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The Old Trail: An explorer finds the unexpected upon the volcano
Posted by Jonas, Jan 16, 2009. 1569 views. ID = 2257

The Old Trail

Posted by Jonas, Jan 16, 2009. 1569 views. ID = 2257
This post was written in 30 minutes.
This post has been awarded 16 stars by 4 readers.

It was a desolate place - lava streams, deadly gas clouds, and slow consuming black rock. And it was here the little girl stood silently. She said nothing just gazed at me from a distance. She was wearing a white night shirt that stretched to her bare feet. It gently swayed in the hot wind. And in one arm she clenched a pale brown teddy bear.

I couldn't believe my eyes the first time I spotted her. "Honey. This place is not safe." I tried to call out over the constant rumble of the earth. She didn't respond, just watched. I climbed over the warm black rocks to reach her.

"What are you doing out here? Are you alright?" I asked. I took a knee and looked into her face. Her eyes were a deep blue. She looked at me without expression and finally whispered, "You must return another way."

"It's alright honey. I've hiked this way for years." I pointed and looked to the west, to my familiar trail. "Now we better..." I turned back and she was gone. I was standing upon that black landscape alone.

"Wow. I must have gotten a whiff of some sulfur." I said to myself and gave a nervous chuckle. After a minute I headed back but not five steps later an enormous cracking sound slapped my ears and the ground shook me off my feet. Not far down the trail an underground lava flow came bursting to the surface, pushed its gasses and searing liquid rock into the air. After a moment the pressure was released and the deadly flow began to consume my old trail.

Copyright 2009 Jonas. All rights reserved. has been granted non-exclusive rights to display this work. For permission to reprint this item, please contact the author.

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This post has been awarded 16 stars by 4 readers.
This is a revised version of a post. Click here to view the original version


Jan 17, 2009
Nicely written, Jonas. :) Interesting and easy to read, and just a bit of a "creepy" factor. I would have given it more stars, except that I felt like the ending left me hanging, like there should have been something more.

My own idea is this: if you rewrote the last two paragraphs in such a way that you could reverse them, the revelation that the little girl had vanished would have given your ending more of a "goose bump" feeling, and a more satisfying conclusion.
   ~Posted by Douglas, Jan 17, 2009

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