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Cabin in the Woods (Part-1)

Published : Saturday, 3 November, 2018 at 12:00 AM Count : 682
Tafhim Radita Ali

I looked around, frustrated.
"We're lost!" I declared.
My friend rolled her eyes, "No way. We just travel north,"
"And pray tell which way is north,"
"I'm North!" North grinned.
I roll my eyes, "That joke is overdone,"
My friend, North, grinned, "C'mon, let's travel, uh, this way,"
I look around. Every tree looked the same. "Which way?"
North pointed to her left, "This way,"
I followed her, knowing there was no better option. I regret ever coming into the woods, but North had insisted. "It would be fun," she said, "Let's go on an adventure," she said.
Well, some adventure this was.
I look up at the sky as we travelled. The sun had been sinking lower and lower. I sincerely hoped we'd make it out of the forest by evening. I had places to be, things to do.
"This is your entire fault," I told North, "If we'd just stuck to the trail…"
"What's the fun in that?!" North exclaimed, as cheerful as a three year old seeing candy, "Where's your sense of adventure, Wes?"
I frown, "Who cares about adventure? I had dinner with my sister's fiancé this evening,"
"Like you would have enjoyed it,"
I shrug. She wasn't wrong. I hated my sister's fiancé with a passion.
"Hmm, that's interesting,"
I follow North's line of sight. A small cabin sat in the middle of a clearing. North looked down at the map, frowning.
"Nothing about a cabin in here,"
I fought down my nerves. I had been seeing far too many horror movies these days.
"Perhaps someone's inside. We could ask them how to get back," I suggest.
North looked dubious, "Are you sure?"
I smirked, mocking her previous statement, "Where's your sense of adventure, North?"
North glared at me and marched forward in a move of bravado. She faltered at the door.
"This feels wrong,"
"Calm down. Horror movies aren't real," I said, but I wasn't as confident as I sounded.
I knocked twice on the door and stepped back. North and I exchanged glances.
"Perhaps no one -"
The door swung open.
"Hello," came a voice, as old and as creaky as the cabin itself, "Who are you?"
"I'm Westley," I replied, "And this is my friend, North,"
North gave a shy wave, which was unlike her.
The old woman gave them a wan smiled, "How may I help you dearies?"
Her smiled unsettled me. It reminded me of those old Japanese stories, about the old woman and her baby. Except this woman had no babies and was certainly not a ghost.
"We're trying to find our way back to the main road," North replied.
The woman nodded, "Of course I'll help! I love helping travellers along this road!"
I wondered how many people came by. This are of the woods seemed undisturbed as far as the eye could see. If people frequently stumbled upon this old woman, the why wasn't it one the map. Not to mention, what in the world was an old woman doing out in the woods by herself.
As if reading my mind, the old woman said, "Not many people come around here anymore. I live here with my husband, who's a lot stronger that one would think. Perhaps you'll meet him on the way,"
I exchanged glances with North. That didn't sound scary at all.
She hastily said, "Could you just tell us which way the road is? We are in a hurry,"
"Of course!" the old woman gesture toward the back of the cabin, "Go that way. The road isn't far off,"
I was just about to thank her when I felt a bundle in my hands. I blinked at it. It had most certainly not been there before.
North incredulously asked, "Um, what is that?"
"Oh, snacks for your trip! You two must be exhausted,"
I didn't want to admit it, but snacks did sound good right about now, "Thank you very much for your kindness,"
We waved until we were out of sights.
"It's night already?"
I jumped. It had been barely afternoon just a minute ago. But North was right. The sun had completely disappeared. Not even the tell-tale signs of the sunset were present. I was as if it had been night for a long time.
"That's not possible," I said.
(To be continued)

The writer is a 9th grade student, Mastermind School, Dhanmondi

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