By pure luck, I am still alive. Why this beast didn’t kill me when it had me, I don’t know.
Last night I went outside for a short walk down the driveway. It was full dark, well into the night, but I wanted a bit of air before bed. Judith was reading, and said she would wait for me. I took the big flashlight and went down the gravel lane, along the tall hemlocks. The night smelled of pinesap and wet stone.
Just enough ambient light showed the contour of the driveway, and I walked along with the flashlight off. I hadn’t gone far when I heard an odd sound, a kind of throaty sigh. It set me on edge. I waited and listened, and after hearing nothing else I turned and walked toward the house. Then I heard a sound behind me, to my right, and I shined the flashlight there. A great black streak flew across the driveway, just outside the beam of light, and some kind of creature shrieked at me as if with hatred.
I scampered sideways as I tried to get the flashlight on the animal. I didn’t want to run and trigger an attack response, but I gained momentum with every step. Scampering for the door, I heard the big cat running, and I looked back.
Its dark mouth opened as it came for me, its long canines bright. I held up my arm to block the animal, and it sank its teeth into my forearm as it collided with me and knocked me onto the porch. Its claws dug into my shoulders and it held me down on the boards, shaking its head, almost breaking my arm. I flailed and screamed, and kicked with my feet. I smashed it in the head with the flashlight, and then put the bright beam right into its eye.
The cat let go of me and flew away with a scream. It moved more like a huge flying snake than any cat.
I lay in shock for several minutes, flailing feebly with my legs and arms, unable to stop my fight reaction. My chamois shirt was stained with blood. The moaning sound I made was pathetic, babyish.
When Judith finally turned on the light and opened the door, and saw me bloody and squirming on the porch floor, she shrieked and ran back into the house.
I got to my feet and staggered down to her bedroom. I heard her in there, making a terrible, pained sound. I told her I was all right, and that she shouldn’t worry. She made no reply.
# # #[In honor of Halloween, Scott Bowen Creative will be running excerpts from the recently completed collection, Horror 12: Stories of Terror & Possession. A previously published story appears here, at HorrorZine.com.]