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Bonnie

Ireland

Sixteen, Irish, I love writing fiction and adventure stories. I'm very passionate about my writing, I want it as a career and it means a whole lot to me.

Message to Readers

Short Story I wrote for school when we were told to write a story about the woods. Hope you enjoy!

The October Woods

May 8, 2016

FREE WRITING

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I trudged along the mucky, uneven ground, trying to keep up with my Uncle. The trees of the forest were dense, letting in a fraction of the weak Autumn sunlight. I didn't really mind, but it was always a nasty surprise when I accidentally half-tripped on a large twig, and my Uncle would turn to grin at me, only to say 'Can't stand the October Woods, October Woods?'
That's my name. October Woods. And I can't stand it, for obvious reasons. My Uncle never stopped teasing me once the last month of Autumn arrived. Even though his name was similarly ridiculous. Andy-Jones Woods. Who on earth named their child Andy-Jones?? Naturally, most people either called him Andy, or Jones. He despised people calling him by his full name. Therefore, I made sure to do it at every single opportune moment, to wind him up. I sighed, and adjusted the strap of my backpack, the weight putting strain on my shoulders. Andy stopped dead in front of me, and turned around, smirking. I braced myself.
“What's wrong, October? Don't you like October?” He laughed a little to himself. He thought he was so cool, my Uncle. So hip.
“No, not really, Mr. Andy-Jones.” I spat back. He scowled at me, and backed up so I could walk with him.
“Are you coping alright?” He asked softly. I nodded silently. In reality, I wasn't at all. Andy nodded curtly, and continued deeper into the forest. I followed reluctantly.
I recounted recent events as I walked. I hadn't seen my parents in a couple weeks. Rumour has it they've been arrested, by the government. Andy told me not to believe it, but he didn't look too sure. You see, my parents are wanted 'criminals'. So is Andy. And, if people knew I existed, I'd be one too.
My mother and a few of her friends started a resistance group years back, when they were in their teens. Where we're living now is overrun by the most corrupt, monstrosity of a government you could think of. Heartless puppeteers out for one thing: power. And they got it. And they did everything they could to abuse it. The resistance group was small at first, but it grew, and it grew, and suddenly my mother was pregnant at sixteen, and suddenly she couldn't revolt anymore, and suddenly there was a baby to take care of. I was seventeen now, and they'd sent me off, to keep me safe. The government didn't know I existed, my mother and father doing her best to hide my existence. But I didn't want to be kept safe. I wanted to help. I was almost an adult, I was old enough to make my own decisions. My Uncle Andy thought so too. So he smuggled me away to resist with him. And here we were. In a damp, musty forest.
“Keep up, October!” He called, pulling me out of my thoughts, “We're almost there!” I quickened my pace, only to trip over my own feet. Andy looked back at me, that cheeky grin back in place. I death-glared him.
“Don't even think about it.” I growled. He chuckled, and walked on.
We reached a small, poky clearing. Andy dumped his bag, and turned to me.
“Home sweet home!” He said. I scowled at him. He sighed.
“Cheer up, October, c'mon! Help me put up this tent.”
“Fine.” I dropped my own bag, and trudged over to him, lazily moving my arms to pick up the tent. Together, we pitched it, Andy having to correct me several times. I'd never camped before, not without somebody else pitching the tent. And getting the food, and lighting the fire...
“Don't we need firewood?” I asked. Andy looked up at the sky, shielding his eyes with his hand.
“Yeah, you're right...It's getting dark. Better throw your mask on, just in case.”I nodded. I took out a skull-shaped mask, and fit it over my face. Andy took out a similar mask, but his was red. Andy was known for this mask. He was the ost wanted criminal in the media right now, but his identity was a complete and utter secret. I loved watching him at work, from the shadows, or the TV screens, or hearing about him on the radios. He had a knack for stunts, fooling people, and trickery. He was the best of the best, my Uncle Andy. Always finding a new way to fool the same people, and always finding time to rub it in their face. He was simply known as 'Red-Skull' when it came to media.
I strolled along the forest path, my head down, watching the shadows of the trees grow dimmer as the sun went down. I split from Andy, making sure I had my mobile on loud in case anything happened.
I set to work collecting a massive pile of firewood. I plodded along, a little happier now I was alone. I wasn't great with any sort of company, i had very strong opinions. So did Andy. I suppose we got on okay. I hummed to myself quietly, picking up sticks and small chips of wood for the fire. The sun was properly down now, and the moon glowed eerily in the sky instead, bringing with it a chilly breeze, and little light to see by. I decided to head back to camp, when something caught the corner of my eye. I turned.
