By: Amanda P. X. Sim
Have you ever heard a wolf howl? The sound chills me to the bone, and yet, I seem to hear it more often than I wish to. It is a deadly reminder of a tragedy, the most frightful experience that never was, or will be, forgotten.
It all started with an innocent adventure. I was at camp with a few of my closest friends – Jared, Hayley, Nick and Tyler. It was the way we preferred to spend our holidays after graduation. That was the last time we could spend together in the woods, and we wanted to make it as memorable as possible, before we headed off to college after high school.
We chose a quiet spot in the woods near the river, a water source for our daily needs during our camping trip. Setting up the large tent among the dry soil, we unpacked our belongings for the next two days, looking forward to the adventures ahead. Nick had suggested that we tried cliff-diving this time, since there was a huge waterfall in the woods where we could splash into its cool depths. I simply couldn’t wait.
After collecting firewood and water, we did some exploring of the woods. It wasn’t long before darkness fell and we started the campfire, roasting our dinner. We had brought along sausages, ham, potatoes and marshmallows for the trip; it was a delightful feast. We enjoyed ourselves talking, laughing and making silly jokes around the campfire. “This is the best camping trip ever…”, I thought to myself in pleasure.
Little did I know how very wrong I was. The clock ticked the night away and it was time to hit the sacks. We put out the fire, bid each other goodnight. As we were about to enter the large tent, we heard the sound – a wolf howl. It alerted our minds at once, and our instincts were to grab the flashlights and stand in guard. I inched closer to Jared and gripped his hand in a tightening of panic.
It never occurred to us that wild animals would be roaming in the woods, for we never encountered animals in the daylight. Wolves, at least, came in packs. Five teenagers was no threat to a pack of wolves. I could feel my heart throbbing in my chest, the desire to survive overwhelmed me. Then it came, all of a sudden. We were facing five snarling creatures, ready to attack.
Everything happened in a millisecond. “Run!”, I told myself, and the others did the same. Trees were our only option at that moment. Without thinking my friends tried to haul themselves up the closest branches. I didn’t have time to look back or even yell, a brown wolf pounced on me and I fell to the ground. Time seemed to come to a standstill. The wolf snarled and gazed into my eyes. I knew I was going to die, so I closed my eyes, waiting for death.
After a few moments, nothing happened. My eyes burst open and all I saw was the wolf heading towards another direction. The rest was a total blur. I could only recall the last picture of the incident – a haunting scream from Tyler as the pack dragged him away, until the sound died down to complete silence.
Nick suffered from severe injuries in his calf. He could never play football again. Jared and Hayley were the ones who managed to save themselves in the trees. As for me, I never knew the reasons of the miracle; but I understood the feeling of being on the verge of death.
A wolf howls. I hope it is not another nightmare.
Topic: Short Stories Tags: amanda p. x. sim, ghost story, short stories, slythoween