Fiction logo

Weary Travelers, Beware!

The Barriers of the Hidden Realm

By Emily Marie ConcannonPublished about a month ago 3 min read
Weary Travelers, Beware!
Photo by Diana Lisunova on Unsplash

Midway upon the journey of our life

I found myself within a forest dark,

For the straightforward pathway had been lost....

-Dante Alighieri

I saw the man in the woods that night, reciting prayers as he journeyed. He was pleading for guidance, protection, and the will to go on. I do not know what his mission was, but I know it took him much power even to say this prayer.

People think of walls in their homes or holding up the buildings lining the roadways. What if I told you this was only partially true? What if Walls were sentient beings blocking your path and haunting your every move?

After all, we are the barriers in your mind. We go by many names, but if you've ever walked at night and came upon a border, you know you should not pass it, then you've met us.

We appear to you, and you can't predict us. Nor can you avoid us.

I've seen many characters in my lifetime. Let me tell you about a few, and perhaps you will learn the lessons these unfortunate souls missed.

Baalam and his Donkey-

Do you know the story of the man who rode a donkey against its will? Well, if not, I'll share it with you from my perspective.

This particularly stubborn man was riding a donkey and ignoring its insistence to stop. Little did this man know, I stood only a few feet away, guarding the road against him to pass.

I waited for the man, hungry and eager to consume the little man and his donkey. However, his donkey saw through my disguise.

"We can't go this way!" the donkey squealed, breaking the cardinal law that no beast will utter the words of man. I growled under my breath, but the man finally ceased pushing the beast onwards.

"I demand you go forward!" Baalam screamed, seemingly ignoring the talking animal because it was inconvenient.

"No, this wall is a Nephesh! If you move forward, it will consume you," the donkey stubbornly refused to move forward. I watched in frustration as the man continued to try to push the donkey forward, just out of reach of my greedy jaws.

I gave up on this endeavor and moved to a new victim. Not all humans have a beast to protect them while they travel the world alone.

By TS Sergey on Unsplash

Little Red Riding Hood-

I saw the little girl robed in red walking through the forest. She had a small basket filled with bread and wine. It smelled appealing, but that was not what made me salivate.

It was her. Her fleshy, clean body. I wanted to eat her, but if this annoying wolf managed to catch her first, I'd lose my meal to this ignorant dog!

I decided to be very crafty this time. I went to her grandmother's house and became one of the walls. The grandmother thought she felt the room temperature change as she woke up and said, "that wall looks odd."

"Hi, grandmother," the girl in the red cape burst through the doorway. "A wolf chased me on the way over, but I wasn't fooled by his wiles."

"I'm proud of you, my little one," grandma smiled as the girl sat down, and they broke the bread.

I watched as they slipped off into an afternoon nap. The wolf burst in, and the girl managed to scare it away. Just as the girl was about to breathe a sigh of relief, she leaned against the wall.

Or I should say, she leaned against me.

And that was her mistake. She slipped through, and I consumed her. Her grandmother cried out in terror. She called the huntsman who tried to break through me.

But I am not a wall. I am a monster within the wall. You can't kill me with an axe.


About the Creator

Emily Marie Concannon

I am a world nomad with a passion for vegan food, history, coffee, and equality.

You can find my first novel on Kindle Vella here: :) I appreciate all your support and engagement! :)

Reader insights

Be the first to share your insights about this piece.

How does it work?

Add your insights

Comments (1)

Sign in to comment
  • Stephen Kramer Avitabileabout a month ago

    Wow, this was so good! I love these tales, and the mysteriousness around this, these beings, these invisible wall monsters! This was like reading creepy folklore from years and years ago. Loved it!

Find us on social media

Miscellaneous links

  • Explore
  • Contact
  • Privacy Policy
  • Terms of Use
  • Support

© 2023 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.