Red Moon

September 16, 2010
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For some, living in the middle of the North American woodlands would feel scary. But it was the greatest thing ever for 13 year old Zachery Hatchet. But his dream was about to turn into a horrible nightmare.

Zachery was a nice, young boy who lived with his dad in an isolated cabin located in the middle of the North American Sierra Nevada’s. He was a tall, sturdy young man who took after his father. They both loved the great outdoors, which was obvious as they were tan and muscular from all the time spent outside. In the year 1806, Zachery’s father Mr. Hatchet, decided to move here because he didn’t have enough money to pay for their expensive apartment. “Besides, it is much nicer and prettier here than that old motel” he would say to Zachery once in a while, and it was. There was a meadow not far from where the cabin was, and the forest was plentiful with wildlife. Deer would stroll and investigate the cabin every now and then. Wildflowers surrounded the meadow and would seem to grow taller every minute of the day, and tiny blue birds would chirp happily in the morning sun. Mr. Hatchet didn’t move here just because it was cheaper. He was a zoologist studying the current population of mountain lions in the area.

“I saw one when you were sleeping last night.” he said to Zachery one morning. “Must’ve been after the wild pig I caught yesterday.”

After breakfast, Zachery went to take a walk into the woods. Zachery liked to take strolls into the woods, especially in the mornings. He had walked for ten minutes when he spotted an old man walking in the underbrush. Quickly, Zachery rushed to a nearby bush. The man stopped and looked behind him, then continued on.

“Whew,” said Zachery, “that was a close one.”

Zachery decided to tell his dad immediately, so he took off running toward the direction of the cabin. Little did Zachery know that he was being watched the whole time by a strange figure hiding among the bushes. The unknown figure then disappeared without a trace.

When he reached the cabin, Zachery went into the living room were his dad was.

“There’s someone out there!” he yelled.

Mr. Hatchet looked up. “Gosh Zachery,” said Mr. Hatchet, “keep your voice down. The whole forest is going to hear you.”

Zachery replied. “I’m not kidding, I saw an old man walking in the woods just a few minutes ago.”

“We’re in the middle of the forest, Zachery,” Mr. Hatchet said, “I highly doubt you saw an old person walking in the forest.” The conversation between Zachery and his dad lasted another five minutes until Zachery walked out of the cabin and looked in the forest.

“I know I saw a man walking,” he said to himself. “But I also feel like I’m being watched.” Zachery decided to ignore that he ever saw an old man wandering through the forest that day.

For the rest of the afternoon and evening, he helped Mr. Hatchet collect firewood, set up the laundry, and hunt for their dinner. They had built a fire and had enjoyed the elk they had caught and killed.

“Delicious,” said Zachery. “I haven’t had elk in a long time.”

While they were eating, many nocturnal animals had come out to feast and roam in the night. An owl was hooting just above Zachery and his dad’s head, crickets were heard chirping in the night, and the lightning bugs were like beacons in the darkness.

After dinner was over, they decided to call it a day. When Zachery went to bed, he could not stop thinking about the old man, but his thoughts were interrupted by a distant sound that was coming from outside. It was some sort of animal howling, and the sound was so loud that it was echoing throughout the forest. All the other Animal noises stopped as if they were afraid of something. Zachery heard the bloodcurdling howl once more, but this time it sounded closer.

“Now, how am I supposed to sleep with that noise outside my window!” said Zachery. Frustrated and tired, Zachery tried to go to sleep. He forgot about the howls and fell into a deep slumber.

“Rise and shine!!!”

Zachery woke up to find his dad waiting for him in his bedroom. “Come on sport,” Mr. Hatchet said, “our breakfast won’t catch itself !”

Later that morning, Zachery found himself walking with his dad in the forest, determined to catch something, possibly elk or deer. Each of them had a rifle in his hands. Zachery did not have a good sleep, and it was hard for him to keep up with his dad. Suddenly, Mr. Hatchet stopped in his tracks. Zachery wanted to know what was going on.

“Hey, what gives?” he asked.

