Kurzgeschichte: The Smoke
Eight friends were going on holiday together. They were living in a woodhouse, next to a very big forest, for one week. They did many activities together, for example swimming in the ocean, visiting a museum and more. Katy, Luna, Stacy and Marie were sleeping in one room together. Luke, Max, Leon and Bob, too. Bob was wealthy, so he paid for the vacation.
One evening, at 11 pm, Leon said: “I have a great idea. We can do a walk at night. What do you think?“ The boys were shouting very excitedly, but the girls looked very apprehensive. "Come on, girls. That’s an excellent idea. We are protecting you!“, said Bob. The girls weren’t sure, if was a good idea, but they agreed. Leon asked: “Who is going to seek the flashlight? I'm not going to!“ Stacy said: "You are so indolent! I can do that.“ Five minutes later she was coming back with eight flashlights. She was the kindest of them, so she did it willingly. The walk at night could begin! “But before we start, we have to eat something. I’m so hungry”, said Max. He ate a slice of bred with chocolate crème. Now the friends could go. “That was tasty”, he said.
Luke was the first in line, Leon at the end. It was very dark, so the eight teenagers went close to each other. The trees rattled deafeningly in the wind and an owl cawed. Katy was terrified and it didn’t help that Bob scared everyone with his innovative ideas. Nobody said a word for a while. Suddenly they heard rustling coming from a bush next to them. They all were fearful. Luke shouted: “Bob, if this is another one of your jokes, don’t do it! It’s not funny.” But Bob was standing right next to him. Who on earth was it then? But then a person came to them.
At first everyone went a few feet back, but then they realized that it was just the forester the eight had met a few days ago. He asked: “What the hell are you doing in the forest at this hour? It’s dangerous here!“ The teenagers had not recovered from the horror. Marie was too timid anyway, so Leon answered: “A walk at night. The forest looks so different at night than it does during the day. We found it fascinating and wanted to explore more.” "Sounds like a perilous idea. You’d better go back to your hut. There are dangerous animals roaming around here at night“, replied the forester. “Nothing will happen to us!“ “Let’s hope so. But don’t say I didn’t warn you“. With that he turned around and stalked away.
Luna asked confused: “What was he actually doing here?“ “I don’t know. It doesn’t matter now. Let’s move on“, Luke said. Stacy asked, intimidated: “Shouldn’t we better return?“ “Especially not now!“ They walked in silence. Then Luke suddenly stopped. Marie asked: “What’s wrong?“ He replied: “Do you see this glow?“ “Yes, it’s pretty bright.” Step-by-step everyone saw the light. Bob asked: “Do we want to go there? I mean, whatever it is, it’s definitely precious when it’s so luminous.” “You mean a treasure?“, asked Luna eagerly. "That could be.“ So the friends decided to go to this light and find out what it was. Once there, everyone stopped dead in their tracks.
What they saw wasn’t a treasure, but a hill with a bunker built into it. It was immaculate around the hill, almost as if someone cleaned up here every day. The place was spacious. However, it wasn’t vibrant and pungent. Leon asked: “Why have we only seen this one bunker so far? There are almost always more than one in one place. But what surprises me even more is why it glows.” “Let’s ask Marie. One of the reasons we cherished her is because she is so intelligent.“ Luna suggested. “Good idea, but where is Marie?“ Everyone looked around frantically, but they couldn’t see her. Then everyone fell silent.
Bob asked silently: “Did you hear that, too?“ “Yes, first a kind of chainsaw and then a villainous laugh.” An ice-cold shiver ran down the teenagers’ spines. What the hell was that and where was Marie?
Then they suddenly heard her scream. It was a horrible scream that made their blood run cold. She screamed again. Louder this time and for help. Then Leon walked towards the bunker. He was brave and unyielding. “What are you doing?“ asked Stacy, horrified. But the question clarified itself. He shook the door, but expected it was tightly locked. Then the friends heard the villainous laughter again. The chainsaw whined, Marie screamed again, then everything was silent. The seven of them stared at each other with their eyes wide open.
“How did Marie get into the bunker when the door is locked? And who was laughing?“ Luna breathed in fear. Luke said: “I don’t know, but whoever it was, he got her…” He didn’t have to finish the sentence because everyone was aware of what he was going to say. Suddenly the bunker door swung open. Startled, Leon took a few steps back, but there was no one behind the open door. All they saw was thick smoke.
Leon walked carefully towards the bunker again. Then he looked back again and said: “We should go in. Whatever killed her shouldn’t be around here anymore!“ With that he turned around again and disappeared into the smoke. The other six teenagers followed him. It was freezing in there and first they couldn’t see anything, but gradually their eyes got used to the darkness. The smoke slowly cleared. Even though they had all known it, it was still a shock to see her dead on the floor. Her gaunt body, the pale, neat skin and spotless clothes were now bloodied and lifeless. She had been so lovely and adorable. Luna and Stacy began to sob. “That can’t be true, please don’t!“, Katy sniffed. Max comforted the girls and said firmly: “No matter who or what that was, we urgently have to find it and avenge Marie!”
Leon suggested that they split up. They did that. However, Max objected, distressed: “I’ve frequently read horror stories and it’s always an idiotic idea to split up.” “Oh what! Nothing will happen!“ Bob replied. Nevertheless, everyone was still distraught by the event, so no one went alone. Stacy, Luna, Max and Luke went in a group, Bob, Luna and Katy, too. Unfortunately, they only had their flashlights to defend themselves, although one flashlight had already given up. But they knew all too well that they had little chance against the murderer with a chainsaw. The two groups set off.
