The End

The End

A Story by Taylor0401
"

I had a "writing challenge" for a creative writing class where we had to choose three prompts from a list to make a 5-10 page short story. This is what I wrote.

"

Oliver, tears running down his face, ran frantically after his father.  “Dad!  Don’t leave!” he sobbed.  The tall man didn’t even look back as he made for the front door.  The sound of crying echoed down the hallway from the kitchen they had just left.  In a desperate effort to make him stay, Oliver pulled as hard as he could on his dad’s thick leather coat.  It was no use.  The jacket was ripped from his hands without a second thought, and the door slammed in his face.

A mixture of shock and terror rose to a boil inside of Oliver.  He forced himself to the window just in time to see the white 2004 Jetta tear out of the driveway; its tires squealing as it sped off down the street.  Several other sets of eyes could be seen peering out from boarded up windows in the neighboring houses.  The tears stopped as he stared.  The betrayal and sadness he felt leaked slowly down into a deeper part of him.  He couldn’t feel them anymore, but he knew they were there.  

Back down the hall to the kitchen, he didn’t make a sound.  Just staring ahead, unsure what to do or feel.  His mother, Ashley, was slumped in a chair at the table with her face buried in her hands.  Her anguished moans sympathized with the loud pattering of rain from outside.  She hadn’t moved since his father had said he was leaving.  Oliver knew he had to do something.  She couldn’t just sit here and die.  They had to do something.

“Mom.  Come on, don’t cry.  We have to take care of each other now.  We’re all that we have.”

She took a deep breath and laid her head on the table.  After a few quiet seconds, she sat up and looked at her son through tear-filled eyes.  “You’re right, Olli.  He only cared about himself, and I should’ve seen that before now.”  She got up and hugged him tight.

The warmth of the hug felt good, and helped him come back to himself somewhat.  He let it last as long as he could before she let go.  “We have to get ready, mom.  It’ll be dark in a few hours.  I’m sixteen now, and I can help.  We can board up the doors and windows like the neighbors did.”

She stared at him for a few seconds before speaking, “It’s really happening isn’t it?  They’re coming.”

He nodded.  “Joey and Phil heard that the ground split open out in the desert and they just came pouring out.  Like a great big flood of monsters.  I don’t know if I believe that, but... they had to come from somewhere, right?”

Ashley choked back one last sob, and headed for the living room.  She turned on the TV.  Live feed from a news chopper showed the edge of the city nearly surrounded by a squirming black mass extending as far as the camera could pan.  

“--citizens have opened fire on the creatures several times.  They seem to die after being shot a few times, but there are just too many.  There is no word yet from the President or any branch of the military.  We don’t know why they haven’t responded, but we will be covering the event in its entirety.  If you have any military experience or have been trained in the use of firearms, please make your way to your local police station and offer your assistance.  Everyone else, remain indoors and please do not panic.  Stay tuned for more information.”

Oliver snorted.  “More information.  They don’t have more information.  They don’t have any information.  Nobody knows what these things are or where they came from, but we know they’re not friendly.  And I bet nobody has come to help because they can’t.”  He stopped when he realized what that meant.  We’re alone.  Not just us, but everyone.  We’re all alone with the monsters.

He ran out into the backyard to grab some wood from the workshed.  There was a big stack of 2x4s in there he could use to start barricading the house.  Sliding a hammer into his belt, a box of nails into his pocket, and throwing a load of planks over his shoulder, he headed back inside.  His mother had reverted to the thing she knew best: cleaning.  At least she’s keeping busy.


A couple hours later, the basic defenses were in place.  The house was lit only by candles so as not to draw attention, and every opening to the outside had been sealed up tight.  The only exception was the small window looking out from the attic.  Oliver peered out through the rain.  Everything looked so normal.  Just another rainy day with everyone spending time inside.  Until you looked closer and saw that every house was either open and abandoned, or fortified to defend against the unknown.

