English language story

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The Whole Town’s Sleeping


        As Lavinia rounded the corner of Francine’s street, her pace quickened. She was not afraid; at least, she didn’t think she was, despite her vigorous steps.

        It was a beautiful night, and it was only when Lavinia stopped to rest that she could properly admire it. The crisp, cool air washed over her face, sending the tiniest of shivers down her spine. Up above, the unfathomable night sky coated the town in blue-black splendor. The moon shone with an eerie brilliance unlike anything Lavinia had seen before.

What a shame that a night like this should play host to so much fear and grief, Lavinia thought to herself as she continued to gaze skywards. Enraptured by the moment, she did not notice the advancing creature behind her, edging slowly closer.

‘No!’ Lavinia let out a stifled cry as she felt something creep up against the back of her leg. She was frozen to the spot; images of The Lonely One filled her mind, looming over her with a taut length of rope in his hands.

‘Meow,’ the Morris’ cat threaded in-between her legs and looked up at her curiously.

Lavinia let out a long, deep breathe that she had been holding for an eternity. The cat was now grooming himself, unconcerned with anything else. She absentmindedly scratched behind the feline’s ear, thinking about how vulnerable she had just been, so engrossed in the night sky. All that mattered now was getting home.

Suddenly, Lavinia was very aware of how alone she was. She anxiously looked up and down the road. Why hadn’t she just stayed at Francine’s! It wasn’t too late to go back. She found herself arguing with her own mind; turn back and stay with Francine, or just go the short distant home and stop being so darnn scared! This wasn’t like her.

Regaining her composure, Lavinia started towards the ravine. She could imagine what Francine would have been like if she admitted that she had been scared. Francine would have just got herself even more worked up over nothing. After all, there was nothing to worry about.

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The soft patter of a second set of footsteps told Lavinia that the cat had decided to follow her. She didn’t mind, she had always liked cats, more so than dogs. Lavinia had sometimes seen herself as rather like a cat; independent, maybe a bit untrusting but affectionate when you got to know her, and definitely able to stand her ground.

The whole town was silent, holding its breath, waiting for something to happen. Even without The Lonely One prowling around, it was still dangerous to be out at this hour.      

‘This is stupid!’ she whispered to ...

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