At first, there was a brief corridor, but then the corridor ended and it continued left and right. Luke’s group went right. After walking for some time, Luke’s group heard a gunshot. The four teenagers quickly stopped. Then they heard footsteps. They wanted to run, but by then it was already too late. Directly in front of them stood a tiny boy with a gun in his hand. He had his hood pulled low over his face so that it couldn’t be seen. The boy took another step closer, then loaded the gun and aimed it at the friends.
In the meantime, the group of three had been traveling for some time without incident. “Why didn’t we take anything with us to communicate with the others?”, asked Leon. Bob replied: “Because we couldn’t have known that we would split up. “Hopefully, they’re doing well!“ Exactly then, they heard gunshots. “Damn! I hope no one was hurt!“, Katy said. The situation didn’t look ecstatic for the four friends. The boy stood there for a moment with his weapon raised, then he disappeared and only smoke could be seen in his place. “Where did he go?“, asked Luna. „He turned to smoke. Better not come near it!“ “Guys! Max is dead. Are you just concerned about the smoke?“ “Oh no, Max!” Luna stammered desperately: “Not Max, too!“ They all began to realize the danger they had put themselves in. Suddenly, the three stopped because the smoke had disappeared.
At the same time, Katy, Bob and Leon followed their path, without knowing that things were about to get very difficult for them, too. Bob asked quietly: “Do you happen to know why it’s so slippery here? The whole path has been parched and sleek so far.“ “How are we supposed to know?“ But the question clarified itself. Because as they went around the next corner, there was a strange pile of slime. It was cute at the same time, but also incredibly hideous. The slime was just there, not moving, but the scariest thing was: It was smiling at them. The teenagers looked at each other helplessly. Leon boldly took a step towards the strange creature. A big mistake, because the slime literally sucked him into itself. A muffled scream from inside the monster, then Leon fell silent. He was lost to death, too. The two remaining members of the group backed away in shock, turned around and ran as fast as they could, just so they wouldn’t have to endure the sight of this spectacle anymore. Then Luna turned around again and saw the slime turned into smoke.
She quickly told Bob what she had seen, then the two of them started running again out of fear. Return to the bunker entrance. But they did the math without the smoke. It whirled past them and formed a thick layer of smoke in front of them, making it impossible for them to see, let alone get through. To their horror, the smoke transformed into a hideous creature. Not the slime again, but a huge, obese vampire. He flew slowly towards the teenagers, then he made a sudden movement with his hand and thick stones fell to the ground behind them. The way back was blocked. The monster was now hovering just in front of them. It leaned towards Katy, but turned to Bob with a grimace. Katy didn’t understand anything first, but then she realized: Last night she had eaten rolls with garlic dip. No wonder the vampire left her alone. But Bob doesn’t like garlic, so he wasn’t safe. She looked at him guiltily, but she saw that he had already expected that he would die. He gave her a weak nod, one last smile, then the vampire bit. Bob’s lifeless body fell onto the floor and she would have liked to throw herself on the floor and stay there, but she had to take her chance and run away as long as the vampire doesn’t transform again. Then the vampire turned around and looked straight into her eyes. Blood was still dripping down his mouth. Katy just turned around and ran for her life.
At the same time, Luna, Stacy and Luke were on their way back because they knew that something had happened to the others too. They had heard the scream. But the friends didn’t get far, because suddenly a girl appeared in front of them out of nowhere. You could tell straight away that it wasn’t a normal child. Her eyes were milky white and she was wearing a long nightgown, which was also white. She looked sad, but the friends didn’t let that fool them. They were just about to run when the girl raised her hand and stared at Stacy. Then she clasped her neck. She didn’t seem to be able to breathe anymore. Luna and Luke rushed to her friend to help her, but she collapsed lifelessly to the ground. Luna knelt next to Stacy while Luke stood there, uncertain. The girl had disappeared, but there was no smoke to be seen anywhere. Then Luke saw, what Luna hadn’t yet noticed.
A clown approached her from behind. He had never seen such a devilish creature! His scary face and bloody costume told him that this clown wasn’t trying to make anyone laugh. Although he walked slowly, even that was too fast for Luke. He whispered: “Luna, come quickly. We have to move on. It’s not a brilliant idea to sit there. Now the smoke has become a clown. Please come!“ But he noticed her look. Luna’s face was covered in tears. She didn’t have to say anything because he already knew what she wanted to tell him. He looked at her sadly, but nodded. Luke knew that Luna and Stacy had been best friends and had vowed to leave the earth together. Luna always kept her promise, including this time. She called out to him: “Run!“ Then the clown was there and killed her. His red balloon continued to float in the air as a warning sign for a while, even after the clown had dissolved it.
Luke hoped he wasn’t the only survivor with the exit in sight. Suddenly he heard a gasp behind him. He stopped and turned around. Then he saw Katy running towards him. She shouted: “Keep running! He’s coming!“ They did that until they were at the exit and even further through the forest. Luckily, the two of them managed the route without stopping because they were enduring. When they got to their hut, they stopped. Nobody said anything for a long time. Then Luke said: “We can be overjoyed that we didn’t die too!” “However!“ Then they both started to cry, it was just too much. The two friends locked themselves in the hut and called the police. There was nothing more they could do. They lay awake for a long time, but the two friends were so exhausted, until they finally fell into a restless sleep.
The next day the two decided to leave because this experience had clearly spoiled their desire for vacation. But as a souvenir they took the latest newspaper with them, in which all the articles about the legend of this monster, also called “The Smoke”, were included. Since Luke and Katy had agreed, their own descriptions were also featured in the newspaper. It was necessary to warn the people. Many people believed in the legend and stayed away from the forest.
But some wanted to see for themselves whether the monster existed…