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Dating : From The Hill

h2>Dating : From The Hill

Emlyn Boyle

A micro short story I wrote back in 2020, inspired by the image below.

“If You Go Up To The Woods Tonight”. Image by Emlyn Boyle.

A werewolf lives on the wooded hill behind my house — a great tall thing with silver claws, blazing eyes and the urge to eat any poor passers-by. Well, at least that’s what my older brother Jack tells me every night when we’re tucked up in bed. “And sometimes,” my brother always says, looking towards the bedroom window, his smirking face lit from below by flashlight. “It even comes right up to that window, scratching on the glass and wanting to come in and gobble you up.”

“Stop,” I’ll say tearfully and yank my quilt up. “You’re just messing.”

Jack always laughs. “Ah just go to sleep you big baby.”

And so, he tells me this every evening, and in all seasons and weathers, never once changing his tale and forever laughing at my reaction. And it goes on and on and on . . . until one night, when I finally dream about the beast outside my window. First there’s almost nothing — save two gold spots in the darkness, and then a hazy form, and then it’s finally solid. The werewolf stands outside my window on two bent legs, with its hairy claws and long snout pressed against the steamed-up glass. And my first instinct is to hide beneath my quilt — where I can then cry out to Jack and warn him.

But I don’t do that, and instead slowly get out of bed and walk right up to the window. The werewolf looks down on me with what might be tenderness rather than hunger. I turn a latch and let the beast slip into the room, the werewolf again looking down on me tenderly before it suddenly snarls. I open my mouth and snarl back, to make the beast’s black lips part in an animal grin before it evaporates into a silvery mist that flows down my mouth and right into my very soul.

And then all goes black, and I finally awake to a sunny morning and quick shower before I report my brother missing. But they never find him. The police, neighbors and even my own parents soon believed that Jack simply ran away from home, as he had always threatened to do so in the past.

What do you think?

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