Mya Kidson | May 19, 2017
Step into the Darkness
Emma Jensen and her friends had been daredevils all their lives. They jumped off high cliffs, roller bladed down steep inclines, and loved to explore abandoned places. Emma in particular was the ringleader, and the others followed in her footsteps unaware what would happen to them if they ever rejected the invite.
In the newspaper one morning Emma noticed a posting for a carnival that was set to come to town the week of spring break. Without hesitation, she ripped the ad from the spine of the paper and shared it with all her friends. The ad was vague, featuring only the address and a picture of a big top, but that made their curiosity even stronger.
Days passed and spring break approached quickly. Finally the day had arrived. Emma, like the rest had strict parents that certainly wouldn’t approve of this, so they had to sneak out in hopes of escaping captivity to experience the circus of their lifetime. Punching the address into her phone, the walk wasn’t very far. 30 minutes to be exact. Emma rounded up the majority of her group, except Hailey Bradley who chickened out last moment, partially because she told her parents and they swayed her into staying home. 30 minutes later, the three girls arrived at forest on the dead end of a street. Jacqueline looked at Emma concernedly because the forest was unusually dark and endless. Not an appropriate venue for a circus.
“Do you really think we should enter?” Jacqueline questioned, “I mean there are many other things we could do instead. A new ice cream shop opened up down the street.”
“Come on don’t be like Hailey. You’re just a party-pooper.” Emma looked toward the forest and goosebumps started to form on her forearms. She instantly covered them to hide the fact that she was a little nervous herself.
“It will be fun” Emma contended, “Hey look, there's the clearing ahead” She pointed to a dark yet welcoming tunnel leading into the heart of the forest, and they all proceeded.
The temperature changed drastically, as the forest got darker and darker. Jacqueline turned on her flashlight and awoke the creatures that emerged in the midnight sky. Eventually they arrived in the middle of the forest, where the trail ended abruptly. They looked around disoriented and disappointed as their hopes of finding a circus went down the drain.
“Shall we go back” Sarah’s voice echoed.
Turning around to go and leave, the pathway had sealed in with shrubbery and trees, creating one round clearing in the middle of the forest, blocking them in from the outside world. Echoes of creatures began to circulate through the forest, sounds of insects tapping their legs on the ground below, the rustling of leaves, and an unsuspecting maniacal laugh. Emma grew scared, and impatient, but hid it as best she could.
“What do we do now” Jacqueline cried.
“I say we wait it out until daybreak,” Emma replied.
Emma sat down next to a tree and closed her eyes. Jacqueline and Sarah, followed and found a nearby tree. They grew groggy quite quickly and fell fast asleep to the hum of the crickets. As they slept, millions of bugs swarmed in clumps on their feet and hands eventually engulfing every inch of their body.
“Eat my little minions eat because you have earned it” said a voice from within the forest. He laughed a sinister laugh, grasping the newspaper ad in his hands.