It was a particularly wet night in the village of Piddle Brook in England, laying claim to charming yet quiet scenery that is often found out in the sticks. Sheltered under an old tattered bus stop made of rough brick with a wooden and slate tiled roof was a young man in his mid twenties. He stood about 5ft 11 and was blacked out in a jumper with its hood up, cargo trousers, black trainers and gloves. His face was vacantly staring across the street with an orange glow shadowed across the bottom half of his face, showing a dark stubbly beard.
The man sniffed and wiped the snot on his sleeve then leaned forward into the sheet of rain and began to walk across the road towards the small, quaint house positioned on the corner of the road. As he climbed up the bank of the road he grasped hold of the low fence just in time as the mud under his right foot crumbled away into the stream of water that was running down the side of the road. He pulled himself up and crossed over the low wooden fence and marched across the small lawn with big quick strides, finding himself pressed against the brick wall of the side of the house. The soaking wet hooded figure went into more of a stealth mode now, with a crouch and hugging the wall he stepped closer to a window on the side of the house which had its curtains half drawn. The light was on and he could hear voices inside so he inched his head closer to peer inside.
"It's really coming down out there John!" said a females voice out of nowhere, sounding concerned.
"It will be a devil to get the car out of the village in the morning!" arose a male's voice, from deeper inside the house.
" I don't want you breaking down in the middle of a puddle for the sake of work tomorrow, we can't afford to get it repaired again" the female replied.
The voice had gradually become louder and closer so the figure outside the window stepped back out of the line of sight. A blonde woman's face popped up to the glass squinting to look, before a hand rose to her brow and pressed against the glass.
"If it gets any worse you'll just have to work from home or something."
The figures face pushed out of his hoodie slightly as he gazed at the women looking out of the window. He slowly started to slump further to the floor almost as if he was losing strength from his legs. Then the women left.
"John! Did you hear me?" she called, the voice fading away again "it's really coming down out there!"
The hooded figure turned and continued along the wall then leaned out towards the back corner of the house and peered around.
"Yes dear, don't worry. We've had worse weather than this. I'll take a look in the morning."
There were some French windows around the corner of the house and a small, dark, empty back garden, with a small wooden shed in the corner with its back against the house. The figure edged around and darted across the French windows just in time for the women to appear into the kitchen inside and open the fridge to retrieve something. The figure crouched dead still, with his head facing the white framed glass doors not looking, but listening for signs of movement from inside.
The rain was getting heavier and the wind was picking up too. It was hard to hear so he would just have to risk moving further along towards the shed. There was one more window in between him and the shed and at a glance it looked to be a bathroom window, with no light on. He moved into a quick sprint and jumped onto the sheds roof in one movement, then lay on the opposite side of the v shaped slopped roof blending into his dark surroundings.
"JOHN! What was that banging?!" the women exclaimed.
"Calm down! Sounds like one of the fence panels just blew down" John replied "I'll have a look in the morning."
The figure slowly began to rise on to his knees, pushing up with his hands when a loud thud came from the French windows and he quickly released the weight from his arms, hitting the deck. With a quick - half second - glance up, he saw the blonde women holding open the door and peering out into the water logged garden. She wore a white dress with small red roses dotted about all over it. He noticed she wore bright red lipstick but the shoes were out of view as she was leaning forward. The door slammed shut and the lock turned.
"I can't see through this rain!" the women's voice came, from inside the house.
The figure got up again, shivering now and the once black hoody now glistened as the light from the house hit the water that had soaked him through. He slowly turned around toward the house, carefully as not to slip and reached for the top floor window above the shed. At first his fingers couldn't get a tight enough grip on the lip of the window and his hand kept slipping, but digging his nails in behind the gap he pulled and the window opened. A knowing smile spread across his face, the window was not unlocked by coincidence.
He grabbed the sides of the frame and slowly and silently eased himself through. His left foot lowered down and found the top of a radiator followed by his right foot, and he sat on the window sill. He closed his eyes and waited silently for a long second, listening for any movement coming up the stairs. There was none. He carefully lifted his feet of the radiator as not to let them squeak and gently lowered himself onto the carpet and slowly looked up. The room was pitch-black but there was light coming from under the door. The air in the room smelt of a sweet, clean powder almost like washing machine liquid mixed with dust. The figure produced a light with a click from a tiny pocket torch. The carpet was royal blue and the walls were sky blue. He shun the light to a single bed that was made perfectly with cushions presented neatly on the pillows. A spare bedroom. He opened the built in wardrobe and collected a small towel that was stuffed into the bottom left corner and began to wipe the water off his shoes but it was no use, the water from the rest of his body would just run down onto them again. The towel was planned for the mud on his shoes; he had not thought tonight would be so wet. Stick to the plan.
He moved around the side of the room, hoping the floor boards underneath the carpet would not creak as bad as the ones in the centre. When he reached the door, he slowly eased the shiny golden chrome handle down and opened the door enough for an eye. He waited staring onto the floor of the landing, listening for movement. He could hear cups being knocked about which made him think the female was possibly washing up or making a cup of tea in the kitchen. There was no sound of another person, no speaking. The male must be sat in the living room, reading the paper or napping.
The hooded figure leaned back slightly and braced himself, then swung the door open wider so as to not make a slow creaking sound but the door was unfaithful to him. The door let off a couple of cracking sounds halfway through the swing. The figures face winced and he backed into the bedroom a little, pushing his back against the wall and closed his eyes to listen. There was movement and muffled talk down stairs now, the man knew all he could do was stay still and hope they didn't find him. Not yet. Whispering emerged from the bottom of the stairs and a deep voice called up.
"Hello?!" the man's voice sounded demanding although not too concerned. "No one's going to be up there Janet, forget about it."
"Well their not very well going to called back down 'hi, how are you' to you now are they, Johnathan?!" the women said in quick whispers. "Go up there and see what's going on!"
John sighed and looked up the stairs and back to his wife. "For five flaming minutes."
Slowly ascending the stairs, John began to wonder why he hadn't brought anything with him other than the newspaper he had been reading but still he rolled it up and held it in his right hand as a weapon. As he got closer to the landing, John noticed that the door to his bedroom was wide open. His eye brows lowered and his heart started to beat in his throat. Finally he reached the top of the landing and he stood there staring into the dark, empty bedroom his eyes becoming sore as he could not bring himself to blink.
Janet was stood at the bottom on the stairs, holding onto the banister staring at John one foot on the bottom step, she was about to tell him to move when abruptly out of the bedroom came a fist followed by a black shadow attached to it, ploughing John down onto the floor in one swipe. All three of them motionless and one out cold, it was the women who made the first move. Letting of an almighty scream she bolted to her left. The black figure made it down the staircase within 5 or 6 half slipped steps and pushed of the wall at the bottom to his right, pulling a picture frame of a happy wife and husband to the floor. The women now scrambling to unlock the French windows was trapped in the corner of her own kitchen. She looked up at the man dressed all in black then flipped over to the kitchen counter searching for anything, anything at all. The man's voice came from behind her, it was calm, croaky and dry.
"Now she is like everyone else."