He knew there had to be more he could do.  A few pieces of wood weren’t going to save anyone.  Not from what he knew was out there.  He began going through the old cardboard boxes of knick-knacks and memorabilia.  It seemed like there was nothing but old junk, photo albums and baby clothes up here.  Turning to go back downstairs, a box tucked back in the corner caught his eye.  Just a plain black box, probably for holding curtain rods or wrapping paper.  Gotta check everything I suppose.  

The lid to the box stuck at first, but he was able to force it open.  Inside, on a bed of deep velvet, lay a longsword unlike any he had ever seen or read about.  The scabbard was pure ivory, and the gem-encrusted pommel and hilt looked to be made of gold.  Awestruck, he slowly pulled the blade free and held it out before him.  It took both hands to wield, but felt perfectly balanced.  Marvelling at the near-white color of the blade, he gave it a few practice swings.  It felt incredibly natural in his trembling hands.  

Barely able to contain his excitement, he practically flew down the ladder to the second floor.  “Mom!  Mom!  Look what I found in the attic!”

She appeared at the bottom of the stairs, looking scared and nervous.  Her expression turned to confusion when she saw what he held.  “A sword?  How?”

“I don’t know.  It was just sitting in a box.  Who knows how long it’s been hidden up there?!  At least we’ve got something to defend ourselves with now.”

“Olli, don’t be silly.  We don’t know the first thing about swords.  You’ll probably just end up stabbing yourself.”

He just laughed, “I’ve already figured out which end to hold.  How much harder can the rest be?”

She couldn’t deny that having a sword was better than no weapon at all.  “Okay, but only if we absolutely need it.  And no crazy stuff, mister!”

He grinned and set off to double check the fortifications around the house.


Night fell quickly.  The rain’s ceaseless torrent continued in the utter darkness.  Only a few candles were lit now.  They sat watching the news with the sound muted.  The creatures had moved into the city.  They poured like an angry swarm of ants in between the buildings, destroying everything in their path.  Every time they met with resistance, their relentlessness wore down the defenders’ ammunition and willpower until they broke or were killed.  It looked like nothing could stop them.

Without warning, the helicopter turned and left.  It was heading out over the invading mass, probably trying to get somewhere safe.  Anywhere had to be better than here.  Oliver didn’t blame them.  After what he’d just witnessed, his sword didn’t seem so special anymore.  He pulled it out of it’s bone sheath once more.

The blade reflected the candlelight with an almost mirror-like quality.  He was able to make out some faint lettering, but it was in no language he had ever seen.  Where could this thing be from?  Who left it here?  Questions he would probably never have the answers to.  He put them from his mind.

“I’m going upstairs to watch the street.  Yell if you need me.”  He gave his mother a brief hug before heading off.  She just nodded, and stared horrified at the never ending army revealed under the still retreating helicopter.

Out the window he could see light.  A lot of light, but not coming from anywhere he could see.  Flames.  The city must be burning.  The rain would help with that at least.  It did make it harder to see though.  What was that?  Were his eyes playing tricks on him, or did he see something move in the yard?  He waited, but nothing happened.  It must have been his imagination.  Calm down, Oliver.  They’re not here yet.

And then they were.  More numerous than the raindrops, they marched down the street in a wave.  With every house they passed, groups would smash their way inside and return minutes later.  The rain washed the blood off their green skin quickly, but not before Oliver saw it and cringed.  A flash of lightning briefly illuminated the monsters.  

They had gaping mouths with bloodstained teeth, and olive green skin.  Some wore armor, while some wore nothing at all.  Every single one carried weapons.  Wicked black blades that were not made by human hands.  The evil radiated off of the creatures in waves.  terror froze Oliver’s spine as he stared in dumbstruck dread.

The attic got lighter as they grew nearer.  He quickly realized it wasn’t from anything outside.  The fear was gone.  He knew what he had to do.  Lifting the blade, which was now burning with an angry bright blue light, he headed downstairs to defend his home.

