the short story project


Nicholas O' Sullivan

Road Of Darkness

“Are we there yet?” Came a low voice in the back seat, despite that it was his head smacking the front seat that woke him up.

“Yeah, we’re fine, did you enjoy your little nap,” said Carl sarcastically, yet obviously a bit shook up. He checked to make sure Joe was okay, a bump to the head but still not enough to knock sense into him obviously. Mike, who was on the passenger side miraculously came out of the crash unscathed and was already surveying the damage done to the car. He couldn’t help but feel partly responsible for it. Joe got out of the car in a daze wondering if they were near the next town like they had planned. The problem, however, is that they don’t know where the next town is or where they are now. The most important thing right now was escaping the danger that was following them.

They were on a long stretch of country road that seemed to go on forever and it was icy cold and pitch black. Luckily they had torches with them. The huge trees on either side looked like they were reaching out to grab them all. Carl, taking one of the torches and looking at the damage done to the car just shook his head “damn that tree, why did it have to be there in the first place”. Joe just snickered and said, “I know, how dare that tree just….get in the way of your car”. Carl just looked at him, appreciating the humor but hating it at the same time.

Carl, Joe, and Mike were debating over what to do next since the car was no more use. Just getting to a safe place and getting in contact with someone…anyone was the priority now. While Carl and Mike were arguing over who’s fault the crash was, Joe heard something in the distance and walked over a bit to see what it was and where it was coming from. It seemed to be coming from everywhere. It sounded like tortured moans in the wind. It was the only sound to be heard, apart from the arguing. Joe shouted down to them to shut up and listen. All three quickly shone their flashlights in the distance and it revealed what they were trying to escape.

Panic set in all three of them now, and to make matters worse one of the flashlights went dead. Carl tried banging and tapping it but to no avail. It just blinked, blinking…gone. They started to run as fast as they could, not knowing where they were or where they were going, just running on pure survival. They had no idea how many were after them. Just the silhouettes shambling towards them was enough, with the scent of their warm flesh in their decaying nostrils. After running for about five minutes they stopped, huffing and puffing, then the realization…..there were weapons in the boot of the car, but they couldn’t turn back, and now another flashlight was blinking, blinking…gone. Joe made a joke about it being like something out of a horror movie and laughed hysterically out of shock. They ran again looking behind them to hear if they were outrunning the treat. The one beam of light from the remaining flashlight their only hope. Mike collapsed and banged his head on the ground and it came to total darkness. He had the last flashlight that smashed when he fell. Carl and Joe stumbled in the darkness but couldn’t find him, so they just kept running screaming for one another. They were blinded, in an infinite abyss with hungry arms outstretched reaching for them. Were they near safety or too far from it, they couldn’t tell. Darkness swallowed them up and the whole land echoed with their screams.

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