Saturday, November 12, 2011

The Last Song

Everything was so cold now. No August day should have possibly been this cold. The girl held her jacket closer, trying to gain the tiniest bit of warmth. It didn’t help.

Around her, people walked through the park, enjoying their summer day. None looked at the young girl sitting on the bench; none asked her why her clothes were so torn and dirty, why she had such heavy bags underneath her eyes, why she constantly looked over her shoulder with fear. Their eyes passed over her, unseeing. None of them could feel the cold.


The Detective took one last look at the haven he had been living in for the past few months. A part of him still wanted to stay. A voice in his head telling him that they still needed him here. That she still needed him here. But this lead…. It was what he had been looking for. If he let it slip away now, he’d never forgive himself. He had to leave them. They could handle themselves fine without him constantly hanging around.

As the Detective started his car, he put a CD in, and let the sound flow over him. There was only a single song on the CD. Some girl he’d never met had written it and dedicated it to him, long ago. He didn’t think he deserved such praise, but it served as a reminder. He wasn’t the only one suffering from this. All those people who thought he was a hero, or some kind of messiah…. He knew it was all bullshit, just a false hope. He wasn’t a savior. He wasn’t going to be the one to put an end to all of this. But at the same time, he couldn’t abandon them. Couldn’t abandon a girl who believed in him enough to put it into song.
The fairytale was over. Time to get back to work.


The girl’s hands shook as she reached for her laptop. Her fingers were so numb, she could barely type. Why even try? It had been almost two months since she last posted on her blog. As far as everyone else knew, she had become another victim.

Though maybe that wasn’t far from the truth. It probably wouldn’t be long now. The girl could see the fog slowly rolling in from all sides, engulfing buildings, snaking through the trees, steadily reaching for her. Like a wall of gray nothingness, blotting out the world around her, until finally she too was consumed by it. She wanted to scream at the people walking past her, shout a warning about the fog, or maybe just a cry for help. But she couldn’t. The words choked in her throat, unable to break free. No one around her would hear her screams. No one could help her.


There were two of them walking down the night road; a boy and a girl. They had been inseparable before, and their current situation had changed little between them. If anything, it had only forced them closer together.

It was the boy’s turn for keeping watch, so he steadfastly held a flashlight ahead, while the girl rested her head on his arm, eyes closed but feet still moving mechanically to keep with him. It had been days since either of them had a chance to get a real night’s sleep; these tiny moments of rest were all that life offered them now.

The boy was listening to an iPod as he walked. Soft music played in his ears, a song made for another couple who had been forced on the run. They were gone now, but the boy felt he could identify with them. How they had protected and relied on one another, even through the hardest times….

A burst of static tore through the music, loud enough to wake the half asleep girl. The boy swung his flashlight around in wild arcs, panic racing through his mind. The light briefly caught the silhouette of a tall figure standing down the road before it flickered out, leaving the couple trapped in darkness.


The fog had covered the sun and all the other people in the park now, leaving The girl floating on her bench amongst a sea of mist. She tried to ignore it, ignore the fog and the whispers which came from it, focusing on her laptop’s screen. Others all around the world were still posting online, writing about their encounters. So many new faces had appeared recently, while so many old faces were gone…. It was strange, the knowledge that almost everyone she had talked to when she first made her blog were dead. There was always that fear, every time she looked online, that she would find more people gone.

It didn’t look like anyone had been killed today. The girl breathed a short sigh of relief which quickly turned into a shiver. Tendrils of fog were reaching out, brushing across her face, like ice being dragged across her skin.

Maybe there still would be a death today. It was a thought she tried to fight away, but such resistance was no longer possible. Her mind was too tired to ignore the echoes of despair all around her.


The fighter hefted his baseball bat. It was an old metal thing, dented in several places and no longer near suitable for any games. But it had been his companion for the last few weeks. His only companion, after the massacre which had led him here.

The monster’s minions were outside the cabin, shouting challenges and insults at him. For days they had been there, shooting through his windows, smashing at his barricades, laughing at his coming death. A few had tried to burn down the cabin, but he had managed to drive them off. Barely.

This siege couldn’t last forever. Even if he rationed, the fighter knew his food would last less than a week. And at any moment, the monster itself could choose to appear, and instantly end the confrontation.

It would be easy to just give up. Let the monster’s minions break in, and accept his death. Fighting was only prolonging the suffering.

