Sweet But Psycho
Phoebe was always a weird kid and always had trouble making (or keeping) friends, even during high school. At age five she began talking to others no one believed existed except her, by age ten she was obsessed with ghosts and the supernatural; mostly vampires. Phoebe's parents started to worry eventually, but she soon learned not to talk to people about certain things. Once she realized the strange occurrences happening around her wasn't happening to everyone else Phoebe became a lone wolf, or at least she kept her mouth shut when it came to anything paranormal. Ever since she was a child Phoebe knew something about her, perhaps her energy, attracted all types of characters to come up to her randomly. Half of them are human, but more often than not - monsters. She's faced creatures of all kinds since she was little. The only thing that scares Phoebe, other than heights or bugs, is the fate of humanity. Her best friend Gregory couldn't even scare her when they first met.
I Remember You
Phoebe was having trouble sleeping with the weather. The storm howled outside and made the branches of the tree beside her window tap against the glass furiously, as if someone were outside of it screaming to get in.
Something is after me.
She could sense danger. The air was thick with it, making her feel suffocated and hot. She kicked the covers off her legs and listened to the sounds of the old house.
Her grandmother's house.
Far from everyone and everything she's ever known.
But Phoebe was used to her grandma and her unusual personality.
The kids at school with their thick accents and judgmental stares. She didn't like being the only one in this small town with a southern lilt. Phoebe still hadn't made any new friends at her school and Jen wasn't hanging around like she used to. She knew something was bothering Jenny, but never commented on her sour mood or asked her what the problem was.
Phoebe wanted them to be happy, even if they were alone together.
It's been a whole day since she last spoke with Jen and thinking of her now on this frightening night, Phoebe sat up in her bed and glanced around the room.
"Jen? Are you still here?"
All she got was a stinging silence.
Was Jen mad at her for the move?
Her room wasn't completely pitch black, but the Hello Kitty night-light beside her nightstand table and the moonlight filtering in through the curtains over her bay windows gave little comfort. So Phoebe climbed out of her bed and padded out of the room down the hall, peaking in on her grandmother to make sure she was still sleeping peacefully.
Then she crept downstairs to the living room and turned on the TV until the storm calmed down.
Phoebe was wide awake at that point though and once again wondered where Jen went off to. She had asked once where Jen disappeared to for days on time, but Jenny simply told her that she was exploring Scotland. It was weird not having Jen attached to her side.
She missed Jen.
Since the storm slacked off and she no longer heard the wind howling like some terrifying creature, lying in wait to slide out from under her bed.
To take her.
Drag her across the floor.
Swallow her whole or quite possibly, drag her so far into the darkness that she became the darkness.
Phoebe was used to seeing things, sometimes they were scary.
Other times she was too in-tune with their energy to even be scared.
She hurried back upstairs once she cut off the TV, prepared to throw herself under her covers and try to get a decent four-hour sleep.
Her grandmother would be up early, 7am on the dot, and cooking breakfast while also expecting to see her downstairs fully dressed.
Ready to start the day.
It was exhausting.
Phoebe poked her head inside her room and groaned, "I was just about to go back to bed."
"Well, sorry, I had to recharge this afternoon and didn't know when I would be coming back to the land of the living."
Jen had a big grin on her face, which meant trouble. She wanted something or to show Phoebe something.
"Do I have to put on shoes? I already know you want something, Jenny."
The little girl was extraordinary. She looked so young, but was actually very smart. From years of hanging around Phoebe, she liked to say.
"Yes and a coat. Pants, too. It looks chilly out there tonight. You have to come see what I found though."
"It can't wait until tomorrow? I may be wide awake, but I'd rather be in my bed trying to go back to sleep than lose more sleep."
"You'll make a pretty zombie tomorrow."
"A very cranky, pretty zombie."
What could be so important?
. o . o . o .
Jen was right. It was freezing out here practically. Five minutes walking behind Jenny in the dark, constantly looking over her shoulder, her fingers felt like icicles and she was starting to lose the feeling in her nose. Phoebe had dressed warm, put on a pair of fleece Scooby Doo pants and furry winter boots. She was already sleeping in a long sleeve shirt when she decided to sneak out of bed to watch TV, but added another layer and had on a denim coat.
The cold was still seeping through the fabric though.
"How much longer, Jen? I'm turning into a popsicle."
The little girl looked back at Phoebe with a toothy smile, skipping as she walked. "We're almost there. I've been running around in the forest behind grandmother's house all day. I found some interesting stuff. But the best part is close to our backyard!" She promised Phoebe it was amazing.
Another five minutes passed before they reached a sturdy looking tree, coming to a stop at a little clearing. Small enough for a gathering of close friends.
It's thick limbs held a tree-house, long since abandoned. There was a light coming from inside the worn down structure though. It was a dim light and it should have been comforting, but it was nothing compared to the light inside her bedroom. Where Phoebe felt safe.
She didn't feel so safe now.
"I don't think we should go up there, Jenny.. That light. Someone could be in there sleeping."
Jenny shook her head and began to float off the ground towards the open door of the tree-house, "Nah! I was here earlier. I put a battery-powered lamp in the window. Which I may or may not have borrowed from our grandma. I will get her a new one, promise."
The missing lantern.
Her grandmother had asked a few days ago where her lantern was and Phoebe had no answer for her.
Now she knew.
Jen turned her back on Phoebe when she reached the platform jutting out from the doorway entrance, waiting on Phoebe to finish climbing the rope ladder. She was taking her time, careful not to slip and break her neck. What Jenny saw made her gasp and Phoebe pause, both of them looking up.
One of them surprised.
The other nervous.
"What's wrong, Jenny?"
Fear, a tiny bit, crept into her heart making it speed up.
"There's a bat in here! He wasn't here earlier and he shouldn't be here. In the light."
A flash of it blinded them both for a brief moment.
Too bright to come from the lantern.
Then a face, angry and snarling, burst through Jen like he didn't see her there. Or he didn't pay attention to her.
The face of a teenage boy, but not quite. Blonde curls, brown eyes.
Two of them, sharp and glistening with drool.
Staring right at her.
Just as the boy, not really a boy, lunged to attack Phoebe let go of the ladder. He would have fallen atop of her if she hadn't landed perfectly on her feet.
Would have wrapped his hands around her neck, pulled her to him and took her life in one swift movement, if she hadn't bolted.
Something is coming after me.
Aiden had been on the hunt for food when one of the hunters Rookery used to associate with caught him in their truck beams, so he flew off and found the tree-house to stay in until it was safe to come out. He never expected his prey to come to him, but wasn't going to let her get away from him that easily. "I will find you!"
Don't look back.
The back door is still unlocked, not far from where she was. But all the trees had started looking the same.
The path she was running, the same.
Was she going in circles?
It didn't matter, she thought to herself.
Just find a way out of these woods.
The wind whistled now, an eerie song added to the melody of her heart beating wildly in her chest and her boots thudding furiously in wet mud. She was terrified, but she wasn't going to stop even as her lungs began to feel like they would burst. Jen couldn't save her.
Phoebe had to save herself and find her way back home.
"I'll find you!"
"I smell you!"
"I can hear you!"