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There was a deep delighted laugh from the darkness between the candlelights…

By Ross E Fortune LombardiPublished 12 months ago 27 min read



There was a deep delighted laugh from the darkness between the candlelights…

By Ross Lombardi


The cabin in the woods had been abandoned for years, but one night, a candle burned in the window.

Scoutmaster Richard Johnson saw the light flickering through the trees, and then went pale.

He had prayed that this day would never come in his lifetime.

Behind him, the scouts were telling creepy campfire ghost stories.

Because of this, they thought Mr Johnson was only joking when he ran into the light and started shouting.

“Get up! Get up NOW! We are leaving!”

The two other scoutmasters and the small fairly large circle of fifteen scouts all giggled nervously.

Mr Johnson was in charge, but he was in charge because he was the “Dull one”, the “Boring one”, the professional senior administrative manager, by trade.

He was in charge because he liked organizing and filling out forms.

He was the ‘de facto’ “man” in charge because he was sensible and took all this scout stuff far too seriously.

He went to church every Sunday, did a crap load of volunteer work, never drank, and had a sensible boring diet with plenty of fibre.

Mr Johnson was, reserved, religious, polite, quiet, and never cursed.

This was the only time they had ever heard him properly shout.

Sure, he had raised his voice, once in a while, but never before had they ever heard him properly yell.

People like Mr Johnson are usually far too controlled and shy to yell hysterically.

“For God’s Sake! Fucking Move! NOW!”

Everyone froze in horror, the blasphemy from his super religious lips was far more shocking to them than his sexual expletive.

Mr Eric, the younger more macho scout master of the three stood up slowly,

Mr Eric did extreme sports,

Mr Eric had been a two-tour serving master sergeant in the marine core.

Mr Eric considered himself the “Real Leader” if anything ever went terribly wrong.

Nowadays he was a street cop with 5 years of experience as the local self-defence instructor for the local community centre.

Scoutmaster Eric put his hands up palms up slowly.

He never assumed anything, he was too experienced in handling extreme, complex situations to ever do that, but his temporary working hypothesis was that Mr Johnson was suffering some kind of poisoning.

“It is ok, calm down, you frightening the boys” soothed Mr Eric.

Mr Johson rolled his eyes in heavenward in exasperation.

“Sorry for this, but there is really NOT any time to explain this entire back story to you.”

Mr Johnson kicked over the rather large fire in one go, it went out instantly as the dirt pile went straight over it. While at the same time pulling out a pistol and aiming it steadily at Mr Eric before hinting the tip of the barrel at the rest of the group.

“You can arrest me for this later, but for NOW pack up and get in the fucking vans or I will take your life, Mr Eric. Do I make myself perfectly clear!”

“Shit,” thought Mr Eric, “He really has lost his mind!”, “I need to take him down at the first opportunity if I can get him away from the kids!”.

A dark part of Mr Eric's mind said “You may have to kill him” and Mr Eric replied to himself “Let's hope it does not come to that, but yes, I might have to.”

“Ok,” Said Mr Eric, “Everyone rip up the camp and dump it all unfolded and unpacked in the SUVs.”

“We can stow it all properly later,”

“All of you do what Mr Johnson is saying, Do it Now please”

Then Mr Eric turned to the last scoutmaster, Mr Redshirt.

“Mr Redshirt, Can you please supervise the children please”

Then Mr Eric nodded to Mr Johnson, “If that is ok with you,”

“Yes, Mr Redshirt, go do that” Nodded Mr Johnson

All the scouts and Mr Redshirt filled out to obey in stunned silence.

Mr Eric continued to access the situation and thought to himself, “That confirms that he is not thinking straight, Mr Redshirt is bound to almost instantly call for help and back up. A mentally stable and competent Mr Johnson would clearly know that!”

He just needed a briefest of windows, a side glance, anything! Then Mr Eric could use his considerable training to take down and contain the sadly physiologically distressed Mr Johnson.

“What that noise?!” Said Mr Johnson in panic.

