Designed by Fayla
Medium Groups: 24-27
Large Groups: 21-26
Amelia sat in the pew of the small country church, sobbing on her husband's shoulder. The church was filled today, but that wasn't unexpected, considering the recent events. The small rural community had always centered on the church, but they needed the guidance of the gods now more than ever.
Amelia held back a sniffle as she remembered hearing the screams of the young neighbor boy, Danny. Danny had disappeared last night from his bed, like so many others from the village had over the past few months. Sons and brothers, wives and mothers were all taken indiscriminately while their loved ones slept close by. So the struggling remnants of the community huddled in the small church, praying for their safe return.
Reverend Welsh gave his sermon, but Amelia struggled to listen. Her mind kept wandering to her child. Devika was the first to disappear. It had been four months since Amelia or her husband had heard anything from their sixteen-year-old daughter. At first, people had assumed Devika had run away, but she was such a sweet, amiable girl that Amelia never believed it. And then others started to be taken...
When the service was over, Amelia lingered outside the church. Her husband had long since gone home, but Amelia found comfort in the church, and so she stayed long after the others had left. She was resting quietly under the willow tree, lost in her thoughts, when she heard a screeching voice coming from within the church, chanting words she did not understand. Curious, she rose from her spot in the grass and peeked inside the church door. The church was dim and musty, but she could make out the thin frame of Reverend Welsh disappearing into his quarters behind the altar.
"Reverend!" Amelia called. "Reverend, are you alright?" She quickly made her way to the altar and knocked briskly upon the door to his study. "I heard voices, Reverend... Can you hear me?" Concerned, Amelia pulled upon the large oak door slightly, opening it just a crack. She peered though the small opening, but saw nothing but dusty furniture shadowed by candlelight. With one last knock, Amelia opened the door fully, and started to walk in.
"Reverend, I thought I heard voices, and..." She stopped short, her words hanging in her throat. The room was empty. But Amelia was sure she had seen him come this way! Perplexed, Amelia inspected the area, running her fingers along the dusty furniture. From the corner of her eye, she saw her reflection in an ornate golden mirror that hung on the wall. The mirror looked out of place; most of the Reverend's belongings were simple, befitting a man leading a humble life of servitude to the gods. But this mirror looked like it belonged on the golden walls of a palace, not in her small village church. As Amelia walked toward the full-length mirror, the reflection rippled like water.
Startled, Amelia hesitated a moment, then slowly stretched out her left hand to touch the mysterious reflection. Bit by bit, her hand passed slowly through the mirror. The mirror's liquid chrome enveloped her hand, and started running in thick, viscous streams up her forearm. Amelia struggled to pull her arm away from the mirror, but an unknown force grasped her hand from the other side of the mirror, and, with one monstrous tug, her entire body was pulled though the sea of chrome.
Amelia thrashed about wildly, unable to see, unable to breathe, as she was dragged helplessly into the unknown. And as suddenly as it started, the smothering liquid vanished. With a tiny cry, Amelia stumbled forward out of the other side of the mirror, falling flat on her chest. Dazed, she slowly propped herself up on her scraped elbows, and focused on her new surroundings. She seemed to be in dark cavern. The only exit was a stone stairway that led down into darkness. The stench of decaying flesh rose to greet her.
Terror gripped Amelia's heart as she slowly she crept down the stairs, feeling her way around with her hands. Gradually, she saw the dim light of a torch and heard muffled screams. Mute with fear but unable to turn back, Amelia trudged on towards the glowing light.
Suddenly, a hand grasped her shoulder and Amelia whipped around with a tight scream, only to suddenly face Reverend Welsh. "Oh Reverend, thank the gods! What is this horrible place? I heard screams in the distance. Quickly, get help before it's too late!" But the Reverend just stood there with a smirk on his face. Slowly, Amelia focused on the Reverend's attire. His white robes, his hands, his face, were all smeared with glistening blood. Gasping, Amelia backed away, trying to escape, but the Reverend grabbed the struggling woman and hauled her further into the darkness.
Her screams were muffled with the rest.
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