You Keep Your Phone On and You Run

The shore was silent as the group was mesmerized by the reflective eyes that peered back at them from the surface of the water. Without breaking the locked gaze, Angelica reached in her pocket and pulled out her phone, slowly, avoiding any sudden movements. Her eyes still focused on the water, she dialed her father and piecemealed the phone up to her ear while simultaneously clicking the volume as low as she’d be able to hear with her thumb.

Her father answered, “Hello, Honey, I didn’t expect to hear from you so soon. Charles and I are getting a steak at our old hidey-haunt, Abuela Betty’s.”

“That’s great, Dad. Um, just a quick question, what do I do again if I run into a demon looking thing?” she quietly asked.

“Finally, interested in the family business huh? Or just showing off to your music friends? Well, what kinda demon looking thing? Ya know, there are a lot of ‘em out there.”

“I can’t rightly say, Dad, but it’s looking at me right now and it looks very hungry,” she answered, the panic in her voice becoming obvious.

“Are you still in Bolton?” he asked abruptly.

“Yes,” she whispered.

“And a demon is staring at you?”

“Yes,” she repeated even more quietly.

“Is your phone charged?” Her father asked.

Confused, she stole a glance at the screen of the phone; 80%. Again, she replied, “Yes.”

“You keep your phone on and you run,” he said emphatically.

“What?” she asked, her voice quivering.

“Keep your phone powered on and keep it on your person so we can find you and then run, as fast and as far as you can.”

“Um, okay,” Angelica hung up the phone and in a mix of terrified trembling and Millenial habit, slipped the phone back into her pocket.

Carter quietly whispered to her. “What did he say?”

“He said to run.”

“Fuck,” he mumbled beneath his breath, “Somehow I thought he was going to say that.”

Behind them, they heard rustling and turned and saw the others already running off through the darkness, up the dunes of sand, toward the cars.

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Then, a splash from the water as they simultaneously turned back to the creature to see the body of Debbie Debbie splash in the wet sand at their feet, spraying blood and lakewater up at them.

The eyes and mouth of the body were gaping open and stared up at them in lifeless horror, its once petite frame a confusion of bent limbs and bloody skin.

“Run!” Carter yelled, pushing Angelica ahead of him as they rushed toward the parking lot, cutting through the sand and the darkness.

Arriving at the cars, they found the rest of the group getting dressed in whatever they had or whatever they could find. Carter grabbed clothes and did the same.

“What the fuck man,” Brad whimpered, his face ghostly white with terror, eerily accentuated by the hum of the fluorescent parking lot lights, “What the fuck was that? Was that Biscuit? It fucking looked like Biscuit!”

“Calm down and get in the car,” Angelica said to him.

Brad prepared to continue with his panicked outrage when the atmosphere took on an even more creepy quiet. Each of them felt a shiver in their spines and bodywide goosebumps. Then a sound cut through the silence, an audible buzzsaw vibration, a metallic sustained reverberation. The lights of the parking lot, the car, the flashlights, all the lights flickered, then died at the same moment the sound stopped.

Two-Bit hopped in the car and turned the key, “Fuck! Fuck! Fuck!” He stuck his head out the side, “Nothing. It’s dead”.

After some quick, hysterical conversation, it was agreed that they’d continue running to the market they had passed on the way here. They grabbed the flares they could find by the moon’s light and took one last survey of the water.

In the distance, the only light was the dim glow of their shore fire, orange against the black backdrop. Slowly, another glow emerged. The smooth glass of the lake top started to glint with a pale green hue. The green-lit surface of the lake broke as Biscuit’s bluish-pale body slowly started walking to the shore. In the water, darker twists of green, while on top, flushes of dark blue, red, and purple algae massed, bloomed, then floated away in dead black clumps. Her feet stepped onto the sandy shore, each footprint spawning a small unnatural garden of unearthly vines and thorned flowers that spread and died. She walked toward them, looking directly at them. With each step, the same flush of growth, so vibrant and colorful with otherworldly plant life, growing, only die to a charred black moments later. With each step, she stood in abundant life and left a trail of death as she started walking toward the dark parking lot.

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You Keep Your Phone On and You Run

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