the short story project


Rhiannon K White


     Murder is something that would have never crossed her mind before.  Something about the word made her shiver.  Now that her sweet husband was dead, it was something she had to face.

     When she was little, her mom thought she “held back too many feelings.  Even when her father died I never remember her crying,” her mom would mumble to her friends and family.  Why couldn’t they understand she just did not want anyone to know her pain.  Her motto was “The day someone makes me cry is the day that I will die.”  From early on she had decided that most things were better off lock in an empty room.

     As much as she wanted to she couldn’t ignore the blood that now covered her hands.  It was as chilling as it was comforting.  Thoughts of his life raced through her head.  He had always wanted the best for both of them but something inside her kept it away.  The more she tried to push it deep down inside, the more it grew.  She knew her unhappiness hurt him dearly.  The harder she tried to protect him, the more the wickedness hurt them both.

     The sun dancing off her diamond ring snapped her back to today.  Glancing at the sky out the window, she watched the clouds devour the sun.  A few minutes later the rain began to softly fall.  Soon the drops began soaking the earth as she continued looking at the ring.  The ring was the symbol of the love they shared.  They had spent a year of clipping coupons and counting every penny to afford, what was now, one of the only things she had left to remember him by.  Three years that they spent together flew by fast until the darkness entered into their lives.

     She rushed into the kitchen, quick to wash the blood off her hands.  As she scrubbed her ring, she became increasingly upset that the blood hid in every little crevice it could.  She then realized even if she removed the blood it still wouldn’t remove the memories that haunted her.  She finally stopped the hopeless task and put the ring back on.

     As she massaged her neck to release her growing tension, her hands ran across the gold chain that she got on their one-month anniversary.  On that perfect night, the stars were shining brightly as they enjoyed a beautiful midnight picnic together.  Finally, he said the three words she had been waiting for her whole life to hear.  Every night before bedtime, her parents always tucked her in and told her “Sweet dreams,” never knowing how much she needed to hear, “I love you.”

     She cautiously walked up the old staircase to were the nightmare had came true.  On the fifth stair, a loud squeak made her jump.  A smile crept on her face remembering how he always promised to fix that step.

     They almost didn’t get their beautiful cabin because of a step.  She was afraid it would break and then, piece by piece, the entire house would fall apart.  He smiled and convinced her that one step was a stupid reason to give up this cabin.  The cabin hid behind a group of trees that guarded the house.  Out back in a clearing was a small pond.  The last owner was so eager to get rid of the house they spent thousands less than they ever thought.  The old man warned them of the legend about the demons who lived throughout the house.  “No one in their right mind would believe in any kind of demons,” he always used to say.  The smile on her face quickly diminished when she glanced up the stairs.

     Nothing prepared her for what she saw in the upstairs bedroom.  She knew what she would find but hoped it had disappeared or would be easier the second time.  When she reached the door, chills ran through her body.  Blood painted the walls of the once former white room.  Above his body was the word forsaken, carefully written in blood.  She fell on the bed, shivering.  Quickly, she tossed a blanket over her shoulders, wishing that her shivering came only because she was cold.  The rain fell harder with each second.

     The attack had been quick.  Her husband was tossed around the room as if he was nothing more than a rag doll.  His body was still lying on the floor next to the old dresser that was freshly stained with his blood.

     The sight of his lifeless body was enough to make her nauseated.  She collapsed beside him, trying to brush her hands through his sandy blonde hair, hoping that this was all a dream.  His hair, that used to be so soft, was now so sticky from the blood that her fingers refused to run through it.  Every time she called his name, it became more apparent that he wasn’t going to answer.

     Her eyes started to become misty.  Just before she was about to break out in tears, a coldness ran through her as she realized he had done to her what no one else could do.  With him lying there, she reminded herself that now is the time to be strong, more than ever.  Demons can sense weakness.

     His old hunting knife was still lodged in his chest.  Pulling it out wasn’t nearly as hard as she thought it would be.  She ran her fingers over the knife incessantly.  Looking at his body, she longed for his sweet approval to join him.  Deep down she knew that it would never come no matter what she said or did.  She knew He would not be happy if she was dead.  Only one other thing besides her safety would bring him happiness and peace, the pond that he loved so much.

