Welcome to my blog! Please join me as I journey towards finding an agent for my first young adult novel. Between writing, endless snapping of photos, sleep deprivation, taking care of two adorable little girls, and oh yes, the laundry, I'm sure it's going to be a bit crazy on the way to the awaited publication.

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Friday, October 7, 2011

October 2011 AW Blog Chain

This post is part of the October 2011 Blog Chain at Absolute Write. This month's challenge is "Some Things Dark and Dangerous."

Choose a Word from this list of Lovecraftian words or this list of Obscure words (or one from both if you're feeling ambitious). Use your chosen word(s) to craft your post. It doesn't have to be Lovecraftian or even horror, but should be dark, unsettling, scary or Halloweenish in general. Each post should be less than 1000 words if possible.

Please be sure to click on the following participating blogs to read their stories.

As decaying brown leaves swirled around my boots, I pulled my scarf closer around my ears. My fingers were half numb and my nose was already red. It was colder than usual this year.

“Come on, just a little further.” James motioned me with his hand, growing more impatient by the second.

“It’s getting late, maybe we should go back.”

“Oh come on already.” He rolled his eyes and then stepped into the forest. My heart quickened as I followed his footsteps.

My brother was already way ahead of me when I caught sight of him, his form barely lit beneath the moon. At least most of the leaves had already fallen, allowing light to cast down on our path in the shadows of the trees.

He said he had a surprise for me, in the old family cemetery. Two years ago I had sworn I would never go back to the stones where our ancestors were buried. Not since Amaya’s death anyways. The three of us used to come here each year on Samhain, to say a few cheesy chants and scare the begeezus out of each other while hoping to see some ghosts.

But this was also the place of her death, and I didn’t want any part of it anymore.

“Not much farther Analla. Come on.” James had stopped and waited for me with his hand outstretched, offering to help me over the large fallen tree trunk. “Where are your gloves?” He frowned when he pulled me over. I shrugged and shoved my hands in my pockets.

“What’s this all about James?” My voice quivered and I was trying very hard to stop my teeth from chattering, but I just couldn’t get warm. The coldness easily swept aside any of his heat when he put his arm around me.

“You’ll see Analla. You might not believe it, but you’ll see.”  His eyes were full of so much intensity, I hesitated to follow. I had never seen him like this before.

He grabbed my arm and pulled me alongside him, catching me each time that I tripped over bare branches and roots. But then not far up ahead, the forest cleared and a circle of light came into view. Moonlight flooded the ancient monolith stones that were standing in a large circle right in the middle of the graves.

My chest tightened as I looked at the place of Amaya's death and remembered how she had climbed on one and then slipped. My breath gasped out in white puffs and I took a step backwards shaking my head. Any closer and I was afraid I would stop breathing.

“Analla, trust me.” James tugged my arm and led me to the center of the stones, to where the moonlight was directly overhead. He stopped just short of actually walking into the soft glow. “Stick your hand in the moonlight.”

None of this was making any sense and I thought he had gone mad. “James…” I shook my head and thought maybe this was his way of dealing with Amaya’s death. Maybe if I just played along, the sooner we could get out of here. I took a deep breath and stuck my hand in the light streaming down and wiggled my stiff fingers.


I glanced back up at James and was about to leave, but then I felt coldness wrap around my hand. My eyes snapped back to the center just as I jerked my hand away. I was completely freaked out.

“I don’t want to play your games anymore James, let’s go.” As I turned, James not once moved from his spot, his eyes still glued to the shaft of moonlight.

And then I heard her calling my name. “Analla…” It was so soft I barely heard it but when I turned around, there she was, standing in the middle of the stones. My twin sister Amaya, holding out her hand, just like James had done earlier.

My throat closed and I couldn’t speak. Tears welled in my eyes and instantly I hated James. What kind of trick was this?

“Analla…” She was pleading with her eyes; I had to step closer. James was so still, he could have been a statue himself.

Disbelieving that this could be anything but a cruel joke, I stared at the mirror image of myself as she smiled in return. Part of me had died along with her that day. I never thought to find it again, but there she was standing there waiting for me to take her hand. I couldn’t help it, she looked so real I couldn’t stop from reaching out to her.

Beneath the moonlight, Amaya’s skin was iridescent. As she flexed her fingers and grasped my hand, she smiled even bigger. “Come with me Analla.” Her voice whispered on the breeze and the dead leaves brushed against my boots.

My skin crawled where she was touching me and felt so horribly cold. I looked at our conjoined hands and my skin that was bared in the moonlight had already turned translucent.  My first instincts were to pull away, but Amaya held my hand tight, not letting go. But it didn't feel quite right. Her face seemed a little elongated and her body leaned towards me as if trying to hold itself together.

“We can be together again Analla. Come with me.” Could we be whole again if I stepped into the light? Was it as simple as that? Was this my Amaya?

I looked at James and he was shaking his head no, his eyes wide. 

It felt like I was being pulled in as I glanced at Amaya's angry face. Her eyes were full of rotting madness as I tried to yank my hand free. Her grip tightened and when I pulled her hand with me out of the light, the flesh was hideous and draped from her bones.

And then I knew this wasn't my Amaya at all but was the vaporous darkness of Samhain and the last thing I should have done was opened my mouth and screamed.


©Alynza Smith 2011


  1. Six Lovecraft words? Look who's the overachiever :) Neat tale!

  2. An eternal embrace. Curiosity killed the cat after all.

    Well done.

  3. Haha, since I chose an easy word, thought I would throw in a few more of them. I'm not good at writing the real gory or scary stuff. Ends up sounding worse than a B-rated movie when I attempt stuff like that. :)

  4. WOW!! Just WOW!!! Amazing story!


  5. I enjoyed the story very much. Did Amaya get her? I think when she opened her mouth to scream, then the vapor managed to enter her body?

  6. Well something got her, don't think it was really Amaya. :) I wonder if she'll be able to get away? haha!

  7. I wonder, with them being twins, if she wasn't doomed from the beginning along with her sister. Nicely done.

  8. What a great story with an perfect ending!

    Well crafted!

  9. I wonder if Amaya really fell from the stone or if that's just the way it looked to the observers and she'd already been taken like Analla was.

  10. Oh, I loved that! I'm not big on writing gory, scary stuff either, but that was beautifully written, heart-wrenching, and chilling all at once! And congrats on using all those words! :)

  11. This is beautiful work - amazing and creepy, and so full of pathos.

  12. Very enjoyable, quite daemonical...