Pearl Fratti, Murwillumbah Public School
It was a chilly, chaotic Saturday morning when I woke up sprawled across my bedroom floor. It was nice and frigid, sharp and – wait a minute my bedroom floor was less comfortable. It was tepid, moderate and unlively. Instantly I opened my intense, brown eyes. I cautiously scanned my surroundings for threats. I couldn’t see any in sight which I found very suspicious. I started to stand up when I heard a blood–curdling scream. It was nearby. I bolted towards the dreadful scream but as abruptly as it started it ended. Suddenly a matron appeared out of nowhere, covered in shredded hags. She whispered two simple words, with pain in her voice “Help me.”
Before I could do anything, she disappeared, irately and mutedly, into thin air. I cursed out of anger. My only way to know where I was - gone - vanished into thin air. She also needed help, since she didn’t tell me anything, it would probably be too late for me to help her.
Only after that did I take in my ambience. Not for threats but of the stunning scenery. Even though it was truly beautiful, it was in its own type of way… ghoulish. The trees had claw marks all over them. Some were cleaved from the earth. The forest floor in some patches had vivid, green grass glowing with health, others looked dead. The canopy of trees blocked all light from view, leaving it hard to see a thing. Littered on the ground were animal and human bones hacked almost completely clean of now rotting flesh. The smell from the decaying meat could bring tears to your eyes. And worst of all, the blare that echoed through the woods. It made a thundering sound which was horrible enough to make a grown man cry. And yet, it sounded as if the wind was warning you, whispering and moaning at you to turn back.
After all of this I thought to myself ‘Well, this should be interesting.’ I know this wouldn’t be many people’s reaction, but that's just me.
Then I realised I needed to adopt a new plan. Where was I going to go? What was I going to do? I didn’t have to wait long for my brain to respond. I had to hunt the thing that was killing this forest and the animals. That’s where she would be. And by doing exactly that, I had to follow the bones.
Abruptly, the breeze adjusted and the wift of the deteriorating smell got even more aggressive from what it already was. The gust of wind kept getting more and more forceful and was pulling me into a cave I didn’t set eyes upon earlier. As I studied the cave I reluctantly noticed that the stalagmites and stalactites looked disturbingly like ragged teeth. As I looked closer still I saw noxious globs of meat covering the rocks. I realised that the cavern was alive. And I was just in time for dinner.