“Nothing, there is nothing there, just say calm,” said Mr Eric.

“… Any second now,” Thought Mr Eric, “Don’t think, trust your muscle memory”

“He is almost twice your age, and a just a bookkeeper, so do try and take it easy on him”

Mr Johnson started waving his pistol erratically at the tree line and turned to face the invisible noise.

Mr Eric shouted to himself internally,




Mr Johnson knew all about Mr Eric,

He needed someone like that alive and Healthy but he just did not have the time to explain everything to him.

Mr Richard Johnson sighed to himself,

It was a rotten trick, but it needed to be done…

There was no other equally expedient way.

Richard pretended to hear a noise and become erratic,

He knew a good service man like Mr Eric would try and subdue him.

Mr Johnson was twice his age, but that would not matter to the outcome.

It had been a long time since he had “taken out” a marine,

Back then there had been over ten of them, all hyped up on a type of LSD variant, in a certain “Experiment”

The lab door had become locked and Richard Johnson had been forced to defend himself against them all.

But that was a different story…


Mr Eric found himself on the floor dazed and with the pistol still levelled at him.

He did not totally understand what had happened but he recognised those types of combat moves and knew that he was lucky to still be alive.

Mr Eric looked up, and simply said,

“Black Sweat?”

Richard Johnson simply nodded back and replied

“Black Sweat!”

Mr Eric nodded in resignment.

“By now Mr Redshirt should have called for help!” stated Richard

“The sooner we get those kids back the better,” He continued,

“When the time comes, you WILL ‘take me down’ and become a local hero, and I will be put away in some institution for a long while. But we both know That is sometimes the cost, we pay to help the innocent.”

Eric nodded silently again as he got up slowly.



Black Sweats are the sort of people that CIA Spooks bow their heads down and listen to.

Once maybe twice in a Logistic Airman's career, they may be told to take an empty plane for a pick-up general consignments.

Once maybe twice in such an Airman's career, there may be a silently sitting person all alone at the back of the plane, Wearing a Black Sweater and with no paperwork of any kind.

These Black Sweaters or “Black Sweats” are not like the assets from spy movies.

They are neither particularly good-looking and athletic-looking nor particularly ugly either.

They do Not ooze presence and charisma.

They come across in any social situation as a bit dull, and very forgettable.

Forgettable personalities with forgettable faces, that was the entire point!

The airmen giving them a lift are told by their CEOs in no uncertain terms that the Plane WAS completely empty.

The Airman is made very aware that they saw NO ONE and NOTHING!

No Black Sweat was ever given a medal or any kind of military funeral.

Because officially, they did not do anything,

In that area where nothing happened,

At that moment of time,

Where nothing happened in that time period,

– Officially that is,

This is not merely plausible deniability

Because you can not deny, plausibly or otherwise things that never happened!

Unofficially, Sometimes, days later, an international concern manages to miraculously solve itself, as these sorts of things often seem to do.


Mr Eric only knew of “Black Sweats” because it took groups of special forces units such as the Marines, Rangers, and Secret Service, to help train up a Black Sweat.

He had been one of such a group,

The orders are simple,

All of you all go in there, at once, and try and kill that person.

Do NOT hold back!

Try and KILL THEM!

Do not worry, They are not allowed to kill you!

That was six weeks spent of his unit constantly getting their arse kicked by a single person day after day.

He had heard rumours that sometimes they got lucky and managed to kill one.

The rumour was, when that happened, the entire unit got a year's worth of pay and a shit load of leave as a reward bonus each.

As far as Mr Eric knew, it was only ever a rumour.


As Mr Eric considered these memories he heard the screams.


Mr Eric ran towards the screams,

The Screams did not sound like his scouts but like the terrified cries of much younger children.


Mr Eric did not see Mr Johnson, no doubt he was there before him doing his ninja shit in the shadows.

He turned and Richard Johnson was now there.


There was No Mr Redshirt,

There were No Scouts!

There was no sign of struggle.

