Kids are going missing from the neighborhood. Everyone is searching for them. Only Isaiah knows about his sinister, late-night visitor. And he can't help but assume that it's all connected.
Kids are going missing from the neighborhood. Everyone is searching for them. Only Isaiah knows about his sinister, late-night visitor. And he can't help but assume that it's all connected.
This is Part 3 of the Morsambula series. Head here if you haven't read Part 1 yet.
Or if you need to read Part 2, head here.
It's an early hour, an ungodly hour, an hour that is only made acceptable by large quantities of coffee. That is exactly what Isaiah consumes. Coffee after coffee, waiting for the morning sky to open up… to look less sad. Not that it has any reason to.
Isaiah finishes another coffee and is now gearing up to help Adriel, Nev, and the others. Their search party has grown. Isaiah meets them outside and heads back into the forest with them. Some people search the surrounding area, but Isaiah sticks to the forest. He feels the forest will be their best shot at finding Brandon.
He checks the area where the bright beam of light would be… but there's nothing there. He rejoins the group and spends much of his time with Adriel, Nev, and little Ray. Ray is terrified, but he keeps himself preoccupied by munching on a candy bar.
"That's my favorite flavor." Isaiah says to Ray as he chews on his sugary treat.
"This is only my second favorite flavor, after mint." Ray smiles. "This is Brandon's favorite. We took a couple when we came out…"
Ray's smile is gone. He stops talking.
"We'll find him, buddy." Isaiah assures him. "Not only am I going to make sure of it… your mom and dad will extra, super duper, make sure of it. Okay?"
Tears stream down little Ray's cheeks. He simply nods… wanting to believe.
They search all day with no luck. Not a single clue. Adriel won't let down the tough guy act… no one cares to stop him from doing it. Whatever he needs to do to get through this.
In the evening, Isaiah and everyone head home. Isaiah doesn't dare go in his bedroom or anywhere on the half of the house off the reservation. He stays on the couch, on the side closest to the window where he hides, watching TV. He waits… expecting the monster to show up… and then he may hide quickly when the time arises.
Coffee after coffee. TV show after TV show droning on… Isaiah hardly pays attention to any of it. His eyes stay trained on the entranceway. Waiting for the beast to arrive again. Occasionally, he looks out the window, out into the neighborhood. The dark, quiet, forlorn neighborhood. Isaiah watches a slight breeze carry some stray leaves across the street. The first movement he's seen in hours. This neighborhood wasn't always this sad.
A heavy thump from the bedroom lurches Isaiah's heart from his chest cavity. He spins around towards the entranceway. He sees nothing. But he hears several more thumps.
He quickly hides behind the arm of the couch, peeking out to watch. In a matter of seconds, the beast emerges from his bedroom, anger in his eerily human eyes. He stomps off into the office. Sounds of thumping and crashing come from the office. A roar of anger. The beast thumps back into the entranceway, scanning his surroundings.
Isaiah holds his breath.
The beast sniffs the air and looks over in Isaiah's direction. Isaiah freezes, hoping the beast won't be able to make him out in the limited, flickering light from the TV. The beast won't cross the threshold of the midway portion of the entranceway.
Not at first.
Slowly, he takes a step forward… towards the living room. Then another. He is one step away from entering the living room. The beast lets out a pained roar that pierces Isaiah's ears. He spins around, thumps away into Isaiah's bedroom, a light flashes, and then silence.
Isaiah' shuddering breath grows more and more ragged. His breath becomes visible in the air. Steam from his hot breath, as the temperature is dropping. Goosebumps line Isaiah's arms. He's freezing.
He turns… and there are the deep brown eyes once again.
Isaiah gasps and falls backwards. The same ghost.
"Morsambula." He whispers.
Isaiah looks around to check once more for the beast… for Morsambula.
"Morsambula… that's the name of that thing, right?" Isaiah asks in a hushed tone.
The ghost nods.
"I don't have much time." The ghost says, scanning his own surroundings. Isaiah can't help but feel the ghost is scanning a different set of surroundings… surroundings Isaiah cannot see.
