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Monthly S. Story Submissions > July 2016 Issue - Stories - Topic: Quote

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message 1: by Edward (new)

Edward Davies | 1727 comments Title : The Devil You Know...
Author : Edward Davies
Word Count : 1200
Rating : PG

Loneliness is next to Godliness, that’s what Shaw Romilly always said. And actually having some peace and quiet to work on his manuscript was something he’d been relishing for months, if not years!

He’d hired out a cabin in the woods, following the age old technique that so many of his literary heroes had utilised, hoping to find inspiration from being left alone with his own thoughts and nothing else to disturb him. The problem was, sometimes he was lacking inspiration due to the solitude and the loneliness, but if he ventured out and connected with people he’d never get any work done.

Shaw stared at his laptop screen, wondering what he could write. He’d always wanted to delve into science fiction or fantasy, but the world was filled with so much of this kind of writing that it was almost impossible to find someone who was willing to give you a chance and actually even go as far as to read your work. Perhaps a crime thriller, but then again every James Patterson and their mother was writing that sort of drivel. More often than not he went back to that horror staple of the cabin in the woods, but he’d tried that before and it ended up becoming something of a farce. So, what could he write...

A noise suddenly drew his attention, and inspiration hit. The noise had frightened him, so perhaps writing how it had made him feel would be a good start to a story.

So, he thought to himself, horror it is.

Shaw began tapping at his keyboard, smiling to himself as the ideas flooded into his mind. After about ten minutes of typing, he heard the noise again, only this time it stopped him typing.

“What is that?” he mumbled to himself, looking around the cabin. It was a relatively still night, so it couldn’t have been the wind, and the trees outside weren’t close enough to the cabin to tap on the windows. Sighing, he began typing again, this time focussing on writing about the noise itself as its origins continued to elude him.

Shaw stared at his screen, reading back to himself what he’d written; it wasn’t bad. It wasn’t great, but it wasn’t bad. It was a reasonable start to his story, his horror story, and he had some vague idea where it was going next.

Then he heard the noise again.

It was like a tapping, scraping, whining noise; like a cross between a finger on a window, a nail on a chalkboard, and a dog in a veterinary office. The source of the noise was still a mystery, but the now added animal flavour to the sound was starting to make Shaw feel more than a little frightened. He took a deep breath, then exhaled through his nostrils, using the fear inside of him to express some emotion in his story.

He started to type.

The story seemed to be coming along nicely, and the noise appeared to have stopped, when all of a sudden there came a sharp banging at the front door to the cabin. Shaw almost jumped out of his seat at the sudden noise but, collecting himself together, he rose from his seat and slowly walked to the main door of the cabin.

Looking through the small window in the door, Shaw looked left and right. He couldn’t see anyone but as he continued to peer through the glass another loud banging came at the door. It was almost as if someone was standing right in front of him, outside the door, banging precisely where his chest was positioned.

Shaw swallowed nervously, taking a step back from the door. He had a decision to make; he could either open the door and find out what exactly was making all that racket, or he could go back to his laptop and ignore it.

He decided to ignore it.

Returning to his seat, Shaw positioned his fingers above the keys, ready to type, but nothing came to him. He looked forward at the wall behind the desk, trying to think of something to write, but all he could think about was the noise at the door and what might have been making it. It would have made good fodder for his horror story, but his concentration was so affected that he couldn’t even think of writing down exactly how he was feeling, exactly how terrified he felt right now.

His fingers continued to hover above the keys as another bang came at the door. Shaw watched the cursor blink on his word document, there then not there at the end of his last sentence, then decided that enough was enough.

He had to find out what was making that noise.

Picking up a log from next to the fire place and wielding it like a short club, Shaw crossed the cabin to the front door, where the banging was still coming through the door. He closed his eyes for a moment to will himself to have the courage to open the door then, opening his eyes again, he reached for the handle and flung the door open into the night.

Shaw stared out into the darkness, his heart beating fast in his chest, expecting to see something monstrous and gigantic towering over him, its teeth bared and its claws sharp and reaching for him.

But there was nothing, nothing at all.

As Shaw looked around the grounds that surrounded the cabin, his confusion started to get to him. If there’s nothing out here, he thought to himself, then what was banging on the door?

As he stood there, the banging started again, and it was still banging on the open door. Shaw widened his eyes as he turned to look at where the banging was coming from, but there was nothing there, only the banging sound and the dim light from inside the cabin.

This doesn’t make sense, Shaw told himself, there’s nothing there banging on the door. I’m looking right at it, and there’s nothing there!

