loving the king's character Cyrus - evil and attractive all rolled in together. Dangerous combination 😁😁

Palagiri Kullayamma: I like sayuri and shizuko characters and also the detectives. I don't like hana at all she always try to escape from her faults. I ve given 5 star rating because of the words used by writer and also the dialogue of shizuko "DON'T TURN AROUND"

Lauren Jeanette: Brilliant story, absolutely addicted!

yllgel3: yllgel3@outlook.com Pretty good story, one of those that you hope the bad guy turns out to be a good guy before the story ends

11taryna: I absolutely love this book and would honestly love to read a sequel and watch the movies if they ever came out. Definitely will recommend this to everyone.

G....a: Good story more exzarate

Amanda: I really enjoyed everything about the book except for the woman dying at the end. I think Clay should be able to find his happily ever after with all he has been through his whole life. Overall though great story to read.

Angelica Nicole Johnson: Was hard to read, because of all the trauma she suffered. But I liked the book. Will there be a second book, because it seems to end on a cliffhanger

More Recommendations

Teri Cox: Fun to read. Sometimes a bit too wordy. Found I liked most characters. Seemed a good story...fitting for the time.

JamiletM141: I want to know what happens next and keep up the good work

grace: I liked this story a lot. Thanks : )

Barbara: The story keeps me hanging on. Lots of twists and turns. Cliff hanger!!

Kimberlie Garcia: This a very fast paced story. Nothing wrong with that. It's nice for a change. Strong characters and strong story. I would like some info about the back stories on some of the characters though. Some of them are there but would like to know how they got to there. Thank you for the story and I can...

Superstar No1: It is an awesome book .Please bring a part 2 . 😊

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