PDA

View Full Version : Henry (A Short Story)



PitchEnder
01-05-2018, 10:22 AM
Google Docs Ver. with Formatting (https://docs.google.com/document/d/12rgw2mbVlCICB5lMH8G5K2sCghLRwqbtqbgEb2zTiGs/edit?usp=sharing)


T E R R I F I E D

A word that Henry had learned how to spell within the past few weeks. It means to be in a state of intense fear, whether it be caused by an object, person, or lack of understanding. In this situation, it wasn't a what that was scaring him, it was a where. Henry woke up groggily, expecting to see his car styled room and his space blanket strapped over his small, pajama covered body, and saw a familiar that he had never seen before. The sides of his room were still intact, proudly donning an assortment of car posters and plastic models. But, the wall that should have been in front of him was gone. Instead, a gaping hole with jagged edges, as if someone poked through it with a pencil, replaced the door to his room and the wall surrounding it. That wasn't the only obscurity, however, as what was in front and beyond the hole was more important to him than the hole itself. Beyond it, there was an odd, purplish landscape with a star dotted road that twisted and turned over hills and through ominous forests. In front of the home sat a pearly white skull, perfectly formed without any irregular cracks along it. It sat there and stared at the boy with hollow eyes, as if it was waiting for the boy to speak and, for some reason, the boy felt inclined to do so.

“Um, hello? My name is Henry.” The boy said, his voice quiet as if he was trying to avoid getting caught by someone. “I don't suppose you know where I-” Suddenly, a chorus of voices interrupted Henry and all of them were coming from the skull.

“You're home, Henry. You're home and you have to go to school.” The skull’s mouth did not move to accompany this reply.

“Go to school? I don't even think school is out there.” A safe assumption coming from the boy in blue pajamas.

“Oh no, it's out there. You just have to move along the path.” The last two words in that sentence echoed ominously, as if it was a warning. However, the boy, for some reason, still felt the need to move along that path and make it to school in time. So, he hopped out of bed and began to change. He put on a pair of brown cargo shorts, some car flip-flops, and a red shirt that had the word “LIVE” printed across the chest in yellow lettering. Once his wardrobe was assembled, he grabbed his blue backpack and took his first step upon the trail.

“Thanks for waking me up.” He said, before pushing his other foot forward. Left, right, left, right, he made his way forward. Once he was away from his room, he could see that the forests and hills seemed to be floating over an abyss like a bunch of rock islands held together by the path. This made him feel uneasy, since he had a fear of falling to his death in a seemingly endless abyss. But, he continued onward, only stopping when he got to the first island.

“Good, you've made it.” The voices said in unison, which made Henry turn towards the direction they were coming from. The skull from before was sitting upon one of the many stumps that made up the forest ahead. “Now, walk through the forest. Walk… walk…”

“A-alright. Thanks again.” Henry nodded a nod of “appreciation” before continuing his trek. The path darkened as trees began to block out the sun above it. Henry would occasionally look up through a break in the trees, just to see if the sun would provide him with some familiarity. Within the few glances he got, he was sadly let down. The sun itself seemed to be much larger than the sun he remembered. But, that wasn't the biggest part of it. The weird About about this sun was the dozen gigantic eyes on the front that seemed to survey the land. Again, he felt uneasy. But, he kept moving forward.

“Henry, watch out for the cliff.” The skull said, who was now perched upon a tree branch.

“Cliff? What cli-” this time, he was interrupted by his own gasp. Quickly, he slammed his feet down to keep his auto-piloted body from walking off the cliff that suddenly appeared in front of him. The path seemed to break for quite a distance before reforming. There was no way he was going to get to school now.

“There is a way, Henry.” The skull said, seemingly out of nowhere. “Just fly across.”

“I… I can fly?” Henry scratched his head, leaning forward to see the abyss below him.

“Of course you can, Henry.”

Henry had to think about the situation he was facing. On one hand, it seemed stupid to think he could fly. But, on the other hand, he just had a conversation with a talking skull. So, without any further thought, he leaped forward and, just like the skull said, he slowly floated towards the path.

