A Story by mark slade


 I have a ways to go and at every corner of the hedge, there is  new beginning.
I came to visit my Uncle Nave at his brilliant residence, Hobart Manor. When I arrived, the four story mansion was empty. No Servants, no uncle Nave.
I wandered through the place finding doors open and attics locked. The furniture had all been stacked upon each other as if they towers or ladders. Windows in the house were open and would not let me close them.
uncle Nave 's study was bare, contrast to last visited.  None of the paintings he'd been working on were there except the one of the garden.
But there hadn't been a garden at this house for years. Since Aunt Lana died. The garden had been her obsession. She had built the garden with her designer from Argentina. Soon after the garden was built, the designer disappeared. Aunt Lana struggled with the upkeep. Son the sickness came. Everything died in the garden. Soon Aunt Lana passed. the Servants spoke of the garden as if it had been alive. Said it drained Lana of her life.
I didn't believe any of it. until this morning.
I touched the painting Uncle Nave had done of the garden. I heard my name being whispered. The watercolors were warm, breathing. My eyes were failing me, but when they came back from the blur, I was inside the garden that Uncle Nave had cut down years ago.
I walked for miles, seeing the same apple trees, dogwood and hedges nicely clipped. At ever hedge I turned a corner. A new beginning. I could hear voices calling to each other, crying out for help. I recognized a few as Servants belonging to Uncle Nave. I heard Aunt Lana 's voice as well. She told us we would never be apart again. Just as I had entered the garden at first, I thought I saw Uncle Nave walking ahead of me, leading me to every new hedge.
When I turn to find the footsteps behind me, I  would catch a glimpse of a man watching, following. Then he would disappear.
I continue my journey to find the end of the garden.

© 2012 mark slade

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You have a very interesting story concept here, that I think could be turned into a marvelous story. Just be careful not to back yourself into a corner by restricting what the character can do too much. Such as if the character can never get to the end of the hedgerow; then he can never get nowhere in the garden. Or if the character can never make contact with anyone else that is trapped in the garden like the uncle, the hand; for the servants;that makes it extremely difficult for him to rescue anyone or to escape. You did good job on the putting in of detail, but made it easy for me to picture where the character was that what was going on around. Good job

Posted 8 Years Ago

Wow. This has so much to it. Very mysterious, very haunting, very evocative. This leaves me craving more. Great job!

Posted 8 Years Ago

This is filled with wonderful illusions for my mind to digest.

Posted 8 Years Ago

lots of influences here, little shop of horrors, the shining... I think it needs a "quest" what was the visit for? or an answer to a question in the aunt's mysterious will, Good beginning, lots of possible middles... but the ending is going to be the rock and hard place....
Mark you are never at a loss for ideas and plots, I'm envious. lol

Posted 8 Years Ago

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4 Reviews
Added on March 1, 2012
Last Updated on March 1, 2012
Tags: surrealism, horror, fantasy, short story.


mark slade
mark slade

williamsburg, VA

a writer of horror and dark fantasy http://bloodydreadful.blogspot.com/ more..


A Story by mark slade