This writer hates his working title for #NaNoWriMo



Written by C.E. Schwilk



NaNo Excerpt

Just thirty miles outside of Austin, Texas lay Bastrop - one of the oldest towns in the state, named after some German baron back in the mid-eighteen hundreds. It was reasonably quiet on Haysel Street; the muffled sounds of a dog barking in the distance could be heard. A light breeze stirred leaves on the trees that lined the street.

On this moderately warm night, they had left the child's bedroom window just slightly cracked open to allow air to circulate. It had been raining a bit, so the air was foggy and humid. In the corner of the room, an oddly shaped shadow rested and had gone unnoticed for hours.

The little girl lay in the bed on her stomach - wearing only a pair of cotton shorts and a T-shirt - with her arms stretched out and plump face nuzzled into her feather pillow. Slowly, the shadow lengthened as if another light had come into the room, stretching and changing it - but that wasn't the case. There were no other lights other than the lamplight outside, and barely any movement save of the gentle breeze.

Smoothly, as if the shadow were made up of a viscous liquid, it moved alongside the chest of drawers - spilling lower onto the floor where its form changed, becoming elongated and spindly.

Shadowy, supernatural limbs seemed to curl themselves around the sturdy legs of the bed, pulling the massive form closer. Like a living oil slick, it oozed beneath the child. It could hear the little girl's heartbeat and soft, deep breathing. It slowly rose up behind the headboard; the shape grew into something that appeared more like a solid being than the amorphous thing it once was. It loomed over the bed, now, hesitating - visibly pulsing to match the steady rhythm of the girl's heart - forming an otherwise natural shadow over the sleeping child.

Without warning, the silhouette dropped upon the length of the bed - engulfing the child. All that could be heard for a brief moment was a sharp intake of air, as if the young girl was having trouble breathing.

In that instant the shadow disappeared, stealing the child - and hundreds more like her, tonight - to take them to feed the others.