I’ll bet you’re a lot like me. You don’t believe in fairy tales. You don’t believe ghost stories and such are real. Maybe you like horror movies. I sure do. Nothing like a good scare in the dark as long as you know it’s make believe, right? Yeah, I know. That’s me for sure.
Well, it was anyway. Maybe it still is. I just can’t say for sure right at the moment. Maybe I should tell you what I’m on about. I’m not even sure if that’s right. Anyway, I’ll tell you my story.
I was stressed and overworked and growing weary of life in the big city. I was long overdue for some time off. My boss wasn’t happy about it but he granted me two weeks to recharge my batteries and I set about thinking about where I could go for some peace and quiet. I knew a friend of mine had a little place at a nice lake way upstate and I called and asked him if I might borrow it for a couple of weeks.
He was only too happy to oblige and I picked up the keys the next day, packed up my car and headed out. I’d never been there before and when I arrived I found it both charming and ideal for my purposes. I spent lazy days fishing and then making myself delicious fish dinners.
What a life. No television, no phone, just pure, blissful solitude. There was a small town not far away for supplies and some of the local kids discovered I was staying at the cabin and dropped by after a couple of days to say hello. Good kids. I invited them to go fishing with me the next day and they agreed. Showed me how to float fish, which really came in handy.
We had so much fun I told them they could come over for dinner and we could bar-b-que our catch if they liked. They said it would be fine with their parents and they showed up at dusk. We had a great time and when it got dark I built a pit fire and we roasted marshmallows. It was like an old-time Boy Scout camp outing so naturally we began telling ghost stories.
It was all good fun until one of the boys started telling a story about someone they all knew who had been attacked a year or so before by something in the woods on the far side of the lake. I noticed the other boys falling silent and all the fun was gone. The boy telling the story noticed and fell silent in the middle of his tale.
I asked them what was going on and they said it was nothing. Clearly that wasn’t the case. Further probing didn’t go over well and they abruptly decided it was time to go home. As they were leaving the boy who had been telling the story hung back and gave me a serious look.
“Mister, enjoy your stay, but don’t go into those woods at night, okay?”
With that he was gone. As I washed the dishes I got to thinking about the whole matter and his mysterious warning. After awhile it came to me that the boys had been winding me up. It was all an elaborate prank. I shook my head and grinned. I’ve never been the gullible type. I decided to go investigate these dark and deadly woods of theirs and then let them know the next time I saw them that I had called their bluff.
With that I put on a jacket and my hiking boot, grabbed a flashlight and set out for the far side of the lake. It took me the better part of an hour to get there but when I arrived I found a beautiful stretch of old growth trees with a small path running through it. I set out along the path to investigate.
Part 2 Tomorrow – The End