The Prologue from "Chaos" by Elzu Wolfe
In a flourish of golden red, the sun plunged into the horizon, sending velvet waves of crimson exploding into the dense smog of atmosphere. It hung above London like a spider web, heavy with morning dew, which glistened slightly as night fell, reflecting the city lights with dim eyes that twinkled in the sky. New crystalline buildings thrust themselves up, charcoal silhouettes against the colour-clad void. They looked like fat, dark fingers grasping for light, ready to pull down the silky curtain of twilight, drawing the city into eternal umbra, kissing the sky only with the slight pockmark of stars.
Autumn had sailed in on the ghosts of summer, heat loitering in the depths of the expanding city, fumes rising, falling, and painting a poisoned picture of a city past it’s best. Of what few trees remained inside the city-limits, most were dressed in the ruby decay of the dying seasons, leaves flittering softly, haphazardly from their branches and settling in the streets, crunching beneath the heavy hearted foot of the average passer by.
Twilight soon surrendered to the receding sun, passing the baton to night and the soft lunar orb. The moon ethereally etching it’s path across a light-polluted sky diffusing it’s breath into thin layers of cloud. Night caved in on London, darkness suspending the neon throb in a void of emptiness.
Amidst the penumbral shades of the cities labyrinth, feet pounded through dark alleys. Fifteen maybe twenty voices shouting, searching, seeking Evie Green. Their voices distorted; their shouts more like screams, their calls like the communication during a hunt.
Evie ran as fast as she possibly could, she didn’t know what was after her, she didn’t want to know, she just wanted to get as far away as she could. She could hear the soft, leathery pounding and scuffing of the feet belonging to the creatures that could have only been twenty feet behind her. Evie leapt, her feet pressing against one wall, then exploding into the air again, gaining height, twisting mid air and then jumping from the parallel wall just to clear a fence in front of her. Once she had cleared the mesh fence she sprinted forward and hesitated slightly as she came to a fork in the alley.
One of the creatures behind let out a paralysing scream; the sound shuddered deafeningly along the narrow corridor between the dark high rises. Evie belted left; she could tell they were gaining on her, in spite of the fence that lay between them.
If only they hadn’t knocked her halo from her hand, she could be out of her by now, this whole nightmare wouldn’t be unravelling upon her. She didn’t even know what they would do if they did catch her. Again, she didn’t want to know. She didn’t know what to do or what to think.
She was lost in this alien city, a dark spider web of alleys coiled away from the central hub… she had lost her way a long time ago.
Around the next corner Evie found herself facing a brick wall; the side of a building reaching upwards towards the sky. She turned, the spindling shadows of the creatures coming after her stretched up the walls, they would be on her any moment now.
Peering back up the wall, she considered flying but she knew her wings were damaged, and without her halo, she’d never have enough energy, would she?
Shadows coiled down the already dark walls, bricks lost definition as the creatures turned the corner, and begun closing in on Evie.
Their faces were pitch black, darker than night, without stars. There must have been a couple of dozen of them, all staring, ravenous with their empty eyes. Evie couldn’t really make out features; they were too dark and shifting before her. They were almost like black holes, but in the shape of man, moving on all fours, animalistic and deceptive.
Evie sprung upwards, her wings exploding from her back, they appeared to be made of liquid; they were translucent and barely visible until they shuddered with each flap. Ascending swiftly, Evie focussed all of her energy on reaching the apex of the wall.
Below her the black-hole creatures leapt, their muscular build propelling them up the walls, almost as if they could run vertically just as well as they could horizontally. They didn’t appear to even clasp into the walls at any point, merely ran up them, stampeding on all fours.
With each flap of her wings, Evie became more exhausted; her pale appearance was riddled with a bright ruby blush, her muscles were sore and here eyes felt heavy, so heavy that they seemed to weigh her down. She couldn’t keep her eyes away from looking down at what seemed inevitable.
Escalating further, her hands scrambled at the wall on her journey upward, trying to rest her wings, if only for moments at a time. She grasped and clawed at the red brick until her nails were full of a rust red dust and the tips and knuckled of her fingers were bleeding.
Another scream strangled the breath from her as she began to succumb to exhaustion, each flap of her wings became harder, and each foot higher seemed to make her a ton heavier.
One of the dark beings clawed at her leg, trying to grab hold, trying to pull her back down, to hurt her, to rape her, to kill her… she still didn’t know. She was certain they intended to steal her purity; they had stolen her Halo, they had killed an innocent, ate their flesh from the inside out, what would they do to her? Evie daren’t imagine. She strained her back muscles again, pulling the wind beneath her wings down hard, escaping the grip of the dark thing below her.
The last slithers of light crept out of the sky; a scatter of orange clouds juxtaposed against the tumultuous sky of blue shuddered out of sight. Darkness came across the world, day blinked and night spoke of ancient myths returning to terra, whispering of the days where Gods walked the earth, and the earth had spoken back. That time had come again.
Evie heard all these things, she knew what was at stake, and she knew the time had come. Good would once more face Evil, but she wasn’t sure that it was so black and white anymore, she wasn’t sure that she was fighting for good, she wasn’t sure that what pursued her was Evil. How could anyone be sure of what good really was?
Then a creature grabbed Evie’s foot. Her face contorted as it’s grip tightened and punctured her silvery skin and broke the soft bone beneath, her mouth widening with shock as she was torn out of the sky, as she was dragged back to earth.