Jen DeSantis’ Choice: 1
Title: Into the Darkness (Part 4)
I walked past the room with the heart locked in a jar and stumbled through the rest of the house. It seemed to go on forever, impossibly big. I felt as though I’d been walking for an entire city block. But on the outside, the house was no bigger than any other row home.
Time seemed to move strangely within the walls as well. The light shifted from dark to light and then back to dark again, almost as if the sun had sped up in it’s rotation around the earth. But it had only been about an hour since I’d stumbled in blindly behind Lani. Hadn’t it?
I tripped twice going up a rickety set of steps, but was surprised to see a soft glow of light underneath one of the doors along the corridor. I moved quickly, eager to get within the light that looked both warm and welcoming. I pushed the door too hard and it banged noisily against the wall. Inside, what I saw stopped me dead in my tracks.
A little boy, no more than seven or eight, stood on ladder in front of a wall of books. He never even turned when I opened the door, just kept looking intently at the books in front of him.
“Hey, little guy,” I said, my voice barely a whisper. “Whatcha doing in here?”
“Obviously looking at books,” he muttered without turning. “Did the house send you?”
He shook his small head, the auburn locks moving back and forth, but he still didn’t look at me.
“I said, did the house send you? Or are you stuck like I am?”
“My friend...” I felt my knees buckle, but I struggled to remain on my feet. “My friend got lost. I’m looking for her.”
The little boy snapped the book he was reading closed and turned his head slowly. He had pale blue eyes, so light they almost looked white. His skin was almost translucent and he bore a look of weariness no other child could even begin to match.
“So,” he whispered, “the house took someone else. Come on.” He gestured for me to come closer. “We might get some answers in here.”
“Answers to what?”
“Where it took them. I’m Ryan, and I’m looking for my sister Lily. Who are you?”
“Kevin.” I moved to reach out my hand and then froze. “Wait, did you say Ryan?”
“Lani called me by that name when she was reading this place.”
“Lani is the woman you lost?”
“Yeah. She can tell things about places just by feeling it. She’s kind of psychic.”
Ryan laughed. It was a cold, feelingless sound. “So was Lily. Is. So is Lily. Anyway, they’re somewhere deep inside the house, I think. And we need to find them. I hear her sometimes … sighing and calling my name. I just don’t know where it took her, or why. Better get to work.”
He turned back to the books and I shook my head in confusion. So many questions raced through my mind. Instead of bothering the young boy, I turned the books with resolution. Maybe, as he said, some answers might be found within the old, dusty pages.
As I opened the first book, somewhere below me a little girl sighed.
Like what you just read? Have a question or concern? Leave a note for the author! We appreciate your feedback!
Jennifer DeSantis is a Horror and Paranormal Author and host of the #FridayPictureShow. She lives near Philly with her family. In her spare time is an aspiring ninja.