Zachery looked in the direction of where his Dad was looking. He gasped. There in front of them lay a deer who had been literally torn apart. One of the deer’s legs was separated from the body and was found 5 feet away from the carcass.

“What could have done this?” Zachery asked his dad.

“I don’t know,” Mr. Hatchet replied, “but whatever it was, it must have been larger than a bear.”

There was a foul odor in the air that almost made both of them gag.

“Why don’t you go on ahead Zachery,” Mr. Hatchet said. “I want to examine this deer.”

Zachery continued on, rifle in hand. He kept a close eye out on the trail. He had walked so far, he could no longer see his dad. Suddenly, Zachery saw smoke above the trees. He followed the smoke and soon came upon a small hut. He then saw a man, the same man he had seen earlier yesterday.

“It’s him,” Zachery whispered to himself. The man seemed to be carving an animal out of wood. Zachery moved closer. The man spun around in surprise and stared at Zachery.

“Who are you” he said deeply.

Zachery didn’t reply. Instead, he stood completely still.

“Why are you here?” the man asked .

This time, Zachery spoke. “I’m Zachery Hatchet, and I live here with my father.”

“You are in grave danger!” the man replied. “We are not alone. He’s out there, waiting and watching.”

“Who?” Zachery asked.

“GHOR!” the man yelled.

Zachery did not know that Ghor was the name of an inhabitant of these woods. The early settlers who had camped here in 1710 had given him the name because of his reputation for killing and devouring people. The native Americans that once lived here worshiped him as the “Uta-demo-so,” a god that was in their religion.

Ghor closely resembled a hybrid of a bear and a wolf. Weighing over 1500 pounds, he had roamed the mountains for centuries, and the tale of his origin is unknown.

Before Zachery could say anything, he heard his dad’s voice, “Hey Zachery, are you there?”

Zachery immediately fled, and the man stared after him.

When he and his father met, they continued hunting and were successful for the rest of the day. Zachery decided to keep the man a secret. Although Zachery was enjoying his time in the woods, he could still not figure out who or what Ghor was.

“Crazy old man.” he said. “Doesn’t know what he’s talking about.”

Later that night, Zachery tried to go to sleep, but for some reason he couldn’t. He got up out of bed and looked out his window. He saw the moon glistening a strange reddish color in the night sky. Suddenly, he turned his attention toward the meadow. He saw a large creature making it’s way towards the cabin. As it got closer, Zachery raced to tell his father, but at that moment he heard a BANG at the door, followed by another BANG! Zachery realized with the last bang that the creature was trying to get in. He reached for his rifle, but at this point the animal had already broken down the door. The animal, Ghor, quickly spotted Zachery. Zachery was able to dodge Ghor’s claw which almost swiped his face. He darted straight into the woods with Ghor pursing him. Zachery couldn’t remember a time he had been so afraid. Zachery was sprinting for his life when suddenly, he felt a sharp pain in his ankle. He had tripped on a root sticking out of the ground, and he fell face-first into the dirt. Ghor jumped into the air and pounced on Zachery, sinking his fangs in Zachery’s back. Zachery screamed while Ghor tore open his back. Suddenly, a loud shot rang out. Ghor let out a shriek of pain, released Zachery, and collapsed on the ground. The only sounds heard by Zachery was the mix of Ghor’s last breath, and Zachery’s groans. Zachery looked up to find his dad carrying his rifle. Mr. Hatchet ran to his son’s aid. Zachery had deep gashes in his back and bruises from him falling. He twisted his ankle and was unable to walk.

Mr. Hatchet picked up his son and carried him back to the cabin. He gently set Zachery, who fell unconscious, on the couch, and went to find his medical kit. Hearing a knock at the door, he opened it and found an old man standing in the middle of the porch. He was carrying a bag of fungi and herbs with a bottle of liquid. The man held the bag out.

“Take this,” he said. “It will help your son heal quicker and stop infection.”

Mr. Hatchet took the bag suspiciously. “How do you know this will heal Zachery?” Mr. Hatchet replied.

The man held up his shirt bearing his chest. In its place was a gash stretching almost half his waist, but it seemed to be fully healed.

