Bewitched

A short story by Mr. Grey

 

The trees stand tall and stiff as the fierce wind blows through the dark fallen forest. They are as dead as the air around them, as bleak as the life that they have swallowed. Many teens come seeking thrills and adventure. Falling victim to peer pressure and hormones, boys just seeing who has the biggest balls. And girls following in hopes of dating the victor. A primal contest where common sense is turned off for. But as the wind blasts through the forest, as the trees creak,  tree limbs snapping, and mist consumes all open air. A different formula enters the forest’s crypt gates this time, not the stereotypical scenario at first glance.

 

“Jade, are you sure we should be here? This fog is getting bad now.” Mara, a teeny bopping girl, short and fragile. Long blonde hair, pale skin and rosy cheeks. She cowers and surrenders to the fog and dark. Nearly crying from the isolation she feels from civilization. The death that chills any who enter the forest.

“Don’t be a pussy Mara, we got this shit and now we’re gonna do it. Like we planned, don’t you cut now.” Jade commands Mara to follow as she walks deeper into the fog. A strong and fierce heart burns within. A hatred for the world that pushes her to move forward. Rebellious by nature and choice; a true wild card.

“I can’t! It’s too much! Don’t you know the stories!?” Mara yells at Jade with as much power as she can. Her voice being completely cut off by the wind and crows flying by. Not even Death’s pet wants to stay in the forest for long. Jade powers over to Mara and hits her lightly, but it still hurts her. THUD. Her body hits the filthy ground.

“Get the fuck up! Now! You’re not gonna go snitch!” Jade yells in a furious voice as she drags Mara up from the ground. Dragging her deeper into the forest, Mara kicks and screams. But Jade is much stronger, colder, only cares about results and getting her way. And that’s exactly what she will get; the only thing she ever gets. Mara cries as she is forced deeper into the forest, like a child being put down for a nap; each foot more chilling than the last. Jade knows where she is going, she has done this many times in her head; the ultimate act of defiance that she can summon in her clouded mind. Crows caw loud as they fly overhead, the stench of death becoming more real, the chilling attack her bones at the core. Every creak makes her jump, every chill makes her cry, every whisper nearly makes her die. After the hundredth jump and squeal Jade punched her harder this time. Making blood gush from her nose, Mara cries louder than Jade could imagine.

“Shhhh, shhh, I’m sorry okay. Just get the fuck up..” Jade forces a nicer tone so she can get Mara to stop crying, who knows what might be lurking. Even Jade is starting to become aware of the darkness that steals light from the forest. Visibility is almost zero as the fog thickens to its near maximum potential.

“We need to go back! Don’t you read Stephen King?!” Mara cries her plead once more, but it is ignored once again. Nothing will stop Jade, nothing will persuade her to return to false tranquility without executing her plans.

“You remember! You bought these drugs with me! You came here with me! Don’t pussy out and try and snitch! Now come on!” Jade yells at Mara, raising her fist to her once again. This time with more ill intent.

“Don’t get us killed because your dad died!” Mara blasts out, regretting the second she realized what she had said. Jade and her Dad were extremely close….Without a second to waste…CRACK! CRACK! CRACK! Jade’s fists smash against Mara’s skull. Sitting on top of Mara as her fists draw blood, after several strikes Jade gets up. Giving Mara a death stare, chilling; almost lethal on its own. She drags Mara again deeper they stroll into the woods. Mara, bloodied, bruised, just follows now, losing her senses from terror, giving in to the chills and black feeling. It’s getting too intense for her speak. The wind picks up even more, blowing their hair in a frenzy, the cold cutting into their skin, fear infecting both girls like a forced drug. Jade still seems unfazed on the outside, but does she feel so on the outside? Deeper and deeper they go, condemning themselves every step, darker and darker it becomes. They travel so far in not even the crows will follow. Light nearly fades into non-existence, the smells of death becoming intense and almost impossible to ignore. A crunching noise comes from the now thick fog.

CRUNCH!

              SNAP!

             CRUNCH!              CRASH!

CRUNCH!

                                SNAP!

“Hello? What the fuck was that?” Jade’s bravery starts to fall apart, revealing the rusted, broken, terrified person within. Just a weak child looking for resolve to her issues. Just another abandoned child that needs a home, a place where they feel safe, a better life.

“It’s alright child…..”

                       “Just follow my voice…..”

   “I can help you….”

Mara can’t speak, she’s frozen, terrified, dying on the inside. BAM…BAM…BAM…BAM..BAM.BAM.BAMBAMBAMBAM! Her heart beats faster…and faster…and faster…and faster! There’s no escaping the reality of the situation. She slowly nods her head no, but she has no power, she can’t speak or run; she is just a weak little girl. Jade follows the voice in a trance, unable to control anything. She hears her savior…her escape….her peace….her happiness…

“Just a little more…”

                    “It’s okay you won’t get hurt….”

         “I never lie…”

                                            “Trust me darling….”

