It started with a whisper faintly appearing on the wind.
Larineth glanced around the field she was in, and after not seeing anyone, she went back to her task: picking the most beautiful flowers she could find and laying them in a basket. Today was her birthday, and she had proudly told anyone that she met that she was turning nine years old today, and soon she would be an adult just like them.
She looked up, feeling goose bumps appear on her skin as she glanced around again, still not seeing anybody. She looked down at the daisy she had just picked, and recoiled in horror, throwing it with a scream. Her eyes watched as the daisy, that was now a black, rotting…thing… sailed through the air, disappearing amongst the many flowers in the field.
She stared at the spot it had disappeared, breathing heavily at the shock.
It was louder this time, making her whirl around in search of the intruder.
“Who’s there!” she yelled. No answer.
“This isn’t funny!” Again, no answer.
She felt a chill creep into her spine as she looked around the field, every which way. There was a rustling, which her head snapped towards, before realizing the wind was making all the plants sway lazily. She shivered, despite the sunlight beaming down on her. She quickly started heading towards her village, basket in hand.
She hurried, bursting into the front door of her home.
“Mama! I got some!” She called out. No answer.
“Mama?” Again, no answer. She slowly crept through the house, searching for any sign of her mother.
She heard the floor creak and whipped around to face the noise, not seeing anything. She crept towards the back room, the room that belonged to her mother. As she got nearer, it came back.
Nervously looking around Larineth still couldn’t see anyone. The house suddenly got dark, all light seeming to disappear into shadow.
“W-who’s there? What do y-you want w-with me?” she managed to stutter out.
There was no answer. She took another step towards her mother’s room, before the sound came again.
Glancing around fearfully, she darted forward, into her mother’s room, only to see a figure standing over the still form of her mother. The figure was wrapped in a black robe, and seemed to be staring at her. Larineth gulped as she looked towards where the face would be, only to see nothing but shadow.
The figure slowly faded out of view, seeming to dissolve into thin air. Larineth rubbed her eyes to make sure she wasn’t seeing things, before running over to her mother.
“Mama!” No answer. She wasn’t moving.
Larineth bolted, running outside and searching for the nearest person she could find. As she glanced around an uneasy feeling appeared in the pit of her stomach. Her village seemed… empty. She ran to the nearest house, pounding on the door and screaming for help. The door slowly creaked inwards, but there was nobody there. She cautiously walked in, exploring, and found the people. On the floor. Unmoving.
Larineth screamed and ran, but the next house was the same. Everyone was silent. Lifeless. She ran from house to house, tears streaming down her face as she screamed and yelled for someone, ANYONE to help her. There was no answer to her cries. She went through the entire village, only to find that she was the last one alive.
As she looked around in her hysteria, she noticed the robed figure from her house earlier. The cloth moved as if the figure was pointing at her, but there was no visible limb, only shadow.
The voice echoed around her. She dropped to her knees sobbing before letting out the loudest scream she possibly could.
She screamed as she sat up, in her bed. Sweating profusely and glancing around. “It was just a dream…” she muttered to herself.
“Larineth! Come eat! Breakfast is ready!” She heard her mother yell from the kitchen.
“It was just a dream.” She reassured herself before going to the kitchen.
After eating and getting dressed for the day, her mother handed her a basket, “Why don’t you go pick some flowers sweetie? The ones on the table are looking sad.”
Larineth glanced behind her at the vase on the table; the flowers were indeed starting to wilt. She turned back and smiled “Okay Mama! I’ll get the prettiest flowers ever!”
She took off racing to the field, beginning to pick the flowers that stood out and caught her attention.
It started with a whisper faintly appearing on the wind…