"You said… Morsambula must be stopped?"
The ghost nods. "You must stop him… before you can end him."
"What… what does that mean?"
"He is too strong to end. It will not take one attempt. But first, before anything else, he must be stopped."
"This doesn't make any sense. Just tell me… what do I do?"
The ghost scans his surroundings once more… this time… in a panic.
"I must go. You must stop him first. Use the–"
The ghost fades away, but one last word escapes his mouth as he vanishes. Isaiah could only make out that it sounded like "ide" or "ite."
"Ite? Ite?" Isaiah repeats to himself. "The night? The light? Is it the light in the forest?"
With a sudden burst of adrenaline, Isaiah springs to his feet and races outside. He runs just past the edge of his house, off the reservation, the side nearest the forest. He looks at that forest. He sees the light shining brightly. He squints. He can see movement near the light. And then a roar emanates from the forest.
Isaiah races back inside and shuts the door behind him. He'll wait until he has more information before he heads anywhere near that light.
He spends most of the rest of the night in the living room. No more ghosts show up. Every half hour he heads to his bedroom and looks out the window towards the forest. Every time he sees the light is still there. Until the last time he checks, the sun has not yet risen, but the lightness of the sky is prevailing, signaling that the sun is on its way.
Isaiah sees movement in the forest, just next to the light. He hears a faint roar. The top of one of the trees in the area shakes as 30 birds all fly from it at once. The light flickers in an unusual way, as if something continuously blocks its source… and then it goes out completely. The forest looks as plain as ever.
And Isaiah falls asleep.
Only to be woken up a few hours later from a knock at his door. It's Adriel and the others, asking if Isaiah is helping to look for Brandon again. Isaiah says he'll shower and join them in a moment.
It's another fruitless day. Isaiah holds out hope they will find Brandon or discover something. But nothing. He fears the monster and the light in the forest have something to do with this.
That night, Isaiah goes through the same process. He makes sure to have a nap in the evening… but then stays up all night in the living room. The beast returns. Isaiah hides. The beast destroys. The beast vanishes. The ghost with the deep brown eyes returns.
"You said he needs to be stopped before he can be ended." Isaiah is trying to get to the point quickly. "What does that mean?"
"He is too strong to end… it will not take one attempt."
"Yeah, yeah, I know. But you said he needs to be stopped first. Then you said… use the light?"
"Use the white."
"The white? What's the white?"
"I do not know its name. But you use the white to stop him. I must go."
The ghost vanishes. Isaiah gets the feeling the ghost is being watched… on some other plane. He wishes he knew what the ghost meant by the white. But he has no idea.
The next several days are a strange string of days.
From about 5 A.M. to 8 A.M. Isaiah sleeps. He spends the day searching with Adriel, Nev, Ray, and others. Each day the number of people searching dwindles. Each day Nev and Ray are more upset, each day Adriel is more angry. After fruitless searches, Isaiah returns home, eats, sleeps for a few hours, wakes up, then waits in the living room. The beast continually arrives around midnight. Sometimes it arrives in his bedroom, sometimes in his office. After the beast leaves, the ghost appears, just for a minute or two each time.
Isaiah begins to show the ghost things, to see if he can figure out what the "white" is. He's unsure if the object is white, or if white is just some name that represents something. It's not a knife. It's not a hammer. It's not paper. It's not a cross. It's not water.
One night, after a long search in the forest, Isaiah is particularly tired. He orders food from a restaurant and even gets himself some powdered doughnuts. A few too many. He doesn't eat them all. He leaves a few on the coffee table in front of him as he searches for something to watch on TV. He needs to stimulate himself, keep himself awake. He's been getting by on fumes and a few cat naps here and there. Stimulating TV… sugar from his doughnuts… whatever works.
But it's not working. He can't find anything on TV that keeps his interest. His eyelids grow heavy. His belly is full. The room is warm. It's the perfect conditions to sleep…
Suddenly, a loud bang shoots Isaiah up in his seat. He smashes his leg on the coffee table so hard that it shakes. He clutches his shin in pain but tries not to make any more noise. The beast must be here. Did he drift off to sleep? Another loud bang comes from his bedroom. Isaiah quickly jumps off the couch and hides behind it. He watches as he always does.