There had just been the brief screams of young children, they had both gotten there and everyone was missing.


“What the fuck!” Exclaimed Mr Eric

“Now what?!”

Mr Johnson looked towards where he had seen a candle flickering through the trees from the distant cabin on the mountain.

“Now,” He said slowly and carefully “Things will now get untidy!”



At Three,

The sucking of air from between the teeth of a car mechanic as he looks at your smoking car.

At Two,

A nurse taking standard medical readings from you, shouting “Oh my god!” then running out of the room yelling for a doctor.

And the winner is…

The number One thing you never want to hear from a professional is…

“Things will now get untidy!” from anyone in any black ops security branch!


… The ex-two tour marine, active duty cop, Mr Eric, heard, “Things will now get untidy!” coming from Mr Richard Johnson's lips, and a tiny bit of piss escaped Mr Eric, just a little!


“Well, “ Said Mr Eric, “Who wants to live forever anyway!”

Richard nodded back,

But what Richard did not reply out loud was, “Death is the least of your worries, living forever in constant agonising pain was a real possibility here!”

“Tell me,” said Richard, “Do you believe in ghosts, ghoulies and stuff?”

“Well, hell no!” Smirked Mr Eric, “I heard of weird things but I just assumed that was bullshit made by your sort of a lot, to cover stuff up!”

Mr Johnson shrugged.

“Ok, based on your recent reply, these are your current standing orders”

“If you see any small children,”

“Shoot?” interrupted Mr Eric grimly, “I am not sure I can do that…!”

“No!” interupet Richard, in return, “RUN!”

“Even if they are crying and lost?” said Mr Eric incredulously?

“ESPECIALLY if they seem crying and lost!” snapped back.

“If they are not one of our scouts... Then RUN! And DO NOT LOOK BACK!” Richard continued.

“You expect me to leave a scared child out here to die?!!” Said Mr Eric, Shocked.

Mr Johnson thought for a moment…

“I can honestly promise you. That is you abandoning them will not cause them to die…!” he said very carefully, clipping each word to make sure that what he was saying was, very precisely and very literally true.”

Mr Eric let this sink in a bit, rewinding the conversation in his mind.

Just because he was big, tall and mean-looking did not mean that Mr Eric was at all stupid.

He was big and strong, true, but he was also a clever on-the-spot problem-solver like almost all military of his rank and background. He may have looked like a meat head jock when he was out of uniform but he could also jerry-rig an engine, bypass basic electrical security panels and speak four languages.

“Are you trying to tell me that we are fighting ghosts….?”

“NO!” replied Richard Johnson.

“Oh really?” asked Mr Eric

“No! Ghosts are never a real problem…” Replied Richard

“Oh, good,” said Mr Eric curtly, his voice dripping with suspicion and waiting for the other conversational shoe to drop…

“No… These are a manifestation from one of the more minor hell dimensions.” Stated Mr Johnson

“One of the hell dimensions,” said Mr Eric flatly

“Yes” replied Richard

“So, not only is there a hell but there is more than just one…?!” said Mr Eric flatly again.

“Yes” replied Richard nodding briefly

“Well at least it’s one of the minor ones…” said Eric.

They walked for a time in silence

After about getting halfway up the terrain towards the cabin, Mr Eric Asked

“Ok, so what are the rules…”

“Rules?” Asked Richard Johnson in reply.

“Yes, in every horror scenario there are rules.. what are they?”

There was a pause and another half-mile of hiking, then Mr Johnson replied.

“If you see a strange child that you do not know, no matter how much they cray and beg for help… Just run!”

“Ok,” said Mr Eric “We have already covered that…,”

“What else”

“Candles!” said Mr Johnson.

“Candles?” Asked Mr Eric.

“Candles!” said Mr Johnson again.

“If you see any candles then let me know straight away!” Richard continued,

“What if we somehow get separated and I see a candle?” asked Mr Eric, “What do I do then?”

“Well” considered Mr Johnson, “If you are lucky, very lucky….”

