The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!
by Elaine Pascale
Evy no longer hungered, no longer thirst, no longer breathed, but she tingled when a replacement was near.
She moved from window to window. The rule was that they were allowed to illuminate the houses; they were allowed to provide a mirage of olfactory enticements, such as baked sweets, but the replacements had to enter of free will.
Evy no longer had freedom. She was trapped in her house, as others were trapped in their homes. But when the moon was full, there was the chance for escape.
Those who are confined fight over the replacements. If they were corporal, the streets would run red with bloodshed. Instead, their howls the morning after drench the neighborhood.
This full moon, there were three explorers traveling the cobblestone road. She watched them as they quizzically inspected the homes.
“It’s like they are pulsating,” the female traveler said, reaching out a hand to touch the shingled siding.
“Are they party houses?” one of the men asked.
“In this old neighborhood?” the other replied. “I don’t think anyone has been here in ages.
When the female traveler spoke again, Evy’s tingling became unbearable. She felt that this woman was the one. Her conviction was so strong that she no longer cared about the rules. She had been tied to this existence for over a century and she no longer feared repercussions. Besides, full moons only provided opportunities a dozen times a year.
Evy’s door was open a crack and she descended the stairs to move closer to it. She remembered what a kitten sounded like and mimicked its cries.
Evy knew the others would accuse her of cheating, but it would be too late.
“Oh no, poor thing is stuck in there. Probably hungry and afraid,” the woman exclaimed, moving closer to the door.
Evy cried again, this time invoking the sounds of injury and panic.
“I wouldn’t—” one of the men started to say, but it was too late, the woman had pushed open the door and crossed the threshold.
Evy tingled as she ascended, trapping her replacement in the house where she had been kept prisoner. She was carried aloft on the howls of those still contained.
Fiction © Copyright Elaine Pascale
Image courtesy of Pixaby.com
More from Elaine Pascale:
The Blood Lights
They victimize all…
Jezzie Mitchell is in anguish; with her brother’s murder still on her mind, she’s noticed strange behavior among the girls in the residential treatment center where she works. Is there a connection between the contagion on Cape Cod and the deadly Bahamas vacation that changed her life?
Jezzie reaches out to former lover Lou Collins, a scholar who has chased proof of the lights for decades. Will he be able to solve the mystery of the lights in time?
Intensely competitive, reporter Bridgette Collins knows the lights are a way to secure fame in her career. And while it’ll put the final nail into the coffin of her ex-husband’s career, she vows to know the secrets of the lights. Even if it means unleashing a world-wide epidemic…
So good – echoes of gingerbread houses built to entice, but who could resist an injured kitten? Got to love a temptress who’s that cunning.