The beast emerges as it always does. Swinging its arms around and smashing the walls.
What is this thing doing? What does it want?
It grunts and heads into the office, smashing more of Isaiah's belongings. Angry grunts, stomping back to the bedroom… but it doesn't leave. It emerges from the bedroom once more. It stops in the entranceway. It sniffs the air, baring its teeth. It growls as it sniffs the air. Its growing more and more angry.
The beast is facing the direction of Isaiah. He tries to crouch lower… as low as he can go. A grumbling emits from the beast's mouth. Drool hangs from its gums, dripping onto the floor.
A sharp roar from the beast. It spins around and stomps back into the bedroom, the light flashes, and it's gone.
Isaiah doesn't even have a chance to take a breath before the ghost pops up in his face. Isaiah stumbles back towards the couch. The ghost pushes forward, closer to his face.
"What? What's the white?"
The ghost points to the coffee table. Next to the doughnuts, some of the powdered sugar has fallen onto the table. The ghost is pointing right at the white sugar.
"Sugar? Sugar is white!" Isaiah asks.
"The white… it paralyzes Morsambula. Then… then…" The ghost's deep brown eyes dart around.
"Then, it can be killed?" Isaiah asks frantically.
"I must go. Remember. Morsambula is difficult to kill."
The ghost is gone.
He wishes he could've asked more. But he feels like he got his answer.
Sugar is white. Sugar will stop Morsambula. Apparently.
That's right! That night my plate fell on the ground, it had sugar all over it! And… Morsambula stepped on it. And he froze! Like he was paralyzed!
Isaiah realizes that's what happened. Something about sugar must cause temporary paralysis in this thing. That was what he witnessed. It was such a small fraction of time… but perhaps enough time to work with. Then again, maybe more sugar would grant Isaiah more time. If he can paralyze this beast even for just several seconds… he can then kill it. He's not sure what the ghost means by "it's difficult" but perhaps he's just referring to the fact that it's so strong. Or that it must be paralyzed first. Perhaps, it has thick skin.
But Isaiah will prepare himself. He's going to stop Morsambula… this next coming night.
The next day, Isaiah searches the forest with Adriel, Nev, and Ray as usual. At this point, the only people helping them to search are Tommy and Forrest. Isaiah can tell everyone is beginning to become defeated. He just hopes they can hold out hope a little bit longer. And he hopes that Brandon… is somewhere… just hanging on.
If you can hear me, little buddy, just hang on.
Of course, another search yielding no results. Everyone heads home in silence. Isaiah wishes he had words to comfort them… but it will have to be done with his actions… he hopes.
After the search concludes, Isaiah heads to the store. He buys a large bag of sugar, and a few other things to make himself dinner. He'll need his strength.
Isaiah takes his usual nap. He eats dinner. He's nourished. He's alert. His largest knife lays on the coffee table. His second largest knife is on the kitchen counter. He tears the bag of sugar open on the kitchen counter, but with his nerves out of control, he spills sugar onto the counter.
I can't waste any of this!
He steadies his hands, clutches the bag of sugar carefully, walks it over to the entranceway, and pours the rest of the sugar on the entranceway floor. He tosses the torn bag of sugar back on the counter.
Isaiah sits on the couch, alert, shaking from nerves. The large knife with its gleaming steel blade lays within his grasp. He waits. The TV plays. The night comes. The sky darkens.
The house is quiet.
The clouds roll by in the sky.
The moon shines through the clouds occasionally, playing peek-a-boo with Isaiah.
And Isaiah waits.
As it has been almost every night, just about midnight, the first loud sound comes from his bedroom after a brief flash of light that Isaiah almost doesn't notice. He exhales quickly and tells himself not to think. He swipes the knife off the coffee table and jumps to his feet.
Isaiah moves quietly towards the entranceway, hiding behind the wall that separates the kitchen and living room, able to peek out into the entranceway but staying hidden.
