The shadow...

One day in early October I set out for a walk. The village looked especially dreamy that day with lawns full of fragrant flowers and cozy little cottages all bathed in sunshine. Blossoms carried by autumn breezes fluttered everywhere that morning. Everything I saw and heard spoke to my heart by ways of magic: The feel to the atmosphere, the crispiness lingering in the air, the old stone cottages with their delicate threads of grey and yellow resembling sunshine peeking through storm clouds, the flattering flat-roofed brick houses covered in vines and large red poppies, little children playing and happy women adorned with head kerchiefs and crimpled skirts in many colors...

When I got to the white marble fountain, I decided to sat down and rest awhile. The water in the fountain glimmer and flickered under the morning’s sun and all the water lilies sang enchanted song. I shiver with joy thinking how lovely and peaceful this little village was. Never ever would I want to leave this place!

Already rested, I decided to continue on down the old narrow blue cobblestone path but not before stopping to feed the pigeons. Shooing a limping pigeon back onto the pavement, I amble down one street and then another, until all a sudden I came about a lane running diagonal to the others. Walls of blackened brick frame the lane like iron gates and all the houses and all the little shops seemed old and forgotten, as out of an ancient story book. I stood there, looking about me somewhat puzzled. How did I get here?

Our village had three sides: the sunny village side; the dappled wooded area; and the dark, dark, ravine side which takes you deep into the forest—the scraggy and mysterious forest hardly visited by any one, except those unfortunate souls who lose their way in the woods. And now there I was, standing at the entrance of that tangled maze of a forest; known to be haunted by the strange ghost of a woman.

Nobody knew exactly who she had been, or where she had come from, or if perhaps, she had lived in the village in long lost times. But one thing was certain: Those who had seen her were never to forget her. It was said that she had sad big bright eyes deeply set in their sockets. It almost seemed the whole world was mirroring itself in them...

I always thought that those stories were just made up to frighten the children from going beyond our village, but that afternoon I was about to see something I would never forget.

As I was standing there looking into the dappled wooded area, I thought I heard a rustling of the bushes behind me; towards the shadows that marked the entrance of the woods.

I turned around, and I heard the mysterious rustling again… a twig snapped and I stared into the blackness of the mass of trees, thinking that it was probably just an animal… it was the woods, after all, right? And in the woods you can expect to hear all sorts of mysterious noises… noises in the trees, noises in the bushes and underbrush, like a loud screeching, like the beat of a cricket, but much louder and deeper…

Suddenly, a shadow moved, and I knew right then and there that something had to have caused that shadow. Not a tree, not the wind—there was no wind, and I couldn't think what animal could be that big.

"Wh-who's there?" I called.

A sound... a movement.

I had the nagging feeling someone was watching. The ghost of the strange woman perhaps? A witch, maybe? Indeed, something, or someone, was watching!

Suddenly, a loud screeching was heard… something like a “zarrapastra” spread all over the forest. I felt cold fear running down my spine, before I remembered that ghosts didn't have shadows, did they?

Maybe it was a bird or a bat? Bats make a high pitched squeaking sound like "eek" that can be very creepy… or maybe it was a fox identifying her territory. I once heard that foxes and fisher cats, a ferocious weasel like predator, make the creepiest warning cries. It had to be that, right?

I was mistaken! The same loud screech was heard again, but this time it was more like a voice—a voice that said: “come here”. I turned around, and I heard it again, only this time it sounded like it was coming from the woods. It was certainly a woman's voice, and there, right where I had just heard the voice I saw something else… a bizarre glowing shape standing in the woods. It was too hard to see it very clear, but it had the outline of a human.

The glowing shape stayed there for a few seconds... looking; reading my mind... until finally it disappeared.

What was it? I couldn't tell for sure. Would you have listen? Would you have dared turn around and follow the dark path into the mysterious woods? I certainly wouldn’t.

The next day, I took a few of my friends up to the place where I had seen the strange figure. But there wasn't anything there and my friends all said I was lying. I know that I wasn't, but I really don't know what I saw. Even so, whenever I go for a walk I try not to go near the forest. You'd never know what strange thing would come out of the shadows to hunt you.

1 comment:

VMcreation-fashion-studio-atelier said...

Huge nice photos and these atmosphere here by you....just to staying in your dream land:-)))*

Love,
***Violetta***