“Of course I can fly..” he said, before placing his foot on the trail and looking back to see the pit he had conquered… except, it wasn't a pit anymore. When he looked back, he saw the forest had returned and the path was intact. Annoyed, yet still relieved that he got past it, he walked out of the forest and towards the next island. Even though the sun was staring down at him, he didn't feel warm. In fact, he didn't feel much of anything. So, instead of taking the time to complain about the heat, he decided to look around him. In front of him, he saw two remaining islands with paths connecting them. To his sides, he didn't see much of anything. The endless space that surrounded him looked like one of those blue/purple galaxy pictures one can find on the internet. As he turned to check behind him, he saw a shadowy figure that made a chill spring down his spine the moment it came into his field of vision. He immediately stopped his progress and turned to face the figure who, once Henry was able to focus on him, disappeared without a trace.

“What is this place?” He asked, not really expecting an answer anytime soon.

“It's not school, Henry. You have to go to school.” The skull replies just as an unseen force shoved Henry forward, forcing him into the next island. This island contained hills of sand with small tornadoes throwing the small particles around and a large, blue monster with horns in the center. Henry approached the monster cautiously, but without fear, and began to speak to it.

“Hello. My name is Henry. Who are you?”

But the monster didn't respond.

“Hello?”

But the monster didn't respond.

“Are you alive?”

But the monster didn't respond.

“Ignore it. It will just sit there for a while. Eventually, it will leave.” The skull said, filling Henry’s head with thoughts of progression. So, he walked around the beast, whose eyes shined bright with tears. It watched him as he trudged through the sand, heading towards the path. He was so focused on moving forward that he didn't see the monster wave goodbye.

<-•••->

Minutes stretched their aching legs into hours as Henry was making his way down the path between the two islands. Even though his legs said they had walked quite a distance, Henry’s head told him it had only felt like a few feet. Was that good or not? Well, Henry didn't really care about that at the moment. He was nearing the final island which, presumably, was the island that housed his school. Pushed by an unknown fountain of determination, Henry began to pick up the pace. The island seemed to be a flat, grassy plain with flowers of assorted color dotting the landscape.

This is too easy, Henry thought, There must be some sort of trick.

Henry, of course, was somewhat correct. In the middle of the island was another deep pit, circular in nature, that blocked his progression. When he turned to see if the path continued around the hole, he noticed that the grassy ground stretched on forever. If he wanted to make it to school, he was going to have to fly over.

“Alright, easy enough.” He said, as he planted his feet right on the edge of the pit and leaned forward, using all his strength to launch himself towards the other side. He flew forward, and forward, and forward, and down, and down… wait, this isn't flying. Something had gone terrible wrong. Henry was falling into the pit, with his legs behind him and his trust thrown out the window.

“What?! I thought I could fly!” He yelled, as he zoomed down towards the bottom like a rock dropped from an airplane.

“What? Who said that?” A familiar voice, or voices, spoke to him as he fell. He looked up and saw that the skull was falling with him, as if it jumped down after him.

“You did! At the other pit, you said I could fly! You said it was normal!” Henry answered, tears forcibly pushing themselves out of his eyes.

“Henry, you have to go to school…” and, without saying another word, the skull vanished. Henry was left alone, falling down a seemingly endless void. Hope was lost, as the wind rammed itself into the boy’s frail stature. The only thing Henry could do now was wait.





Wait until something, anything, happened.






And, surprisingly, something did happen.

A glowing white hand appeared from the darkness of the abyss and stretched itself out to Henry. It did not speak, but, Henry knew exactly what he had to do. He grabbed on to the hand, holding it tight, and, suddenly, the darkness around him was replaced with a blinding light. He felt as his body began to feel heavy and his forehead began to feel pressure. Seconds later, the air that surrounded him would be replaced by an object. It took him a moment to collect himself, which gave him plenty of time to listen to his surroundings.

“Henry, wake up. It's time to go home, Henry.” A voice said, feminine in tone, which brought Henry’s attention into focus. He slowly tilted his head back and straightened his posture. His blurry vision began to clear as the shape of a girl began to form into an actual person. “Hurry up.” She said, as she grabbed his backpack and made her way towards the door.

“School is… over. Yeah, of course school is over. That's completely normal.” With that statement made, Henry hopped out of his desk and looked out the window to his left. He looked at the green grass, the colorful flowers, the trees, and, finally, the sun.

The sun looked right back at him.