As Violet ventured further into the forest, it was impossible not to notice the fog coiling around her feet every step she took. She battled with her thoughts on whether she should continue this already reckless plan, or fall back all-together.
Only the slightest shimmer of light seeped through the canopy of trees surrounding her, signalling it was reaching six clock already. Leaf green eyes roamed the surrounding forest pinpointing for any form of animal life.
“No animals here, either.” Violet came to a halt, and formed a fist at her side ignoring the scrunching of her map contained in her hand. “I knew I shouldn’t have come this far. Too much time is already wasted.”
But of course, being Violet, she ventured past her hunting ground in hopes of catching bigger food to take back with her to gain her village’s favour. What a stupid idea that proved to be, her inner voice snickered.
Thankfully... she had marked the trees as she passed them, making her journey back beyond easy. Sinbad’s training really was the best, and even though the others strongly objected to it, he still taught her. It was something she was immensely grateful for.
Violet felt her eyes widen when the first sign of rain dropped onto her shoulder and soaked through her cotton shirt.Without hesitation, she turned and ran with all her strength back in the direction of her village with only one agenda: get to the church. Since there was no sound of the church bells having been rung yet, there was still time.
Navigating through the trees proved an easy task as she followed her pollen sap markings on the tree. She pushed her legs to move faster, focusing on the ahead trees which were slowly erasing the marks she made like ink to water.
The forest clearing emerged just as the first roar of thunder took to the sky, painting it in cloudy darkness. A horrifying screech, like someone being burned alive, echoed from deep within the forest as the Earth rumbled in it's wake. Soon more followed in symphony causing a chill to run down her spine.
Forcing even more strength into her legs, muscles doing overtime, she pushed forward despite the pain in her body and the fire in her lungs. Even when she was long out of the forest, and the ground turned to a muddy mess causing her to loose her footing more then she could count, Violet still kept running.
Slowing down even for a second could mean her death.
Listening for the church bells, she passed many frantic villagers who also made it their mission to make it to the church in time. Because like every night, the only shelter providing a safe haven from the Death Seekers was only that of holy ground. No matter what, she had to make it to those church doors before they closed for good, only to open in the morning.
"Leave the toy!" Shouted a mother, who was pulling the arm of her five year old daughter desperately trying to reach the doll covered in mud against her mother's wishes. When the daughter's stubbornness continued, the mother didn't hesitate to slap her across the face. The sound even made my hurt cheek in sympathy.
"Do you want to die!" The mother shouted, shaking the little things shoulders furiously. Violet ignored them with the shake of her head, before passing them. There might have been a time where she would have stopped to help, but that was long before people feared the night. Humans could only care about themselves when their lives were in jeopardy. It was the same for Violet.
This was the word Violet had come to know. A world where keeping yourself alive was above anything else.
A world where humans owned the day, and the Death Seekers hunted at night.
Turning the corner of the stables, the church was in clear sight. Only three minutes remained now. Many of Timway's other hunting parties ran along side her in one final effort to make it before the doors closed.
The people selected for the hunting party were among the strongest and most skilled in their tasks that they finished up fast. Only, even the best of Timway knew that they wouldn’t stand a chance against the Death Seekers who were beyond human and could accomplish things beyond the possible.
It was common for hunters to brag about their catches when bringing home food from surrounding areas. But it was like a silent sin to joke about Death Seekers. When it came to them, creatures who could kill you just from removing your soul, it was out of the question. No one had ever been known to survive a night when encountering them.
Violet stole a glimpse behind her towards the forest which could still be seen at a distance. Trees from the forest swayed widely while the monsters moved inhumanely fast within. They soon leaped out from the trees on all fours.
“The Death Seekers are here!" She shouted, whipping her head back around to the church. "Run for it!" She locked eyes with Brendan who ran beside her. "Remember, live to survive another day." She finished, and he responded with a nervous nod.
Violet's destination felt tremendously far away that she felt she would never reach it. In fact, there wasn’t much distance between her and her destination it only seemed that way as the same recognisable voice she heard since the night she turned four years old was drawing nearer.
“Violet!” A voice called which was all to familiar. “Where are you?” She wished that she was dreaming until the same voice drifted to her ears through the chaotic wind. Violet had reached the steps of the church but instead of heading inside immediently, she halted just in front of the entrance which was already slowly closing. “Hurry up. Aren’t you going to get in?” Brandon prodded behind the church door.
