the valleymen

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: November 12, 2016

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Submitted: November 12, 2016

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June 20th, 1908 
We are staying with a native Russian tribe. They only speak a little of the King’s English and are letting us stay in an extra tent while we prepare for our trip into the largest forest on Earth, the Siberian Taiga. The sun is bright here, compared to the constant rain in England and the people are nice, willing to help an adventurer on his way. 

June 21st, 1908 
Davis and I are going into the Siberian Taiga tomorrow. We are leaving the Evenki village with our bags full of food and our hearts full of hope. If we succeed, we shall have our names carved into history as the ones who mapped Russia! Davis put a hole through a coin and is wearing it around his neck. He told me that he will take it of as soon as we are finished with the maps. 

June 22nd, 1908 
I am puzzled, for when Davis and I left the Evenki, they did not wish us farewell like everyone else on our journey has. Instead, they only warned us of the Valleymen and hid in their tents. But as soon as we started walking, I forgot their warnings, for the beauty before me was endless. The forests and swamps stretched out for miles, the naked eye couldn’t see their end. Even now, in the safety of camp, I can remember every detail of every tree. I fixed us a hearty meal to celebrate the start of what was to be an excellent journey. 

June 25th, 1908 
The past three days held nothing near as awe-inspiring as the view on the first day, but we came across several rivers. We named them after Evenki legends such as Niugun Bootur (Fiery champion) and Atadarak (place with three-sided harpoon). The forest seems endless and the sun can only be seen at midday. In these trees, it is hard to find something twice, so retracing our steps is not an option. Food portions are becoming progressively smaller due to Davis’ realization that the food is not unlimited. Because of the smaller portions, we have to hike the entire day on a half-empty stomach. 
After dusk, the only light for miles comes from the feeble fire and the trees cast dancing shadows. The immense cold makes it almost impossible to sleep, for everything outside a five-foot radius of the fire freezes completely. I know it is childish, but underneath this foreign canopy, I feel as if we are not alone. 

June 29th, 1908 
Today was the most eventful of the journey so far. Excitement grips my body as I write this and I don’t know how to start. This morning started like all the others, with Davis waking me up at the crack of dawn to have breakfast. I don’t remember what we ate, but after we were packed up and leaving, the trees started to thin out and we hurried forward. About midday, we reached the center of the thinner forest. There was a clearing in the middle in which stood several cabins. The wood they were made of was rotting and whoever had lived here was well gone by now. Davis and I scoped out the biggest cabin. It was locked, but the hinges were rusted and easy to knock out. Inside, there was a moth-eaten mattress on the bunk and an unlit oil lamp hanging on the wall next to a wooden dining set. We threw out the mattress and set up our base of operations there. At dusk, the lamp was lit and the maps spread across the table. These log walls, however rotten, give a sense of security that was absent in the forest. 

June 30, 1908 
I do not know the exact date now, but I believe that it is the thirtieth. This morning, I was inside studying the maps while Davis started to cut firewood outside. I heard him yell, so I rushed to the window and looked up. There had been a streak of blueish light in the sky and then a sound like a thousand sticks of dynamite going off. The house had come down around me, and I think I got hit in the head by a piece of debris. 
The sun was directly above me when I came to, and the sight in front of me was frightening. For miles on end, the forest had been stripped of all leaves, leaving an acrid. Ashes covered the ground like snow and the trees were bent or knocked over. Where the cabins once stood, only scattered logs remained. Davis was gone, and I had never been so alone. I dug through what was left of the tiny village and found my backpack with several packets of crackers in it. I couldn’t find our maps, or any sign of Davis, so I set out towards the east. This proved more difficult than I thought it to be. After climbing over the felled trees for what seemed like hours, I ended up back at the destroyed village. 
It is now several hours into the night, and I swear I can see other people. They lurk just outside the reach of the firelight, not daring to show themselves. At times I yell at them to show themselves, but that makes them sink even further into the shadows. I am afraid to go to sleep. 

July 1st, 1908 
I must have fallen asleep soon after I finished my last entry, for by the time I awoke, the fire had diminished to embers and the sun was up in the sky. When I looked around, there was nothing to suggest that anyone besides me had been anywhere near my camp. 
I am convinced that I am being chased. By what, I haven’t the slightest idea, but I keep moving forward. I left the cabins behind, and with them I left any chance of finding Davis. I wish I could have looked for him more. Maybe he is still alive. 

July 2nd, 1908 
I am stuck now. I have driven myself into a crevice of a rock the only way out is into their arms. They are everywhere, never to be seen directly, only a shadow, caught out of the corner of my eye. I have not slept since the night of the thirtieth. 
It is later in the day now, and I have seen one of them fully. They are taller than humans, with lengthy arms and knobbly joints. They look as if they are made of wood and their eyes, oh the eyes! Eyes that shine bright yellow even in the middle of the day. I know that I will die soon, the only barrier between me and the monsters is the firelight, of which they seem to be afraid of. Rations are running low, and I haven’t moved from my uncomfortable position wedged in the rocks for at least 12 hours. 
14 hours between the rocks, and I am now using pieces of my clothing to keep the fire going. 
Another hour has passed, burning my clothes was a mistake. Now my only source of warmth comes from the fire. Maybe I should burn the food. 

July 3rd, 1908 
All of the food is gone now, I had to burn it. The creatures are moving closer by the hour, the effect the fire has on them is lessening. One of them wears a coin around its neck and I know now that Davis is dead. I cannot concentrate on writing for more than a few minutes at a time. I no longer have anything to burn and the fire looks like it is going down. The monsters will be onto me soon. When they reach me I will die. But I hope, one day, that my writing will reach another human soul and I can warn them. 

B E W A R E O F T H E V A L L E Y M E N


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