Friday, July 19, 2013

Story prompted by this photo......




There's No Going Back

By C.L. Exline

Lightning flashed. Thunder pounded. Rain poured. Jessica frowned.  Every ten minutes, the radio blared that another road had been closed and detours in place due to flooding. If she didn't hurry, she'd never make it home and would have to spend All Hallow's Eve in the office, sleeping on the oriental rug. Halloween has been canceled in Millstone.

No choice but to take the long way home which meant she had to cross over the haunted bridge. Thank goodness the creek had been damned and now only a small stream flowed underneath the bridge. She'd be safe.

Jessica grabbed her umbrella and made a mad dash to the car, splashing through the puddles across the parking lot. At least traffic was sparse.

In too short of time, she saw the sign for Hallowed Bridge. She took a deep breath and swallowed. The night seemed extra dark except for the occasional flash of lightning. All too soon, the entrance of the bridge loomed ahead. The support beams reminded her of sentries guarding a castle or waiting to give chase. The tires of her car thudded as she drove across the wooden planks.

Then a childhood chant she'd said many times while jumping rope, echoed in her head, "Troll at night, run in fright. Troll at night, run in fright." She caught herself murmuring the words. Her fingers fastened onto the steering wheel in a death-like grip.

A dark figure suddenly appeared in the middle of her path. She fought for breath. "Troll at night, run in fright." Fog swirled. "Troll at night, run in fright."

Her car crept forward. The headlights illuminated the figure--it was the troll. Jessica slammed on the brakes. He held out his hand. If she couldn't go forward, she'd go in reverse. She glanced in the rearview mirror and saw only gray, murkiness, nothing else. No shine of red taillights. No going back.

The troll stepped toward her. Jessica stepped on the gas.

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