Submitted into Contest #143 in response to: Set your story in the woods or on a campground. ... view prompt


Adventure Mystery Thriller

For the umpteenth time Rev decided to choose the path less travelled, or so she hoped. Down the road and around the corner there was a pathway that one day, she had to meander down, just to see. See what? She had no clue, but these mystery walkways disappearing into the woods, were always a draw. Forever and a day, random side adventures captured her imagination, interest, and curiosity. Today’s scene reflected her past which has now led to an interesting path to her future.  

It was the many moments as a little kid disappearing into the woods where Rev found so many treasures. The best trophies came from old cellar holes. Bottles from long ago with remnants of mystery liquids turned into a major collection as the styles back then were unique. The spring thaw one day led her to a treasure trove of young lady slippers just showing their stems. These flowers were such a unique variety to find just to see, not to pick, but for the beauty in finding Mother Nature’s blooming treasure. These moments turned into years and for every memory into the wild there was a look back on a beautiful life never to be taken for granted. One thing Rev always, always, always remembered to do and that was to make sure to see where each foot was placed when stepping through the woods. Snakes be damned!   

With a new chapter beginning in her life, there was so much in this new town where she found herself. Who knew there was so many hidden gems off road?  It was the draw of the forests and woods that was her calling card. And an appropriate reflection came to her just like in Robert Frost’s world in one of his classic poems, “the woods are lovely dark and deep.” This would take a minute or two she reminded herself. No rushing headway into the unknown. Rev knew she needed to put a cap on the adventure part since there was no way she knew where any “road less taken” would end up. Not smart since she had not a clue, yet, of the area. Baby steps, in a sense, would get Rev into the woods and explore her new stomping ground soon enough. 

Work came first and her commute into the city was a dull routine. But that was what it was, and it certainly was the day’s end that made looking forward to driving home so much better. Her friends did not get the reason for her need to be gone from view, living off the grid and to enjoy living in the woods. But when she had the chance to talk about it, it made total sense. She had to make peace with the alone factor she chose and not panic. But look how many movies and shows that used scenes like this where crazy people did crazy things and got away with it?  They talked on and on adding creepy sound effects, then jumped up and acted like these characters just to get it in her head. They were envious of her choice but had to add their twisted images to make it fun. This was a real way Rev decided to live and within this lifestyle she worked on a screen play idea. Over the years she compiled a boatload of story ideas. Some of these Rev fine-tuned and they made their way to contests. And that is where it ended. But every comment, suggestion, both negative and positive made her strive to achieve the next idea. Never say never. Keeping at it was the way she hoped that a real deal in the big world of a movie series would finally come to light. Fingers crossed.  

She bought a calendar to keep track of the progress every day and now was the time to up her game. A friend of a friend who knew a friend gave her the inside scoop on the current theme that was the new craze. Or a remake of an old craze, yet now with a modern twist. The one thing she did not want dreamed up in anything created from her perspective is a horror, zombie, walking dead type of series. Too much of that has already been done and it has lost its charm. No more need for that undone charm for sure. So now what?  

Adventure. That was where she felt drawn to, the adventure of the moment, a day, or a life. That resonates with everybody. Off the road, in the wild, on a quest, this would be a winner. A Hallmark kind of vibe in a sense but including the real deal with the ups, downs, and sideways moments as life would have it no other way. Then the surprise factor, of course. That had to be the huge ‘wow’ moment bringing it all together. The ending would have each person watching the show leave with a jaw dropping moment.  

It was her day off from work and now was the time to hit that trail down the road and around the corner. Here she was, heading into the unknown with only a canteen of water. But Rev had a sense of place which led to hundreds of trips off the beaten path and into the woods. Today her journey began with serenity. Ten minutes, a half hour and now two hours later Rev realized it was time to turn around. Going back however, did not seem the same. Looking to the left, another trail called, and she opted to sidetrack to find out why this way was not obvious before. Suddenly, the way became more of a meander over and through a broken ground of fallen trees and stonewalls. Where was this leading? 

The wind suddenly picked up, and storm clouds began to cover the sky. Now Rev became nervous. Not the place to be when the weather changed in a flash. Why had she not sensed this? Turning around was not an option as the tall trees were bending and cracking. Follow the stonewall. It was a way and a marked property boundary that would lead to somewhere and get Rev back to the road, she was sure. Until she sensed she was being followed. Stepping as fast as she could among the debris of fallen branches, Rev skirted the edge of the stonewall glancing back every now and then in an attempt to see whoever was behind her. Not looking ahead one moment, she fell to her knees. In pain, Rev pulled herself up, breathing in gasps, she saw someone in the distance. The person shifted out of view, and she was beside herself not knowing if they were friend or foe. “Alright! You got me. I’m not stupid!” she yelled into the woods. It became quiet as the wind died down, but the clouds were darker than ever. Rev turned and attempted to hurry but needed to adjust her injured knee. It was not going well as she turned upon hearing footsteps scrunching from several angles towards her. She picked up a rock to defend herself from not one but three people suddenly coming at her disguised in dark hoodies. She screamed in panic as they approached her, fist raised, when each one stopped, pulled down their hoodie and yelled surprise. It was her friends and the ones who spooked her not that long ago. 

Rev yelled and swore a blue streak at them. But finally, each one came up and gave her a hug. They did not apologize just made her realize it could have been a lot worse.   

“So, the reason we pranked you, Rev,” Jack said being the leader of the triple fiend's aka friends, “is that we have something incredible to show you. And yes, it is in your happy place also known as these woods.” Jack added, “We found an amazing place you can now call your second home.” 

Rev, looked at everyone with surprise and was happy to have them near even after their stupid movie stunt. “Ok, I am now ready to see this mystery place. Before long they came to a cryptic rock arrangement, quite hidden to the average person, but upon a closer look had a metal door crafted within the medley. She looked at Jack, mouth open, chin dropped. She was in awe of this surprise. He just smiled and before she even asked the first question, he said, “Yes, you are right, so let’s get this party started.” He opened the door and told each one to watch their step. “Falling is not an option.” 

They went down nearly two stories to the bottom. Each one had a flashlight to show Rev the area surrounding cavern they were in. The air was fragrant with a scent of napalm with a hint of burnt marshmallows. It was full of everything to survive the end of time as it was an underground safe place created in the event of the next world disaster. 

Rev screamed with such a happy vibe, punching her fists in the air. Jack gave her a high five and everyone laughed, then stood around giving her a well-received round of applause.  

Her latest movie series now had the theme, with the place, the bad ass characters, and the ‘wow’ factor. 

April 29, 2022 23:32

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