Gothic Fiction Workshop Sumission

The autumn air was particularly cold that evening. She felt it through the thick wool of her red sweater, how it chilled the marrow of her bones. It prompted the young woman to quicken her pace through the park but the biting cold continued nipping at the heels of her feet insistently. A feeling of restlessness gnawed at the back of her mind, urging the woman to keep moving.

The wind carried with it a forlorn howl that rustled the leaves above her head. They trembled frantically much like her chattering teeth, and so she stopped in her tracks to listen. All was still in the darkness beyond the dim, yellow light of the street lamp where she stood. It was as if though the forest itself had been silenced by an unexpected presence; one that the woman in the red sweater could not see in the thick gloom that had taken over the park.

She could no longer stand the eeriness of it all, and so she made a point to leave this place as quickly as possible. After all, home was just a short distance from the western entrance. It wouldn’t be too long now.

Alas, her haste lured the prowling beast from the shadow of the tall trees. Its eyes glowed white, roused by the thrill of the hunt. Her beating heart beckoned the creature out into the pale moonlight: the sweetest of songs for nightly terrors such as it.

A single bound was all it took to close the distance between them. Monstrous jaws found its chosen prey and quickly tore through the tender flesh linking her right shoulder to her slender neck. Its savagery created a hellish symphony of crushing bones, rupturing skin, and helpless gurgles for the blood and bile stuck in her throat prevented the woman from screaming. The beast feasted on her blood, and her blood fueled the Moon’s curse.

Tonight was a night of curses. It belonged to bloodlust and ravenous hunger.

Once sated, the creature returned to the dark depths of the forest, leaving behind the mangled body of its victim to be found soon thereafter by a pair of joggers on their routine run.

Hospital staff claim she had been viciously attacked within an inch of her life, but the wounds appeared to have been inflicted by a large animal of unknown origin. Canine, perhaps.

When the full moon shall crown the night sky, so it is that another will join the hunt…