Chapter 24

All The Men In My Life Keep Getting Killed By Candarian Demons

Everyone had taken up stations around the cabin. Ash was sitting in the rocking chair, clutching the shotgun, Annie was going through her fathers notes, looking for something that might help them, Jake was keeping watch at the window and Bobby Joe was reluctantly clearing away what remained of Ed, throwing each piece in turn outside, wrapped in a blanket.

"So what can you tell me about these things?" Ash inquired in Annie's direction. Annie looked up "What?" Ash put down the shotgun. "These…things, you know, when they take you, these…"

"Deadites" Annie interjected. Ash raised an eyebrow. "Deadites?" Annie nodded. "Yeah, that's what ancient scripture calls those who have been possessed by spirits of The Necronomicon" Ash raised the other eyebrow "Nice name".

"That's odd" Ed finally said, a tremor of fear in his voice. "What?" Bobby Joe inquired, her grisly task finally done. Jake turned to her "That trail we came in on? It just ain't there no more" Bobby stared out the window, between the boards and sure enough, the tiny beaten path they had come in on was gone, a solid tree line was all that remained. "It's like the woods just…swallowed it up" He continued, positively terrified by now. The silence that followed this revelation seemed absolute. No one else spoke as even the wind grew quiet. Ash looked up at the wall. The clock had stopped ticking. It was as though time had frozen. He almost jumped when Annie spoke. "It's so quiet"

Ash actually did jump, along with everyone else, when a horrible rending noise filled the cabin. It sounded like someone dragging a metal bathtub across the ground. It was as though a tormented beast was howling at the top of it's lungs, and it was coming from outside. It was definitely coming from outside and it sounded like it wanted to come in. The four huddled in the middle of the room as a window in the far corner shattered. The timbers above them creaked and groaned as if they were bearing a colossal weight. The clock's hands began to spin faster and faster as the sound of stampeding horses filled the room. Roars came from different points in the room as Ash, Annie, Jake and Bobby-Joe all spun to try and see the source. A single piercing scream shook the cabin and then once more, there was silence.

Jake was the first to speak. "What the hell was that?"

"I don't know" Ash replied, as shaken as the rest of them. "Maybe something, from the other side. Something trying to force it's way into our world." No sooner had he spoke then a clap like thunder sounded from the far bedroom. It sounded again as a strange light seemed to flicker from within.

Ash stared at the door, mustering his courage. "Okay" he said, trying to take control of the situation. "We'll all go in together"

"Hell no!" Jake replied "You're the curious one" Ash grimaced in his direction, realizing he would once again be facing unknown horrors alone. He slowly edged towards the door, trying to make as little noise as possible, not knowing what lay on the other side. Suddenly Annie appeared at his right, holding a lantern. She smiled and nodded. Ash gave a small, reassuring smile back and carefully pushed the door wide with his stump as the flickering light stopped.

There was nothing in the room. It was just a simple bedroom, a cot, a wardrobe and a few pictures on the wall. Ash jumped as Jake and Bobby Joe leapt into the room behind him. "Well shit" Jake exhaled loudly "There ain't nuthin in here!" He was cut off rather rudely by a loud explosion.

The same screeching noise filled the room again as the room rumbled and a foggy light seemed to claw it's way into the air. Two hands formed from the mist and finally a ragged head. It howled in agony and began to breathe heavily, as if the figure had run miles. Annie had gone completely pale. She stepped towards the floating figure, her voice trembling. "Father?"

"Annie" the phantom replied "There is a…dark spirit…here that wants to destroy you" Every word sounded painful to utter, as if each syllable was a monumental effort. "Your salvation" He continued "Lies…there" One hand pointed to the glass case containing the pages of the Necronomicon. "The pages of the book…Recite the passages. Dispel the evil!" Knowby's spirit was growing faint, as if he were being pulled back from wherever he had come. "Save my soul!" Clawed hands reached from the darkness, wrapping around his head and hands, pulling him into the void "And your own Lives!" he howled, finally being wrenched back into the darkness and disappearing in a clap of thunder.

Silence once again filled the cabin. Bobby Joe broke it, whispering to Jake. "You're, you're holdin' my hand to tight" Jake looked at her with an odd expression. "Baby, I ain't holding your hand…" Bobby joe and everyone else slowly looked down at her hand to see who was holding it.

It was Righty.

