Marked for Review
This story has been marked for review for the following reason(s):
Does not seem to meet Quality Standards, awkward wording/syntax, punctuation/quotation/phrasing issues, substandard plot
Part 1 (Welcome to the Neighborhood)
The forest had seemed to be so much more inviting and peaceful only a few short hours ago, a nice quiet place for him to just sit and relax maybe see an animal or two. He was correct when he thought he had seen an animal out of the corner of his eye. His first thought had been to dismiss what he had seen, but he quickly changed his mind as he saw a shadow emerge from the natural darkness created by the many trees that surrounded him.
At first, the shape was only visible for a slight moment. He barely caught a glimpse with the most forgotten corner of his vision. The shape seemed to be mocking him, able to avoid the path of his vision no matter how fast he swiveled his head to get a better look at the figure. His anger began to grow as he continued to walk and barely see the shape. It was there and gone in a flash. He took a few more steps and it reemerged.
He walked until he came upon two trees that looked as though they were reaching out to each other but were unable to touch. He began to think about the tree’s fate, but the problems of simple trees did not concern him, as the figure reemerged in a slightly different form. He pushed through the trees and found himself in a large clearing, with his anger about to topple over he walked to the center of the tall grass and turned around to confront the shadow but of course it wasn’t there. He stood still, panning his eyes over the line of trees, waiting to finally see what had been tormenting him.
In the quiet he thought to himself, why had the figure seemed so different the last time he saw it. It was bigger, more defined, and closer to him than before. This thing wasn’t just watching and following him, it was hunting him. He suddenly realized that he was the prey and that meant the prey had just stopped running. This thought was just beginning to solidify in his mind when a rush of air came from behind him; he turned without even thinking to see…
"Brent!" yelled Kristen, Brent looked up from the latest thriller he had bought at the bookstore to see the annoyed face of his new wife.
“We’re here,” she said, as she waved her arms slowly in front of her to get Brent’s attention to travel to the town that was in front of them.
Brent’s eyes lingered on a large green sign that was placed in front of the town it he started to read it aloud in a less than elated tone so Kristen could hear.
“Welcome to historic point pleasant WV, where history and rivers meet.” was inscribed in golden letters.
Kristen looked at him with slight anger at his tone, but was too happy from finally arriving to be that mad. They continued to drive until they arrived in front of a large building that had a sign in its lawn that read sold.
Brent looked at the house and then back at her and said in a jokingly tone, “Ok, we're here, we bought the home of your dreams in the small out in the middle of nowhere town so if anything goes wrong it’s your fault.”
That one got her mad but before she could turn and yell at him Brent was out of the car circling around the front of the car to open up the driver side door for her. As she rose out of the car he caught her off guard and kissed her forehead. All of her anger quickly was deflated as they stood in front of their new home. They walked hand in hand through the door way.
After walking through each room inspecting his new land, Brent decided that for his first step at remodeling was to pull the wooden sign out from his new lawn. As he walked on the grass thinking of each small problem in the house and to fix them but more importantly how his book would end, His thoughts were stop with a joyful sounding, “Hello” he looked in the direction of the sound and was amazed to have to look up to see the man’s face.
The large man walked over to him and presented his hand so quickly that Brent flinched; Brent regained himself and grasped the man’s hand the large man almost crushed his hand and smiled as he said, “Hello I’m Jonathan Randolph but you can call me John.” He loosened his grip on Brent’s hand.
Looking at his hand Brent replied, “Ya hi, I’m Brent Richardson.” John clasped his hand down on Brent’s shoulder and said “well welcome to the neighborhood Brent, and as new neighbors if you need help with anything just ask.”
“Well,” said Brent, “all I’m doing now is I’m going to dig up that sign there.” pointing to the wooden sign in his lawn.
“I got this one,” John said as he almost through Brent aside. John walked over and simply pulled the wooden plank out of the ground and started walking back to his house then he stopped and looked at Brent.
“Sorry almost forgot to ask. Do you mind if I take this?” Brent nodded and John kept walking in to his back yard. Brent went back inside and passed Kristen in the living room unpacking.
“I think we have a giant for a neighbor.”
Part 2 (A Restless Night)
“Well look at that,” said Brent as he pulled his head out from under the kitchen sink.
“We have lived in this house for almost a month and I think I finally have it working.”
“Except for the garage door and the upstairs light and the…” said Kristen.
“Ah whatever I still say this deserves a victory dinner how about that nice place in town, my treat.”
"No thanks, we have been working for a long time why don’t we just stay in tonight and relax, maybe watch a movie or-” (Smash!)
“What was that?”
“It sounded like someone just threw a trash can at the house; I’ll go check it out.”
“Brent stop here take one of the kitchen knives just in case.”
“Ok fine although it’s probably just a raccoon.” Brent slowly walked through the back door moving from the comforting light of his home to the cool dark night. His fingers grasped the hard handle of the knife without Brent even noticing. He continued to walk around the walls of the house until his bare foot collided with a cold metal surface which sent the over turned trash can souring through the air and smashing into the ground a few feet away. The sudden pain in his foot combined with the unexpected sound caused for Brent drop the knife.
The blade of which landing in the space in-between his toes, Brent looked down and stepped back from the knife. “Ya take this for your own protection,” he said in a sarcastic tone as he kneeled down to pick up the knife as he stood back up he rolled his head on his shoulders and reopened his eyes to see the darkened wall of their house. His eyes scaled up the wall while he tried to think why someone would have knocked over his trash bin and where could they have gone to? His eyes rested on the top corner of the wall “Wait, Was that there before?” He was looking at what seemed to be a silhouetted oval which only created its shape by placing a much darker black then even the night and stars behind it. He thought to himself, “Is that moving?”