Another loud thump in the bedroom, followed by a crashing sound. Wood breaks and splinters. An agitated grunt.
Isaiah gulps. He grips the knife tightly in his hand. He shifts his weight, angling his body into the kitchen, and peeks out into the entranceway.
And there it is.
It lumbers into the entranceway and immediately locks eyes on Isaiah. It's eerie human eyes. It inhales so loudly, Isaiah can hear the air tunneling down its throat. It lets out a deafening roar and steps towards Isaiah…
…right into the pile of sugar.
A strange squelching and grunting noise gurgles from its mouth as it steps in the sugar… and freezes!
Isaiah exhales quickly.
Morsambula is frozen. Isaiah jumps out from behind the wall and against all common sense, marches towards this massive beast. Its arms are out in front, exposing the chest area. Isaiah marches right up to the beast, cocks his arm back with the knife, and drives it straight into the beast's chest with all his might.
The feeling of the blade entering the beast and cracking through its chest plate is sickening, it vibrates through the handle of the knife and Isaiah winces. His stomach turns. He plunges the knife deep into the beast, the blade completely vanishing beneath its skin.
Isaiah looks up at those oddly human eyes. They move and flicker slightly. Isaiah hears a trembling breath escaping the beast's nose. A low growl begins to exit its mouth.
It's not dead! This knife is right in its heart!
The fingers of the beast begin to wiggle. Isaiah spins around and sees the other knife on the kitchen counter next to the torn bag of sugar. He runs for it and snatches the knife up. He turns around just in time to see the beast roar at him with anger. It stomps towards him. Isaiah grabs the bag of sugar with his free hand, the spilled grains of sugar all over it. He whips it at Morsambula, flinging sugar at it. As Morsambula is hit by the sugar, it freezes momentarily, tensing up. Its fingers and eyes twitch.
Just enough time. Don't wait.
Isaiah jumps at Morsambula, just as its arms begin to move again. He plunges the second knife into its chest, right next to the first knife. Morsambula's heavy arms latch onto Isaiah's shoulders and grip him tightly. Its claws sink into his skin. Isaiah twists the knife with all his might. A pained grunt comes from deep inside Morsambula's throat.
The claws dig in deeper. Isaiah twists the knife back the other way as his shoulders are aflame with pain. Another pained grunt.
Morambula's grip loosens. Its claws slide out of Isaiah's skin. It collapses on the floor right in front of him. It shudders with a shaky breath, and then it vanishes in a spectacular flash of light.
Isaiah's mouth is open. Air cannot enter or exit. He coughs painfully. He forces himself to take in air… and then he breathes a sigh of relief.
It's dead. And somehow… the light took it.
Wait, the light! I need to go to the light… Brandon has to be there… somehow.
Isaiah doesn't wait. He sprints out the front door like a madman and runs straight for the forest. He can see the light among the trees. He races straight for it. All the way across the field.
His feet pound the ground with purpose. His shins and thighs burn… but not nearly as much as his bleeding shoulders do. He puts it all out of his head. He ignores the pain and powers on through the field.
He reaches the edge of the forest and runs into it. He's closing in on the light. It's so bright up close.
Isaiah slows down as he nears it, unsure what he'll come across. He comes to a full stop just 20 feet in front of the giant beam of light. He marvels at it for a moment, but then remembers he's on a mission. He steps carefully towards the light. As he closes in on it, he notices the light is coming up through a large hole in the forest floor.
Isaiah inches closer to the light, careful not to slip and fall into this hole. As he nears closer, he can hear sounds coming from down there. Heavy footsteps, hundreds of footsteps. He can hear metal clanging, objects thudding around.
Isaiah peers into the hole as best he can, the light making it difficult to look in. It appears that there is something down there, an area, a room. He squints and can see, there is a rock floor down below, about eight feet below.
Looks like I'm jumping down there. I haven't thought twice about any decisions so far. No need to start now.
