The Forest

By Lashanna Bryant All Rights Reserved ©

Thriller / Horror

Chapter 9

Chapter 9

My last official day of summer vacation came and went as fast as any other day living in this house, however, the night dragged on for so long I felt like I'd never see the light, that the sun provided, again. It was very late at night. The sun was replaced with the moon and silence invaded the usual noise surrounding us. I laid the rock that flew through my window on my dresser. I couldn't help but stare at it. Jasper is watching. Was this a joke pulled by someone? Was it pulled by Sammy? I instantly pushed the idea out of my mind when I remembered Sammy was in his room when it happened.

I tried figuring it all out in my head, but it didn't make sense. Who wanted me to read this? More importantly... could they come back? That question sprung a curiosity all over my body. If they come back maybe they could explain all this. This could be a trick though... they could possibly think my intention is to find out who they are and try to attack me. I wasn't even sure what my intentions were.

Although I had no clue of my plan I could feel myself pulling my body off my bed and start walking into the hall. Sammy was presumed to be asleep and so was my mother. I walk carefully down the staircase. I try to see through the darkness because if I turned on a light I may cause attention to myself. Attention that I want to avoid. I make my way through the living room, trying not to trip in fear of making any noise that would wake anyone up.

I felt like I was sleep walking. I felt like I wasn't in control of my body. I am slowly getting close to the back door. It was still dark so I moved my hand over the surface of the door to find the handle. I feel like I've finally got it when all of a sudden the lights come back on immediately and everything is clear.

"Matt, what are you doing?" I hear a voice ask.

I am frozen in this pose because I don't know where to move or hide. I try to turn my body slightly to her direction.

"Nothing mom. I just needed a little... fresh air. My stomach is bothering me" I lie, hoping that it was convincing. I put my hand over my stomach to make my pain seem realistic.

"You're probably just nervous, aren't you?" she asks, leaning her body against the wall.

"Uh yeah. Terrified." I answer nodding. What she was implying was true, but I was not nervous for the reason she thought.

"It's okay to be" she tells me. It feels, in a way, awkward having her talk to me in this type of tone. A very understanding, comforting tone. She hasn't spoken to me this way in a while. All because she doesn't believe me...or is just choosing not to. If only she knew the real reason, I was down here.

"I'll be okay though" I say, trying to brush off the situation.

"You sure?" she asks with concern.

"I'll be just ...fine. I am just going to get something to drink"

"Alright" she answers back to me, "I'll just be going back to bed then"

I wondered if she wanted me to be nervous and scared? Did she want to have to nurture me somehow so it'll excuse the way she has been treating me? I couldn't quite figure it out, but even if I wanted to, I have something else to worry about.

When I finally hear my mother reach to the top of the staircase I reach for the door handle again. Before I leave I pull out one of the kitchen drawers and find a flash light. The house could be confused as a light house near the dark ocean as I stepped outside. I didn't know what I expected to see. I didn't hear anything. I close the door behind me slowly as I take slow, carefully thought out, steps through the yard.

I press the top button of the flashlight and light shoots out of the cylinder. I move it around the yard looking for something off. It was so unusually quiet, it made me uncomfortable. I'm ready to look fear in the face and it won't even show up. I start to become angry because of my unfortunate findings.

I start to walk back into the house when I hear footsteps. They sounded like they were running. I turn the opposite direction from my house and try to find where the sound was coming from. I catch something or someone. They were running up the road.

"Hey!" I yell and chase after them. I didn't know who I was trying to stop or even if I should've been stopping them in the first place, but I keep running.

"Wait!" I yell, this time at the top of my lungs. I try to pick up speed behind the stranger. They obviously didn't want me to catch them. I can hear them breathing, their breath quickening with each step. At this moment I was right behind them. I could finally see who was running from me, but I still was confused on why they were running. What were they afraid of? Was it me?

I grab their shoulder to stop them, they pull away, and my body springs forward. As I fall I reach my hand out as quick as I can and grab their ankle. They fall face forward into the street. At first I felt concern, but then anger for this person making me feel like a monster.

I slowly get up off my feet, trying to catch my breath, and examine the body on the ground. I recognized the light brown, curly hair and shuddered.

"Suzie?" I ask, not really to her, but to myself. I knew it was her. At least now I did.

She turned her body around towards me. Her face was bleeding. She had a cut right above her left, hazel eye.

She stared at me with anger.

"What's your problem?" she asks, holding her head.

"My problem? What were you doing near my house...”?

She started to pull herself up and I backed away, holding the flashlight in her direction.

"I'm not going to hurt you. That's the opposite of why I was there"

I shook my head in confusion, "Were you the one throwing rocks at my window?"

She stood there silent for a minute. "Yes" she finally answers. I self-consciously grabbed my shoulder remembering the pain.

"What do you know?" I ask in anger.

"More than you could possibly understand Matthew" she answers back to me and I become speechless.

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