Moving was just as painful as I thought it would be, surprisingly enough. It’s been almost a week and I still haven’t recovered. There’s just so much to put away…too much. And although we made lots of progress on that front over the week, I still have enough to keep me busy after work today. Sigh.
So, enough complaining. Time for some good news! I’ve finally figured out the mechanics (mostly) of the flash fiction contest that I want to start hosting. I’ll be putting up a blog post on that early next week. I don’t want to crowd this one with talk of another contest. So, if you’re interested in flexing those writing muscles some more – stay tuned!
This week’s #WOW555 prompt gave me a pretty good opportunity to mess with Malakai and Emma worse than I have up to this point. Muahahaha! It’s purposely dark, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to shift gears for a little bit. And it brings me that much closer to a possible end! Hooray!
Prompt: write about what comes out of the shadows when the world outside goes quiet.
Into the Abyss
Climbing out of the mouth of a beached whale has to be – by far – the weirdest thing I’ve ever done. Drenched in salt water, I dragged Esther out before losing my footing on the sand and falling backwards. Despite the situation, I let myself relax as I listened to the waves crashing against the shore, the warmth of the air around me sinking into my bones. It wasn’t long before the heat turned unbearable.
When I opened my eyes, Malakai was looking down at me, back in human form.
“You look comfortable.”
“Better than the inside of your mouth.” I shrugged, sitting up to take in our surroundings. Every second that passed made the heat worse, though I couldn’t see a sun in the sky. The landscape reminded me of an abandoned beach – stretching beyond the limits of my sight.
“We need to find some shade…” Malakai kept his shirt off, drenching it in water and using it to keep Esther cool. “Before this heat kills us.”
“Stay here.” I tried to take off like I did in the snow, but my ascension was sluggish, my body weary before I was able to get more than a few feet off the ground. “Damn it.”
Malakai scrambled to catch me. I managed not to collapse again, keeping my eyes trained on the horizon, looking for anything that seemed like hope. “There! How did I miss it…?”
There was a single cloud in the sky, casting an impossible shadow that fell directly onto what looked to be a door. I shook my lethargy away and pushed forward, motioning for Malakai to follow. He didn’t seem as affected by the heat as I was, still able to easily carry his sister. It was barely a few moments before we reached the edge of the shadow, its area much larger than I’d first thought.
It was instant relief. Stepping into the shade felt like an ice bath in the middle of the hottest summer imaginable. The door was just a few feet away now. I turned to tell Malakai to hurry, but my voice caught in my throat. My mouth moved, but no sound came out. He noticed, eyes confused as he tried to respond. I couldn’t hear anything – not even the waves anymore. In a panic I reached out to Malakai’s hand.
Below us, everything shifted, the sand becoming liquid shadow. Tendrils reached up, stopping my hand just short of Malakai’s, tightening around my wrist like a vice and pulling. I struggled against it, but more grabbed my other wrist, my ankles, my neck. I screamed Malakai’s name – or thought I did. Even if he could hear it, it wouldn’t have mattered as the tendrils ripped Esther from him, pulling her easily into the void below. His mouth moved in desperate attempts to call his sister, eyes frantically searching the abyss before it engulfed him, too.
Throat raw from my soundless screams, I gave in to the pull.
Always knew their relative safety would be short-lived. Can’t wait for next week’s prompt!
Remember to check out the rest of the entries on Saturday and vote for your favorite! If you’re into writing, give it a shot!
As always, think happy thoughts!
Image Credit: Image found via Google Image Search on www.artwallpaperhi.com