Writing on the wall

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic
A short story about 3 friends and the start of their holidays

Submitted: June 12, 2019

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Submitted: June 12, 2019

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James, Peter and Rachel sat in the backyard of Peter's parents house, around a small fire. An empty bag of marshmallows and 3 charred tree branches lay discarded next to them. Behind them, the tent they'd be sleeping in that night. They were all three friends from school and being the first week of the holidays were having a sleepover.

 

 'THAT WASN'T SCARY!" James yelled, as children often do, when overloaded with sugar. "YEAH" Peter agreed, always following James's lead. Rachel, had just finished telling the story about the Ghost on the hill. A story she had in turn heard from her older brother after his trip to the highlands, earlier that year. "WELL, YOU WEREN'T THERE!, MY BROTHER WAS AND HE DOESN'T GET SCARED OF ANYTHING, AND HE TOLD ME HE RAN AWAY!" She screamed back. 'KIDS!' A shout came from the screen door at the back, Bernard, Peter's father stood with a cigarette hanging from his mouth. 'Keep it down would you!'. Rachel turned red with embarrassment! The others burst into laughter.


Speaking much quieter now, James spoke 'Everybody knows ghosts aren't real, your brother is a big sissy!', 'is not!' said as a whispered shout came the reply, 'and yes they are!' Rachel continued. Peter had been oddly quiet usually he chimed in after James made a statement, he spoke in a very quiet voice now. 'They are', 'What?' asked Peter. Rachel's body language changed, then  she perked up a little, feeling emboldened by James's support. 'See!' she said. 'How do you know anyway!?' said Peter. James was nervous, he never disagreed with Peter, he looked to Rachel for support, she smiled at him. He began to speak 'I saw one, with my cousins, when they were visiting from London.' 'Where' asked Rachel. 'Yeah, where was this!?' added Peter. James continued 'It was near our school, you know, the abandon house, with the truck in the driveway?' They both knew the place he was talking about. It was something of a bragging right among some of the older students at the school to go into the house. Many urban legend's surrounded it.


Peter with slight annoyance in his voice asked 'Why have you never told us this before?, your cousins left last month.' James spoke defensively, 'Because you wouldn't believe me!' 'I believe you James.' said Rachel. A small smile crossed his face, 'thank you'. 'Well, I don't, my Dad says Ghosts only in the mind of people who get too frightened to think properly' answered Peter. The 3 went silent for some time, the fire crackled. 'Let's go there, tonight.' It's not far from here!' It was true, Peter's house was only two blocks away from the school they all went to. 'We already have flashlights, and soon my Dad will fall asleep.' 'No, no, no!' James said obviously frightened. 'I don't want to go either!' said Rachel. 'Fine' said Peter, but that's because you know I'm right, and there is no such thing as Ghosts!' Peter's Dad opened the back door again. 'Kid's it's time to go to sleep', 'If you need to go to the bathroom do it now, because you don't want to have to walk to the toilet in the dark'. The kids all went to relieve themselves. Before saying Goodnight and closing the tent and lying in their sleeping bags. They talked for a while more in the dark about, teachers, their favourite subjects and what else they wanted to do these holidays, the house and talk of ghosts seemingly forgotten.

 

James woke up to movement. 'What are you doing' he said louder than he wanted to, momentarily forgetting Rachel was sleeping beside them. Peter was trying to leave the tent. 'I'm going to go to the abandon house, I have to see for myself.' came the reply. 'No, don't go, please!', pleaded James. 'Don't be such a baby, if you're so worried then come with me, face your fear, you'll see there is nothing to worry about.' James looked to Rachel, sound asleep snoring away. Peter noticed this, 'Don't worry, you know she sleeps through anything, we'll be back soon, no one will know'. James reached within himself and grabbed at whatever courage he could find, he managed a nod in Peter's direction. 'Good.' Peter said.


Grabbing their flashlights and quietly exiting the tent into the backyard, Peter motioned for James to follow. Out on the street, James's fear was somewhat subdued by excitement, in reality, he hadn't actually seen a ghost, his cousins were older than him and truth be told, he hadn't had the nerve to go in the house. Instead, he stood scared outside. His cousins told him what they saw when they came out. Peter was right, he was always right, there were no Ghosts, his cousins were surely messing with him. Filled with excitement, the two boys, walked quickly and quietly along the deserted streets to the abandon house.


Standing in the driveway, James was once again filled with dread. The same fear he'd felt before, barely able to move. 'Come on, let's get this over with' Peter said, obviously experiencing some trepidation himself. Both boys stood there for a good 10 seconds, before Peter took a step forward. 'Wait!' James grabbed his arm, 'let's go back' he begged. Peter, not wanting to chicken out looked at his friend. 'If you want to go home, fine, but we've come this far, I'm not leaving until I at least have a look.' Swallowing the lump in his throat Peter continued forward. James Looking around at the dark street and the foreboding house as his friend walked down the driveway, into the overgrown grass near the broken front door, he quickly followed.

 

Opening the broken frosted glass door into the dark abyss, it made an ominous creak. The two boys paused at the entrance their flashlights losing their luminescence in the depth of the hall. Peter entered first, crossing the threshold, the hallway was littered with broken glass, it crunched beneath their feet. James and Peter started to remember all the urban legends they'd heard from their school. In one of the rooms was a still beating human heart, in one was a dead dog, in one was a mirror which gave no reflection. In the upstairs was a group of cannibals. James barely holding it together, grabbed onto his friend's arm. Peter jumped, clearly on edge himself.


Something about the house, or at least the ambience it gave off at night was extremely unnerving. 'We can go soon, let's just look at some of the rooms first, to prove the big kids wrong' Peter reassured himself as well as James, all the confidence in his voice now gone. Straining to hear anything over the sound of their beating hearts. They gently pushed one of the slightly ajar doors fully open, they heard a hiss and a black shape darted past them! They both jumped, the screams snatched from their throat. 'Cat!' peter finally spurted out, 'it's just a cat' James, who was now completely pale at this point and struggling to stand up for shaking so much, said nothing. Shining his flashlight around the smelly room, they noted that it was empty, apart from an overturned table, looking very dilapidated, and tattered curtains hanging over a broken window.


Peter seeing the fear he felt mirrored and amplified in his friend said 'just one more room, and we'll go.' Opening the door adjacent, the most repulsive smell filled their nostrils, shining their lights in was another discarded chair on the ground, above it dangled some feet, attached to a body, attached to a rope attached to a wooden support beam. On the wall behind the man scrawled with what certainly wasn't paint was written "DeAtH CaLLs Me" James vomited and Peter started to cry before both the boys fled the house in a frantic panic screaming and crying at the top of their lungs...


© Copyright 2019 C. Edwards. All rights reserved.

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