“It helped me.” the man said. He then started to slowly walk into the forest and disappeared within the darkness of the woods.

Mr. Hatchet closed the door and rushed to Zachery. He dipped the herbs and fungus into the liquid and smeared it across Zachery’s back. A few mornings after the attack, Zachery was resting on his bed, and he seemed to be feeling better. The old man’s medicine had worked.

“That was an animal that clearly was beyond the study of science.” Mr. Hatchet said to his son.

Zachery thought about how bad the attack from Ghor was and he also thought someone was still watching him besides the old man. He knew the answer already and looked out his window up into the sky.

“Thank you” Zachery whispered. Zachery slowly shut his eyes and fell asleep.

Join the Discussion

This article has 37 comments. Post your own now!

Jo-Z12 said...
Feb. 6, 2012 at 2:39 pm
it was pretty good. but it wasnt very scary, or suspenseful. also the moon thing came out of NOWHERE.
booklover272 said...
Feb. 6, 2012 at 2:36 pm
Good work! Very descriptive, but maybe next time work on your suspence. But overall good job.
assassin said...
Feb. 6, 2012 at 11:35 am
nice story but NOT scary at all. work on the suspense and description.
Sophia S. said...
Feb. 6, 2012 at 11:25 am
This was a cool story. The characters were described well, and the suspense was evident. I just think it it was a bit rushed at the climax, which was only one paragraph... Lengthening it out more would have been good.
BlueWater said...
Feb. 6, 2012 at 10:47 am
Nice! It was very descriptive....
LUVINLYFE4EVR101 said...
Feb. 6, 2012 at 10:43 am
I personally liked it. It was sort of predictable though. Good detail and leading up to the events. Overall, good job!
mariana.ryan said...
Feb. 6, 2012 at 9:46 am
kind of cliche, stereotypical werewolf story. i liked some of the detail, created vivid imagery in my mind.
Abbydermody97 said...
Feb. 6, 2012 at 9:43 am
i thought you had a very good story like with a lot of good descrpition. it made the story line much more intersesting and i enjoyed reading it throughout the whole story.
Marek said...
Dec. 2, 2011 at 4:30 pm

I'm sorry to say that I found it just a tad stereotypical. (seeing all the positive comments, I'm unsure about the reaction to this one) I's like you placed every horror story element into this one. Moving out into the unknown isolation, meeting the ominous stranger, even tripping on a root and thinking all hope is lost until your savior comes. It's just, I'm also unsure if I am the only person who thinks this, but I personally believed it was just.....predictable. 

Sorr... (more »)

CaeCae97 said...
Oct. 19, 2011 at 9:32 pm
Very good storyline, and a wonderful description! Keep up th good work.
Mr.Papa said...
Oct. 8, 2010 at 8:38 pm
This story really took me deep into the mysterious forest and made me wonder who the old man really is.  Fantastic story set up and great ending!
luglymuzzer replied...
Oct. 10, 2010 at 11:41 am
Very good!  Riveting!   B
Mrs. V said...
Oct. 5, 2010 at 3:08 pm
Loved the show details and the suspenseful action!! Great job!!!!
Principal said...
Oct. 5, 2010 at 2:39 pm
Once I started reading this story, I had to continue!  The rich vocabulary grabbed me!
dbarrett said...
Oct. 5, 2010 at 11:46 am

I listen to about 4 audio books per week during my commute.  A lot of those are teen books.  This is one I would love to hear more about.

Keep writing, you've got talent!

Matt_B replied...
Oct. 16, 2010 at 10:48 am
Thanks for the great feedback, working on a sequel right now!
Nana said...
Oct. 5, 2010 at 9:54 am
Loved the ending - you have such a wonderful imagination, never stop writing!  Love you
Ms. J. said...
Oct. 4, 2010 at 11:06 pm
What a great story!
jaybo1200 said...
Oct. 4, 2010 at 10:37 pm
very descript, i was impressed
Jerrij said...
Oct. 4, 2010 at 9:51 pm
Good Job Matt..
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