The Hunted (2008)

A journal. A single journal hinting at the whereabouts of a missing person, and a mythical mountain. Will the journal lead to fame and glory, or something else?

  Soaked in crimson. Patches here and there. Soaked in crimson. But where was the body? There were footprints that led up to this spot in the snow. But there were only those and the blood. A glimmer in the distance. What could it be? He walked over, reached down, and picked it up. Scrawled across the smooth black surface it read 'Journal'.

  December 7th, 2007

  I write this in the hopes that my story would be heard. Or maybe I write it so I don't go mad. My name is Frederick Gustav. You can call me Fred. My story begins a couple of days ago. My colleague and I set out into the tundra to try and find the ancient Tomb of Amaranth. (As we are archaeologists) The Tomb of Amaranth is said to house ancient treasures unimaginable to mankind. It is also said to be home to a dormant monster. I'm starting to believe the legend.

Glenn Jackman closed the journal and placed it inside his jacket. He looked around at all of the blood then continued on his journey north. Where he would meet up with his friend, Alex Coleman. They had been assigned to find the missing archaeologist, Kent Harrison. He had been the colleague Fred had mentioned in the first entry of his journal. After about ten minutes of walking across the frozen and snowy land, a small orange tent cam into view.

"Really? Well do you think it's legit?" Questioned Alex. Glenn picked up the journal off of the fold-up metal table. "I think it could be." Alex started packing things up. "Well read more out loud while I gather up the equipment.

  December 8th, 2007

  I now know I'm being followed out here. I saw it last night outside of the tent. All I could make out was a shadow however, and Kent had been asleep at the time. I must admit, it has me worried. Even by the shadow, I could tell that it is enormous. I must finish writing entry, as me and Kent need to get moving. We think we are close to the Tomb!

Alex put the last of the supplies into his rough sack. "Alright, lets say that the journal is authentic. Then to find Kent then we probably have to find this 'Tomb of Amaranth' right? Well lets start looking" Alex and Glenn set off into the bright Antarctic horizon, rough sacks and journal in hand.

  December 11th, 2007

  We have been wandering around out here for three days straight and we have come to a large mountain. In the day time it's beautiful and glimmers a soft purple color. Leading Kent and I to believe the mountain is composed of amethyst. At night however, it is almost invisible to the naked eye. I can't explain it. We have set up camp and are climbing it tomorrow morning. We believe the tomb may lie at its peak.

Glenn placed the journal back into his jacket. "We need to find this mountain they're talking about." Alex nodded. "But without knowing exactly where they were when he wrote that, it's almost impossible." The two continued walking onwards until they came to a large crater. They could only tell it was a crater in the darkness because it was darker than their other surroundings. "Lets just set up camp here and wait until morning. I'm tired and its too dark to go down into that crater tonight." Glenn agreed and they set up the tent. Alex couldn't sleep however, so he took out the journal from Glenn's bag and read another entry by lamp light.

  December 13th, 2007

  Were about halfway up the mountain now. Were still being followed, but neither me nor Kent have seen who, or what, it is yet. It is confirmed that the mountain is indeed made entirely of amethyst. It appears as if it glows during the day beneath our feet. It's beautiful. Kent laughs at me when I stop to admire it.

Glenn awoke to find Alex asleep with the journal in his hands. "Alex, wake up. How much did you read?" Alex slowly opened his eyes and turned to Glenn. "Only another entry." He yawned. "It was only talking about the mountain and how it was beautiful or something." Glenn took the journal back. "I see. Well, I'm going out to look at that crater. Pack up and we'll get going." Alex started packing when Glenn shouted to him. "Alex! Come here quick!" Alex ran outside to where Glenn was. His jaw dropped as he stared into the crater. "It's the mountain."

Alex and Glenn descended down the side of the crater on their ropes. The slippery under-layer of ice and snow made it hard for them to keep steady. If Glenn could look back at that whole situation, he probably would have wished he was the one who slipped. It happened so fast. The rope tangled and Alex and gotten his leg caught in it. His foot slipped off the slippery side of the crater. He fell a good fifty feet before the rope went tight. The sound of his snapping leg echoed. It was sickening. Alex, upside down with his shattered leg, slammed full force into the hard ice. Blood was pouring from his head. The rope snapped. Glenn couldn't look away as his friend fell. He couldn't even look away as he was crumpled and broken by the force of the landing below. Already a large puddle of blood had formed around his friend. Alex was dead.

  December 18th, 2007

  It took awhile, but we've finally reached the top! There's a cave that Kent and I are preparing to go into. Could this be the Tomb of Amaranth?

Glenn started up the mountain. It was indeed composed entirely of amethyst. It was breathtaking. What would await him at the top of the mountain? Would Kent and Fred still be alive? What was the thing Fred spoke of. So many questions to be answered. So little answers awaited him.

  December 20th, 2007

  Its so dark in this cave, even with our lanterns and flashlights. I can barely write this entry in. The thing is still following us. We saw its eyes earlier. They glow a glimmering sky blue color. I wish we could have seen it in the light. I fear for our lives now, however. As I now know it isn't a creature of this world. Or if it is, it hasn't been discovered. Were must continue on now. We think we have found a door.

It was night now, and Glenn was on edge. He had seen the sky blue eyes multiple times while he was setting up camp. Staring. Watching. He couldn't erase what had happened to Alex out of his mind. It kept playing over and over again, the fall, getting down to his friend and seeing innards and brain matter everywhere. Glenn shuttered. He lay down in his sleeping bag and tried to go to sleep. He caught the eyes staring at him again as he closed his eyes.

Glenn had packed everything up earlier and was now at the peak of the mountain. There was indeed a cave. But it was lit up very well in the bright morning sky. Glenn left his pack at the entrance and ventured in. He had been crawling for what seemed like hours. Down, down into the deepening darkness of the cave. Until he hit a dead end. "What the hell is this?" Glenn felt around and his hand hit something. All of a sudden everything was illuminated. The dead end had moved to reveal a large chamber. Gold and gems of infinite value as far as the eye could see. Then his eye caught it. An open tomb, dried blood everywhere. The rotting, putrid corpse of Kent Harrison. There was no sign of Fred. From behind his came a voice with a deep German accent. "Hello, Glenn"

Glenn spun around and came face to face with a tall, lanky man. His face shrouded in shadows. A long gray beard hung from his chin. "Who...are you?" Stammered Glenn. The man smiled to reveal sickly, yellow and brown teeth. "I'm glad you were able to follow my clues, Glenn. A shame what happened to Alex though." Glenn backed into the wall and fell to the ground. "Fred?" The man nodded, still smiling. "You...killed Kent? What...what's going on?" Glenn managed to sputter out. "You see, being locked in that tomb for so long, makes one hungry. Myself, being the imprisoned creature of Amaranth, need human flesh to survive. As you probably know, there are no humans here in the Antarctic. This fake journal I planted, has drawn many like you before. Like your friend, Kent, who I am saving for my lunch. But you. You Glenn, are the main course." Glenn stared in horror as Fred's eyes went from deep brown, to a glimmering sky blue. He started growing a thick coat of shiny white fur. He went from tall and lanky, to huge, and muscular. Twice the size of a grown Polar Bear. Long yellow fangs jutted from his upper and lower jaws, crisscrossing in places. A thick slime seemed from the corners of his mouth. Glenn began to scream blood curdling screams. But they were drowned out by a mighty roar. The sound of tearing flesh and roars could be heard at the bottom of the mountain.

The End

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