Secrets in the Shadows: Chapter Three

Haeley Gibbs

Sweat dripped off my face. Everyone else looked tired too. Michael was way ahead, skipping merrily. “How much farther?” Katie managed to ask. He stopped hesitantly. “Um, not too far now.” he assured us. Something was off about him though. Isabella saw it too.

“Well, can we take a break here?” Isabella questioned. He turned around and nodded. He knew we heard the hesitance in his voice. He went ahead to make sure we were going the right way while we sat on a log. “Olivia, how can you trust him?” Katie demanded. I shrugged.

“He seemed forgiving at the time.” I explained to them. We changed the subject as Michael made his way to the log. “Are y’all ready, or should we stay here for the night?” An idea struck me. Before Isabella could respond, I said, “Of course! We can continue the journey in the morning.” I faked a yawn. “I am getting awfully tired anyways.” Katie said.

I winked at them. As the sun went down, and the moon got higher in the sky, we went back and forth collecting twigs for a fire. Michael made the fire while we warmed up. I soon realized the nights were colder in the woods. Michael went to bed early, although he was the most energized of us all.

We crept past his body, trying to keep quiet. Once the fire was out of sight, we ran fast. None of us said a word until we got to a very familiar river. “I was actually tired, but I’m sleeping here.” Katie said, panting. I shrugged and smiled. We had managed to escape, and we were so close to town already!

Isabella was being awfully quiet. “Hey, what’s-” I glanced up when Katie stopped her question. Isabella wasn’t in sight. “Where could she be? She’s faster than both of us.” I told Katie. Of course, she didn’t know either. Not a single sound could be heard, other than the crickets chirping on the other side of the river.

A big rush of wind almost knocked me off my feet. I caught Katie, who was too weak to stand her ground. Once we were standing straight again, I looked at what had caused the big commotion. Michael was standing straight and tall, glaring at the ground covered in leaves.

He wasn’t happy. “What did you do with Isabella?” Katie suddenly bursted out. I grabbed her arm quickly before he got any ideas. “I thought you knew. She fell a little ways back and twisted her ankle. I didn’t want to let her suffer.” His grin stretched from ear to ear. His voice seemed overjoyed.

His head lurched back. Was he.. laughing? After his fit of laughter, his eyes caught mine with a mischievous glint. “Why did you leave me?” He asked sinisterly. I was too distracted by the blood lining his upper lip. “You ate her, you monster!” Katie screamed.

I was worried for her. He seemed to be growing hungrier by her outbursts! I pulled her back behind me, locking my eyes on his. He saw the anger mixed with fear in my eyes. He seemed to be staring into my soul. His smile slowly faded, and he looked away. “I don’t understand. I thought you trusted me.” I shook my head.

“You were going to kill us once we let our guard down!” I scolded him. A tear trickled down to his chin. “Fine. You shouldn’t trust a vampire anyways.” he mumbled. I pushed Katie closer to the edge of the river. “What are you doing?” she whisper-shouted.

Soon, her legs were plunged halfway in the cold water. Her teeth were chattering, but I didn’t think about it. “This river runs all the way to the edge of town. It crosses behind your house.” I told her. I could see the look in her eyes. “I’m sorry.” Then, I pushed her completely into the water, only her head peeking over the surface.