The Haunted Town

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#10 - Mine

Simone ran. Branches snugged at her clothes and the twigs snapped beneath her feet but she did not stop. She could tell that Nathan was close behind her. The trees started to thin out almost immediately. Surprised, Simone halted midway for there was an open space in front of her. Behind her, Nathan also came to a stop. Both of them were breathing heavily. While Simone looked at everything around them, Nathan bent over with his hands on knees as he took deep breaths.

“Ok, you win.” He rasped.
“Nathan, look.” She whispered instead. Just ahead of an open space, there was a rocky hill which rose even higher than the tallest tree in the forest or so Simone thought.
“Wow....Truth be told, I’ve never be this far in the forest before.” He said as he took cautious steps towards what appeared to be a cave at the base of the hill.
“Nathan, be careful.” She called out to him but he waved his hand at her from over his shoulder. Just then, Kyle appeared behind them, looking like an angry bull. His long hair hand twigs and dried leaves. He looked comical enough to send Simon into fits of laughter.
“Oh God. I wish I could show you the way you look right now.” She said, pointing at his hair.
“Wait till you see where you’ve come, you idiot.” He growled out in response. Simone’s laughter vanished at his words.

“Kyle, shut up man! Don’t be a coward.” Nathan called out to them, beckoning Simone to follow him. She hesitated, recalling her last visit to the forest. What was she thinking? What if she made these guys run into Matthew? She had hoped to lose the boys in the forest and then wait for them to return without her but they had followed her. Almost too perfectly. Suddenly, Simone’s throat was dry and her heart thudded in her chest. When they were quiet, they could hear the wind moan through the trees. Just as she watched, the shadows of the trees became deeper. Soon enough, she could see them crawling up on the hill where the sunlight was the brightest. They had appeared twice in one day. During the day. What was going on?
“Nathan!!!! WE NEED TO LEAVE!!” Kyle shouted at his friend, not looking up at the shadows above them. Could he see them? Simone thought numbly.
“A sec...” They heard Nathan say.
“NATHAN!!” She screamed his name when the hill above them started to darken with the shadows. Just how many were there?
“Oh my God.” Beside Simone, Kyle whispered. His eyes were transfixed towards where Nathan had disappeared. Mist or fog. It was one of those things and it was spreading fast. Nathan was nowhere to be seen.
“NATHAN!!!” Simone and Kyle screamed together.
“RUN!!” They heard Nathan shout before he appeared from the fog. He was limping and his forehead was covered with sweat drops. “RUN AS FAST AS YOU CAN!”
“WHAT THE HELL IS THIS?” Simone shouted back at him all the while resisting Kyle’s grip on her arm.
“Mist. It’ll make you numb.” Nathan was saying, his breathing labored as he had trouble walking. Jerking his hand away, Simon ran to help him. Cold. The mist was cold around her ankles just like the shadows were. She shuddered but the need to help Nathan won over whatever she was feeling.
“Let’s go.” She said, taking his arm and draping it over her shoulders. Nathan jerked back from her. When he gripped her shoulders to make her face him, she could see that his face was red with pain. Why couldn’t she feel anything? She wondered.
“Just. Go.” With these words he pushed her away. She watched, horrified as the mist swallowed him whole. She let out a scream as Kyle began dragging her away. A few steps later, they broke into a run. She ran as fast as she could, ignoring the sharp branches hitting her face. She was sure that she had a couple of cuts on her face and her hands were bleeding.

Soon, they were out of the forest. Kyle stopped a couple of steps ahead of her. He, too, was breathing heavily but otherwise appeared to be in lot better condition than Simone was in. Nathan wasn’t there. Was......was he....
“He is not coming back, is he?” Kyle asked her in almost a whisper. Simone had a huge lump in her throat and she did not trust herself to speak.
“What’s going on here?” She turned at Jenna’s sharp voice behind her. So she hadn’t left when Simone had.
“Nathan......Nathan...he...he suggested going...” Simone stopped, not trusting herself to go on.
“Stupid jerk!” Kyle mumbled, pressing heels of his hands against his temples.
“Simone, what happened?” Jenna asked once again, her inquisitive gaze meeting Simone’s.
“Nathan....I think he is gone.” It was all Simone could say. Jenna gasped as Kyle kicked a stone in frustration. What were they going to do now? Was Nathan really gone? What exactly had happened back there? Too many questions clouded Simone’s mind. When Kyle started walking away, his shoulders sagged and head down, Simone lost all the hope she had.
“What....should we...are we supposed to tell anyone?” Simone asked Jenna, not realizing that she was gripping at her t-shirt too tightly. Jenna tried to hold her at an arm distance and shook her once to get her all attention.
“Were the shadows there?” She asked Simone. Gulping, Simone nodded and told her about the mist.
“Then the demons will take care of the matter. Don’t worry.” Jenna had said. When she had dragged Simone back to her house, the sun had almost set behind them. When Jenna told Simone to get into the bed, she had obliged. She was too tired and had told her mother that she was coming down with a flu or something. She was left alone to rest.

“After what happened today, I’m sure Brianna or someone else will come to wipe away your memories of today.” Jenna whispered, bending down to face Simone who was lying straight and staring unseeingly at the roof.
“Let them come. I want to forget. It is my fault. It is.” Simone sobbed and bit her cheek to keep herself from crying. She could taste blood.
“No, it wasn’t your fault.” Jenna said softly and went to take out Simone’s camera. Turning it on, she set it among her clothes in the closet in such a way that it faced the bed. Simone would’ve appreciated it all any other day but not today. Not at all. Nathan was gone. She was the one for whom he had suggested visiting the forest. It was her fault. Only hers.

༼;‘༎ຶ ༎ຶ༽༼;’༎ຶ ༎ຶ༽

Simone opened her eyes to the sounds of birds chirping outside her bedroom window. Surprised, she threw aside the covers and ran to see. Throwing open the window, she gasped at what she saw. Birds. Lots and lots of them flying from over the Elmdale. What was going on? What had made them fly away from the forest? With her eyes wide, she stared at the forest on her left. Suddenly she recalled the events of the day before. Her legs gave out beneath her and she collapsed on the window seat. Nathan was gone. There had been a mist and and....She ran towards the closet, recalling the camera Jenna had left there. The camera was still there, recording just as Jenna had set it up. What had happened? Why hadn’t she lost the memories? She stopped the video and then played it.

Brianna had come. Simone could clearly see her in the video, standing near her bed. She was dressed in all black but her face visible. She was wearing bright red lipstick. When she was about to bend over sleeping Simone, she jerked back in surprise. Someone else had entered the room. Simone’s throat went dry as she saw Brianna’s face. The demon’s mouth was hanging open and her eyes were wide.
“What are you doing here? Why did you come here?” The camera had recorded her voice clearly.
“Leave her alone, Quinlynn.” Said a guy’s voice. She could not see him. He must’ve stood by the door.
“Why? Why should I leave her be?” Brianna had snapped.
“Because she is mine.” The deep voice had replied. Simone gasped as the camera dropped from her hands and onto her bed. Demons obey someone. Someone who is onto you.

༼•̫͡•༽ 。・:*:・゚༼•̫͡•༽,。・:*:・゚༼•̫͡•༽

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