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Josie >> March Promptlies #5

Gooooooooood afternoon, me lovelies!

It's the fifth & FINAL week of the Promptlies Link-up!  I can't believe how fast this month has seemed to pass.  But I've had so. Much. FUN writing for each of these prompts.  Hugs to all who were able to join in as well! I've loved reading what you've come up with.  It's so interesting to see the differences in how each of our minds work in regards to working on the same writing prompts.

> > > > > < < < < <

So, it's Week 5 of my Link-up!  And tomorrow is the deadline for this week's prompt.
Click HERE for the info!


> > THE PROMPT < <


Similar to last week's prompt, this one features characters in no relation to any current WIPs.  Brand new, shiny characters are SO fun.  I just realized I haven't created any new concept ideas or stories in AGES.  Probably because I'm TRYING TO COMPLETE AT LEAST ONE DRAFT OF AN ALREADY ACTIVE STORY. . . *le sigh* I'll get there eventually, I think.  ;D

> > MY STORY < <

           Josie hated this stretch of her walk home. It was only one night every week when she had the late shift at the restaurant, and the one night neither Lauryn or Ward could accompany her.
          With her friends, she never felt alone. But when both were unavailable, she could swear things followed her every step of the way.
          She’d always felt this way—for as long as she could remember. Always felt she was watched.
          Too bad she wasn’t a runner… She could knock out the two miles home in no time at all.
          A branch snapped the way you hear only in movies, and she whipped her head in that direction, a nervous squeak escaping her lips. Jumpy, much? You probably just imagined it, Jo.
          But she knew she hadn’t imagined that creature two weeks ago, standing at the end of her bed. The nightmare had awakened her in a cold sweat and she saw it there—in her room. But when it vanished, she’d succeeded in convincing herself it was a part of the nightmare she thought she’d awoken from.
          Not even Lauryn or Ward knew of her dreams. She was too afraid even they would throw her into a mad house…
          Not realizing she’d frozen in her tracks, she picked up the pace again and began fumbling in her bag for the pepper spray, her house keys—anything—only to remember she’d tossed everything out last minute searching for her notes from last period.
          Like pepper spray would even work on such a creature…
          “Just wait till I turn twenty-one, you creeps,” she muttered under her breath. Never mind that was still four years away. “I’ll be more of a match then—I can assure you.”
          If they let her survive that long.
          The sidewalk bordered the old park, now overgrown for more than a decade despite the city’s promises to restore and make it an eco-friendly haven. Trees lined the road and the lamp-posts cast an eerie glow into the early-Spring dusk.
          She quickened her pace and debated on whistling a tune into the suffocating silence.
          If only she could whistle.
          Huffing at her own sarcasm, she threw a glance behind, saw nothing (as usual), and hurried on. At the rate of her heartbeat and rising anxiety, perhaps next week she could convince Mrs Lichlyter to allow her to stay the night at the restaurant. Chicken.
          Jarran should’ve been home from work by now. Why couldn’t he have picked her up? She knew Dad had taken yet another extra shift at the police department this weekend. A teeny prick of sadness welled at the loss she felt in his almost constant absence.
          But at least she had Jarran. Her older brother always did his best to cheer her up after days like this.
          She sighed, nearly tripping over her own feet, but caught herself just as the air before her wavered and crackled as if disturbed by some unseen electrical force.
          Before she could react, she was on her back staring up into the salivating face of a demon.
          The scream caught in her throat as its dagger-like claws pressed her into the concrete walkway. It drew its face down to hers and it was all she could do to breath as it seemed to assess her soul.
          *Misvādu kanī tadhve viśea,” it drawled insidiously.
          She didn’t understand the words—but there was enough in the tone to deduce it thought she looked rather tasty.
          She struggled, her vision blackening. So this is how I’ll go. And even in death, no one will believe me. Under different circumstances, the dry humor would’ve been amusing. ‘Here lies Josie Quinn, a demon’s dinner.’ But before it could even attempt a nibble at her throat, a great force threw it into the street where it slid and rolled—claws gouging the pavement.
Photo by Sven Scheuermeier on Unsplash
          Free from the oppressing weight, Josie gulped in sweet, clear oxygen, then immediately wished
she’d allowed the darkness to overtake her.
          Because her creature was most definitely real. And it was standing over her—defensively?—growling at that thing rallying in the middle of the empty street.
          “She is mine, Watcher,” the demon’s voice rasped.
          Okay. That she understood.
          Still in a defensive stance, the beast dipped his head her way and, never taking his eyes from the demon, said in a gravelly voice, “Move.”
          His massive wings—one leathery and the other mottled in dark feathers—shifted to cover her, shielding her from view of the drooling monster. Without a word, she obeyed, scrambling toward the old concrete bench by the tree border. As soon as she was safe, she turned to watch the creature lunge for the demon, his body dwarfing its sinewy form. In the brief battle, he slashed it across the middle with a dragon-like claw and with a shriek, the demon vanished, leaving nothing but a dark splash of blood where last it stood.
          Drawing his wings in, her rescuer turned and lifted to his hind legs, sniffing the air. Seemingly satisfied, he lumbered towards where she was clinging to the bench, too afraid to let go of the only thing that seemed real. But now, she could make out his features. His body was like a mix of mashed-up dragon and massive wolf. And his face displayed the horned crest of a dragon combined with a wolf’s snout and fangs.
          Terrifying. She was sure her eyes were as wide as saucers.
          “Y—you protected me…” The fact blew her away.
          He nodded, rubbing his side. She noticed a bit of blood matting his hide of fur and scales. His eyes met hers: Animal. Human. Beast.
          “We all do.” And it was then she noticed the others in the shadows—at least four, all kinds of shapes and sizes.
          Watching. Silent. But not in a menacing way. The were guarding her.
          “Why?” These beasts had been protecting her all this time?
          His eyes softened, and it was then she saw the depths of them.
          “It’s our curse.”


