The moon shone through the tree branches giving the forest an eerily feel, the only sound came from my converses and my steady breathing as I walked clearly trying not to trip over. I knew this part of the forest like the back of my hand and had never been afraid, but apparently Gran had heard people talk how something was amiss in the town and how it must be linked to Elm Forest. Of course she didn’t believe and neither did I when she told me, there was a rumor about a man who had gone into Elm Forest alone and had yet to be seen again. Honestly, it all sounded like ghost stories parents told their children to prevent them from going into the forest having parties.
I sighed lightly throwing my coin in the air and catching it…Snap! I gasped stopping to look down seeing only the dirt on my shoe. I look round trying to see what had made the noise. There was nothing. So why did I still feel frozen and nervously searching the trees.
“This is stupid,” I whispered out loud to myself and carried on as I was before the ‘snap’ noise interrupted the quite. I was nearly there now the wind had picked up blowing my hair, it has become harder to see where I was going now and I still couldn’t shake the feeling that eyes where following me.
I quickened my pace wondering why I chose to come this way and that was when I saw something lying on the ground. Slowing down I saw the small furred creature, it looked like a badger well I think it used to be…the badger was torn to shreds blood splattered into the ground, I bent down and touched the fur covered in blood and noticed how it still felt warm.
Something flashed, an image crossed my vision the badger coming from it hole under a nearby tree, a unfamiliar smell in the air and the thud thud…snap and then nothing.
A distant noise made me jump to my feet and I quickly carried on seeing the road and car lights. The 24 hour garage was lit up and felt too bright from the darkness of the forest, I made my way across the road and pushed the door open heading straight for the fridges seeing the semi-skimmed milk bottle.
“Summer must be here again.” I saw a familiar face quelling next to me smiling.
“Hello Mr. Edwards, how do you mean?” I asked politely feeling lost by Mr. Thomas Edwards comment. Mr. Edwards was a business man, tall board type, green eyed with black/grey short hair and was married with two children and also was a regular at my Gran café.
“Well I know when it’s summer, as you come to visit your grandmother and you bring a ray of sunshine with you.” He turned paying for his items.
“Oh right well I don’t always bring the sunshine with me.” I gave the woman the milk bottle. “How’s your family?”
“There are very well, Sue keeping busy as always, Kate working at the hospital now as a nurse and Simon will be going into his last year at school.” He informed me whiles opening the door outside.
“Wow that’s great.” I replied thinking about taking the streets back home not wanting to through the dark trees again.
“Would you like a lift home?”
“Erm I’m ok I’ll walk. Thank you.”
“No I insist, your grandmother might not invite me into the café again if she knew I didn’t offer you a lift home.” Those light green eyes held me for a moment, maybe I should go with him.
“Ok thank you again.” I said following him to his black Audi, he opened the door for me and then slid into the driver’s side.
“So how come you took a nightly stroll to get some milk, seeing if anything had changed in the town?” He asked casually starting up the car and driving out of the garage.
“I couldn’t sleep Fang was meowing why there was no milk so I took a walk through the forest.”
“The forest? Elm Forest, why would you do that and haven’t you heard of the tales?” He seemed surprised and curious and I thought it best not to mention the badger. “I wanted the change and I don’t believe everything people say.”
“Hmm I see, well that might change soon.”
“Nothing. Your grandmother's house on Silvers Road right?” He asked changing the subject as he turned off the main road.
“Yeah.” I replied feeling puzzled, tired and confused about tonight events in the forest and remembering the badger’s blood on my hand.