Shining brightly, only a little away from me, was a light. A great, big orange globe of a light, flickering, almost like a fire. My insides went cold for a second, thinking it was a forest fire. I was about to run and tell Andy, but something halted me. The light wasn't a fire...It was growing smaller, not bigger...And it wasn't as fickle as a flame, it was more constant, only flickering a small bit, smaller the longer I looked at it...The amber colour turned to a pale yellow, and then a blinding white, as the light shrunk into a dot...And then it was gone. What...What was that? I quickly made my way back to base, stumbling over a couple more twigs, typically. Andy was waiting for me, sitting on one of two large stumps.
“Hey, buddy, I found these stumps just hanging around out there, they looked pretty new. We should keep an eye out, but we can sue them as seats anyways.”
“Andy...” He caught the uncertainty in my voice, and frowned.
“What is it..?”
“I saw something weird...A light. Over there..” I pointed in my general direction. I sat on one of the stumps, and tucked in to the mediocre food Andy had prepared for us.
“A light, you say...?” Andy chuckled. “There's an old wife's tale about these woods...You want to hear it?” I smiled, and nodded. Andy's stories were the best. He leaned in, and put on a low, spooky voice.
“It's rumoured that a demon lives in these woods, put here by the Devil himself. A demon of fire. They were set in an old farmer's house, that was situated right in these very woods. The demon came to life at night, and burned the house to the ground. A few decades later, somebody else built something here. Next night, burnt down. Same goes for everyone who ventures into the forest, so the story goes...Even us...Even we're in danger.” He laughed in a creepy way. I smiled. Then I remembered something...Andy did actually believe in demons..
“Andy...Is the demon real?” I asked. He shook his head. “I presume not.” He replied, “I've never recorded this forest as the den of a real demon. Just a story.
“How do you tell the stories apart from the real ones..?” Andy winked at me.
“Experience.” He said. I scowled at him. We chatted for a little bit, before going to bed. There wasn't much to talk about. I sighed, and tried to sleep, but I hadn't been getting very much of that lately. I tossed and turned, my mind on the revolution, and my parents. I hoped they were okay. I hoped we would come out of this alive. But...There was only so much I could hope for.
I felt light on my face, and opened my eyes. I raised an eyebrow. We put the fire out hours ago...I checked my watch. Three am. I ventured out of my tent to be met with an ice cold wind. I kicked Andy's tent until he woke up. He climbed out, ready to curse me to hell.
“Andy, I saw a light again.” I said quickly, to avoid being given out to. He frowned, then smiled mischievously.
“Why don't we go take a look, then?” He asked. He tossed me a flashlight, and off we went, staying close to each other. We were walking about five minutes, when Andy let out a big sigh.
“Look, October...There's something we need to talk about.” I turned my head, confused. He sounded serious.
“Just after we went to bed...I got a message, through my radio. Um...It was..About...” He hesitated.
“About what?” I asked. A ball of nerves grew tight in my chest. Andy looked at me, his expression morbid.
“Well...” Something cut him off. A scream in the distance. I gasped.
“C'mon!” Andy said, and we started to run. I snagged my foot, yet again, on a small log, and fell flat on my face this time. Andy halted, and came back to me. I groaned, and got up, grabbing my flashlight. I flashed it at the log, and my insides went cold. The log was...Charred...In this dark, damp, cold forest, it was charred as if burned. Another scream sounded, and the smell of burnt wood filled the air. I looked up, just as Andy grabbed my arm, dragging me back towards camp. I saw a blazing fire, engulfing the trees, engulfing a small house in the distance...
The fear set in, and I ran alongside Andy, trying not to stumble, my heart pounding in my chest. We reached the campsite, and I dived into my tent. Andy had told me about demons before, and they couldn't hurt you as long as you didn't let them. I shut my eyes tight, and prayed to whatever might be watching out there that I wouldn't die tonight.
I must have fallen asleep, because I had the strangest dream...It was the demon. She came to me. She whispered into my ears, but all I could hear was the crackling of flames. Andy was there...No...It was a memory of Andy. How he'd looked at me, what I'd dreaded he might say...The demon nodded her graceful, firery head, and whispered again, the crackling growing, the words starting to make sense. 'She's gone...Your mother...They got her...She's gone...' I looked up at her beautiful eyes, the colour of a sunset splitting the sky, and saw only truth reflect back in them. The demon felt pity for me...Andy had said to never trust a demon. But...Her eyes were so truthful...I moved closer...Her fiery arms outstretched, her flames licked at me. I allowed them to...'Come...Join her...' The demon crooned. I nodded silently, and allowed her to caress me...The flames filled my mind, heart and soul...And burned down to ashes. I was free. I was no more.
 

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