Thursday, February 17, 2011

Until Dawn - 17

He knew that no car had gone out. Aside from the cable being across the road, there were no tire tracks. He swung the flashlight to the left. The cars were there, covered in snow. They were here. There should be lights. He felt eyes on him again. He shrugged it off, but he hitched his coat up over his gun and unbuttoned the latch.

Jim knocked on the door. The house was old, at least early nineteen hundreds. This had been a farm once, before the Pritchards had moved in, and the house was large and looming. He pounded on the door with his fist, trying to make as much noise as he could.


No answer. He stopped and listened. He thought he heard movement inside. He walked over to one of the windows and looked in. He thought he saw something move, chased it with the flashlight beam. He couldn’t find it again.

The front door was locked. He walked around back. There was a big deck around back, a new addition to the house. He could see the faint remains of footprints, he tracked them with the flashlight beam across the yard and into the woods. The Defibaugh house was over that hill, but it would be a hell of a hike in the dark woods even without the storm.

He stepped onto the deck and shined the light at the backdoor. There was a bloody handprint on the glass.


He pulled his gun. Nothing about this felt right. He pushed the door inside with the flashlight. There was a black stain on the floor. He knew that it wasn’t really black, that blood in the dark looked that way. There was too much of it.

Jim knew that the amount of spilled liquid could be deceptive. He’d seen some one spill a pint of milk once and had the thought that, if that were blood, he’d have thought the person bleeding was dead. The kitchen smelled like copper, and he suddenly felt hot. He swallowed hard. He could hear his heart pounding in his chest as he stepped inside.

He could hear a wet ripping sound on the other side of the island. He couldn’t see past it. He didn’t want to step around it, but he did anyway. He shined the light and his insides went cold.

Jim had a second where he could process what he was seeing. He saw bloody hands. He saw red stained teeth. He heard the smacking of lips. He saw flesh tearing. He saw blood. More blood than he’d ever seen before. He stopped breathing and took a step backwards. They looked up at him in the beam of the flashlight, and their eyes reflected the light back at him.

Becky and Bud were crouched over Cassie, and Jim hoped like hell that she was dead. Becky looked at him and he saw her jaws working. Bud jerked his head back and tore loose another piece of his wife. Jim felt bile and vomit rise in his throat.

“I’m so hungry,” Becky said.

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