Short Story, Uncategorized

Hide & Seek


viaduct 2

Photograph Copyright of Jason Merrick 2007.


Hiding was never his strongest suit. Every time he played, his friends would be quick to find him and then taunt him for not trying hard enough. But David didn’t like hide and seek. It scared him, made him feel alone. He would feel the weight of darkness upon him; the random cruelty of nature ready to hurt without warning. Especially here playing with his friends in the gorge, the old viaduct overhead. Here, where the plants twisted around your body as they twisted and choked the tall trees; the only sounds here the water flowing nearby and the incessant chirping of birds.

He held his breath, waiting to be found. It would be more difficult for them this time. Finding an opening through the hanging branches of a blueberry bush he curled up like a newborn, the wet mud and hard stones underneath keeping him alert. The sky outside turned grey, his new hiding place cloaked in semi-darkness but from within he could still glimpse his pursuers through his green veil, life flickering like an old movie screen. His heart thumped, every breath getting louder, shaking his narrow body as he waited for them.

But they never came and time crept forward, the moon staring down from above, slivers of light through the thickets.  The night creatures began to stir around him in the hiding place and as he tried to scream in fright they crawled over his skin, drowning him in shadow, dragging his body into the earth and claiming his soul for all time.

Those who knew him returned to find nothing but silence and blood, lost forever beneath the viaduct.