Needless to say, Bobby Joe screamed long and loud, hurling Ash's disembodied appendage across the room, where it struck Annie, who in turn dropped the lantern, which went out, bathing the room in darkness. Annie scrambled to pick it up while Jake quickly produced a match. As the lantern flared to life again, the light fell on only three people. Jake looked around the room, frightened "Hey" he whispered "Where's Bobby Joe?"

Bobby Joe had had enough and was making a run for it. Bobby Joe was outside.

She was running, howling through the trees as branches snatched at her hair and clothes. She plunged down an embankment and kept blundering through the underbrush. She wanted to be anywhere, anywhere but that damnable cabin. It was only till the lights of the wooden sanctuary faded from sight into the fog and she felt truly lost did Bobby Joe stop running and try to get her bearings. She realized that dashing blindly into the woods probably wasn't the best idea. Bobby figured she might want to head back, who knew what was waiting out here? She didn't have to wonder long as she felt something snaking up her leg. She looked down and gasped when she saw a ine slowly climbing her right thigh. She shrieked and traced the vine to a large tree. It seemed to shift in place, then a deep roar emitted from within it's wooden being. It was time to scream again, as more vines and branches wrapped around her, ripping at her clothes and hair. Roots burst from the ground, tearing away her jeans and holding her feet in place as more branches wrapped around her head and torso. Thin vines raked across her face as they forced their way into her mouth and down her throat. Suddenly all the branches grew taught, lifting Bobby Joe off of the ground and dragging her in a single direction across the forest floor. More vines pierced her flesh, tracing under her skin. She was being pulled at an impressive speed. Bobby, still screaming, looked up at where they were taking her, only to see the roots of a large tree part, revealing a large void where the vines emanated from. She howled one last time as she was dragged into the darkness under the tree and the roots threaded back under the soil, where she was trapped as all manner of unspeakable things were done to her by her arboreal captors.

Meanwhile back at the cabin…

Ash dropped the case containing the pages on the desk, shattering the glass. He didn't have time for subtlety. As he deftly picked the shards aside, Annie lifted the pages clear. Jake was by the window, staring out into the fog. "Hey" he moaned "Where the hell is she?" Ash glanced at him out of pity for a brief second before returning to his task. Jake returned to staring out the windows. The trees seemed to be…moving, growing closer to the cabin. He turned back "We gotta go out there and find her". Ash sighed "If she went out in those woods, you can forget about it. Then he suddenly shivered as a long chill ran down his spine. Something dark whispered in the black corner of his mind. Annie looked up from the pages, concern in her voice. "What's wrong?" Ash calmed as the sensation passed. "I felt like someone just…walked over my grave" He swallowed dryly then turned back towards the pages. "What's that picture?" he asked, pointing to an illustration on one of the pages. It depicted a man in blue, holding what looked like a thick, barbed sword in one hand and a stick with fire flowing out of the tip. He was surrounded by a throng of cheering people. "What is that?" Annie furrowed her brow. "It was prophesized that this man would come to earth in around…1300 AD. He's called The Chosen Hero From The Sky. It says that it was his destiny to destroy the evil" Ash grimaced. Something about that drawing seemed awfully familiar. "Well, whoever he was, he certainly didn't do a very good job. Did you find it?" Annie leafed through the pages, eventually pulling two out. "Here it is" she smiled pointing to the inscriptions. "Recitation of this first passage, will make this dark spirit manifest itself…in the flesh" Ash glanced at her incredulously. "Why the hell would we wanna do that?" Annie pointed to the second page. "Recitation of this second passage creates a kind of…gateway in time and space and the physical manifestation of this dark spirit can be forced into the rift, trapping it between dimensions. At least…that's the best translation I can manage from-" Annie was cut off abruptly by the cocking of a shotgun. She looked up at Ashley, who looked over at Jake, who was holding the double-barrel, a wild, enraged look in his eyes. "That's right" he grinned "I'm running this show now. We're gonna go out into them woods and find Bobby Joe, and once we find her we're gonna get the hell outta here!"

"No you idiot!" Ash yelled at him. "You'll kill us all. She's dead by now, don't you understand?" He held up the pages of the Necronomicon. "But with these pages, we might have a chance" Jake advanced on him "Bunch of mumbo-jumbo bullshit! These pages don't mean squat!" he snatched the pages from Ashleys hands and opened the trapdoor to the basement a crack, stuffing them inside. "Besides, now you ain't got no choice!" He pointed the gun at the two of them. "Now MOVE!"

Authors notes.

Yikes, Ash and co. certainly are in a predicament. Sorry about the long wait, I was going through a lot of personal crap. I'm back though and the next update will be here in a week or so.