Serenity Lake

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic
Serenity Lake seems like the perfect place to go for a sail.

Submitted: August 14, 2016

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Submitted: August 14, 2016

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Serenity Lake.

 

It seemed a great place for a picnic. The banks of Serenity Lake are almost always deserted. With no fishing and no sailing allowed it doesn’t have a lot to offer day-trippers or holiday makers. It is not in particularly picturesque surroundings. All it does is offer stillness.

 

It did offer privacy though and that was what drew the teenagers who liked to meet there. The town of Creydon offered very few opportunities to escape the prying eyes of the bored and often bitter adults that lived there; especially now crews were working to thin out the forestry.

 

Bailey, Jeff, Rose and Chloe stretched themselves out on the grass to soak up the sunshine. They had already finished their ‘picnic’ of snack-food and stolen beer and were listening to the rather tinny sounding music from Jeff’s mobile.

 

Bailey, getting bored, walked to the very edge of the lake. The surface looked completely calm, not a ripple to be seen even though the branches of the trees were moving in the breeze.

 

He turned towards the others. “Why would sailing be banned? I mean look at it, guys. It would be perfect.”

 

Chloe walked over to stand beside him, putting her hand in his. “It looks so calm. You’re right, Bay, what could possibly be dangerous about it?”

 

Just one problem that I can see,” Rose said, as she joined them to stare out at the water. “We don’t have a boat!”

 

We could go for a swim,” Chloe suggested, but Bailey shook his head.

 

Swimming in these lakes can be lethal. Some of them are really deep, even at the edges. You get cramp – you’re gone. There’s just no place to go but down.”

 

Did I hear someone say they wanted a boat?” Jeff said, walking away from the others. “Because if you do, I know just where to find one.”

 

Bailey ran to catch up with his friend and together they carried the rowing boat to the edge of the lake. “How come you knew about this?”

 

Saw it when we arrived, didn’t I. Some people just seem to notice more, I guess.” Jeff dodged the playful punch Bailey aimed at him.

 

They started inspecting the boat. The wood seemed sound enough; there were no obvious holes or cracks where the water could seep in. One thing was missing though.

 

Guys! What good is a rowing boat without oars?”

 

Chloe, quit trying to ruin the moment, will you? We could always use our arms” Jeff was not going to let his find just be written off and forgotten.

 

Ha! As if.....” Rose ran off shrieking as Jeff dipped his hand in the water, cupped it and threw a handful at her retreating back.

 

Bailey and Chloe walked off towards the spot where Jeff had found the boat. A few minutes and plenty of scratches later they triumphantly discovered a pair of oars buried amongst the brambles.

 

Come on, you two. Quit messing and let’s get this boat afloat. Chloe and Rose, pick an end each. Jeff and I’ll be rowing.”

 

The boat tipped and bobbed on the lake’s surface as they all climbed in and attempted to make themselves comfortable. Ripples spread across the top of the water.

 

So would you ladies like the round trip? Or would you prefer the more direct approach of straight across the middle?” Bailey, it seemed, had taken charge.

 

Chloe and Rose looked at each other and shrugged. “How about a bit of both. We start off going round the edge then head off to the opposite side”, Chloe suggested.

 

Sounds like a good plan to me. Ready with the oar, Jeff? Let’s get this voyage under way.”

 

Once Bailey and Jeff got into a pattern the boat began to move smoothly along in the water. The bank stayed no further than five feet away from them; an easy distance to get across should the worst happen and the boat sink. None of them noticed the odd bubble that started to make its way to the surface. They didn’t notice the increasing ripples that were moving across the lake. Any movement they did notice – well, it was just the rhythm of the oar-strokes, wasn’t it!

 

Shall we go for it?” Jeff asked Bailey.

 

Across the middle? Yeah, this boat’s sound. Let’s do it!”

 

The course of the boat altered and the bank was becoming more distant. Serenity Lake was turning out to be much bigger and wider than they had imagined. Chloe and Rose trailed their hands in the water; Jeff and Bailey slowly but steadily rowed.

 

What the hell is that?” Chloe almost shouted as a stream of bubbles rose up just a few inches away from her hand.

 

Bailey looked round and saw the last of the bubbles. “Oh, no! It’s the beast of the lake. We’ve disturbed it and it wants our blood.”

 

Yeah, right. The Serenity Lake monster,” Rose laughed but Chloe still looked nervous.

 

When the boat started to lift at one end only to splash back down again, both girls screamed. “What are you doing? It’s not funny!”

 

Yeah, quit messing, Jeff. I nearly dropped the oar.”

 

Me? It wasn’t me that was messing, Bailey. I think you’ve had your game of scaring the girls. Let’s head back.”

 

Oh, come on. We’re not even half way across. And I didn’t do anything.”

 

Bailey, I want to go back,” Chloe said. “Something feels wrong out here. And if we’re not half way yet we should just go back the same way we came out here.”

 

Rose?” When Rose nodded, Bailey accepted defeat. “Okay, okay......Back the way we came then, Jeff.”

 

The boat slowly started its journey back to dry ground. Stroke by stroke Bailey and Jeff struggled to make progress but it had become more like trying to row through treacle than water. A stream of bubbles spread from the centre of the lake and made rapid progress towards the almost stationary boat.

 

Will you two stop messing and get us out of here. I’m scared!” Chloe was staring at the approaching bubbles. “There’s something bad out here. I can feel it.”

 

Rose saw the bubbles. She was sure she could see something moving under the water; something that was moving ever closer to the boat. Why wasn’t the bank getting any nearer. “If you two morons won’t row I’m going to swim.”

 

Rose, don’t!” Jeff shouted, but she took no notice. Rose got to her knees, stood unsteadily, then moved herself over the side of the boat and in to the water. She was a strong swimmer. She would be okay. Arm over arm she was swimming away, not making much more progress than the boat but certainly trying to escape. And then she vanished. One moment she was swimming along; the next there was not a trace of her.

 

Rose!” Jeff screamed. He flung down his oar and leapt into the water.

 

Jeff, what are you doing? You’ll capsize us all.” Bailey grabbed for the oar and handed it to Chloe who had quickly moved forward to take Jeff’s place.

 

Both Bailey and Chloe saw the arm reach out of the water; a ravaged arm of mottled flesh that was strong enough to pull Jeff straight under as it disappeared back beneath the lakes surface.

 

Jeff! Rose!” Bailey shouted as Chloe choked back her sobs. “Row, Chloe! As fast as you can. Don’t look in the water.”

 

Chloe strained and pulled at the oar, desperate to keep pace. “Why aren’t we moving? The bank is just as far away.....”

 

Five greyish fingers with long sharp nails had broken through the bottom of the boat. And this hand was strong. It was pulling the boat downward, aided in its effort by the water that was seeping in through the holes those fingers had made.

 

Jump!” shouted Chloe, but neither she nor Bailey stood a chance against the hands that were waiting to pull them down. Their struggles were futile and short-lived.

 

As their heads disappeared beneath the surface the boat began to float freely back towards the bank. It was low in the water but managed to stay afloat until reaching the bank near to where it had set sail.

 

The lake rippled then settled once more. The surface was as still as glass, not one movement visible in spite of the breeze. It was once more a picture of absolute serenity.

 

 

 

 


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