Ravine Lereux: A Supernatural Short Story
Olivia and Edward Lereux live a quiet life with their chocolate Border collie, Axel in a picturesque cottage flanked by Maine’s blustery cliffs, far from town and people. Outwardly, their lives appear normal, but they’re not ordinary people. The Lereux family is cursed with something that has claimed their ancestors many years.
When Ravine Lereux receives a distressing letter from her Uncle Edward, she must return to a place she swore never to return, a place that’s haunted by something, an abnormal presence she feared as a child. Now she must face it again. As she races to the aid of her aunt and uncle, she makes an unsettling discovery about herself and her family.
THREE HOURS LATER, AT MIDNIGHT, Ravine arrives at Covington Cove. The jeep meanders along several narrow roads and chugs up steep inclines ornate with autumn’s birch and pine trees, toward the cliff ahead. Air dissolves thinner. Night alters. Dense fog swirls over treetops, creeps below, forming a diaphanous wall, dividing the road ahead. If she weren’t familiar with the area, she’d swear the other side was nonexistent. A warm, wet October would explain the thick fog, but it’s a crisp, thirty-eight degrees.
Swirling gauzy tendrils swallow the jeep, smothering views ghostly before freeing the car to finer mist. The incline flattens and then dips, revealing a dark mass drifting beyond a full moon over Frenchman Bay. The white cottage arises a surreal three-dimensional painting. Amber and tilleul heads tremble with the breeze, shaking foliage across the shadowy home. Windows shuttered laurel green, appear open-eyed, guarding the yard. The sun-bleached falcate timbered porch grins eerie in headlights.
Ravine parks the car alongside the slumbering home; praying Edward and Olivia are safe inside. Rolling the window halfway, she gulps pine, birch, and sea-scented air, expelling a long, soothing breath. Muscle twitches, besetting her since she left the diner, percolate along her feet and calves, and now dance about her thighs. Something within awakens, stroking and poking, effecting terror. She springs from the jeep and shakes her limbs, desperate to thwart what’s rising beneath.
Immediately, a charge actifies the air, raising hairs on her arms. Affright, she stiffens and listens while shivers lace her skin. The paralyzing fear she’d felt as a child seizes her mind again.
An ominous hush falls as though ethers paused for its arrival. Ravine stares around the yard, wraps her waist in shivering arms and glances toward the backyard. Trembling leaves halt with quiescent breezes holding its breath… waiting as she has.
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