Isaiah exhales sharply and then jumps down into the hole. He lands awkwardly on the rock floor and stumbles. He falls to his knees, but he quickly picks himself back up. He's standing right in the middle of this great beam of light that's just coming right out of the floor. He moves away from the beam of light which is roughly six feet by six feet, a circular shape.
Isaiah steps out of the light and realizes he is in an underground cave. He's in a room that's no bigger than his house. But in front of him, there's a doorway carved into the wall. He steps carefully towards it. The sounds of footsteps and metal clanging grow louder.
Isaiah reaches the doorway and peers through it. A massive open area inside this cave. Hundreds of football fields long and hundreds of football fields wide. It's a sight Isaiah could never even fathom. The room extends farther than Isaiah can even see, but the room also slopes downward. Isaiah is standing 50 feet above the floor of this room. A pathway in front of him leads down into the room at a steep angle.
Inside the room, hundreds of beasts that look just like Morsambula. Built just like Morsambula, same color as Morsambula. But there's a slight difference. As one of their heads looks up in Isaiah's direction and he ducks behind the wall for cover, he catches a glimpse of the eyes. Not human-looking. The same eyes you'd see on a bear.
Isaiah continues to watch as these beasts march throughout this room, carrying objects around, carrying out various tasks in a place that appears to be their home. They all have the same animalistic eyes… not one has human eyes.
Then, Isaiah sees something even more horrifying. He sees people. People, shackled up, chained up, doing manual labor. Many of these people are transparent, as if they're ghosts. But a few of them aren't. In fact, Isaiah notices two right away. They're small.
Isaiah studies them, the two kids who went missing before Brandon!
Isaiah scans quickly for Brandon. He cannot find him. But he's positive, those are the two missing kids. They're chained up, being prodded along by these beasts, forced into manual labor.
Human skeletons line the floor. One beast sits next to a skeleton, crunching its bones between its teeth.
Isaiah cannot believe what he's seeing. He takes a step back. There are so many of these things. What is he going to do? Where's Brandon?
He steps back again. Again. Isaiah feels the cowardice coming over him. But how could he not? What could he possibly do?
He turns back around, towards the light. Just past the light, he sees movement. He crouches down. Something is moving beyond the light, on the other side of this room the size of his house.
Isaiah steps slowly towards the light, ready to jump back up into the forest and climb his way back out to freedom. He squints and peers through the darkness of the cave which only has slight ambient light from the bright beam of light.
Something small is in the corner of the cave, shaking. Isaiah moves closer… and he sees…
"Brandon!" Isaiah yells in a hushed, urgent voice.
Brandon's head lifts up. He's crouched down small in the corner of the cave, holding his legs, dirty, cold, shaking.
"Brandon. It's me, Isaiah."
"Isaiah?" His voice is weak.
Isaiah rushes over to him and pulls him to his feet. Brandon hardly has any strength.
"Oh my God. I knew you were still alive."
"This big monster got me in the forest. It took me down here." Brandon explains weakly. "But then as it had me, I had a chocolate bar, and it fell on its arm. It froze or something and I ran over here into this corner… and then he left me. Every time he comes down here, I throw a piece of candy at him and he leaves me alone."
Brandon reveals the tiny bit of candy bar he has left in the wrapper.
"I've been eating some too. I'm so hungry."
"The sugar!" Isaiah says a bit too loudly, and then returns his voice to a whisper. "Good job. Hey, you're good. We're gonna get you out of here. Come on."
Isaiah helps Brandon up and holds him as they walk back towards the light.
"I tried to jump back up but I can't reach." Brandon says.
Isaiah doesn't waste time. He hoists Brandon up and lifts him up through the light. Brandon extends his arms up and grasps onto the edge of the hole, his fingers gripping the forest floor above them. Isaiah keeps pushing up as Brandon pulls himself up weakly.
"Come on, you got it." Isaiah encourages him, trying to rush things along.
Brandon struggles. Isaiah keeps pushing him up, his shoulders burning with intense pain. Isaiah winces but pushes on. He pushes Brandon up, more, more, more…
Eventually, Brandon gets his entire torso up onto the forest floor, and he lifts himself out of the hole, safely into the forest.
