The Haunted

"Oh Lucinda, if you think this has a happy ending, then you haven't been paying attention." She smirked amused by Lucinda's sense of optimism.

Something has come back to Bishops Green. Something that wants to kill. Something unworldly.
Sixteen year old Lucinda Marcs is cute, fun and looking forward to the start of her Junior year of High School. But little does she know that something evil has made it's way into Bishop's Green, her quaint, seemingly normal town where nothing ever happened.
And when Lucinda finds herself caught up in the mess it's up to her to figure out how to get rid of this evil for good.
But what happens when her best friend becomes a target? Will she be able to save her? Or will she fall with her?

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7. Chapter Seven:

"Nightmares?" Poppy whispered as she sat with Lucinda in their Friday morning Biology class. Lucinda nodded keeping her gaze on their teacher trying not to draw attention to herself or Poppy. "The same one for the past three nights." Lucinda admitted. Though she hadn't woken up screaming anymore her nightmares had got increasingly worse and she didn't have the heart to tell anyone but Poppy. She knew Poppy wouldn't think she was crazy.

"They're getting worse every night." Lucinda whimpered. Lucinda was normally a strong, confident girl but after three nights of harsh nightmares and minimal sleep she felt weak and vulnerable. "What exactly happens other than you walking around half naked in the woods at night." Poppy asked. Though Lucinda knew she had to tell someone or she'd go crazy she wasn't sure Poppy could handle the full extent of her dreams. After all Poppy got scared watching Harry Potter who knew how she'd react to Lucinda's unconsciousness. 

Lucinda took a breath before saying, "There's this woman. Tall, beautiful but her eyes are black, like a void." 

"That's frightening. No wonder you're not sleeping." Poppy shivered.

"That was just the first night. I woke up before anything else could happen but it's got worse since then." Lucinda admitted. She saw the way Poppy looked at her and decided not to continue. It was clearly freaking her best friend out and she didn't want to admit how scared she was at the moment. She hadn't even told Noah, she was sure he couldn't even handle what had happened next.

"Tell me. It's ok." Poppy coaxed, she was scared but she knew her friend needed to tell someone.

"The woman released these shadows like dark grey smoke from her mouth and they wrapped themselves around me and started whispering horrible things. Most of it I couldn't make out but I could just hear some words, it was nasty." Lucinda began. Her heart beat increased slightly as she made herself remember the bad dreams that had been plaguing her sleep. 

"And..." Poppy pushed.

"Then the smoke turned into people. Four people. And they all stood around me chanting something I couldn't understand, it wasn't in English. And then..." Lucinda felt like she was going to be sick. Though she hadn't woken up screaming from the dreams she had woken covered in sweat and scared for her life. She had forced herself to stay awake for the rest of the night which meant she was currently running on four hours of sleep a night.

"They started screaming really loudly and laughing at me. The woman, the leader, she grabbed me by the neck and started chanting again. It felt like she was choking me. I couldn't breathe and she just laughed. They all just laughed. I thought I was dying." Lucinda told her friend.

Poppy realised her friend was close to tears and she wrapped her arm around her shoulders. Maybe it wasn't such a good idea to get Lucinda to talk about it during class. "It's ok." Poppy said before she stood up from her seat and walked towards their teacher. Miss Locke was stood behind her desk flicking through the mounds of paperwork clearly looking for something in particular. Poppy hadn't even noticed she'd stopped lecturing the class and everyone was getting on with their own work.

"Excuse me, Miss. Lucinda really isn't feeling great. I think she should go to the nurse." Poppy said as she approached the teacher. Poppy tried to sound as kind and calm as possible knowing that Miss Locke wasn't the most heartfelt of teachers. The teacher looked up and glanced at Lucinda noticing the threat of tears in her eyes and the dark circles from her sleepless nights. No one could deny she looked a wreck. "Very well. You may escort her." Miss Locke said and Poppy ran back to her friend before the teacher could change her mind.

"Right grab your things." Poppy said receiving a look of confusion from Lucinda. "We're going to the nurse. You're going home." She told her. Lucinda didn't argue, she was too weak to fight, she merely picked up her things and followed Poppy out of the classroom. At least now she could finish her story without worrying about prying ears or crying in class.

Poppy stayed close to her friend glancing over at her making sure she wasn't crying. Poppy couldn't remember the last time she'd seen Lucinda cry, it just didn't happen.

"Do you want to tell me the rest of your dream?" Poppy asked. Lucinda nodded and sighed heavily.

"There's not much left to tell. I pretty much wake up right when I think I'm about to die but there's always a face I see before I wake up." Lucinda shivered picturing the innocent face staring at her in her dreams. 

"Who?" Poppy asked apprehensively.

"Alanna." Lucinda told her. Poppy's eyes widened and she felt a cold shiver run through her entire body. But Alanna was dead, she thought. Maybe Lucinda was having bad dreams about her because she had died so unexpectedly.

"I don't know what to say." Poppy said as the silence between them got too much for her to handle. Lucinda nodded, "I know. I haven't told anyone else." She admitted. Lucinda had wanted to tell Noah but she figured it would be more painful for him considering his relationship with Alanna. And she still couldn't figure out why she was having nightmares about her dead classmate.

As they reached the nurses office Lucinda realised that Poppy would have to go back to class and she'd be left alone with her thoughts. The nurse was always very chatty but that didn't mean Lucinda would be listening. 

Poppy gave her friend a tight hug before pushing open the door to the nurses office. The nurse, Linda, smiled politely as Lucinda walked inside and shut the door behind her. "You don't look so good dear." The tall, slender woman said to her. Lucinda merely shook her head and said, "I'm feeling sick." Though it wasn't completely a lie it wasn't the whole truth and Lucinda hated lying. 

"Take a seat here and I'll call your parents to come and collect you." Linda said gesturing to the row of chairs opposite her desk. Lucinda slid into one of the light blue chairs and let herself relax as much as she could into the hard plastic surface. She listened as Linda rummaged through her files and pulled out her emergency contact information. 

Lucinda wasn't surprised that the nurse had known who she was, it was a small town and even though Lucinda never went to the nurses office everyone knew everyone. Linda held the phone close to her ear as she dialled the number and waited for an answer. Lucinda wasn't even sure her parents would pick up and there was no one else for her to call. Both Lucinda's grandparents had died when she was very young and she didn't have any Aunts of Uncles. 

"Hello, is that Mrs Marcs, Hello I have Lucinda here with me in the office she's not feeling very well. I was wondering if you would be able to come and collect her from school?" Linda said down the phone. Lucinda heard a muffled reply from her mother knowing it would be a surprise for her to hear she was sick.

"Ok, that's perfect thank you. We'll see you in a bit." Linda answered before putting the phone down. "Your mother's on her way." Linda told the teenager. Lucinda merely nodded and stared at the wall in front of her trying to avoid any chance of conversation with Linda. She would just sit and wait for her mom to come and collect her and take her home. Though she knew her mother would make her rest and try and get some sleep right now Lucinda feared closing her eyes scared to see the woman and Alanna again.

What is going on with my brain, she thought to herself.

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