Shaw shook his head as the banging continued, and he quickly closed the door and locked it to keep whatever was banging on the door outside. But he couldn’t see it, so maybe whatever was banging was banging on the inside.

Shaw shuddered at the thought, returning to his desk, but he couldn’t write, not now. Everything was too confusing and too frightening for him to concentrate. It might have been better if there had been a monster at the door, at least then he’d know he wasn’t imagining things; at least then he’d know he wasn’t going insane.

As the banging continued at the door, Shaw stared at his open word document. He clicked on the red cross in the corner and the laptop asked “Do you want to save the changes to Document 1?”

Shaw clicked no, and the document vanished from his screen, leaving him staring at the desktop wallpaper. The banging stopped, and silence filled the cabin. Shaw realised the truth of what the sound had meant, and tears filled his eyes as he closed the laptop lid and prepared to pack his things away.

message 2: by C. J., Atm Seeker in the "Lin Kuei" (new)

C. J. Scurria (goodreadscomcj_scurria) | 4214 comments Wish I could put something on here but am busy. I am doing two stories here on GR already so maybe next time...

Oh and Alex? If you ever use my story in your mag look at my blog, click "About" then look for About the Author which is near the bottom. I recently edited the about page so it now says two separate things. Thank you Alex and to everyone: Happy writing!!

message 3: by C. J., Atm Seeker in the "Lin Kuei" (new)

C. J. Scurria (goodreadscomcj_scurria) | 4214 comments A wrote: "...never get back to me about their bios! :[

Maybe next time. ;] I HOPE you submit next time! Heehee."

I will try. :)

message 4: by Gashbeen (new)

Gashbeen | 167 comments The Empty Darkness

By Gashbeen Saeed

I am blinded by the dazzling light when I first open my eyes. A searing pain pierces through my aching skull, and a groan escapes my lips. I struggle to sit up, but my limbs are heavy and limp. The spell of exhaustion falls over me, and I slip back into the deep abyss of unconsciousness.

After what feels like a second, I finally awaken from my deep slumber. I groggily lift my hand, shielding my eyes from the scintillating light. It shines mercilessly down upon me, attacking my eyes viciously.

I sit up slowly, my arms shaking with the effort. I gaze around the small room, its walls covered with a strange foam. I look down through the glass floor, and I can see nothing but a replica of the room that contained me.

I lean forward for a closer look and am greeted by my reflection. It isn't a glass floor at all. It's a mirror!

As I examine the mirror, the light suddenly goes out. The room is plunged into complete darkness.

I am too frightened to move. The darkness has taken my sight from me, and it feels rather empty. As I listen closer, I realize that there is nothing to listen to. There is no sound at all.

I sit alone in the room, losing sense of my bearings. As I face the dark abyss, a strange rushing sound fills my ears.

I look frantically about me, surrounded on all sides by the pressing darkness, for the source of this sound.

The sound of a beating drum pierces the darkness, and sweat runs down my face. I think it's sweat.

Some time passes, I think. I have no sense of time in this darkness. I don't know how much time passes. Does time exist anymore?

Time passes, and a face swirls in the darkness before me. It's an angry face, its mouth spewing out accusations.

"You killed me!" That is what the face says. I think it says that. I cannot tell what it is saying. It might have said, "You saved me!" Was it even angry? Did the face even feel?

As the face speaks, its words blurring together into an indecipherable jumble, the pounding of the drum grows louder.

The drum is a signal. It must be. It's telling its intended recipient that it's time to continue this torture.

Is it torture?

Is this even real?

I am used to being alone. I used to seek solitude. This is not the same. Solitude helped me think. This is taking away my ability to think.

I try to scream, but it is drowned out by the rushing and the pounding. I do something with my arms and legs, and the light turns on.

I am no longer in the same room. I am in a spacious white room, and a mirror is set up in front of me. In my reflection, I lay on the floor, curled up with my arms cradling my head. There were others behind me, trapped in the same position.

My terrified eyes watch as the white room fades away, and I find myself in darkness once more.

I'm not the only one trapped in the darkness of isolation.

message 5: by Gashbeen (new)

Gashbeen | 167 comments I know I won the last one, so I submitted this just for critique

message 6: by [deleted user] (new)

Attention: Just six more days to go, pirates! :)

message 7: by Edward (new)

Edward Davies | 1727 comments Do I win by default? :D

message 8: by Gashbeen (new)

Gashbeen | 167 comments Sure, I suppose. No one else has submitted.

message 9: by Edward (new)

Edward Davies | 1727 comments Gashbeen wrote: "Sure, I suppose. No one else has submitted."

If entries continue to be so few, I guess you'll win next month, Gashbeen. :D

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