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Dark Heart of Winter

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posted on Nov, 27 2019 @ 12:37 PM


“Hot damn, but it’s cold,” Marv says for what seemed like the hundredth time.

It ain't any news to me though. I know it’s cold. I’ve been tryin’ to keep this meager fire goin’ from what busted up furniture we could find since the firewood ran out a few days ago. Gus, our cousin, went out to get firewood about an hour ago. I hope to hell he hurries. This damn fire is about to die. At least there aren’t any of those crawlers out there. That’s what people call those critters that are nothing but mouths, tentacles, and eyeballs that’ve been poppin’ up since the fall. They call it “the fall” because those damn critters and worse stuff fell from them space ships a while back. All of them things have been up in the big cities like Detroit; though, at least that’s the last we heard before the power and internet went nuts up.

We been in this cabin for a while now. It must be about four weeks ago since we got here for our huntin’ trip. We come out here to get away from town. People was startin’ to act funny and supplies were gettin’ low. We thought we’d be okay out in the old huntin’ cabin. There’s a stock of canned food there and a well. We figured when we ran out of food we could get some more by huntin’. The woods have been mighty quiet though. It’s like everythin’s been layin' low.

We tried to leave before but the damn truck was fried. Seems like none of the gadgets work. My brother, Herb went out for help a few days back but never did come back. He’s probably out there froze stiff because that blizzard came through the mornin’ after he took off. I try not to think about that. It’ll be us froze stiff soon if Gus doesn’t hurry the hell up.

Jess starts bitchin’ about how the beer is all gone again and then Marv starts up his moanin’ about the cold and I tune them out. They just won’t shut the hell up, though, and I’m about to tell them to can it when the door creaks open and Gus stumbles in. He’s lookin’ green around the gills like he ate somethin’ that don’t sit right with him and his eyes are all glassy like the eyes of the buck we got hung over the fireplace.

“Where’s the wood? We ain’t got nothin’ to keep this damn fire goin’,” I say but he just stares at me.

“I wish we had some damn beer,” Jess says again.

Marv starts to say somethin’, probably somethin’ about how damn cold it is, but Gus reaches out and grabs him. He starts shakin’ and some weird thing shoots out of his mouth. It looks like long spider legs. They latch onto Jess’s face. Jess starts buckin’ and jerkin’. Gus lets him go and turns toward Marv. Jess falls to the floor squirmin’. Marv yells out and runs at Gus. He get grabbed and that thing shoots out of Gus’s mouth again. Marv hits the ground just like Jess did.

I don’t know what the hell is goin’ on but I ain’t about to get tangled up in that mess. Gus jerks around and starts stalkin’ toward me. He’s movin’ all stiff-like like he don’t know how to move his body no more. I manage to get to the shotgun and let loose right at him. Gus stumbles back a bit but starts comin’ on again. Worse, Marv and Jess are back on their feet and comin’ on at me, too. They got those spider leg things comin’ out of their mouths and they’re lookin’ mighty hungry.

There’s no place to run to here. It’s just the one room in the cabin. I break out one of the windows with the cast iron fryin’ pan and just manage to get out as one of them grabs onto my leg. For a second there I think I’m toast and I’m gonna end up like the others but my pant leg tears and I get loose. I can hear them raisin’ hell in the cabin and don’t dare slow down enough to look back. I know they’ll be comin’ soon.

I don’t know where the hell to go. At least I had my coat on in the cabin. Still, it’s damn cold. I don’t know how long I run before I start hearin’ the brush rustlin’ and thrashin’ a ways back. I know they’re gonna get me before long if I don’t find a place to hide.

I’m all covered in sweat and out of breath when I spot a dark spot in the snow. I swerve toward it and see that it’s a cave. There might be a bear in there but at least it’s winter and they’re most likely sleepin’ anyway. Being ate by a bear can’t be as bad as freezin’ to death or getting whatever happened to the others. I take my chances and dive on in. It’s dark as a miner’s asshole in here but when I light a match I see that I got the place to myself. I get to the back of the cave and see a crack just big enough for me to squeeze through. I make myself as small as I can and squirm on into that crack. It opens into a larger area, I guess you’d call it a cavern. At least I’ll be safer in here. It’s a bit warmer in here too. Still, I ain’t got no food or water and don’t know how long I can stay without starvin’ to death. Wouldn’t that be a treat, gettin’ away from whatever the hell Gus and the others have become, only to starve to death?

Some time’s gone by. I light a match and check my watch and see that it’s nine o’ clock. Lucky it’s the windin’ type that don’t need no batteries to run or I wouldn’t even have that. I guess I been in here goin’ on four hours. I haven’t heard a damn thing from outside. I guess I lost them. I’m startin’ to finally feel safe, when I hear this skitterin’ noise comin’ from the dark. I don’t know what the hell it is but it don’t sound good. I light another match and see dark little things movin’ around. Oh hell. Somethin’s in here with me. The sounds are all around me now. I also hear these squishin’ noises and somethin’ grabs my leg. I get loose and run. I bonk off the wall and almost fall down but grab hold. The crack! I’m right by that crack I come in.

I get my ass back into the crack and work my way back to the cave. I still hear those squishy skitterin’ noises behind me though and it makes me hurry all the faster. I heave a sigh of relief when I finally get back to the cave mouth. It’s full night now and I don’t hear a thing out there. I can’t say the same for the cave behind me. Those things are comin’. I run out into the cold and snow. Somethin’ grabs me and jerks me around. It’s Gus. He’s got a good hold on me and I can’t get loose. It wouldn’t matter anyway. Jess and Marv are there, too. Gus leans all close like he’s gonna kiss me and I feel something hard and scratchy movin’ into my mouth. Somethin’ hits me like an electric shock and the world goes dark.

I come around I don’t know how long later. I’m movin’ alongside Jess, Gus, and Marv. I say “movin’” but it’s more like my body is movin’. I don’t have no control over it. I feel like a puppet and somebody else is movin’ my strings. Things are gettin’ a bit fuzzy. I guess I don’t have long left in the world. At least I don’t feel the cold no more.
edit on 27-11-2019 by Skid Mark because: Formatting and grammar

posted on Nov, 27 2019 @ 07:02 PM
a reply to: Skid Mark

Love the title! Good story Skiddy! Hope we never get alien thingies like that on Earth.

posted on Nov, 27 2019 @ 07:42 PM
a reply to: Night Star

Thanks. It was written for a story stream and it was winter themed. It was the first thing I thought of.

I hope not either. That would be very bad.

posted on Nov, 27 2019 @ 08:45 PM
Skiddy, than you for sharing your writing with us.

posted on Nov, 27 2019 @ 10:01 PM
a reply to: LookingForABetterLife
You're welcome. Thanks for reading it.

posted on Nov, 27 2019 @ 10:53 PM
a reply to: Skid Mark

Well done, Ser Mark of Skid!


posted on Nov, 28 2019 @ 05:53 AM
a reply to: Mike Stivic
Thank you, Ser Meat of head. How have you been?

posted on Nov, 28 2019 @ 05:58 AM
Beautifully written, as always!

posted on Nov, 28 2019 @ 09:37 AM
a reply to: swanne

Thank you. I'm glad you liked it.

posted on Nov, 29 2019 @ 12:59 PM
a reply to: Skid Mark

Doing well bro, I hope life is finding you content.

I purposely delayed my reply to give your thread a bump.. I hope you don't mind.


posted on Nov, 29 2019 @ 03:38 PM
a reply to: Mike Stivic
Good to hear.
It's cool.
It's been a boring day so far. I'm going bonkers.

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