I am dreaming. I traipse across the moors in Brontë country. It’s almost Halloween, and soon, back home, I’ll be carving jagged smiles on pumpkin faces. As I walk, the sun sinks lower and lower in the sky, deepening the grass’s golden glow. Shadows walk with me, till they’re obscured by the darkness. Night lays a black shroud over the naked trees and heathered knolls, covering them completely. A fine mist obscures my vision even more. It kisses me all over, lightly like a playful lover, until I am weakened and drenched. Lost. At the sound of a ghostly screech, I jump, then laugh a bit at my fright. It’s just a barn owl. There’s nothing here to frighten you, I tell myself–until cold fingers wrap themselves around my wrist. I try to call out, but no sound emerges from my throat. I try to wake, but I cannot. I am dreaming I tell myself as the bony fingers pull me down to the cold, damp ground.
Cold, autumn mist,
nightmare shapes in the shadows–
Jack’s crooked mouth laughs
This is for Frank’s Halloween dVerse prompt. I liked the image he used, so I used it, too. Franks said we could write fictional prose, so I’ve revised one I wrote a few years ago.
You are most welcome 🙂
Very frightening and surreal!
The chill factor on this is off the charts!
Wow! Thank you!
Very spooky – and the mention of the Brontes made me think of the cold, ghostly hands at the start of Wuthering Heights.
Thank you, Sarah. I was thinking of that scene when I wrote the original.
What a vivid dream… that hand pulling you down sounds to me like you would wake with the blanket wrapped around your wrist..
Thank you, Björn. I’m not certain if I had part of that dream or not. 😏
I’m going to have nightmares about Jack! Well done, Merril. 🙂
Thank you. Mission accomplished! 😏. (Though I don’t really want you to have nightmares.)
A wonderfully spooky dream, Merril. I especially love the ‘jagged smiles on pumpkin faces’ and the haiku. I agree with Sarah about the mention of the Brontes and Cathy;s hands at the window in Wuthering Heights.
I think I remember this.one, and probably told you at the time I was brought up in Brontë country. Nightmare story!
Thank you. Yes, when I looked at the original post, you mentioned it then. I think maybe that was the first time I knew about you growing up there (though I probably sensed it. . .).
It’s where my gothic streak comes from. Well, it would be if I had a gothic streak 🙂
I think you do, but it’s a sort of Irish fantasy Gothic. Gothic-Celtic? Cothic? 😏
Cothic! Love that. Did you know Bram Stoker was Irish?
I did–but just recently read that.
So Irish Gothic does exist. In fact old man Brontë was Irish too so…
Yeap, I’m creeped out. Aim achieved brilliantly .
Thank you! Yes! 😀
You paint a vivid, though misty, scene. Until those sinister fingers appear, it almost seems as though you might wake with a smile. But then your prose takes a perfect nightmare turn. Well done.
Thank you, Ken!
A nightmare indeed. What a tale
Thank you so much!
Delightfully spooky!! I was glad to be tucked in warm and safe as I read it!
Thank you so much, Beverly! 😀
I’m glad I am not at a campout and hearing this told around the fire, and then later having to sleep in a flimsy tent where I would be…quite scared!
Thank you! That’s the perfect reaction! 😀
Chilling to the end, Merril! Love it!
Thank you very much, Frank!
A nightmare of the first caliber; the icy hand, and invisible foe is chilling. Victorian mansions and spooky moors; Shelly and Bronte dominion. Nice job.
Thank you so much, Glenn! I appreciate your kind words.
That’s a chilling a little nightmare Merrill. Well written. Perfect for the season. Happy Halloween!
Thank you very much, Rob. Happy Halloween to you, too.
Wow! What a chilling tale, Merrill. Superbly written.
Thank you so much!
Just a little spooky UNTIL those icy wristfingers, then it was freakishly so. Well done
Thank you very much, Ron!
A shivery little tale. I can feel those icy cold fingers around my wrist pulling me down . . .
Thank you so much, Liz! 😀
You’re welcome, Merril!
“The moors in Brontë country at Halloween.: Creepy and chilling, just perfect for the mood this week.Thanks, Merril!
Thank you very much, Marian!
The moors of Bronte country are the perfect setting for this genuinely chilling tale. I hope it was a dream!
Thank you so much, Ingrid.
I can’t remember if I originally based this on a dream or not. I know I didn’t dream the scary part. That’s pure fiction.
Perfectly scary atmosphere conjured up
Thank you very much!
Chilling! Trying to wake but not able to do so… Well done Merril!
It is scary when that happens!
The dreams that cross into the real world are the most frightening. (K)
Yes, they are!
Loved it 😍
Thanks so much!
My pleasure 🌼
Brrrr! Delightfully, creepy, in a Hallowe’en way!
Thank you! Exactly what I was going for. 😀
Ooh! I love that haiku.
Sent shivers up and down my spine! Perfection for Hallowe’en!
Thank you so much! I’m surprised that I enjoy writing scary stuff. 😀
It comes through 😊