     It wasn’t until she reached the foot of the stairs that she tried to pick him up.  She was about to go down a step when she lost her grip.  She flinched away so she couldn’t see her love’s awful decent down the staircase.  After she heard him hit the last stair she rushed to him, not noticing the fifth step had finally broken.  As she ran towards him, she hit what used to be a step and fell.  Her body toppled on to her lover.

     The first sight of him scared her, causing her to jump up and scream.  Realizing what just happened made her mad.  “I told you to fix that step.  Why didn’t you listen?  I told you not to by the cabin but you changed my mind.  If you just listened to me, we would be happy in some crappy little apartment in middle of a busy town.  I don’t know how happy we would be but a least you would still be alive.”  She stopped to realize that yelling at a corpse wasn’t helping.  She took a few seconds to reassure herself that he was dead and wasn’t able to feel the terrible fall or hear the terrible things she said.  Reluctantly she began to drag his body outside to avoid having that horror happen again.

     He took on a new meaning when she reached the backyard.  He was a burden to drag through the mud.  It was a dreadfully long way but she was determined to make his final resting place somewhere he loved.  She collapsed beside him as soon as they reached the banks of the pond.

     Five minutes passed before she could bring herself to pull his body into the water.  She let the water kiss his sweet body because she didn’t think her lips were worthy enough to touch him again.  She looked at him as he began to reach the water.  It was then she spotted the monster’s reflection in the water.

     Something was very familiar about what she saw.  It looked at her with the same eyes.  It moved with the same arms.  The demon was inside her.  The realization hit her hard, as she burst into tears.  She was the forsaken one.

     With trembling hands, she took off her wedding ring and placed it on her gold chain; know it should stay with him.  Slowly everything started to become blurry.  The tears that hid inside her, now submerged.  She placed that chain in his palm and tightly shut his hand.  Her emotions ran wildly just looking at him, knowing that she would never see him again.  All she could bring herself to say was “Sweet dreams.”

     Mysteriously, his body seemed to float along as she guided it to the middle of the pond, just like that is where it always belonged.  At first, she started to shiver, as the cold water brushed against her body.  It didn’t take long until her body went numb.  When the water was up to her neck, she stopped.  She forced his body under the water, hoping that guilt would disappear when he did.  Slowly, she wiped off all the blood that covered her once fragile body.

     After she washed the red reminder of her love from her body, it was time to face the demon.  Looking at the sky, she watched as the stars were emerging from their hiding spot behind the clouds.

     “I am doing this for you, mother.  You never once let me be a child.  You always made me worry about your image, not anymore.  This is for you, father, for telling me I couldn’t shed a tear.  I did anyway and I don’t care.”  After she yelled her final words she looked back down at her finger.  The ring was no longer there.  It was gone.  He was gone.

     She slowly brought the knife up to where, for the last time, the moon reflected the image of the demon that existed within her.  With her last ounce of energy, she stabbed the knife sharply into her chest.  The pain was intense, even though most of it wasn’t from the knife.

     Despair ran through her body as she realized that her death wasn’t going to be quick.  At first, she begged that pain to go away.  Her pain clouded her head and her intentions became unclear.  Suddenly her body lost its strength and water rushed over her head.  She gasped for air and instead got a mouth full of water.  She knew before long she would be under with him.  The struggle didn’t even seem worth it without him so she finally closed her eyes and lost consciousness.  Both bodies sand to the bottom of the pond, forsaken forever.

     A week later some of their friends traveled together to check up on them after they had disappeared so mysteriously.  It only took one look inside the cabin before they realized that at least one of their friends was dead.  Investigators spent months trying to figure out exactly what happen this time.  Although everything looked very familiar, it seemed like just another fight gone wrong.

     The freshly remodeled cabin resold rapidly to a newlywed couple who couldn’t believe they were able to purchase their dream house so cheap.  The old man warned them that demons lived within the house but they didn’t believe such nonsense.  If they would have only looked behind to see that evil smile appear on the old man’s face as he led them inside, maybe it could have saved them.  His face lit up with an eerie grin as it began once again.

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