The Dark

Tallulah Woods family disappeared (somewhat ironically) in the Dark Woods years ago. She now lives with her aging grandmother and lives a solitary life, only talking to her mysterious neighbor. In a land where there is no day and there is only darkness, candles are the only option. But when something tragic happens, and a wondering Tallulah ends up the one places she doesn't want to be, where she is encased in darkness, what will happen?

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4. 4.

The next day was a sad day. The day after that was sad too. And the day after that and the day after that. After four days of not leaving the house and sitting on the sofa, alone. Tallulah hadn't moved from when Gwen had left her four days ago. Gwen had left sad. Tallulah had stayed sad. After four days of mourning and adjusting to her new hair, Tallulah was ready to leave the house. 

She dressed in clean clothes and walked over the candle stubs and dried wax puddles outside her door, the Gwen's house. She knocked. No answer. She tested the door. It was open. Tallulah opened the door and walked in. 

"Gwen?" She called out. No response. Afraid of another incident, Tallulah grabbed a candle. She looked all over the house. It looked like it hadn't been lived in in days. When Tallulah, sluggishly and once more sadly, moved to leave, she saw a note on the door facing the inside of the house. 

' Lula

I am gone. 

~Gwendolyn'

Tallulah looked at the note defeated. She had no one. Everyone had left her. Her family. Her grandmother. Gwen. Tallulah sighed. She blew out the candle and walked to her house, fully encased in the dark. 

In her house, she pulled on more comfortable shoes-boots. She pulled on a jacket, took a few coins and left the house. Slowly, she walked. To the left of her house. Under the swaying lanterns. Her hands were in her pockets. She looked to the ground and watched the cobblestones as she walked. She walked and eventually her eyes started blurring. She just walked and listened and heard her boots on the ground. She felt the darkness surround her. She opened her eyes and saw small, dark houses. She saw broken lanterns. She continued to walk. She saw bridges and she blindly crossed them. 

When she saw something even vaguely interesting she walked towards it When she found interesting objects, she tucked them away in her pockets. A pen. A braided string. A piece of broken glass. A warped kitchen knife. She tucked them all away, safely. A scrap of fabric. A very used doll. A clip. She just tucked the objects in her pocket. 

The houses just seemed to get darker. She was surrounded by taller and thinner houses when she came across a long bridge. Most bridges were short. Most were nothings. This bridge was something. Tallulah walked across it. She tripped on the cobblestones and fell to her knees. She cried out as her knees stung. She then stopped and looked around. She was over a river. She didn't know that there was a river nearby. She crawled over to the edge of the bridge and looked down. The dark rushing water. If she fell in, she would never be found. She held onto the railing. She looked down again and felt slightly dizzy. But something caught her eye. 

There was something shiny on the side of the bridge, tucked away between two of the rocks use to make it. Tallulah took a large breath, building her courage. With one hand, she held on to the railing and with the other, she leaned down the shiny object. When normal reaching didn't do it for her, she laid down on the bridge  and reached down with all her might. She felt something for a moment and it didn't feel like the shiny object. Tallulah pulled her arm up, stretched it and looked down again, practically folding her body over the bridge. There was a note there too. A note. 

She reached down and grabbed. The paper was barely tucked between her fingers when she pulled it up. She took it in her other hand and reached for the shiny object, which was to the left of the note. She got it and it nearly slipped out of her hand when she pulled it up. She looked at the shiny first. It was a ring. Silver colored with a small red stone. Tallulah wondered how it had gotten there. The put the ring on one of her fingers and then turned the the note.

It was old. The paper was somewhat crisp. The handwriting was smooth and elegant. Tallulah wished she had handwriting like that. It read:

'I love you. 

10

17

8

4

?

-JMK'

Tallulah wondered what the letters meant. Who it was from. Who it was too. How the note had gotten to the bridge. She tucked the note away in her pocket and began to walk again. She walked until her legs ached. When she looked up to see where she was, she couldn't see. Everything was much darker than it had been. Tallulah looked backward. Darkness. She took some steps forward and tripped over something. From the ground, she reached her hands around and felt. At one point she felt something slimy. Her hand shot back and she jumped up, wiping her hand on her jacket. She heard a loud screech from somewhere above her. She knew where she was. 

The dark woods. 

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