*Demon dialect of ancient Sanskrit origin.  Essentially, it means "Tasty girl, you are special" (and must be read in Gollum-like voice).

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So.
What do you think???  Is this a story you would pick up?  How would you imagine this prompt differently?

Thank you for reading!  I'll have a wrap-up post for this week going up sometime tomorrow. Buuuuut there's still time to join in on this prompt!  If you miss the link-up, be sure to put your blog link in the comments---I'd LOVE to read what you come up with.  :]

Happy Friday! Have a lovely weekend, y'all!

Comments

  1. :O
    :O
    :O
    DIS STORYYYYY.
    THAT WAS SO CHILLING.

    The image of a creature just STANDING there at the end of her bed was especially horrifying. And then the tension through the whooole thing. O___O I LOVED IT. It was deliciously creepy! I love how you used another language for the monster too. That was epic! (And I totally read it in a Gollum voice. ;D)

    BUT DAT ENDING. Like, you think it's all good and these creatures are nice and WANT to help her. But they're cursed into helping her??? DKJFLJDLJFDJF. I WANT TO KNOW MORE. That was the coolest twist!

    This was just amazing. I can't believe this is the last one! It's been suuuuch a blast reading all your prompts. I adored every single one. I'm so glad you're doing it again in the summer. Can't wait! :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. *BEAMS* Oh you are the bestest, dear Lauri! I'm so glad you thought it was chilling & "deliciously creepy". That's kinda what I was going for. ^_^ I wanted that bit of made-up/based on language of Sanskrit to kinda hint at a possible backstory to the demons. Haha! The Gollum voice totally adds to it. xD

      YESSSSSS. It surprised me too!! And now I've an irritating itch wishing to expand the idea & SEE WHAT COULD HAPPEN... O___O GAHHHHHH

      Thank you, girl! I know---SAME! I'm totally planning another one for the Summer. Hopefully more will be freed up to join in! Though I'm not sure I should do it in June (as originally thought), becuz some might want that month to prep for Camp. *shrugs* We'll see!

      Delete

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A shapeless mass, and a book of rules,
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A stumbling block or a stepping stone.
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