The moon peered down upon the dry earth, shadows streaking the lost streets and only one set of eyes were open to witness the darkness. They glowed blue from the dim light the moon granted.
They were wary, and unsure, but above all else, they were scared.
Only the winds howls granted respite from the nothingness. Despite the strong gales, they appeared to carry no clouds, but guided the stars from there hiding places beyond the reach of man. Beyond the reach of the last man.
The wind sent a chill down his spine and wisps of air attacked his ankles. He could not understand how he had lost the entire day, how he had lost the light of all but the moon.
The once familiar was now painted in deceiving shades of black and grey. Steadily he rose to his feet, fixed his trousers so that they would protect his ankles and gripped his chest to offer some protection from the chill.
He tried to take in his surroundings. Glancing from building to building, abandoned car to sign post and back. Empty glass, reflective metal and the shrieking of the wind left him on edge.
His finger nails burrowed into his palms to the point of pain, but that was not even entering his mind. The cold sweat on his back and the unease in his stomach left him immobile.
He had begged, prayed and bartered for company, now he willed his prayers had been unanswered, his bartering unsuccessful and his begging ignored.
But he felt he wasn't alone. His fear told him he wasn't alone.
His voice grasped for clarity. "Hello?..." He could barely speak.
The wind gave the only answer.
He stepped forward, so that a rusted car lay to his left. He shifted his body slowly, so that his back was to the bonnet, and leaned against it cautiously.
He attempted to regain his composure. "In through the nose, out through the mouth." His arms still hugging tight against his chest.
But before he could bring his arms out to stop it, his face cracked down hard against the sidewalk, and the car slipped backwards by a few feet.
He jolted upright. Blood flowed from his nose and splashed onto the ground when he darted his head around him to see what caused it.
He could see nothing. He whispered, again. "Hello?..."
This time the wind didn't even answer, as it stopped blowing. His eyes searched the shadows frantically, from dark spot to shadow, and from shadow to moonlit path. But he could see no one.
And then a low buzz echoed throughout the air, like that of a loud bee.
"I see you." The voice called out through the buzzing.
His face glazed over in fear. Every pore lay still, and every hair stood on end. He thought even his heart stopped beating for a moment, as his mind went blank.
"You can hear me. As I can see you."
His hands trembled uncontrollably. The fear controlled him now, his voice refused to speak, his eyes refused to look in the darkness and his legs refused to carry him from this nightmare.
And then the voice cut through the silence once again. "I know who you are, Charlie."
His lower lip slowly fell away from the top, and they too began to tremble. He tried to pinpoint where the voice came from, but it sounded like it came from everywhere. And yet it vanished as is it was never there at all, only the buzzing remained.
"Do not try to run, Charlie, for I am like the darkness, and the darkness is faster than the light."
He did not move, but in line with the buzzes end, a great cloud swept across the sky blocking the stars, the moon and the little light that gave him hope.
That gave Charlie hope. And it was in that moment he collapsed, not from exhaustion or malnutrition, nor from illness or death, but from fear, and sadness and the loneliness of his latest haunting.