July 10, 1938


They were fast, and they were dangerous.

I’ll admit, my stomach took the reins for a moment.

I’d lost any sign of Turk, although I occasionally heard him in my wanderings through the labyrinthian building. The last bit of food I’d eaten had been with the bulldog, and that had been little more than some jerky that the dog had assured me was not human.

When I caught the scent of a cake baking, it set my mouth to watering and my feet to moving at the behest of my stomach.

I came upon a kitchen door and paused outside of it, my ear pressed to the wood. I listened and heard nothing. Not a damned thing.

I counted to one hundred, then to fifty, and finally, I let myself into the room, where I caught a knife in my chest for my trouble.

The blade was heavy, and it felt as though someone had punched me. I didn’t need to look down to know there was the handle of a kitchen knife sticking out of my left breast. I could feel it and the way the metal vibrated with every breath I took.

I pulled the knife out, bone grating against steel, and then the three girls were on me. They were all armed with blades, the light glinting off the metal as they slashed and stabbed.

The girls were skilled, calm, and deadly, and before more than a few minutes had passed, I was bleeding from a dozen wounds.

But I was healing.

The girls were trained, and there was an artistry to their attacks.

But fighting isn’t about art. It’s about winning and not dying.

I took hold of one girl, twisted her arm and drove her own knife into her thigh. Dark, arterial blood sprayed out as I pulled the blade free and cast her aside as her face paled. She gasped, whimpered, and then moaned as she realized she was dying.

That simple sound caused a crack to form in the calm façade of her compatriots.

They hesitated, and it was all I needed.

In a matter of moments, all three were bleeding out on the floor, and my wounds were healing.

They begged for help, and I ignored them as I stepped over their bodies and made my way to the oven.

With a dishtowel, I took the cake out and set it on the table.

I sat down, wiped off my hands, and waited for the cake to cool.

#horror #fear #paranormal

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Nicholas Efstathiou

Husband, father, and writer.

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