Mara tries to nod again, but the results don’t vary. She closes her eyes and wants to cry, but she’s too far gone for that. Too terrified and lost in her newfound nightmare. Wake up! Wake up! Wake up! She thinks in her broken head, but it’s too late to wake up, too light to see what lied in wait. She just stares into the fog as she’s dragged, unable to change her fate….she assumes she will die…assumes it will be horrific…maybe she won’t be wrong…

“Closer.”..

   “ Closer….”

          “There you are darling….”

There…in front of them…was the monster they feared…the terror of the night that children cry from……a demon so superior that grown warriors have fallen to. The Witch of the forest…the Witch of Salem…the one they didn’t kill….the one they treated like a monster…History may have forgot her….but she did not forget it…Her skin burned in the worst of ways, eyes black and hollow, body deformed and broken. Hair singed from existence, no hat, not the Hollywood witch…Her nails like claws and darkened, a tattered, bleak cloak is its only clothing. Its eyes….grey as a misty night….sharp as several razors….

“Hello my darling…”

                     “I won’t hurt you….”

                                              “But your friend here I need…”

She speaks in a creepy, cold, disturbing voice that you could only expect from nightmares. She touches Jade’s chin, rubbing her smooth face…carefully avoiding cutting her with its nails. Mara stands in horror for one last moment…maybe it was adrenaline, maybe she finally found strength inside. Only she knows as she runs as fast as she can.

Faster…………..Faster………..Faster..

Faster………………Faster………………………Faster..          Faster…………………………………Faster………………………………………Faster..                 Faster…………………………..Faster………………………………Faster..

Faster……………..Faster……………..Faster..

      Faster…….Faster……………..Faster..

FASTER!

Get her! Or you will have to die in her place!

The Witch commands Jade to hunt and bring back Mara. Mara runs faster and faster, trying to put distance between her and the Witch. No thoughts…no hopes…no cares…just a resolve to escape…

BAM…BAM…BAM…BAM..BAM.BAM.BAMBAMBAMBAM!

BAM…BAM…BAMBAM..BAM.BAM.BAMBAMBAMBAM!

Her heart pounding out of her chest once again, her breathing heavier than the surrounding air. Her vision blurred and broken from the fog. She can’t think of where she’s going, where she is, this is the forest where none return…faster…faster….faster…faster! Crashing back to reality….finishing her body……her legs stiffen unable to move. Her lungs collapse as she loses her breathe. Her mind broken and numbed. She lays there on the forest floor wishing she could cry. Too horrified to even think about what she was feeling. Blink….blink….her head aching….her hearing turns into ringing….her lights start to fade away…blink…blink…Jade appears out of seemingly nowhere…blink….blink…she’s moving…dragging Mara back to the Witch…Mara can’t move…can’t think…she’s done….her vision blackens out…her conscious slips into darkness…

“Wakey wakey little girl….”

              “You have to feel this…”

                                  “ I need this you see….”

“Your life force will save me…..”

Mara slowly rises from her slumber. Reviving from her temporary death, she looks around. Broken home….tainted wooden walls….dark everywhere….no hope of escaping…she starts to notice a faint music box playing….duh duh…duh….duh…..duh duh…duh…..

“Where am I…?” Mara tries to speak before her fear kicks back in. Something is off…her body…feels weak….she struggles to sit up….

“Don’t move girl…”

                    “You will only fight against…”

“The inevitable…..”

Her vision comes back into focus, trying to see where the witch is. Her mind feels as disoriented as her body…is this real? The witch creepily slinks over to where she is sitting up. She pushes gently against her body to push her back down. Something slightly unsolid is beneath her….torn sheets…tattered pillows….a bed….maybe….Mara feels her pants slide off…then her underwear….

“What are you doing?” Mara powers the words out of her mouth before falling back to weakness.

“I must drain your life….”

           “ To get the most however…”

                                   “You must be excited…..”

      “Your body must be intensely excited….”

“Now just stay still for a few minutes…It will all be over soon….”

“Those cursed witch hunters did this to me….”

“They took my heart….burned me alive….but I didn’t die…I KILLED THEM ALL!”

The night darkens, then it passes, leaving Mara just a victim on the sheets. Like so many others, tricked into the forest, raped, drained; the vicious cycle the witch follows to stay alive…draining the young for their remaining years…keeping herself alive….but never healing the damage…the burns….they didn’t follow the rules….didn’t hang her….now the world pays for the pasts mistakes…Jade now stands there above her sister Mara, staring at her with no compassion. Just staring with cold eyes that have no emotions in them any longer.

“One day you will have to do this too, maybe you should practice. She still has a little life force left…still a little alive.” The Witch points her fingers at her other. The birth of a new witch begins. The twisted life they follow, condemning and destroying those they encounter…doomed to live in the forest forever…draining victims…keeping their corpses as trophies….living their wretched existence locked in this cycle. Every victim corrupts their minds more and more….until they are nothing by crazed fiends feeding on the weak…

The cold winds blow away all screams…they match the pain and misery that infects the land…the crows try to warn those who enter. But none can speak their tongue, except those who know…like the witches…

BEWARE! BEWARE! YOU WILL BE BEWITCHED!!!

And Death sings her lovely, bleak tone as the world fades away.

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