The Monster of sorrow swamp
It was a night like no other. Stormy and wet, a hurricane was moving in. The eye of the hurricane would pass by in less than twelve hours. The people of Trentonville were preparing for the worst. They were covering doors and windows with boards, placing sand bags here and there, and many people were evacuating to nearby towns. Bruce and Mary Olson were huddled in their house around a crackling fire. They had experienced storms before, but nothing like the one they were about to experience. They too had nailed boards over their windows and front and back doors. They had put sands bags all around the outside of their house to keep water from entering.
Flooding was their worst fear. If the river nearby crested, most of the homes in the small town would be destroyed. Countless lives would also be lost. Bruce prayed that it would not come to that. The couple had ignored the warnings to leave town, but they had a boat outside if things got messy. They had a good stock of food in storage, enough to last through a crisis. Mostly canned and dry food.
"Want some more tea, hon?" Bruce asked, carrying the pot out to the living room. Mary's eyes lit up. "Yes, please," she said, reaching out her cup to her husband. He poured her a full cup and returned the pot to the kitchen. Mary took a sip of the tea. It filled her with warmth. Bruce returned to the couch and put his arm around mary. Mary had a distant look in her eye. "You okay, hon?" he asked, stroking her long blonde hair. She sighed. "I just hope everything turns out alright," she said, taking another sip from her cup.
At that moment, the rains began to pound the roof of their house. It had begun. The hurricane was here. They could hear the winds blowing wildly outside, and distant sounds of glass breaking far away. Bruce glanced at his watch. The storm was twelve hours early. "What's going on?" he said, standing. Mary had a alarmed look on her face. "Maybe we should go to bed, Bruce," she said. "I'd feel safer." But Bruce wasn't not tired. He was wide awake. "You can go if you want, but i'd much prefer to stay up and be prepared." He walked to her a gave her a kiss. "Night, hon," he whispered. "I won't let anything happen to you." Mary returned the kiss and then hugged him tightly. "I love you," she said sleepily. "Good night. And don't stay up too late." She exited the living room and went off to bed.
Bruce placed another log on the fire, and it crackled hungrily. Then he turned to count the bags of food that sat by the front door for the umteenth time. He would be ready just in case they had to make an escape. After counting the canned food, he returned to the couch and flopped down on it. He watched the fire until his eyelids drooped. Before long, he was fast asleep.
Something woke him, a banging sound. It was very near him. He jumped to his feet. That's when he realized that he was standing ankle deep in water. Water! "Mary!" he cried, running towards the bedroom. He splashed through the kitchen, nearly slipping, but managed to get to the stairs. He sped up them and into the first door on the left. At least it was dry up here. Bruce flipped on the light, and ran to his wife. "Mary!" he shouted, grabbing her. "Wake up, Mary! The house is flooding!" Mary sat up suddenly and clung to his arms. Bruce pulled her to her feet. She threw her arms around him and cried. Bruce tried to calm her.
"Don't worry, hon," he said, squeezing her. "We'll make it through this." Mary looked down at Bruce's shoes and gasped. "It's that high?!" she said. "Yes. Downstairs it is. We're flooded in. This might be a good time to get to the boat." Mary looked up at him in astonishment. "Are you sure, Bruce?" she said. "Is it that bad?" Bruce nodded. "C'mon, Mary. Let's go." Mary protested. "But I'm not even dressed. Are you sure we wouldn't be safer if we stayed here?" Bruce shook his head. "If we stay here, we'll surely drown. At least we have a chance in the boat. C'mon, we have to leave, now!" He grabbed her arm and pulled her after him. Once they were back downstairs, the water had risen nearly a foot. It was now almost to their knees. The water had put the fire out, and rain water was falling through the chimney.
"We have to get the food," Bruce shouted, flipping on the living room light. The bags holding the cans of food were soaked and ruined. "We'll have to carry them out by hand! Here, take these two." He handed his wife a can of chili and grabbed two more cans. "Let's get to the boat," said Bruce. They strode out the open front door onto the porch, where the water was now nearly to their thighs. "Honey," said Mary. "I'm scared."
"Me too," he said. "But we have to be strong. There's the boat over there. Take the cans and i'll carry you to the boat." The two stood staring at each other, standing thigh deep in the mirky water. "I don't think I can do this, Bruce," said Mary, starting to cry again. "Yes you can," he said. "I'll be with you the whole way. I won't let anything happen to you. I promise." Before she could answer, Bruce swept Mary off her feet and started for the boat. He held her tight as he waded through the flood waters. He stepped down the front porch stairs carfully. One, then two, then three, and finally....the water was now up to their shoulders.
