I let myself just slide down the rough wooden wall and to the floor. I wrapped my head in my arms and tried not to cry. I was tired, hungry, and scared. There was nothing else I could do.
I could not really wrap my head around everything that had happened tonight. The vines, the road, the creepy check in paper work. Those paled in comparison to the uncontrollable visions.
There had been Jared, with all his anger barely controlled under the thin veneer of appearing civilized.
Jennifer and her intense envy of everyone around her. She had not tried to hide that.
The greedy little Donna, always wanting more.
The gluttonous children, led to their doom like Hansel and Gretel. Sandy and Paul had never stood a chance.
Proud Rebecca and her sense of superiority and importance had met her end alone and unappreciated.
Finally there was Nathan. The man was so consumed by lust he had not even thought twice about following a stranger into the dark boat house.
What was left? Anger, envy, greed, gluttony, pride, and lust. What did they want with him?
“Just come out and we will show you, Dali,” a dry voice whispered through the walls. “You know the answer already.” It assured him.
“No,” I yelled out to the mysterious voice. The wind picked up outside the shed and made the boards shiver and shake. “Leave me alone, I don’t have anything you could want. I’m not like them!”
“But you are,” the voice came from everywhere at once. “You are one of us. You have been since you decided to come here.”
“I am not greedy, or angry, or jealous,” I heard the pleading in my voice and could do nothing to stop it. I put my hands over my ears, trying to black the sound, but still it came.
“Do you not know? Can you not think of anything?” I heard the door creak open and I closed my eyes, wrapping my arms tighter around my head.
“Can you not see?” The voices was close and the room began to feel warmer. I heard the soft sound of clawed feet moving around the room, surrounding me.
“There is another sin still,” it assured me.
“I’m not lazy,” I pleaded unashamedly, I refused to look up.
“No, but you do not appreciate all that has been given to you. You have given into your despair and lost the joy that living things should have.” Hot breath brushed the back of my neck. “You are one of us, Dali.”
“Look at me,” the order was so powerful I could not resist and I opened my tear dampened eyes and looked straight into the red eyes of the largest of the demon dogs. It’s long white teeth were inches from my face.
“Join us brother, the sun will rise and we must be away.”
I tried to stand, to back away, but found that my limbs no longer worked the way they should. I looked down. Long black limbs, ending in sharp black claws were all I saw.
A howl started in the pack, circling higher and higher as the first pink rays of dawn fell on the boat house.