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Secrets of the Night (continued)
Somewhere in the corner of my mind, I knew I was dreaming. But everything was so vivid! I was in the woods. The trees were blackened, gnarled poles of thick bark. Spindly branches grabbed for the crisp, gray-blue sky and the dead leaves made a blanket of different shades of brown. And every detail looked emphasized by some kind of unnatural, barely visible white light.
I was walking, but to where, I didnt know. My footsteps crunched mutedly over the leaf blanket,my head aimlessly swiveling from one side to the other, searching for something unknown. Everything looked the same as far as I could see. And the weird thing was that there wasnt one sound in these woods, only my strolling. No bird songs, no grasshopper chirps, no soft breeze rattling the branches...Everything was totally still.
A sudden chill tickled my backside, making me freeze in my tracks. Until I felt that, I hadnt particularly noticed that the temperature was also neutral, but the insignificant detail shot out of my mind as I turned slowly around on my heel. Nothing was there. Except trees. Tree after tree after tree.
I raised an eyebrow and took one step forward before turning back around to continue walking. I walked smack-dab into a paralyzing blast of coldness, in a more concentrated form. My jaw parted in shock, I froze where I stood again, and sucked in a deep breath. However, after blinking several times to focus my vision, I saw that I was still alone.
My eyes flicked from side to side, heartbeat accelerating, and hesitantly started forward again. I kept my chin slightly tucked and was hyper alert of my surroundings. Granted, there wasnt much to look at, but still.
"Adrian." The sound was a whisper that ever so slightly touched my ears, like the very tip of a feather brushing softly against skin. It made me stop once more, my brow creasing up in confusion. I waited just a heartbrat before I turned around yet again.
My gaze latched onto the person standing a few yards away from me. It was a boy a bit older than I, dressed completely in black: black shoes, pants, shirt, and jacket. He shone from the same weird light that emphasized every detail of the woods around me, except the white shine was a bit brighter. Feet planted firmly apart and shoulders squared, he sure looked like a spectacle--espcially with that alluring smile on his lips, his head cocked to the side.
"Adrian." He spoke in a whisper, and even though he stood fairly far away from me, I could hear him perfectly. "Why don't you come a little closer?"
Mesmerized, I felt myself doing just that. My skin faintly detected the temperature change from neutral to cold as I neared this mysterious person. His alluring smile grew slightly wider on his attractive face when I finally stopped a couple feet away.
"Hello," he murmured, eyes shifting lower so he could keep eye contact with me because he towered over my frame, "How is it that you came to my domain?"
I didnt realize that I'd been holding my breath until I felt the burning in my lungs. I quickly took a gulp of oxygen--and was surprised at the freezing air that filled my chest. "YOUR domain?"
Amusement entered his friendly eyes. "Yes. My family and I live here, and we rarely receive unexpected guests. Did my father escort you here?"
I threw him a puzzled look. This dream was getting a bit too weird for me. Wake up, I though apprehensively while saying, "Um, you're not exactly making sense. So uh, why dont you let me in on the secret?"
His previously smooth forehead wrinkled slightly in a confused expression. "Secret? What secret do you speak of, exactly?"
"The secret to waking myself up. Do you mind?"
His shoulders shook as he chuckled. "You think I have that secret, do you?" He grinned gloriously and shook his head. "You think you will be able to wake. How can you be so sure?"
The small smile that'd been forming on my lips slipped from my face at his words. I felt my eyebrows lower a few centimeters as I continued to stare at him. I finally began to wonder who the heck this guy was, which was followed by a trickle of realization: something was definitely wrong here.
Like a reflex, my foot shot backwards and I made an attempt to move away from him. His grin instantly dropped to a frown, his brow lowering over his once-friendly eyes. Any speck of approachable persona he'd had melted away in a split second, revealing a blood-chilling mask that made my heart shoot up my throat. I watched as his eyes suddenly darkened to a pitch black and--were they literally FLAMING?
My mouth fell open in fear and I gave up the original plan of being subtle--I swirled around and ran full speed in the opposite direction of that piece of work. Even with my heart pumping and my blood flowing, I though I should feel a little less warmer than I did--it suddenly felt like I was running in a gigantic oven turned up to its highest degree. My skin began to burn, yet there was no flame, and I felt perpiration beading on my forehead. My nose picked up the acrid scent of smoke, but there was none to be seen. There wasnt a fire anywhere, not one spark, but I FELT it! A scream of panicky terror threatened to rip from my throat.
Something raked across my back, stinging so harshly that I stumbled, practically falling to my knees, but I regained my balance and kept running. I didnt want to look behind me and see his face an inch from mine, those horrid, flaming black eyes borning into my own.
The same something rammed into my side, barreling me off my original track and causing my ribs to ache. Panting even heavier, sweating profusely, and more terrified than ever, I pushed myself to run faster. Unfortunately, impossibly, my other side was slammed, but I didnt even catch a glimpse of my attacker. it was only in the space of a few seconds when I got hit in the back of the knees, sending my sprawling face first onto the leafy ground.
"Where are you going, Adrian?" his whispery voice sounded alarmingly close by my ear, his freezing breath slithering over the nape of my neck, "You are not leaving so soon?"
Fighting against frightened gasps, I flipped over on my back and crawled rearwards for a few feet, eyes wide. The guy stood with his legs planted far apart, chin lowered so that his eyebrows cast a dark shadow over his flaming evil eyes. The malicious smile on his face was a terrifying mockery of the first I'd seen.
"Do not waste your energy, Dreamer. You are perfect." He leaned down towards me, his hand stretching out to grab me. "You will like your new life, I promise. You will be completely free."
The proximity of his fingertips, somehow only inches away from my arm, expelled frost-like temperatures onto my skin. A scream boiled up in my chest, threatening to explode, as our skins made contact. Painful shards of coldness stabbed through my limb, making my mouth wrench open wide in a gasp. He yanked me to my feet, my arm already numb, and forced me to stare into those black eyes of his. Midnight flames licked out of the sockets, brushing against his hooded brow and the surrounding pale skin. His lips parted, the opening rapidly widening into an impossibly large yawn. When his jaw could no longer contain the gaping hole, it popped out of place, causing his chin to drop several inches--utterly blood-curdling and unnatural. All I could see was that endless black abyss.
"You are MINE!" he screamed, deathly cold breath streaming over my face. The scream that'd been building in my chest ripped free from my throat and joined the extrimities of his scream, my echoes several octaves higher. Then his head lunged forward with his mouth gaped wide. The blackness raced towards my face and in the next moment, I was swallowed in the dark abyss.