Strangers in Cross: Jan. 10, ‘38


The thrum of machines filled the air.

I followed the sound up and out of the darkness I’d been traveling through and came into a room of Miskatonic students.

Or, rather, what used to be Miskatonic students.

The machines went silent as the young men turned and faced me. Their eyelids flickered from left to right, then up and down.

Then one of them turned out the lights.

If it was meant to frighten me or to give them some sort of an advantage, they made a poor decision.

I knew where they had been standing, and I don’t need to see to shoot.

The first two rounds found their targets, the screams telling me as much.

As I moved forward in the darkness, I listened and waited.

The creatures attacked.

The first one latched onto the side of my face, the needle-teeth sinking into the soft flesh of my cheek. The pain was horrific and intense, blinding light shooting across my dark field of vision.

But as the creature sank down, trying to pull me to the floor with its weight, I brought the barrel of a Colt up under it’s writhing neck and pulled the trigger.

In a heartbeat, the remaining two were on me, even as the head of their dead sibling fell from my face. One of them took hold of my left arm while the other grasped my legs.

Their hunger made them fools.

The one at my legs broke its teeth on the hard leather of my boots, and I slammed the Colt into the bell of the one on my arm, putting a round through its belly. The sound of the slug tearing through it made me smile.

As the new corpse fell away from me, the one at my feet let go and ran. I waited, and a moment later, it opened the door out. Light streamed in, silhouetting the creature in the frame.

I emptied the other Colt in its back.

I stood in the thundering silence, reloaded my pistols, and then left the basement.

The hunt wasn’t over yet.

#horror #fear #art #writing

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Nicholas Efstathiou

Husband, father, and writer.

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