|Creatures in the Mist
Author: NoMoreTears PM
Monsters don't exist only in stories. They're real. And they exist within the confines of this small, foggy village. Ever since I arrived, horrible things have been occurring. And I can't leave until it ends...Rated: Fiction T - English - Horror/Suspense - Chapters: 12 - Words: 22,285 - Reviews: 2 - Updated: 06-19-11 - Published: 02-25-11 - id: 6778017
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
"I know many of you may disagree with what I am saying to you. But to make sure that we are all indeed safe, these precautions are of the utmost necessity. And being the good people you are, I would hope that all of you would accept what I am proposing. I hope that all of you will do nothing but pray, pray, pray. Keep nothing but our Lord on your mind. Our savior will protect you from all of the evils in this god forsaken village. All of you, please be safe. We will be meeting again later within the chapel, with our closest members of the church to discuss these events in further detail. For now, go home and pray. Go home and pray the beast does not kill you next." He shouted harshly.
The silence of the crowd was overwhelming. They all stared at the man vehemently, their eyes clouded with rage, some with fear. I stood beside Callum, in awe of the priest's declaration of slaughter, bemused by how easily a good man could simply kill all without remorse.
I straightened my posture and peered over the many heads of the villagers standing before me, my eyes picking up every little twitch, every tremor, every shift they made. Nearly all of the people were tense, rigid, their spines fully erect now. No one spoke, save for the muttering of prayers floating throughout the crowd. Their minds must be racing.
A hand clapped on my shoulder. I turned. Oskar stood beside me, his eyes darting every which way. "What in God's name is going on here?" He hissed.
"You think I know? Christ, I'm just as baffled as you are."
My brother's face seemed stricken by annoyance. Abigail looked over at me. She offered a grim, tight lipped smile. I returned the smile and resumed facing forward at the crowd, watching Father Addison's frame pace back on forth on the stage, his hands gyrating along with his body, his lips moving rapidly, speaking quietly, yet harshly to the men standing with him.
They bowed their heads in respect, nodding silently at the priest's words. Abruptly, he turned to the crowd, and waved them off, dismissing them. His lips curled into a sneer, his coal black eyes scanning the mob disdainfully. One by one, they turned, walking off into the thick mist, and vanishing. Oskar and Abigail came closer to stand with Callum and I, remaining out of the path of the departing villagers. Once the crowd had cleared, Callum began to speak.
"The man's been doing this for years now." He wiped his nose with the back of his hand. "Aye, but he's never threatened to kill a man's family."
I narrowed my eyes. "He's done this before? Why…has no one killed him yet?"
"Oh," he laughed, "there have been many attempts on Addison's life. But it's like the man just won't die."
Callum's words seemed weighted, like they carried more meaning than he would have liked to admit. At this point in time, I would not deny the possibility of there being an immortal being; considering what I am, monsters are no fable to me, but the thought of there being something that truly cannot die is a mystifying concept. How does one live while being dead all the same? To walk, to live, to breathe, to bleed, but the body is dead. And yet you carry on. I do not understand that, at all. In a way, it scares me.
"What do you mean 'he won't die'?" Oskar asked.
Callum shrugged. "So many times have the others tried to kill him, but every attempt was to no avail. He simply recovered and carried on. Like he was some sort of beast."
"Maybe he's the monster your village fears." I said.
"I wouldn't doubt it, boy. He is a bit of a monster." He glanced over to the right, then tapped my arm. "Speak of the Devil."
I looked over. Flanked by several large men, Father Addison sauntered over toward us, a dark, yet equally arrogant air surrounding him. He fixed the cap upon his head, and trained his eyes on me. The icy stare he gave was one meant to intimidate, but I did not budge. I have been through hell and back, an old man's stare won't rattle my bones now.
"Ah, Callum, I see you attended the hearing." He said, approaching us.
"Aye, Father, I did. I had to see what all the commotion was about." Callum grumbled. "This time, anyway."
"I wanted to know what your hearing entailed this time. Seeing as you have plenty of them."
"Humph. And who might you be?" Addison glanced between the three of us.
"Your men here had us removed from our cottage in the woods. They deemed it unsafe for us to be there." Oskar sneered. "Although, I have seen that it is far more dangerous here, than deep within the forest."
Callum spoke up. "And my boy here, Grayson, is staying with me. He left yesterday to go visit his brother."
"And his brother is?"
"I am his brother." Oskar replied.
I remained quiet, watching the group talk, feeling the tension build between us. My heart has begun to race, and for a second I am fearful that I will Change before all of the men. The hatred in the air, the anger, I feed off of it like fodder to livestock. I swallowed hard and slowed my breathing.
"Are you okay?"
I looked up. One of the men stared at me expectantly, and I soon recognized him to be one of the hunters that collected us from Oskar's cottage.
A thought crossed my mind.
How had they even known where his home was? Oskar had said he lived on the outskirts of the village, and that no one knew who he was. Abigail appears to be unknown by these people as well. Hmm.
"Yes, I'm fine." I answered after a moment. "Just a little tired."
"You should get some rest then. Maybe stop by the chapel later; we'll feed you, and provide fresh clothes." Addison cut in, noting my stained clothing.
"Thank you, Father, but I would not want to burden you. I'm fine in these garments, and I can cook for myself."
The Father nodded. "We'll be off, now. Make sure Elizabeth attends the meeting later. You're welcome to join if you like, Callum, as always."
Callum glared. "I will make sure Elizabeth arrives there. I'll try to join as well."
"Good." He looked at us. "I would like to see you there, also."