© 2013 Taylor0401


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Featured Review

The first sentence is excellent, it caught my attention instantly. I love the way you have constructed it. "The betrayal and sadness he felt leaked slowly down into a deeper part of him." This line is absolutely beautiful. I love your use of language and imagery. You have definitely established a powerfully tragic scene. You have also supported this scene through your ability to conjure such a sombre and melancholy tone. I was really close to shaking my laptop screen and yelling at his father.

"Just staring ahead" This should probably be 'stared ahead' just to maintain the consistency of past tense.

"Live feed from a news chopper" I think this sentence needs to start with "A live feed", or "The live feed"

OMGOSH, so I'm reviewing while reading and, literally after reading the news report, I about to start screaming 'ZOMBIES!'. Come on, let it be zombies! Man, I really was not expecting the story to turn like this (zombie pun intended). I was thinking, classic father leaving moment, but wow, this is excellent!

And great addition to the tension by having Oliver stumble upon a sword. Okay, so not zombies, but still thoroughly entertaining and highly original. Bright blue light? Is this sword similar to the one in LOTR? If so, yay!

"terror froze Oliver’s spine" The biginning of this sentence just needs a capital letter.

Anyway, a very fun read! I love the dramatic tone and the really unpredictable storyline. The only criticism I have is that this is a one-shot. Not cool, man! I 'm dying to know what happens next!! Argh, great work :)

Posted 10 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Taylor0401

10 Years Ago

Haha thanks for the great review! I can't believe I missed capitalizing the beginning of a sentence.. read more
Jane P.

10 Years Ago

Exactly! Okay, well I'm now officially imagining Gandalf riding in a saving the day, or something, b.. read more



Reviews

The first sentence is excellent, it caught my attention instantly. I love the way you have constructed it. "The betrayal and sadness he felt leaked slowly down into a deeper part of him." This line is absolutely beautiful. I love your use of language and imagery. You have definitely established a powerfully tragic scene. You have also supported this scene through your ability to conjure such a sombre and melancholy tone. I was really close to shaking my laptop screen and yelling at his father.

"Just staring ahead" This should probably be 'stared ahead' just to maintain the consistency of past tense.

"Live feed from a news chopper" I think this sentence needs to start with "A live feed", or "The live feed"

OMGOSH, so I'm reviewing while reading and, literally after reading the news report, I about to start screaming 'ZOMBIES!'. Come on, let it be zombies! Man, I really was not expecting the story to turn like this (zombie pun intended). I was thinking, classic father leaving moment, but wow, this is excellent!

And great addition to the tension by having Oliver stumble upon a sword. Okay, so not zombies, but still thoroughly entertaining and highly original. Bright blue light? Is this sword similar to the one in LOTR? If so, yay!

"terror froze Oliver’s spine" The biginning of this sentence just needs a capital letter.

Anyway, a very fun read! I love the dramatic tone and the really unpredictable storyline. The only criticism I have is that this is a one-shot. Not cool, man! I 'm dying to know what happens next!! Argh, great work :)

Posted 10 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Taylor0401

10 Years Ago

Haha thanks for the great review! I can't believe I missed capitalizing the beginning of a sentence.. read more
Jane P.

10 Years Ago

Exactly! Okay, well I'm now officially imagining Gandalf riding in a saving the day, or something, b.. read more

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Added on July 5, 2013
Last Updated on July 5, 2013

Author

Taylor0401
Taylor0401

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About
I've loved writing ever since I was a kid. I haven't had time for it in years, but now I'm making it a regular part of my life and hopefully it will eventually go somewhere. I'd love to publish a no.. more..

Writing
Prologue Prologue

A Chapter by Taylor0401


Chapter 1 Chapter 1

A Chapter by Taylor0401


Chapter 2 Chapter 2

A Chapter by Taylor0401