She didn’t have the attentive gaze of someone checking up on us. No, there was something more aggressive about it. Something almost predatory.
Some called it snorkeling, some called it scuba diving but it didn’t matter, they were the same thing… killing yourself to live.
They weren’t human: they were demons. Demons using the carnival setting to masquerade among the living. The more I looked at the crowd, the more otherworldly creatures I saw. The old woman in the wheelchair? A fiery beast on a chariot of thorns. The duo hitting on a pregnant woman? They were feathered beasts with crooked yellow teeth.
After his parents died, because his father had decided to drive six whiskeys deep, he claimed every unexplained creak and groan was a sign. But back when I worked at Toys R Us, everyone had thought the place was haunted, too. There would be stories wherever you went.
“My son keeps having nightmares and complains about something called “The Tall Dog”…does anyone know what the hell this is? It’s happened three nights in a row! It’s driving me crazy! Help!”
On impulse, I threw the notebook in the trash bag and began to drag it out of the shed. That journal was a joke gone wrong and I felt that nobody really needed to see it. Spencer would probably prefer it if I threw it out, anyway.
I cut the engines, trusting my ship’s forward momentum to take me the rest of the way to the stranger. I didn’t want to risk overshooting and having to turn around. I had the strange feeling I’d only get one chance.
So, in the dark of the night, I chose a fate for both Alessandra and myself, and prayed to whatever could hear me that I would escape this ordeal alive.
I’m not sure how long it took me to realize something was off. One minute, I was second-to-last in our little procession, the next, I noticed the absence of Christine’s footsteps. When I turned around, she was gone. Not off in the distance or taking a break, just … gone.
I didn’t want to believe this shit, but the ceiling shuddered again and I had become a little bit more open to crazy ideas at this point.