Reapers -- Thirteen Brothers (Watty Awards Paranormal Story of 2012)

Dedicated to


Reapers -- Thirteen Brothers

By Shim Simplina

All rights reserved. 2012


Because I could not stop for Death,

He kindly stopped for me.

The Carriage held but just ourselves

And Immortality

~Emily Dickinson




Death is the ultimate end in life. It is an undefeatable enemy almost all of us fear.

More than a hundred and fifty thousand people die every day. More than six thousand die every hour and more than a hundred every minute as we speak.

I wish I could say that life is a story that concludes with “and they lived happily ever after” but no. Our stories go on and on until our last breath, making the best of our time on earth. In the end, it is not the ending that matters because eventually and inevitably, all of us will die. It is the natural order of the universe.

I knew it was coming. But I didn’t expect it to be this early.

Running but going nowhere.” A woman’s voice sang in a horrible melody that made the hairs on the back of my head prickle. The voice seemed to be coming from under the ground. Sometimes it echoed everywhere hissing and growling at me accompanied by the occasional thunderclaps of a brewing storm.

I took one brave look at the rearview mirror, half-expecting to see something unearthly terrifying settled at the backseat. There was no one around; no one living at least.

I stepped on the gas pedal trying to fight the urge to shut my eyes and cover my ears with my hands. My heart was pounding against my chest and my sweaty hands trembled as I steered through the dark street leading to Ashland’s border.

“C’mon Aramis Rayne! You can do this!” I gritted through my teeth as I squinted against the shadows cast by the ancient looking trees lining the road.

Loud blood curdling cackles reverberated everywhere as though a dozen more hungry spirits were in pursuit of me. I ground my teeth struggling to keep my concentration and not succumb to the urge to look back to whatever creatures they were that lurked in the cold darkness.

Instead, my left hand fumbled into my jacket pocket for the small piece of paper with a haphazard scribbled note.


You know where to go.

Route 61, The Sinclairs, Ashland-Centralia Border.

P.S. Watch out for the hole.


Rayne, Rayne don’t go away.” The voices chorused all at once grating like rusty hinges, making me wince. “We’ll come again another day.” In any other day, I would’ve laughed at the pun but tonight, I could only cower in fear.

Vincent Sinclair knew what was happening to me. He warned me long before this night. He’d know what to do; that is if I get to him first before those creatures get me. Desperately, I accelerated over ninety miles, my breathing slowly becoming ragged, my sight blurring with a dark haze. Soon, I could feel it again. My grip on the steering wheel loosened a bit as my hand twitched with an ethereal glow. It was happening again.

It looked as if the road was splitting into two and soon I could see my body slowly separating from my consciousness from waist up. I fought hard to keep my body and my spirit intact. If I detach now, it would be the end of Aramis Rayne.

“No!” I cried with an eerie voice that wasn’t mine. I kept driving as though in a state of trance. It was no good. I needed to find that address and fast.

Yes!” The woman’s voice screeched loudly as though she was screaming on my ear. A pair of gnarly ashen hands materialized from outside the window of my Dad’s Pick-up truck. The hands passed through the glass panel and grabbed me on the shoulders. I writhed away from the hands as a horrified scream left my lips.

An angry wail came from outside as a body of a woman slowly materialized outside the car window growing from the hands that clawed on me. My eyes widened in fear when the woman grinned lopsidedly at me as she glided through the air.

She looked just like me but wraithlike. Only, her clear furious grayish-blue eyes were bloodshot and sunken. Her heart-shaped was face ashen and emaciated, her long brown hair crusted with blood and dirt. The long flowing robes she wore might have been white once, but now it was brown and brittle with filth, like tentacles flailing against the wind. If she had feet under that robe, I couldn’t be sure.

The hands clawed on me furiously. “Give it! It’s mine!” The woman shrieked madly.

A shudder ran through my spine as she leaned closer to the glass. It was almost like I could smell the stench of a rotting corpse.

I perfectly knew well what she wanted but I wouldn’t go down without a fight.

My name is Aramis Rayne. I used to be an ordinary girl. Now I’m getting chased by hordes of evil wraiths with a goal to possess my body.

And it all started on the day I died.



if you are reading this, thank you so much. This is my first non-romance work but I might inject a little love-hate action in here. So if you liked the plot ot the prologue, please do vote or comment. I'd really appreciate it. Trailer at the right side :)




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