Devil Cares: Chapter Twenty-Eight

July 25, 2008 at 4:03 pm (Devil Cares) ()

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Her breath was harsh and shallow as she ran. Although her side was aching, she knew she couldn’t stop. She couldn’t use her car either. That was surely a death sentence.She’d headed to the woods, and now twigs and branches stung her face. A few times she had almost lost her footing due to a log on the ground or hole. Wouldn’t that just beat all, she thought, escape them only to break my neck.
The rain poured down into her dark eyes making her blink rapidly. Her hair was black, thin, and stringy with stored water. Her clothes were no better; they were skin-tight, painted-on skins now.
She knew it was their doing, the renewed rain. How, she didn’t know, but the knowledge set heavy in her gut.
Donna…Donna…
Panic slammed into her as she heard her name echo on the wind. Strength came to her tired limbs. Donna didn’t know where she going, really. She just knew she had to get away.
Lightning split the sky, and thunder boomed in the distance. An electric tingle danced along her skin. She wasn’t going to make it. They were closing in. She slowed some, loosing heart.
A building appeared in the distance, barely visible through the rain. Heart pounding, with hope this time, she sprinted forward. It was the school she saw as she got closer.
Donna dashed up to the door and pulled it open. She had come out of the woods so she was at the back of the school. If she could just make it to the office she could call for help.
Just having a plan in mind gave her new strength and she began to run down the long length of hallway. She hadn’t made it even halfway when her body seized up.
No, please, no, she thought desperately, no!
“Help!” She cried out as her body convulsed of its own accord. “Help me!”
Loosing her balance, Donna fell sideways into the row of lockers. Again she tried to call for help, but the words died in her mouth as the force on her body tightened. It was like the air itself crashed down around her, tightening.
It wasn’t just her, either. Metal ground together, the harsh sound echoing down the hall. Plaster began drifting from the ceiling, snow-like.
Darkness swarmed over the edges of her vision. Uselessly, her hands clawed at the wall, at the air. The force surrounding her intensified.
Sliding down the wall, she saw a long crack appear in the ceiling. She could no longer hear it, however. Another wave of power slammed into her. The ceiling exploded, water raining down on her.
It wasn’t supposed to be like this, she thought dully.
Slowly she slumped to the floor, the life leaving her body.
Miles away, in the cozy little building known as the Bright View Nursing home, Priscella Jones was preparing to meet the day. Though she was exceedingly old, she was still strong. Almost never did she need the nurses’ help to function. Today was no exception.
She didn’t exactly spring out of bed, but at her age she was positively speedy. Prissy was opening her closet when the first wave of unease tickled over her. Any other person would have simply shrugged off this feeling, but Prissy had not lived as long as she by being another other person.
Still in her bright red nightgown, Prissy walked quickly over to the table by her favorite chair. Opening the drawer, Priscella pulled out a stick of black chalk and a tube of salt. In the center of the room, she knelt on the tile of the floor. Her knees creeked a bit, but she managed. Spreading her arms as wide she could, she drew an inverted star with the black chalk.
She was attempting to stand when she felt the air tighten around her. All the lights in the room began to flicker wildly.
Taking as much of a breath as she could, she pressed against the force with her will. She felt it slide away, rebounded by her pentagram. Prissy realized her heart was pounding and her hands were shaking, and not from fear.
I’m getting too old for this, she thought grimly.
Unwieldy though her hands had become, she somehow managed to get the salt open. She was only halfway through drawing a circle when the attack came again, more powerful and urgent.
Crying out, Priscella went down. She was already crouched to make the circle, but even so she felt her hip give as she struck the floor.
Thankfully, her grip on the salt container was true. With shaking hands, Prissy whipped the salt in an arc around her. The force lessened some, but half the circle wasn’t strong enough.
She felt the strange heavy air recede, and knew it was gathering itself for another strike. Gritting her teeth, Priscella lifted her arm into the air with what felt like Herculean effort. She shook the salt tube in another half circle, and then brought it back again. On and on she shook out the salt until she couldn’t keep her arm raised anymore.
The salt particles buzzed as the force struck them, but her circle held this time. Smiling with relief, Prissy reached beneath her nightgown for the smooth white plastic pendant she knew would be there. In that instance Prissy did something she hadn’t done in weeks and weeks.
She called the nurse.


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6 Comments

  1. Zappaz said,

    OoooOoooh. The mystery deepens once more. I like it!

    Did find a few typos:

    Wouldn’t that jus beat all… ‘Just’, I believe.

    …she was already crouch to make the circle… Crouching?

  2. jekloneo said,

    Inverted pentagram, eh?
    I thought that that’s supposed to be the symbol of the devil… Interesting, though.

  3. Seth Gray said,

    The inverted pentagram being an infernal symbol is an almost complete fabrication. Originally, all it meant was the drawing of energy, just as an upright pentagram represents charging energy. Negative and positive energy, that’s all.

    Several Luciferan sects expanded on that idea and used it to represent the devil. It has no basis in history whatsoever, but as with most religions that little fact hasn’t stopped them much.

  4. jekloneo said,

    So Prissy was drawing energy… from where?

  5. Seth Gray said,

    She was trying to draw the energy that was attacking her to somewhere else, with varying levels of success.

  6. charisstoma said,

    Many months later from the last post… I invoke the “will there be more soon?” question.
    Why are the religious talismans not glowing in the presence of the succubus and whatever took over Kimber’s car? The old gods were reduced to being demons with the advent of the Jewish faith and religions that have connections to Judaism. So what Wes heard from the handmaidens of the succubus conforms. Really enjoyed what I’ve read. More?

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