“What? If I am very lucky I might survive?” Asked Mr Eric

“No… If you are lucky, very lucky… you will be allowed to die!” Said Richard Johnson.

“What The FUCK DUDE!” Scowled Mr Eric.

“Hush…!” said Mr Johnson.

“We are getting close enough to have to move silently now!”

Then they were both suddenly deafened by the loud piercing screams of very young children and passed out…


There was no way of knowing how much time had passed when they both woke up.

They were in a windowless room.

It was too dark to see.

Me Eric jumped but did not cry out as he felt something being pressed into his hand.

It felt like a pair of welding goggles.

Not unlike swimming goggles but tinted black to protect a wielder's eyesight.

Putting them on he found that could now see in the heat spectrum.

The walls and floor looked bright red as if they were scorching hot, yet he knew that they were just cold stone or brick.

It was a large square room, with six evenly spaced pillars, but there seemed to be no windows or doors.

These goggles were odd.

Mr Eric knew that heat goggles were bulky things not small, and flimsy like welding goggles.

Mr Johnson explained,

“These, kind of, went accidentally missing when I was on a certain errand, for certain people”

“They are extra small, light and compact,”

“They are broken” Said Mr Eric

“Actually, They are not, I just re-calibrated them to show normal stone as red, and blocks of ice as yellow, etc.”

“I shifted the heat map UI colour translation towards one end so very very cold things would stand out.”

“I knew that one day, I might be facing these creatures of the void again, and they show up as being well below normal temperatures, Green to Blue or even lower. “

“You faced this thing before and won?” Asked Eric?

“Yeh, but I was much younger then and I had an army of werewolves to help me.”

“You managed to recruit werewolves??!”

“No” replied Mr Johnson, “They recruited me, they needed my help!”

“The moon goddess hates this void demon,” He continued “She hates it so much that her direct moonlight unnaturally burns them!”

“Where are they now?” Asked Mr Eric

“Well, they all died.” Shrugged Mr Johnson

“I have seen five huge werewolves attack one of those little crying children and be physically ripped apart while that child thing giggled, delighted as if it was just popping bubbles!”

“Only I survived!”

They could see each other's forms with the heat goggles and Richard Johnson nodded slightly at the walls around them.

The two of them, split up and started searching the walls of the room for flaws and possible weak points.

“So how likely are we to get out of this alive?” Asked Mr Eric

“Not very,” Replied Richard as he closely examined the first wall to the north.

“How, not very” Pushed Mr Eric, as he carefully checked out the second wall to the East.

“We are as likely to get out of here alive as Vocal Media is to have a competition winner that actually deserved to win,” was the answer, As Richard examined the third wall on the West side of this dark room.

“Shit…!” Exclaimed Mr Eric, “THAT unlikely huh!”

“Yep,” Continued “ Mr Johnson, “It is really all just a load of Sweepstakes disguised as a series of competitions to avoid the normal tax liabilities payments due from a normal gambling site.”

“Really?” Gasped Mr Eric

“Really!” Replied Richard Johnson, “So, based on THAT, we have little or no chance of surviving this.” He continued as he searched the last southern wall.

“So, why do we keep trying?” Asked Mr Eric

Richard Shrugged, “Just because something is futile does not mean you have an excuse to just quit… Always go down swinging!”

“Any luck with THE FORTH WALL?!” Asked Mr Eric,

“No, it is just as impenetrable as the other three, Unfortunately, No Chance Of A Win there either!”

They both stepped back and looked around at all the mess of boxes, useless broken tools and machinery.

“Floors next!” said Richard

Mr Eric nodded and got to his knees.

Mr Johson took the opposite corner and between them did a methodical grid search.

Mr Eric was the first to speak in a very nervous whisper,

There are a load of tallow fat candles strewn all over the floor here.

Wordlessly Mr Eric held one up, his hands shaking.

