A little girl lost, and all alone, runs into the forest. How many small tragedies have started that way? Too many, whatever the number. Stumbling over roots, trying to outrun the tears, the shadows leading her on as the sun set behind her. She still hears the laughter. Children can be so cruel. On and on, into the dark, and the dark embraces her. The cold creeps in through her best sunday dress to steal away her strength. She's sobbing, not from memory but from fear. She's all alone now.
The sun has gone and the trees have lost their golden charm, turned to ivory by starlight. The little girl lost, and all alone, tastes blood. A hand touched to her lips turns black and wet. She coughs, and there is blood in that as well. She tries to shout but chokes on the words, and she coughs again and the blackness leaves a trail down her chest.
No more tears; the blood is in her eyes now. A pain twists and builds at her wrists, and skin splits. The black is pooling at her feet. Her knees buckle. That twisting is at her neck, and she falls into the dark, and the dark reaches up to claim her.
The little girl lost is not alone.