The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!
by Stacey Turner
The hunter pulled his sword as the wood filled with an eerie green light. Mist rose from the ground reducing visibility to almost naught. The hairs on the back of his neck stood up while icy tendrils snaked their way down his spine. Fear filled his mouth with a bitter tang, and he turned in a slow circle, the better to see anything which might be creeping up on him. Twigs cracked, and a large wolf padded into view. Maintaining eye contact, it perched on its haunches, non-threatening. But the hunter didn’t relax. Though the wolf might not be hostile, foreboding still flooded his mind, keeping him on edge. And then, it glided into view. The figure resembled a man, draped in a worn leather cloak, the hood pulled low over the face. The hunter did not trust anyone, or anything, he couldn’t look in the eyes.
The figure pulled a large, silver blade from beneath its cloak and rested the tip on the ground. Crows cawed from high in the surrounding trees, a cacophony that hurt the hunter’s ears. As he winced, an overlarge crow came to roost on the stranger’s shoulder. The mysterious figure lifted his head. Piercing green eyes were the only things visible in the darkness beneath the hood. The hunter cowered.
“I seek a village where resides a woman called Petra,” a voice rumbled from the figure. If the voice had spoken in the last century, the hunter would be surprised, so hoarse was its timbre.
“Petra lives in a cottage on the outskirts of our village,” the hunter answered, too afraid to keep silent.
“Give her a message,” the shrouded foreigner said. “Tell her Marcelle is near.”
“Yes, of course.” The hunter bowed low, not knowing what else to do. Fear still held him in its grip like sharp talons piercing his guts.
“She will not be pleased, and you may not survive.” Marcelle turned and drifted back into the mist. The wolf rose and silently padded after him.
The hunter knew he had spoken with a demon, and now must deliver a message to one many called witch. He hoped his Gods would forgive these trespasses and keep him safe.
Fiction © Copyright Stacey Turner
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com
More from author Stacey Turner:
Morbid Metamorphosis: Terrifying Tales of Transformation
Metamorphosis occurs every day as caterpillars become sweet fluttering butterflies, tadpoles become gorgeous frog princes and chameleons become one with the beauty of nature – but you won’t find any of that here.
The transformations you’re about to witness are unnatural, sometimes gruesome and deeply psychological. They will make you question reality and take your mind places it was never meant to go.
Terrifying Tales of Transformation from Greg Chapman * Roy C. Booth & R. Thomas Riley * Terri DelCampo * Dave Gammon * Nancy Kilpatrick * Rod Marsden * Jo-Anne Russell * M.J. Preston * Stacey Turner * Tina Piney * Suzanne Robb * Franklin E. Wales * Donna Marie West * Suzie Lockhart * Cameron Trost * Daniel I. Russell * Simon Dewar * Amanda J. Spedding * Ken MacGregor * Erin Shaw * Gregory L. Norris * Nickolas Furr