Mr Johnson nodded, “Tallow fat candles, made from the fat of captured children”

“These pillars are actually metal pipes,”

“Above us, children would be placed on one of them, and a coke fire lit around them to roast them alive.”

“The idea is to collect their fat as it drips down here and made into candles, made from their human fat. Using a basic wick dipping method.”

“But why?” asked Mr Eric in Horror

“Long ago a woman made these candles from captured children”

“She sold them far and wide to innocent people who thought that they were just made of animal fat.”

“This certain woman in the 1840s took the basic concept of harmless sympathetic candle magic and twisted it, to raise herself to demon hood.”

“She particularly delighted in tricking parents into lighting a prayer candle in vigil, made of their own murdered child.”

“The more loved the child the more potent the magic was in the candle when they were lit and cried over.”

“Ironically, She was venerated as a local healer, almost as a saint, during her lifetime, and for a long afterwards.”

“I only discovered her crimes when I investigated hundreds of years later”

“Those crying children are now the trapped souls she manifests, in order, to do her sick bidding, the way a weird unearthly octopus or squid would use a disposable tentacle.”

“The poor tortured children are now her foot soldiers, and her hands while the actual she-demon keeps herself at safe distance, never taking any personal safety risks herself.”

“That is why I could not properly defeat her last time, only subdue her.”

“So how will we defeat her this time?” Asked Eric.

“We can’t defeat shit!” Said Mr Johnson bitterly,

Eric found that he was still shocked by the formally mild-mannered, super goody two shoes, Mr Richard Johnson swearing like a normal person.

“All we can do,” continued Richard “Is try and rescue the scouts and run”

“If we can get at least one of them home, unroasted and alive, then our fates might be worth it!”

They both stood up and looked at one of the six hollow metal roasting pillars.

Wordlessly, they exchanged glances, they knew that if they could get into one of those pillars they could, possibly, try and crawl up.

Mr Eric kicked one of the more rusty parts of a pipe three or four times with all his might without a single dent.

The cries of children were starting all around them.

Through the Heat goggles, they could both see the dark blue, black silhouettes of ghostly children phasing onto existence around them.

The cries got louder.

Mr Johnson took a martial arts stance and faced a pipe,

An expression of self-centring crossed his face, as he tuned out the world around him.

Without shouting any form of “Kiai” at all (Such black ops types and Black Sweats, train to do such extreme things without shouting out and giving away their location.) Richard's fist flew in a flurry and punched enough holes in the pipe for them to crawl up and into.

He let Mr Eric go first.

It was hard work for Mr Eric, as the pipe were slick with the grease of the dead, but with Mr Johnson behind him, they managed to climb to the next floor up.

They had to smash through a few drip grates to do it, small bones falling about them as they did so, but they made it.

Once there, Mr Johnson smashed another hole for them to climb through.

Mr Johson had noticed with dismay that the holes he had punched and the drip grates that were smashed “Healed” and rapidly self-repaired themselves behind them.

They both took their goggles off now, as this room was well lit with hundreds of primitive candles on every wall.

They dripped but they never reduced in size or melted away.

There was a door, with a tiny barred window showing the stars of the night sky.

Around him were the captured scouts, all bound and gagged with tent ropes and their own scout neck chiefs.

Demons did not tie people up with mere human scavenged things, But their worshipers did!

In a Red Robe, a figure stepped forward, the hood fell back,

Underneath was the occult demon worshiper,

This sorry sick excuse for a so-called “Man” had his face painted with various arcane glyphs.

Mr Johnson could not help but notice that over half the arcane symbols, whilst looking “Cool” to your average cultist wannabe, were incorrect and wrongly placed.

It was Mr Redshirt.

Mr Redshirt had been the one that had reawoken the demon that Mr Johson had once sacrificed so much to lay to sleep, so many years earlier.

Mr Redshirt smiled the grin of one who is feeling powerful for the first time in their pathetic lives.

Mr Eric took in the scene,


“Why else” gleamed Mr Redshirt “For power, sex, money, all the usual stuff!”