Isaiah backs up, readies himself, and then gets a running start. He jumps and reaches his arms up and grabs onto the edge of the hole. His fingers grip the forest floor but when the weight of his body pulls on his arms, his shoulders erupt with pain. Isaiah yelps and can't hold on. He loses his grip and crashes down onto the floor in the cave in a crumpled mess.
"Isaiah! Are you okay?" Brandon yells out loudly.
Isaiah shushes him, but he knows it's already too late. As soon as he yelped and crashed loudly to the floor, the beasts grunted in the large room. He could hear footsteps coming from the room and approaching this smaller room.
He scrambles to his feet. His shoulders are in such pain but he needs to block it out. He needs to ignore it. He rushes back to his original spot, giving himself a runway.
Isaiah inhales deeply… exhales sharply.
Forget the pain. It doesn't exist. Just forget it for 10 seconds. You can block anything out for 10 seconds.
He looks over to the doorway and he sees the animalistic eyes of the beasts pop up from below the sloped walkway. Massive beasts crowd around the doorway and peer in. They see Isaiah and they roar in unison.
You only get one more shot.
Isaiah turns back towards the hole as his peripheral vision allows him to see two beasts race through the doorway, more to follow from behind. Isaiah takes off at full speed. He races towards the light beaming down. He steps into the light and jumps. He extends his arms up.
The light blinds him. He can't see. But his hands grasp the forest floor. He grips the dirt with all his might. Flames scorch down his shoulders and it feels like they'll rip right from his back. Isaiah blocks the pain out and lifts himself. He lifts with all his strength and all his speed. He pulls himself up as angry roars emanate from below him.
Isaiah pulls his head up through the hole, he flops his torso onto the forest floor, his legs dangling down below into the hole. One more grasp of the dirt in the forest and he pulls himself forward and yanks his legs out of the hole. A massive clawed hand swings towards his leg and narrowly misses grasping his shoe. The claws dig into the dirt of the forest floor.
Isaiah scrambles to his feet, locates Brandon, grabs him, and pulls him along.
"Come on, we got to go!"
Isaiah starts to pull Brandon along as they run out of the forest. All the while looking back at the light and the hole it's shining out of.
But the beasts never come out.
The light flickers slightly… but then it's still.
Nothing exits the hole.
Isaiah and Brandon stop running. The forest is still.
"They're not coming out?" Brandon asks.
"I guess not." Isaiah answers.
"But what about the other one? There was that one…"
"He's gone. Let's get you home." Isaiah pats Brandon's shoulder and ushers him along the field as they walk towards his house.
They amble along slowly. The cold night air feels good on Isaiah's skin.
"I'm going to bring you home. Everyone has been looking for you." Isaiah says.
"And the other kids?" Brandon asks.
"Yes, people were looking for the other kids too." Isaiah's head slumps. "I don't know if they still are."
"They're still down there." Brandon says. "I saw them."
"I know. Um, just leave that to me." Isaiah tries to stay strong for Brandon. "But um… we're going to have to come up with a story. We cannot tell anyone the truth."
"No one will believe it. They'll think we're crazy. Um, how about, you fell into a pit in the forest and you were injured. There were bears around constantly, so you couldn't get out. And… and I just heard you from my house tonight, screaming, so I came to look."
"That sounds too weird."
"Believe me, it sounds a whole hell of a lot less weird than the truth. Just stick to that story, alright?"
Isaiah walks him all the way home. He knocks loudly on Adriel and Nev's door. He feels awful to wake them up in the middle of the night with all they've been going through, but this will be worth it.
They open the door in a stupor. But as soon as they see Isaiah with Brandon, and Brandon dives into their arms for a hug, they're overcome with tears of joy.
Brandon sticks to the story. When Adriel and Nev see the claw marks in Isaiah's shoulders, Brandon improvises and says it was from a bear. But that Isaiah scared it away.
Not bad, kiddo. Better than the real story.