His computer began to play the next song on the playlist. It was the battle theme of a previous generation of fighters who had faced the monster; men and woman who had for a moment gathered together in the hopes that they could defeat it. They had failed, but the power of the song remained. To them, it didn’t matter whether or not the monster was beaten, only that it was challenged. None knew how many had died trying to fight it, but for each that fell, more took their place. Humanity would not lie down and surrender to this monster; the fighter knew that to be a fact. This thing had to be fought, even if the fight was futile.

Once more, the fighter clutched his bat and opened the door. They were waiting for him outside, jeering at his seeming suicidal stupidity. The fighter only smiled, and charged forth, back into the battle.


The girl told herself she had to run. It was coming for her, cloaked in the fog, slowly and patiently approaching its victim. Her only chance was to run now, and hope that it would allow her to escape.

She couldn’t do it. No matter how much she tried, she remained seated on the bench. For months, she had been running. Always having to stay on the move, trying to keep one step ahead of this silent stalker. Everything she’d cared about was gone now. Her whole life, slowly ripped from her, piece by piece. All she had left was constant fear and paranoia. She was tired, wanting only a chance to rest. But there was only one way to find rest now.


None of the people gathered under the bridge had known each other before they had been forced to abandon their regular lives. They had come together by chance, looking for the sense of security numbers brought. Most knew deep down that no amount of companions could protect them, but it was comforting to have someone nearby. Someone to remind them that they weren’t alone; to know that someone else out there understood what they were going through.

One of them pulled a guitar out of her bag. After tuning it, she began to play a melody which most there had heard before. Then she begins to sing…

“One AM, I toss and turn, awake in my own bed,
I can’t sleep because of a creepypasta I read….”

And for a few minutes, smiles are on the faces of those gathered under the bridge.


The fog had completely surrounded The girl. Even the bench she was sitting on was hidden, and her laptop appeared only as a shining light which barely could pierce the grey wall which had grown around it. A blank draft was opened on it, but she couldn’t think of what to type. How do you tell people that you can’t keep this up anymore? That the only way left for you to escape is to give in? There were some people who had, in their last messages, said they were preparing to attack the monster, claiming it better to die fighting it than letting it kill you. But she wasn’t one of those people; she didn’t have their madness, the insanity which allowed them to gaze into the abyss and laugh. She was just a girl, someone who should have just lived a normal life.

How could she tell everyone that it was over? What would they say about her afterward? That she had “given up”, that she’d “let them all down”. A small voice tried to shout that this wasn’t true, that they would understand… but that voiced couldn’t be raised above a whisper.

She wouldn’t tell them. Quickly, trying to finish in the brief time she had left, The girl wrote a short blog post, linked to another post written on a forum. It was all a story. The whole thing had been a story. She was dropping the blog because she was too busy with college preparation, and just wasn’t satisfied with how the story was going.

Would they believe her? She didn’t know. But it was better than adding another death to the list.


The Successor held the sword in his hands with reverence. It had been the weapon of a leader, murder, sage, hero…. Once broken, it was now reforged. He swung it a few times, a bit clumsily, but it felt good in his hands. As though it belonged.

So many had called him insane when he said he was looking for the fallen sage’s weapon. Why would he want to reclaim the tool of a man who had turned on them, a man who had slaughtered so many innocents in an insane crusade? They only seemed to remember him for his failure and descent into madness. But the Successor remembered the man before the fall; he remembered the sage who had brought hope to those who had given up, and led them to rise up.

The thoughts brought the memory of a song the Successor had heard. It had been written for the fallen sage, on the day he had died. It wasn’t a song written for a murderer or a madman. It was dedicated to the memory of a hero.

The Successor hummed a few bars as he sheathed the sword. He didn’t know what to expect on the road ahead. But there were people out there who needed help and protection.


The girl could see it approaching, slowly drifting forward through the fog. The black suit and white body were almost invisible at first, but as it got closer, they came into contrast against the grey background. She stared at its head, the blank spot where there should be a face, as it approached. There was no fear now, only regret, and the slightest hint of relief. At last it was all going to end.

The thing stopped several feet away. It tilted its head slightly, almost as though it were curious. The girl slowly stood to her feet, legs shaking slightly. A strange compulsion told her to walk forwards to the thing; she obeyed, feet dragging sluggishly across the black grass. As she got closer, it spindly arms reached for her, wrapping around her in an embrace.

The girl and the creature gradually faded into the fog, until no sign of them could be seen. The mist began to dissipate, returning the sun. The visitors at the park continued with their lives, ignoring the abandoned laptop lying on top of a bench where a young girl had just been resting.