“Violet!” The scared voice called again. She searched for any signs of red hair and fair skin. It wasn't long before she saw the twelve year old boy with his back to the stables war shaking in fear. Seeing him so distressed caused her heart to ache. There was no way she would leave him.
"Violet?" Brandon called her name again, his voice filled with defeat. He watched her carefully, in hopes she would leave the boy and step over the doors before they closed. When Violet sent him a sad smile instead, meant as a bittersweet farewell and a silent apology, they both knew she would save the boy. While the doors came to close slowly, Violet could not miss how those chocolate brown eyes stared at her intensely- as if carving her face into his memory one last time.
I will miss you.
The doors shut with a loud thud locking everyone else out. A shrill scream came from Bobby behind her, making her heart speed in up as she turned back around. Bobby watched as a man fell to ground, his eyes empty and soulless beside the Death Seeker. It stood on all fours, with wolf-like legs and sharp protruding claws that dug into the ground.
Instead of eyes, big holes sunk into it's head the shape of ovals. Grey cob-webs inhabited the holes leaving no gaps. With a slow beast like precision, it fixed it's attention on Bobby. He still stared down at the dead man with eyes wide open in horror. I looked between the creature who already staked his next prey and the boy who was completely unaware of the thing approaching him.
"Run Bobby!" I screamed, trying to draw his attention. It seemed to reach him as he looked up from the dead body and to the Death Seeker creeping up to him slowly. "I'm coming," I said making a run for it. Bobby tried to run, but the beast pounced on him from behind slamming him to the ground.
His body jerked forward, mouth agape as the life was drained from him right in front of her eyes. No. Anybody but him.
A wave of rage clouded her senses. She wanted to rip the creature to shreds with the same amount of indifference he had when stealing Bobby's life. Please. Something grant me the strength to beat this thing. As if answering her prayer, a sudden feeling of blissful calm flowed through her. When it stopped, she felt lighter then normal and a strength she never felt before overtook her.
“Get Away!” Violet hollered, knocking the Death Seeker against the stable wall. It knocked against it with great force, the wall shattering from the force of the creature. Bricks landing on top of it against it's defying screech. She crouched beside Bobby, her hands trembling as she reached down to grab his head and bring it close to her body.
"Bobby," she whimpered. "Oh, bobby." At this point she couldn't hold her tears in anymore and they fell down her face freely. "Bobby, please wake up." She stroked his hair, gently. "I'm here now."
This was the part when he’d call her name with his honey buttered voice. She waited, but only her cries could be heard. It was unclear how many minutes she sat there cradling his body, but the Death Seekers had come to take notice. They already were close enough an escape proved futile. One approached her slowly, his mouth opening to reveal pitch black and three layers of humongous teeth covered in drool.
Violet wanted to desperately hurt them and right now it should be scared. But some part of her watching Bobby had sucked the life out of her and she was just very tired. That's right. Why don't we let it end. It was so close now that its face was literally in front of hers.
Growing numer by the second from the rage that was building within me from this creature and the wolrd i lived in, i needed something to concentrate on to restrain myself from acting out. The Death Seekers mouth was more then enough as it both frightened and intrigued me. No fangs were visible, but the mouth aligned with the jiggery pattern both on the bottom and top of its mouth. The wide pointed jaw below the mouth was nearly touching my face making me feel disgusted.
And just like that the Death Seeker passed me along with many others as they praid on the people around me. At this stage I was so disconnected from the situation around me that when I closed my eyes to get sleep I was not even aware where I had gone. Only, the remeberance of how I met Bobby stayed with me.
As I sit on the cool concrete I feel a tap on my shoulder, I quickly whip my head around.
I didn’t manage to grab any food because I couldn’t afford to be locked outside at night.
I turn to face a little face. A young boy has approached me around the age of seven. He has red curly hair and piercing green eyes. His freckles dotted around his face the same colour as his red hair.
He smiles up at me. I’m surprised at how he can possibly posses a smile through this time of night.
“Here.” He says extending his hand out towards me. He opens up his palm to reveal a bit of dry bread. It is small but just enough to keep me going.
I return his smile but mine is full of gratitude towards him.
“I’m Bobby.” The little boy beams up at me and I smile again.
“Veronica.” I reply.