Bruce propped Mary up onto his back. She clung to him tightly. "Were almost there," he shouted. The rain was pouring all around them. "I lost one of the cans, Bruce," Mary cried. "It doesn't matter!" he shouted. "Forget the food, hon. All I care about is saving you!" They were now several feet from the boat. "Just a little closer!" Bruce shouted. He took a step, and then another. "Mary! Grab hold of the boat! I'll push you into it."Mary still clung to him, sobing. She reached out her hands and grabbed hold of the boats edge. Her hands slipped, but a moment later she got a firm hold on the boat's edge again. With all his might, Bruce pushed Mary into the boat. She fell into it, gasping for breath.
She turned back to face her husband, who was still standing neck deep in the dark waters. He clung to the boat, breathing heavily. "Come on, Bruce! You can do it! Grab my hands!" He was trembling. "You might...have to go without me..." he sighed. "I can't pull myself in. I'm....so tired..." Mary shook her head, leaning over the edge of the boat. "I'm not letting you go!" she cried. "You're gonna live, hear me?! You're gonna make it!" The rain was still pouring, filling the boat with water. Bruce reached for the boats edge and grabbed it. With all his might, he lifted himself up out of the heavy waters. Mary grabbed him and pulled as hard as she could. His shirt ripped, but he managed to get into the boat.
Once in, he collapsed. Mary pulled his head up above the waters so he could breath. The two embraced one another. "We...made it," he said wearily. They were both soaked, and the winds made them shiver like it was the dead of winter. The boat rocked wildly, tossing them to and fro. Bruce made his way to the back of the boat where the engine was. He tried to start it, but nothing happened. "There's too much water!" he cried, over the whistling winds. "Were sitting ducks!" Mary reached for the engine. "Let me try." She tried, and slowly but surely, it began to growl unsteadily.
The boat began to move. "Yes!" shouted Bruce, throwing his hands into the air. He embraced Mary, kissing her face. This time, she collapsed into his arms, weeping tears of joy. The rain covered up their tears.
Bruce steared the boat away from their house and down the street which now become a flowing river. "Where should we go?" Mary asked, shivering. "I have an idea," sais Bruce. "There is a swamp about half a mile west."
"You mean sorrow swamp?"
"Yes. It should shield us from storm."
"I don't like the idea," she said, a worried look on her face. "I've heard that people have never returned from that place."
"Nonsense," said Bruce. "We'll be fine. I used to go fishing there all the time as a boy. I always came back just fine." Mary hesitated. "Well...if you're sure, Bruce."
"I am." He sounded confident enough, so Mary accepted his plan of action. The boat moved quickly through the water, passing houses and cars half submerged in the water. Still the rain came. Mary thought she could hear shouts in the distance. Desperate cries of people in crisis. She shuttered to think of all the lives who would inevitively be lost.
Several minutes later, Bruce and Mary could see the swamp in the distance. They were passing over the old highway now. Just beyond it was Sorrow Swamp. They passed a tree floating sideways in the flood waters, and moved the boat around it. Other trees stood intact, submerged halfway in the water. It was a horrible sight. Finally, they came to the enterence of the swamp. It was flooded too. As they passed under the gnarled trees of the swamp, the rains stopped falling on them. The trees acted like natural umberellas.
It was getting darker, and still freezing cold. Bruce steared the boat down a canal, through the eerier swamp. For the time being, they were safe. Or so they thought. "What's our next move, Bruce," said Mary wearily. "We sit tight," he said, sighing. "In the morning, we'll try to find help." So Mary lay back in the front of the boat to rest. Soon she was asleep. Bruce stayed up to keep watch. He sat silently, listening to Mary breath. At first it sounded normal, but then it took on a rhaspy tone. It didn't sound normal. He reached over to Mary to shake her awake. But she wasn't there! Her body was gone!
Suddenly there was a splashing sound, and something cold and slimy touched Bruce's arm. "Hey!" he yelled in surprise. The thing began to wrap itself around his body, squeazing tight. He heard a gurgling sound and screamed. Now he could hardly breath. He tried hard not to pass out. Then the tenticle thing lifted him out of the boat and dragged hum under the swampy waters. He screamed again, swallowing and inhaling water. The last thing he remembered seeing was blood filling the water. His legs hurt like hell. He thrashed on last time, then was still.
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