By :Xeneb Shah
Year :10 C
The Lurking Shadows
To some the forest was nothing than a deceptive path to mischief and troubles. Only a few had ever dared to embark on that adventurous journey. As the years went by the rumours started to become more and more distorted. Then it became just a mere folk tale.
However to one young little girl the woods were never dangerous but full of wonders, friends and creatures. It was her own wonderland. Those beautiful flowers who would dance with the ever changing rhythm of the wind. It was always spring there. Spring that personifies happiness and happiness that symbolises her life up until now. For her life revolved around the forest, the forest- an embodiment of everything that is beautiful.
The woodland was majestic. The tall trees stood high like a crowd of vivid green umbrellas. They were stretched as far as the eye could see. The emerald green leaves were swaying to the rhythm of the cold summer breeze. The bright radiant sun was dancing on the tree tops or leaves. There was a sweet surrendering scent of the morning dew that cascaded all around the sublime forest. The dew soaked grass looked like a field of liquid diamonds. The blazing carpet of blue bells stretched like a carpet of jewels. Even the dark dotted poppies were fluttering like fiery crimson ribbons. They hung like swaying feathers for the tree branches.
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One fine afternoon the young child skipped along the path her black hair flailed wildly in the now cool summer breeze. Her skin glistened and her cheeks were glowing, her eyes sparkling with excitement. She had the whole day to herself and she wanted to explore the forest. The forest looked welcoming and calm as it usually did. There was a sense of security all around when gradually everything around her changed. The light smooth steps turned to rough ridged stomps on the rocky path filled with twigs. The trees were no longer swaying with the wind but they were reinstated by the many ghastly sounds coming from all directions of the forest. She couldn’t tell this part of the forest from the rest. Her surroundings had changed. Ivy was choking the twisted trees. The path was blocked by a writhing carpet of buzzing, crawling insects. Rotten leaves and branches strangled the path.
She felt as if someone was following her, there were other footsteps besides her own crunching ones. She could see a shadow, one that looked similar to the one of a tall man .She jerked her head quickly to get a glimpse of the tall man towering her but she soon realised it was just a thin tree bending to close to the path .In fact she was surrounded by the bleached skeleton of dead trees. The branches of the aged trees had sharp pointy tips like finger nails all pointing towards her. The dark shadows of the numerous bulky trees seemed to shape up the forest. All of a sudden something with black dark flaps came rushing towards her startling her into shock and fear. Her heart started pounding in her chest and her eyes were round with terror. It was only an owl sitting on the highest branch of a barren tree. It was cooing in a strange rhythm. It almost sounded like it was warning others of her humble presence in that jungle.
A wolf was howling in the background, panic started bubbling in her throat as she thought of the various ways she could escape but she found none. She was stuck in this dark tangled maze of tunnels and secret paths. Frightened by her surrounding she began to run frantically .Her pulse started to race the dark, gloomy forest past in a blur. She felt as if she had been betrayed by her own forest .The sweet welcoming woodland had tricked her into false serenity and had lured her into this hell that she was trying to escape from. She was cloaked in the blanket of darkness. This was the only place that had kept a slight feeling of safety in her heart but even this had disappeared behind the darkness.
The wolf jumped in front of her, she clutched her scarlet coloured cloak as he started approaching her as a predator would approach his prey .Her blood froze in her veins ,she let out a spine chilling scream. Her heart started pounding in her chest. He rapidly took her by her cloak and started running with her cloak in his mouth. Her whole life flashed in a blink of an eye ,she knew she was going to die. Tears started forming in her eyes as she heard the sound of thunder in the background, the rain was falling hard on the ground. She felt the darkness pulling her in she was trying hard to fight it but it was too strong and after all she was just a mere child. She finally stopped struggling, she met the darkness her eye lids had to offer as unconsciousness took over her
That night when she finally became conscious again she realised she was tucked in her bed neat and nice, and it all might just have been a horrible dream. When she was about to go back to sleep ,she heard a dull howling sound in the shadows .Since she was quiet dizzy she hardly noticed it and stood up to switch off her night lamp. She accidentally stepped on her beautiful crimson cloak. It was tattered, been shred to pieces. She didn’t know what to think of this strange sight when suddenly it all came back to her how she had gone to the woods, the wolf, and all those thoughts came back. She could see a faint shadow behind her floral patterned curtain..Thinking it was her mother waiting for her she started walking towards it .Until she got close enough to see it wasn’t her loving mother.It was some kind of hideous creature .She let out one final spine chilling scream and it was all over …..
A few hours later the young child’s mother stood in her daughter’s bedroom and all she saw was the body of her frail weak child covered in a pool of blood. She could only scream in horror.