“…And because it is fun”

“Because, of course, I love her!” Redshirts eyes twinkled with desire, as he carefully rubbed the head hair of one of his captives perversely”

In a fit of rage, Mr Eric stepped forwards, fist clenched, only to feel grabbed by hundreds of invisible little hands.

Each hand felt like the size of a child but could rip apart a living cow in half effortlessly.

So, obviously, Mr Eric could not move to attack.

Mr Johnson, on the other hand, just stood still and remained calm and collected.

“Why am I still alive,” Mr Johson asked politely.

“She wants it,” slithered Mr Redshirt’s voice

“She needs it”

“What does she need?” asked Richard evenly.

“She demands an apology for your mortal disrespect, wanton sacrilege and blasphemy against her immortal unholiness.” Redshirt sneered.

“You embarrassed her, in front of the whole of the dark realm, with your lucky victory”

“NEVER! YOU SICK FUCK!” Screamed the immobilised Mr Eric.

“I'll unreservedly apologise IF you let all the scouts go!”

“AND reach the edge of the woods in perfect safety, unharmed”

“NO!” screamed Redshirt in triumph, “These are my payment for awakening her, for bringing you here!”

“They will be by private harem, before I tire of each one and roast them to make candles in her honour”

“Then I guess your goddess will never get her apology then….” Stated Mr Johson flatly.

“You do not speak to me like tha…” Began Mr Redshirt, foaming at the mouth slightly.

But his voice was cut off, mid-sentence, by the sound of a hundred young cries,

Mr Redshirt smiled”

“She is here!” Redshirt smiled and knelt down in worshipful supplication. His forehead pressed against the floor.

An unnatural almost female voice, made of the very shadows themselves, whispered,

“We agree”

“BUT! Demons always lie” Shouted Richard Johnson.

“Unless they are forced to sware by their real name”

There was a hiss from the darkness,

“Only if you know of such a thing”

“I know you!” Richard replied,

“I know your real name”

“Her from the bloodline of Robert Hob of Nottingham”

“She that is the Scarlet hood”

“Demon wolf slayer”

“Sacrificer of her mother's matriarch”

“Red Riding Hood”

Then Mr Richard Johnson bowed his head in concentration, He thought silently yet he also thought as loud as he could her real name.

Anything capable of reading a mortal mind heard that name as easily as any professional opera singer’s held note in a theatre with perfect acoustics.

Mr Johnson looked up,

“Swear thrice by that name, Your true name”

The voice that replied was a chorus of children's screams, but also somehow, at the same time, in perfect clipped Oxford English.

“I swear by my real name,” Said the Demon

“Swear thrice!” shouted Richard

“You must also agree to denounce your alliance with the Green, the Grey, the Moon and the Fool!” it hissed.

“I agree to those terms as long as the scouts go free and unharmed” Shouted Mr Johnson

“Then again, I swear by my real name,” Said the Demon

“But you must also choose one of your number as a sacrifice…”

Obviously, Mr Johnson almost instantly screamed, “Take me..!” but even as the thought entered his head the demon interrupted him before his lips could move”

“Not You” the chorus cried,

“We want you to live…”, You could hear an evil grin in the intonation of the faceless words.

A deep curtain of sadness crossed Richards's eyes as he guiltily glanced toward Mr Eric

Mr Eric felt a hundred ghosty child hands pull him effortlessly through the air and into one of the metal roasting tubes.

The oven door slammed shut.

“Why am I the sacrifice” Screamed Mr Eric from inside the metal tube, as the coke fire at the tube's base, on this floor, magically lit with an eerie green light.

“Because,” Said Mr Johnson grimly, “She wants to humiliate me and have me live with this guilt,”

“Swear thrice!” shouted Richard again

“I do swear by my real name,” Said the Demon, “Take you scouts and go.”

Richard Johnson took a breath,

“I unreservedly apologise to you, oh great velvet of blood rouge scarlet one of the deep woods,”

“In supplication and to prove my regret at my blasphemy I herby denounce and renounce my alliances with all the holy aspects of the Real Green, the True Grey, the Light of Luna in all its forms and even of the Fool himself! Without limit or reservation!”