We nodded in unison. He left along with his men, leaving the four of us in the center of town. We remained silent, listening to the heels of his shoes clicking along the cobblestone, the sound growing faint as the distance between us grew.
Callum heaved a sigh. "Elizabeth must've gone off to the chapel already. I'm heading home. You three carry on."
Neither of us said a word. We stood facing each other, at an utter loss for words. Abby shifted uncomfortably, running her hands up and down her arms.
"Look. It's that damn girl."
My eyes widened. I looked off into the direction Oskar was pointing, and saw Rhiannon stumbling down the road clutching at the injury on her arm. She seemed delirious, most likely in tremendous pain, and strung out on a high dosage of morphine. The physician must have tried to keep her as numb as possible to prevent her from feeling any pain.
We watched her stagger toward us. The closer she came, the more we could see of her; her mouth was bloodied, her lips swollen, yet curved into an eerily cheerful smile. She lifted her uninjured arm to wave.
We all exchanged looks.
"Uh, good morning, Rhiannon." I said slowly. "Shouldn't you be getting rest?"
She stopped about a foot away from me. "I should be, probably, but I will be fine. This hasn't been the first time I've been attacked."
"What is it with this damn village? Nothing's happening for the first time!" Oskar shouted angrily.
Rhiannon stared at him. "Because this is all reoccurring. This has happened many times before. And you three," she pointed to us, "are stirring them up. They're not used to the presence of outsiders."
"I have to ask, though, do you believe in the undead?" She asked suddenly.
I narrowed my eyes at her. "I've begun to believe in the possibility of it. Why do you ask?"
She smirked. "I wish I could tell you."
"And you can. And you will." I said, stepping forward. "I want you to tell me everything about this damned village."
She continued smiling. "I wish I could, Grayson. All I can say is that things are going to escalate, and fast. I understand you two had a small incident the other day."
"With the child?"
Oskar and I paled simultaneously. "How did you hear of that?"
"You cannot simply believe that the ever present fog here, prevents us from seeing all? We see everything. Our eyes are as sharp as yours."
"What do you mean by that?" Oskar asked.
"I know what you are."
"Oh? And what am I, then." Oskar spat. "You're just a fucking cook. You're a girl who's on far too high of a dosage of medication. You don't know what the fuck you're talking about."
"Oh, but I do." She glanced between us. "You two are wolves; and the three of you are related."
"What?" I choked. I looked at Oskar then Abigail. They both shook their heads, wide-eyed at the accusation. "Impossible. Rhiannon, you need to rest. Oskar is right; you're on a lot of medication, your mind is clouded right now."
"Grayson, my mind is not clouded. I am perfectly sane, and perfectly willing to help you. I know more about this village than either of you combined. If you want to end whatever horrors that have taken over this village, you're going to need help." She glared. "There's a reason I'm hated, Grayson."
I thought back to the conversation I had with Callum and Elizabeth. They would not share their reasoning for hating their own child.
"I suppose you're right." Oskar turned to object, but I raised my hand to silence him. "But how am I supposed to trust you?"
"Whether you trust me or not is for you to decide. I can only hope that you will."
I frowned. How can I trust her? She could be leading me on, setting me up to become another victim in this damned village. I sighed. I do need the help, though. That I am sure of.
"I will trust you, but not fully."
"And why not?"
"Do you blame me for being wary?"
She shrugged her shoulders. "No, I do not. I would probably feel the same way if I was you. Actually," she laughed, "I wouldn't trust me at all."
I raised an eyebrow. "Why?"
"Because I belong to this damn village, of course. You're no mind reader, you don't know what my motives are."
"True." I sighed. "We'd better get back to the Inn, now."
"Actually, I would rather we return to my home. Rhiannon included." Oskar said.
"I don't like this place. It was much safer there than here." He looked around. "We'll pack our things, then leave. Don't forget your horse."
I nodded. I had completely forgotten about her.
"Well, let's go then." Oskar said. We all headed toward the Inn.
. . .
"Grayson," Oskar said, pushing through the gate surrounding the Inn, "get the horse, I'll go upstairs with Abby and get our things."
"I'll stay with you." Rhiannon said. "I know where the horse is."
I followed Rhiannon behind the house through a maze of overgrown shrubs, the trek lasting several minutes. We stopped before a stable, one that looked as if it had not been used in years.
"I thought you didn't have stables?"
"My father just does not like to be responsible for people's animals."
"Oh, god!" She exclaimed, throwing her hand over her mouth and nose.
"What? What is it?" We entered the stables. The smell hit me like a battering ram. I cringed, growling lowly at the smell.
She crept forward cautiously, checking each of the pens. She stopped before the last one. "Oh, no."
I jogged toward her and looked in. My horse lay on the ground, it's left side cleaned of all muscle and organs, the stark white bones peeking out of the torn flesh. I gagged at the sight.
"Oh, dear god, what in fucking hell happened?" I choked, spit dripping out of my mouth.
"Grayson, we've got everything!" Abby's voice called. The two neared the stable. I raised my hand and waved them away, choking all the while. Rhiannon gripped my shoulders and directed me out of the wooden structure.
"What's wrong?" Abby asked.
"His horse…it's dead." Rhiannon sulked.
I drew in a deep breath. "Half of it's fucking body was stripped of it's flesh. We need to leave. Now."
"Relax, you should sit for a moment. You look sick." Rhiannon said, patting my back.
I stood up straight and glowered at her. "We need to leave here before I fucking kill someone. Let's go."
Oskar nodded. "Come on."