Monday, July 16, 2012

[Moon-dæg] When the Guard is Down

{A figure, a silhouette, a being - but with what intent and purpose? Image from the Minecraft modding site}

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This piece of flash fiction (or scene from a longer work) came from a writing exercise, that, as far as I remember, just involved a phrase. The idea of the exercise is to take a phrase and then to write a piece that starts with that phrase.

So, once the phrase "She could hear them living all through the house" came up, I just took it and ran.

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She could hear them living all through the house. She felt herself sink deeper into the bed, all of the muscles in her arms and legs loosening for the first time in weeks. Mathias' plan had worked. And he was right about them not wanting to get into this room.

A quick glance to the window still showed a pillar of smoke rising from somewhere below the lintel. And the sky remained filled with the kinds of clouds that brought drabness but no rain.

Yet she knew that they were all living beyond the door and down on the first floor. The still silence confirmed it. Silence enough to hear someone's walk. It's brisk, she mused. A word she hadn't been able to use to describe anything's walk for far too long.

She relished the sound of shoes squeaking on the floor. A stop! Low voices. Low voices that only survived as undulations of sound full of pitch and intonation - but measured and easy - after they crossing through walls and even floors.

But then, a scratching. A scritching against wood that forced Emma back into the fore of her mind. She closed her eyes and tried to melt into the mattress. The memory faded, but the sound did not. She put her feet on the floor, faced the closet and walked over to it.

Her hand reached for a knob of the folding door. Her hand's steadiness caused her no surprise - she knew the door led only to a closet. And nothing terrible had ever come from a closet. They had never seemed to get into them.

The scritching subsided and air rushing through the corner of a canine mouth could be heard.

How on earth did he wind up in there?

She turned the door knob. The hinge creaked and the colour of clothes formerly worn only by shadows rushed to get through the crack of light.

A low growl followed.

Her arm continued to push the door outwards. But before the panel door snapped into place a weight latched onto her neck and she fell backwards.

"No..." she managed, as low as the voices that had now resumed below and around her. But teeth and flesh would not part. "No...bad. Bad...Dog-uugh!"

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On Wednesday, come looking for an editorial on some of the newest news, and on tomorrow and Thursday be sure to watch for annotated links #8 and #9. Plus, don't miss part three of Nicolas Cage month on Friday, featuring his 2011 thriller Trespass.

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