View Full Version : The Dead Roam Free Chapter 2

February 10th, 2014, 05:27 PM
Chapter 1: http://www.writingforums.com/threads/144620-The-Dead-Roam-Free-Chapter-1

Chapter 2: Serena

The woods were filled with an eerie silence. Moonlight winked on the slowly flowing stream as a fire crackled just off the shoreline of the river. Jack clasped his hands together, rubbing them vigorously, before bringing them to his mouth, breathing hot air into them. Wisps of a light grey vapour escaped his mouth and danced in the wind. The fire continued to spit, radiating with a slight orange glow filled with warmth.
Something caught Jack’s attention, out of the corner of his eye he noticed Serena was still shaking; her breathing was raspy and short.

‘Are you cold?’ He asked, taking off his large jacket, and offering it to her.

‘No, you keep it. I’m fine,’ she lied.

Jack stood and wrapped her up in his jacket, the quivering of her cold bones slowed and her breathing grew calm.

‘Thanks,’ she said, as she watched the fire dance in the deep onyx of his eyes.

A cold breeze blew through the small camp, making the fire dance back and forth, as their shadows flickered onto the thick trunks of the forest trees. Thick clouds grew in the sky, blocking out the moonlight, and the orange radiance of the glowering fire was the only source of light in the forest.
The once silent woods now echoed with strong gusts and growing winds. The branches of the tall trees swayed in the strength of the air current, as Jack continued to warm his hands by the fire, and an awkward silence grew between Serena and him.
Jack began to hum and whistle a tune, the noise bounced off the trees and echoed on for an age. A bird cawed and its wings fluttered off in the distance, an unsettling noise which always set Serena on edge.
A howl carried on a large gust of wind called softly through the trees, as though it had been picked up not too far from the camp. It sent shivers down Serena’s spine, Jack remained oblivious to it.

‘Jack,’ Serena whispered. Jack kept whistling.

‘Jack,’ she said, raising her voice slightly. The oddly whistled tune still escaped from Jacks mouth as he stared up at the stars in the night sky.

‘Jack!’ Serena said louder; Jack turned and gave her a quizzical look.

‘What?’ He asked, frustrated. His face screwed up.

‘Stop whistling,’ she said, ‘I heard something in the woods.’

They stopped talking, ears craned to the sky, waiting for the sound. Nothing. Silence, eerie and heavy filled the campsite once more. A small breeze swayed the branches, but no howl came bounding through the trees.
‘You’ve lost it lady,’ Jack said with a smirk. ‘I should have left you back there.’

Serena looked up towards him, tears welling up in her eyes. She began to sob, her cheeks turned red and the sound of her choking on her tears plucked at Jack’s heart. His smirk faded quickly.

‘I was only kidding you know,’ he said, averting his eyes towards his feet.

‘I-’ she said, her words caught deep in her throat. ‘I know, Jack.’

Silence erupted between them once more, Jack sat and stared into the dancing of the flames, their tips licked at the sky tentatively. Tears still casually dripped off of Serena’s face.

An hour or so passed with still no words passed between the two. Jack had had enough of the silence, and chose to break it.

‘So how did you get there?’ He asked, glancing up from the flames which had dwindled to a small glowering ember.

Serena looked up from the log she sat on, her blue eyes were stained red where white should be. Lines of dried moisture were visible in the small light of the low burning fire, where tears had crept down her cheek.

‘Where?’ she questioned, feigning ignorance, rubbing her raw eyes as she spoke.

‘You know what I mean,’ he said. ‘I know we barely know each other, I’d like to find out more about you. Surely someone special gave you that pendant hanging around your neck.’ He looked at her pleadingly.

Serena sighed heavily, clutching at the silver, ankh pendant hanging from her neck. If she had not been crying so much earlier, tears would have been streaming down her face.

‘The roof you found me on was the apartment where I lived,’ she said, struggling to talk. ‘I lived there with my good friend, Carl. We’d been friends for a long time, and I’d never saw him as anything more than that, until a few weeks ago.’

Jack leaned in, eager to listen to more. Again, Serena sighed and continued on with the story.

