A writing prompt and the first signs of autumn inspired me to give you all a little early Halloween present.
Branches grab at her legs as Tina sprints down the little-used trail. The thick forest suspends the trail in inky darkness, despite the October night’s full moon. Tripping over a gnarled root, she falls flat, scraping the palms of her hands on the rough forest floor. The sounds of pursuit gain ground: crackling leaves, snapping branches, and howls of rage.
Struggling to her feet, Tina knows that she has to do something to stop the creature that chases her. Though she hesitates to use force, the time has come to either fight back or lie down and die. Turning off of the old deer trail, she hurries to a nearby clearing. Tina doesn’t bother to hide the sounds of her route. She wants the animal to find her now.
As if on cue, the beast howls in excitement, and the sounds of its passage veer off the path to follow her.
Rushing through the clearing, Tina turns back towards the sound of pursuit and drops to her knees. She presses her stinging palms to the dry grass and begins a chant that has been often practiced but never before used. The ground before her changes, rippling in the moonlight, then settles back to stillness.
Charging out of the trees, the animal is before her. It howls and gibbers as it catches sight of its prey. Tina stands and regards it coolly. As the beast strides across the small clearing, its feet begin to sink into the ground. Before it is halfway to her, it sinks to the waist into the quicksand she conjured.
“Witch!” her boyfriend shouts, his face contorted by rage as he finds himself swiftly sinking into the earth. “The Lord God will release me so that I can strike you down! Suffer ye not a witch to live!”
“I think not,” Tina says softly.
“You will burn in hell!” He snarls right before the ground swallows him.
“I think not,” she repeats, before turning weary feet toward home.
I’m entering this flash fiction piece over at the Trifecta challenge page. The link is here if you want to go read cool stories and vote on your favorite. There’s also still time for my fellow writers to enter your own piece! Rules and guidelines are posted on the page I linked. Go, see, explore!