Carnival of Blood Part IV
July 1, 2013
After limping a few yards away from the dying clown, Jack figured he should stop and bind his leg wounds. The others weren’t as bad, but the first stab he had received went deep. Cursing his poor progress, he took in his surroundings as he tied the torn t-shirt over the seeping wound.
The hallway stretching before him appeared to be lit just enough to keep someone from walking headfirst into a wall. The walls themselves twisted in odd angles that distorted his vision. It looked like Alice in Wonderland meets Willy Wonka after taking some bad acid.
Groaning inwardly, he pushed himself to his feet, but then froze. Another scream could just be heard echoing through the place. It sounded like it came from overhead.
“I wonder how many poor souls entered this ride tonight?” he whispered. Then the thought occurred to him as to how many might have entered it over the years and never came out. Town after town, parking lot after parking lot. This ride, like some horrid monster, could be swallowing up the locals by the dozens. Then it would just move to a new, small dying town and start over again.
Jack shivered once, but after clutching his dagger tighter, he entered the chaotic corridor. The walls and even floors pitched at strange angles. Soon, it became difficult to walk without braced one hand against a wall for support. Before him the hallway appeared to be shrinking. He crouched over and his skull ran along the roof. A door loomed before him, but it barely looked big enough to fit a mouse.
Behind him something moved. A blackness rose from the floor. Like a man picking up a dark robe, something sprang out of nothing. A moan filled his ears as the living darkness spread across the length of the hallway. It scrapped long ebony tendrils against both walls. These seemed real enough for these talons created a sharp shriek that sounded like metal being dragged over a tin roof.
“Ah, holy hell,” he muttered as the thing filled his vision.
Turning back toward the tiny door seemed a fool’s errand. He would be lucky if he could fit his boot through the thing. But looking back at the swirling cloud of blackness, he didn’t want to fight that if he didn’t have too. More talons had formed until the encircled the shape completely. Jack guessed that it must have at least forty jagged edges that it would be able to use to cut him to pieces.
Thinking that he might be able to cut through the wall, Jack leaned down and opened the miniature door. He figured he could at least see what lurked on the other side and wouldn’t waste his time trying to break through if it was just a steal wall.
Turning his back to the moaning blackness made his skin feel like insects crawled over his clammy flesh. Any second, he figured dozens of sharp fingers of writhing darkness would be tearing at him.
Then something completely unexpected happened. As soon as he had opened the fake door and panel had slid to the side revealing a steel leader heading up. The sharp fingers of darkness were only two feet from him and without another wasted second, he leapt to the ladder. It held as he rushed up its length.
Behind him, the creature moaned in anger as its sensed its prey’s escape. Torn strips of razor edged darkness grasped at him and Jack cried out in pain as the calves of his jeans were shredded. They sought for a hold, but Jack scrambled past its grip. Passing through an opening about the size of a manhole cover helped, but the nebulous shape moved toward him and appeared to be continuing its pursuit. As he crab walked away from the opening, his hand brushed something. A loud click was heard and then, a second later, a cover slid over the passage he had just traveled through.
“They must want to keep it down there for the next victim,” he mumbled to himself. “It’s hard to believe that most people would have made it this far, but maybe they’re pulling out all the stops for me. Either way, if there are any innocents in here I need to find them before I burn this hell hole to the ground.”
With new determination, Jack pressed on and began his exploration of the Haunted House’s second level.
To be continued next Monday