‘We had heard stories of some people turning, becoming aggressive and attacking others. At first we thought it was just normal, people killing other’s isn’t very rare in this day and age, but the style in which they did it, and the media blow up had everyone worried that something wasn’t right. Anyway, Carl and I had been in bed together, when we hear a knock at the door. I remember each knock so clearly, it plays through my head in my dreams and in my waking nightmares. The loud, thunderous boom of the fist on the wood of the door, matching the beat of my pounding heart, being startled from bed, it always makes me feel uneasy. Carl got up and answered the door, while I began to nod back off, too comfortable to move. Until three words and a loud screech of grief ripped me from a near dreamy sleep.

“Woah, what’s wrong?” I heard Carl say, followed by the shriek. That cry, it was heart gripping, the pain behind it was, was.’ Serena stopped for a while, looking up at the countless stars dotting the night sky. She looked back towards her feet, another sigh escaping her lips.

‘It was a shriek that I now understand the pain behind. I leapt out of bed dressing quickly, to find Carl comforting his ex girlfriend, this perfect looking girl Cindy. She had natural blonde hair, and deep brown eyes, with a full hourglass body. Her smile was always sparkling and white, wherever she walked, guys jaws would drop, and their eyes even further. Between her sobs I could only make out a few words.

“He... bit.... me.”

Like that shriek, only now do I know the meaning behind these words. I came up and asked what had happened, and Carl told me her boyfriend had come home angry and frustrated. Cindy said he looked kind of pale, and his hands had gone clammy, so she put him to bed and let him sleep. When she walked in an hour or so later, she snuggled up next to him. She said he was still, not even the movement of breath rocked the bed at all, and he was cold. As she peered over at his face, his eyes snapped open and he attacked her. She showed us the red bite mark, it was bloody and deep. That’s when she ran here; she explained she had nowhere else to go.’

Serena stopped, a noise had emanated from the woods, but Jack seemed too enthralled in the story of how they met, to notice. She ignored it and continued.

‘So we took her to our spare room, and told her to get some rest. At this point me and Carl began to argue, and I-’ she stopped, words became harder to speak as she fought back tears. Through the sobs, she managed to keep going. ‘I accused him of cheating on me with her, and he erupted. Mid way through the argument she burst through the door and leapt on him. At first I thought she was kissing him, and with a heavy rage, I booted her in the face. She flopped off him, and then I saw the blood, Carl’s blood flooding out in large surges from a hole in his neck. The gurgling sound of him drowning and choking on his own blood still haunts me, and I can’t decide which is worse, if he died drowning on his own blood, or if he died from blood loss. I try to think positive and say whichever way he died, it was the more peaceful of the two, but I know I’m only lying to myself. After that I realised what was happening and I ran out to the roof of my apartment, and then you came.’

Jack looked at her in awe, struggling to piece together a sentence.

‘I’m so sorry, Serena,’ he said. ‘So that turned girl I beheaded near the top of the stairs was Cindy huh?’

Serena nodded heavily, dry tears burst through her eyes.

‘Go on, get some sleep Serena,’ Jack said reaching out and touching her hand. ‘I’ll take first watch, you get some rest.’

‘Thank you,’ she said as she lay down on the soft grassy ground, closing her eyes. That night she dreamt of it all over again, the noise of Carl choking echoed through her mind as she tossed uncomfortably in her sleep.

February 18th, 2014, 08:34 PM
So glad i decided to read the next chapter! The beginning was a bit laborious if i'm honest, you used the word 'dance' way too much. I think the whole descriptive bit could have been shorter which would have made it quicker for us to get to the good bit.
The good bit i'm on about is Serena's story. In my last 'critique' i said that i didn't really feel much from the chapter, well i did in this one. I was drawn in (and overlooked any typos or punctuation errors etc.) and wanted to read on.
Much improved from the first chapter. Oh and i liked that it's written from different perspectives, gives the novel more depth.

February 19th, 2014, 02:25 AM
Thanks for the comment!

Chapter 3: http://www.writingforums.com/threads/145127-The-Dead-Roam-Free-Chapter-3