15 - Follow Him

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You decide that maybe punching him right now would be too hasty. Perhaps following him to see where he leads you...and maybe catching him off guard would be a better idea. He leads you to the house and stops.
     "Go on. Go see the doc," he says.
     You don't know who he's talking about, but you're eager to be away from him. You rush inside the house hoping to find help or at least a working landline. As soon as the door shuts, something grabs your shirt. You spin around and see a blonde girl with wide green eyes.
     "Oh, thank goodness there's a live person in this place," she says in a whisper. "I've been alone for a long while. I lost the others."
     "Others?" you say.
     "Shhh-" she says, but then she looks around. "Too late, we gotta go."
     All around the room, small shadowy things are crawling out. The girl urges you to follow, but for some reason, these little humanoid shadows have captured your attention. One comes to stand beside you and you feel loneliness coming off of it Ina flood. You feel sad for it and like you should follow it wherever. It holds its hand out to you.
     Before you realize you've almost given it your hand, the girl has already taken your hand and begins to lead you toward the stairs.
     "Don't touch them. Don't even look at them," she says, but you're still looking back. "And jump before you get to the last-"  
Before she can get the words out, the floor disappears below you. Both your stomach and heart drop as you fall, pulling her with you. With a scream, you fall down a whole story and land on a dusty wooden floor. She lands beside you harshly.
     "Trap door," she finishes.
     "Thanks for the heads up," you say.
     From the floor, looking straight up, you see one of the shadow things peek into the hole and then disappear. The feeling of wanting to stay with it is completely gone now. You're now only creeped out by it.
     "What were those things?"
"Lost souls, I guess." She sits up and shrugs. "That's the best I can figure."
The hole shuts, plunging the room in darkness and sending a little shiver down your spine. It's so quiet, you could hear a pin drop. And chilly. You get the sickening feeling you're standing in the middle of nothingness.
"What is down here?" you ask.
"I don't know, I've always avoided the trap door until now. Thanks for that," she says and you can hear the sarcasm oozing in her voice. "I saw...someone else fall down, though."
It's clear that she just purposefully avoided saying someone's name. You briefly wonder why, but it's really none of your business, you decide. But you are concerned what happened to that person here.
"And?" you press.
"He didn't come back," she says harshly. You understand then that it must have been someone close to her. She was pressing out the words because they were too painful.
"I'm sorry," you say.
"Thanks," she says softly. Her phone light shines in her face. A moment passes and the flashlight on the back pops on. She shines it around to show piles of human bones, stripped clean of flesh. Hundreds of rats begin to crawl out of the walls and up from the floorboards until they're all around the room, staring at you with beady little red eyes. A few of them raise up and sniff the air around you. They start closing in.
     Shrieking, the girl shines her camera frantically, looking for an escape route. The light finds a window you could probably fit out of, but that would take you back outside. Is a chainsaw more dangerous than a few hundred biting, clawing, possibly diseased rats?
The light also found a door. Where it leads, there isn't a clue. The biggest number of rats are in the space between you and the door. Could a mystery be a better choice?
One jumps on your shirt, and you can feel it's nails scratching against your skin. You shout and throw it, then make a hasty choice.

The Window - go back to chapter 8The Door - go back to chapter 9

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The Window - go back to chapter 8
The Door - go back to chapter 9

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