There was a deep delighted laugh from the darkness between the candlelights…

The ropes binding the scouts desiderated and Mr Johnson quickly herded them all out of the now opening door.

Then he glanced at Mr Redshirt.

With furious well-trained speed, Richard dashed forward and grabbed the little shit by the scruff of his neck and easily shoved him into one of the roasting pipes.

“Protect me dark mother” Mr Red shirt cried.

“She has no regard for you Redshirt, you are not even the same as a goldfish or a potted plant in her eyes” Growled Richard.

“But she promised me…” Redshirt whined.

“Yeh, dumb arse, she is a demon, she promises a lot of things, you stupid idiot,” said Richard as he slapped the door closed and bolted it.

Then he took out his lighter and lit the coke fire at the base of the oven himself

It only lit with a normal orange glow, but it would do.

“Drip well, you fucking pervert” Richard snarled,

He ran out after the scouts, without looking back, to the sound of the demons laugher at such a delightfully petty mortal thing.

It was a heinous demonic laugh made out of the sobs of forever tortured innocent children,

As he ran down the mountain with his boy scouts, he could still hear her giggle sickly

“Now long will you last now, Mr Richard, F, Johnson,”

“He who has so many powerful enemies”

“Now that you have foolishly denounced all your allies!”

Mr Johson just kept running, cold fresh air hitting his face and filling his lungs.

Freedom air!

He got the children home.


Our perception of time is subjective,

A ten-minute wait in a dentist's seems much longer than ten minutes of a good movie.

Demons can play with a mortal's perception of time.

Mr Eric was forced to suffer for as long as possible while he still lived

And this suffering was perceived as being even longer after he died,

Each drip of his melting body fact seeming to take an eternity as he was roasted while still remaining fully conscious. (although dead)

His body stuck in a rigorous silent scream as his tortured soul heard each,




…Of his own natural human tallow…

…Down the metal pipe, to the candle workshop below…



Mr Richard, Fortune, Johnson, scoutmaster of a small town, had lost all his most powerful allies.

He had been forced to sacrifice one of his own to save others and leave them behind.

He had been forced to apologise to a minor demon for doing what was right.

Richard did not like losing.

He was most definitely going back to finish this!

Once he had prepared a decent plan.

Defeating that thing was no longer enough,

Killing that thing was no longer enough.

He was going to make her regret her very immortality.

Sometimes, among all the demons, vampires, aliens, and eldritch horrors, of the multiverse…

…Nothing was more dangerous than an angry human.




This story was originally written as part of a writing challenge for the internet site “Vocal Media”!

Part of the entry condition was the start the story with the sentence

"The cabin in the woods had been abandoned for years, but one night, a candle burned in the window."

They also gave this brief

“Write the scariest, most bone-chilling horror fiction story—the kind of story you'd tell around a campfire on a summer night.

From famous stories like ‘The Green Ribbon’ and ‘The Tell-Tale Heart’ to the original edge-of-your-seat thrillers your Dad would make up, summer nights are when we embrace the macabre. For those classic campfire moments, or simply for the thrill of being frightened, write the best scary story to tell in the dark.”

Because I am very much a total arse hole, this made me reach a little.

“Let us not just do ‘Campfire Scary,’ I told myself,”

“Let us, instead, pull the stopper off the NSFU bottle and nuke this fucker!”

“Let us make them puke and feel genuinely disturbed”

“And try and slap the odd joke in, while you are at it, the type of joke that causes a guilty laugh”

So, here is my attempt at emotionally scaring you all for life….



About the Creator

Ross E Fortune Lombardi

Writer. Gamer, Goth

A (Constantly Failing To Be Funny) satirist!

[email protected]

Mutare non est meum

Cantus moriar


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  • Dharrsheena Raja Segarran12 months ago

    Whoaaa such a fantastic story!

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