Ray even wakes up and comes to the door. He sees his brother and breaks down in tears. The two hug. Adriel and Nev insist Isaiah come in and let them tend to his wounds, no matter how much he explains he should head home. They patch him up. They feed him and Brandon. They thank him a million times.
But Isaiah isn't done.
Those other kids are still down there.
Isaiah insists on leaving and heading home. It's the middle of the night. In fact, it's in the wee hours of the morning. Everyone is still awake, sitting around the dining room table, talking, cherishing that Brandon is back home, safe. Isaiah leaves.
He walks home as the sky is lightening. The sun is getting ready to peek up over the horizon. Isaiah reaches his house and looks to the forest… the light is gone. He heads into the forest anyway. The hole is gone. It's just dirt. He will have to try again at night.
Isaiah sleeps peacefully for the first time in a long time.
He doesn't wake up until 1:00 P.M. Isaiah is clearly not working today. But he'll be working tonight. He heads to the store and buys all the sugar that they have. He needs all the ammunition he can get. His next stop, a gun store. He buys several pieces. As much as he thinks he can carry all at once. Oh, and lots of ammunition. He needs all the ammunition he can get.
Isaiah waits in his bedroom for the first time in a couple weeks. Nightfall hits. Isaiah keeps glancing out the window at the forest. There's no light.
He waits and waits. The light never appears. It's past midnight. No light.
Isaiah marches across the field and into the forest, toting several guns, and carrying a wagon full of sugar. A knife in a sheath on his belt. He reaches the forest. There's no light, there's no hole, it's just a dirt floor in a simple forest.
Isaiah waits here for two hours. There's no change. He trudges back home and heads to bed.
He does the same thing the next few nights, hoping the light will return. It never does. Isaiah can't get down there to save the other two missing kids. On the positive side, the beast never returns. Clearly, it's dead.
The days carry on. Isaiah gives up on the idea of saving the two other kids. It's heartbreaking. He even sees the parents of one of the missing kids in the store one day. They're both disheveled messes. It's painful to see them. Especially because Isaiah saw the kids… he knows where they are. But what can he do? What can he say?
Isaiah continues to be able to sleep in peace in his bedroom. He doesn't stay out in the living room past 9:00 P.M. He knows the ghost helped him, but he doesn't wish to have any more interactions with him. Sometimes he wonders if he could save the ghost. But he's a ghost. How could Isaiah save him?
Isaiah has a couple of weeks of peaceful sleep in his room… until the night the full moon returns… and the beast returns.
Crashing sounds in Isaiah's office jolt him awake.
No, it couldn't be!
But the sounds of destruction are all too familiar. Then, a familiar grunt. Isaiah leaps to his feet, scurries under the bed, and into the crawlspace just as he did the first time he encountered this beast.
The beast enters his room, smashing pieces of furniture and knick knacks. Slamming heavy fists into walls. The beast doesn't touch the bed.
Isaiah works up the courage to slide out of the crawlspace ever so slightly… position himself under the bed. The beast lumbers towards the doorway and turns slightly. The beast begins to gnaw on the door.
Isaiah can see those same porcelain white, hairless legs. The same massive muscles. He pokes his head out from underneath the bed. His gaze travels up the body of the beast. His stare reaches the beast's chest… two knife wounds scarring over… no knives.
His gaze travels upwards. Sharp teeth gnawing at the door, breaking pieces off, wood splintering into its mouth. And there are those eyes. Those human eyes.
Isaiah gasps involuntarily. He pulls himself back under the bed and slides backwards into the crawlspace. The beast stops gnawing on the door. It stands silently. Isaiah pulls himself completely into the crawlspace and holds his breath.
With the exception of heavy slow breathing from Morsambula.
The floor creaks under the weight of Morsambula.
A flash of light. And it's gone.
Isaiah allows himself to breathe. He pulls himself out of the crawlspace and out from underneath the bed. He looks out the window and towards the forest. He sees the beam of light in the forest, stretching up towards the sky. He sees the light flicker slightly.
Morsambula is back.
This was Part 3 of the Morsambula series. Head here for Part 4.
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Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!
Compelling and original writing
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