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  • Writer's pictureJeff South

Blogtober 2023, Day 14: Despondent

In another dream, I was a field

and you combed through me

searching for something

you only thought you had lost.

Cecilia Llompart, Omens

Carrie lifted a despondent Liz to her feet only to have Liz collapse by Denise’s side once again.

“I can’t leave her,” Liz whimpered. “It would be cruel.”

“We can’t stay here.” Luke frantically surveying their surroundings. “Whatever killed her could come back?”

“You say you saw whatever was head that direction?” Glen asked the man clutching his satchel. “Did it go into that house?”

“Possibly.” The man produced a long, black metal flashlight from his satchel. He flipped its switch and aimed its bright beam into the weed-infested backyard of a house as dilapidated as Glen’s childhood home. There was no old swing set. Only a rusted pole and backboard that once served as a basketball hoop stood.

“That’s Marshall’s old house,” Glen mumbled.

“Who was Marshall?” Spencer asked.

“Can’t we just get the hell out of here?” Luke’s panic was overtaking him but no one noticed. Carrie comforted Liz as Liz maintained her vigil over Denise.

“Marshall Dunlap. He was my best friend growing up.” Glen walked into Marshall’s old yard and stood under the basketball hoop. “We played a lot of basketball here. We were teammates at Deer Tick Creek High School. Go Hoboes.”

“Hoboes?” Spencer asked.

“Named for all the vagrants that used to come through on trains.”

“Y’all can stay if you want,” Luke said before running off into the darkness.

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