Suddenly the figure grew twice as large as before standing on two large bulky legs, two large wings slowly unfolded on each side revealing large bright red eyes peering back at Brent. Those red burning eyes weren’t just staring at Brent they were blasting through him. Brent was frozen unable to even fathom moving, those eyes froze him and the outline of the body with the glow of the dim specks of light created by stars being consumed by its shape constrained all other thoughts he could create other than to fixated his eyes on its. The creature began moving forward and leaped off the roof dive bombing towards Brent still keeping him locked in its vision. Brent’s muscles keep yelling at his leg.
“Move, move, I can’t stay here I need to run!” But his feet wouldn’t even respond. They were frozen with fear.
The beast was getting closer Brent could see it fully now, each feature on its body all of its black feathers as they rippled in the wind, its legs lurching forward displaying the darker than night talons that looked to be even larger and sharper than his knife. But even in seeing all that in a fraction of a second his focuses returned to those bright red eyes careening toward him. Suddenly all the air was knocked from his body he was sure his life was about to follow. All his muscles tightened as he hit the stony ground. He opened his eyes to see John falling beside him just missing the snapping talons of the creature as it flew overhead. Brent looked at John and without stating a single word they both jumped on their feet and ran to Brent’s kitchen door. Brent burst through the door already looking for Kristen with John right behind him.
“What’s wrong/” Kristen called as she leaned over the rail of the vertically angled stairs. Brent and John ran to her and rounded the hand rails to hide in the downward staircase that leads to their basement just as the kitchen door burst open and flew from its hinges. “What is that?” Brent whispered to John.
“How am I supposed to know? I just heard some loud crash over here and I came to see what it was, and you’re lucky I did too or you would be dead right now.”
“Well you have lived here longer than we have! What, you have never heard of this thing before?!”
“No I haven’t!” whispered John. They all quieted as the creature walked into the hallway standing on only two legs with its large wings wrapped at its side its head rotated from side to side looking for where its prey had run. John slid his shoe off and threw it at the top of the stares that traveled up to the second story. The creature dug its claws into the wooden floor and it took flight after the sound. They waited, not knowing if best to try and run or to stay hidden.
John began to move to the door slowly and quietly while Brent and Kristen were slow to follow. As they began to move from their hiding place a ray of hope sprang up as Brent and Kristen closed in on John who was already at the open door and was waiting. Kristen felt a light touch on her cheek, she touched her hand to her face and pulled away a small chip of dried paint. She looked up and screamed as she saw the creature clawing down the wall above them, she grabbed Brent’s arm and began to pull him back to the basement stares. But Brent didn’t turn he could only look at john as the beast landed in between them and flew through the door with John grasped and impaled with its claws.
Part 3 (The Escape)
Brent peered through the crack in the basement door they hadn’t heard or seen the creature since it took John last night, but now that rays of sun light where slipping in to the basement it brought hope. Brent walked over to where Kristen was sitting and put his arm around her.
“Did you sleep at all last night?” he asked.
“He’s dead, John’s dead, that thing killed him,” she muttered as she began to cry.
“Well maybe he’s… no you're right, that thing killed him but we can’t do anything for him now, we have to get out of here!”
“And do what? Run out there and into the claws of that thing!”
“No, but we do have to try and get to the car maybe drive to the police or, I don’t care, just leave this place.”
“Ok fine but how will we get out there?” Kristen asked as she looked out the small window.
“Well we don’t have a lot of chooses, all we can do is grab what we can find like some wood or pipes and run for it. And besides it’s morning maybe that thing doesn’t like the sun”
“Maybe you’re right, ok let’s go.” They each grabbed for anything they could use to defend themselves and together walked out the door and up the stairs.
“Looks clear let’s run for the car,” said Kristen.
“No stop, that thing may hear us running around, walk slowly.” And they walked attempting to keep side by side out the door keeping their eyes on the early morning sky. They both got into the car and took a breath of relief. Brent started the car and the engine turned over, when suddenly tow large pair of claws burst through the roof.
“Drive Brent drive!” Kristen yelled as Brent slammed the gas pedal and the car lurched forward. And the creature flew from the roof and began to give chase.
“Brent, drive faster it’s going to get us!”
“I’m already going 60 if I go any faster we will fly off these winding streets. The creature stayed parallel with the car looking into the passenger window only a few inches from Kristen’s face. Suddenly, the creature turned and flew up in to the sky out of sight.
“Brent, it stopped chasing us,” Kristen said.
“We just have to get across the Silver Bridge and then we are out of here,” Brent yelled to Kristen. They continued to drive until they got to the bridge but found that their escape would be slowed for it was the early morning rush hour on the very famous bridge. They pulled in line with the other drivers who were ignorant to the true hurry that Brent and Kristen were in. All the cars slowed to a crawl as Brent and Kristen neared the center of the bridge.
Suddenly the sounds of metal groaning echoed across the Bridge and a large crack opened up in front of the car ahead of Brent and Kristen the road began to angle downward. The car pilled full with a once joyful family toppled over and spun into the cold waters followed by other cars that slammed on top of the van. Brent tried to reverse, but the car's size betrayed him, and it slid forward and off the edge as it tumbled in the air and smashed into the water the front facing up. As they began to sink looking up into the air with fellow cars falling around them, they saw a shadow flying in circles above the bridge until chilled water began to burst over the rims of their screaming mouths and stinging the couples eye until their heads went under.
Today on December 15, 1967 in will be a day that will always be committed to memory by this small town in West Virginia named Point Pleasant, is no longer that pleasant when today, the beloved Silver Bridge collapsed while during rush hour causing 46 people to lose their lives. 43 of the unfortunate people’s bodies have been found. All but the bodies of original citizen Jonathan Randolph and new citizens, Brent and Kristen Richardson, two newlyweds who moved to our Small town hoping for peace.