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Rebekah King Rebekah King
Recommendations: 21

At Night: Kieran's Killing

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At Night - Part 1
No End to the Nothing
At Night - Part 2
At Night - Part 3

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What did Kieran do after David left the shed...?

I watched David trump out the door, trying to be a bloody hero, with zero guilt. Though I’d never say it, I was actually genuinely freaked by those sounds. But I did also think that Davo was right and it was just some rabid animal. Mostly. I didn’t really know what to do, so I just stood around like an idiot and waited.

I found myself thinking about Dave’s comment earlier. About Emily. I thought he was full of shit – just trying to confuse me like a dick. But part of me was hoping he wasn’t, ‘cos I liked her too. I’d liked her for years. She’d been different since her parents died, though. Been more distant from all of us. She didn’t want to get too attached to anyone, I guess.

Of course I was just distracting myself with thinking about all of this. It didn’t take me long to realise I was being a complete arse. I turned on my torch and I’d just walked out the shed door into the night when I heard the screams. Horrible screams coming from the barn – David’s screams of pain and torture. I exclaimed in surprise and dropped my torch, horror starting to overtake surprise as I realised what the sound meant. I started panicking. What do I do? Where do I go? What the hell’s going on here?

Should I go to the barn and try to help him? No, the screams had stopped now. It was too late. I was too late. Dave was dead. And I could hear the growls starting in my direction. I made the most foolish decision of my life: I picked up the torch and ran towards the barn anyway. I had to help him, had to do something. Even if he was dead, I had to kill whatever had killed him before it could kill me, and Maddy... and Emily.

I stopped running as I neared the barn entrance. Fear was stopping me from entering. What would I find in the darkness of the hay barn? What kind of monstrosity could surely have killed David? And where had it come from? Was it a human, or an animal, or something else? All these questions would have to wait – I needed to know. I started fearlessly into the barn and shone the torch around the dark, musty space.

At first I saw nothing, then I heard that growling somewhere to my left and very close. I spun around in the direction and pointed my torch in front of me as if using it as some sort of defence. What was waiting for me wasn’t what I expected. There, standing not three feet in front of me, was the most awful, twisted monstrous thing I’d ever seen. Its mutilated face illuminated by the torch light was expressionless, yet strikingly human in its warped appearance. It growled right in my face.

My eyes took in its blank eyes, its distinctly human ears, its sparse grey hair, its huge gaping hole of a mouth created by the absence of a jaw, and inside its tiny, sharp teeth. I thought that this would be its method of attack, but it didn’t have a jaw, so for a moment I was slightly comforted by the fact that this thing was defenceless. Then I remembered it had killed Dave. I saw the creature pull its left arm back, the long, deadly claws attached to what used to be a hand come forward and rip open my flesh before I even had time to scream.

I fell to the ground and watched as the monster stood over me triumphantly, though its expression didn’t change. I realised it thought I was dead, and I thought I should be, yet my eyes were still open, I was still drawing breath in shallow spurts, I could still feel the cold air and the blood soaking my clothes and pouring over my skin. Either I couldn’t feel the pain from the open wound, or it was so great my mind was blocking it out. How was I still alive?

My eyes saw the sky pass as the thing dragged me across the ground back the way I’d come, but nothing registered. Eventually, I felt the concrete under me as the monster dragged me back into the shed and threw me against the wall, half-hidden behind a shelf. Then, it turned and went back to the barn, probably to retrieve David’s body and dump him here with me.

Time passed, and eventually I heard sounds coming from outside. The shed door opened and I saw the thing shuffle into the shed. Only it wasn’t the thing, I realised a moment too late, as the dark eyes and soft face peered into the black. Emily! I wanted to do something to make her realise I was here, but I had no control over my limbs now. I was trapped in my own mind as my body slowly died.

As it turned out, it wasn’t necessary anyway, because Emily found me all on her own. She tripped over my foot on her way in the shed. I saw her eyes bulge in horror as she stared at my shoe, dotted with my blood, then she turned away and dry-retched. The sound was awful, and yet comforting to me – at least she was still alive. Maybe Emily could survive this, if no one else. She was smart, she could make it out and call for help. That was all I wanted now.

She didn’t look in my direction again; instead, her eyes focused on the floor near my feet. I followed her gaze and realised that a thick trail of blood had been left behind by my body being dragged from the barn. I watched her then, as she went about whatever she was doing with the fuse box. I figured she had some plan up her sleeve.

Her head turned as she heard the growl at the same time I did. The monster was making its way back towards the shed. Emily crouched low in the darkness with her back to the door. I prayed that the monster wouldn’t see her so she could get out of here and live. The monster came straight over to me, looked like it had decided to move me. The last thing I saw was Emily’s back, her beautiful brown hair flowing down it, as the monster dragged me from the room. Then my eyes, at last, closed forever, satisfied at their last sight.

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