Under the Folds of the Sea

Written in response to: Set your story in a silent house by the sea.... view prompt


Horror Fiction Suspense

The wind whistled with a screech. It banged against the boarded-up windows and doors of homes and stores, kissed the tops of the pigeon-colored clouds, and kicked up the sand on the shore. It kissed the face of little Sara. She stood on her balcony, arms crossed, staring straight in front of her at the beach. She watched as foam sprinted across the beach, the waves becoming more fervent and demanding. 

"We should race it." Molly appeared next to her, leaning against the railing, letting her hair get blown in every direction. Her dress fluttered around her. "It would be fun." Sara toed the wood under her. The faint smell of wet rot mixed with sea salt.

"I shouldn't, Mom and Dad wouldn't like it." she paused. "I shouldn't even be out here in the first place." It was the first time Sara's parents let her stay home alone. They went out to get storm supplies and didn't want to risk taking her. A small frown appeared on Molly's face. 

"Then why are you?" The 8-year-old didn't know how to respond. She couldn't explain how she loved to see the birds fly slowly in the sky, no one was out and about to chase them or take up their space. Or how she loved hearing nothing but the gusting wind. How at ease she felt when she was alone. So instead she shrugged her shoulders. 

"I guess I'm weird." Molly smiled and went to grab the other girls' hands. 

"Yea, you are." Molly spun her, and Sara giggled as she went around. This continued on for a bit until Molly's arm started to hurt and she had to stop. 

"Let's go eat something," Sara said and they quickly ran to the balcony door and went inside, leaving the door wide open behind them. The kitchen faded with light grey light, making it look more sterile than it already was. The smell of its disuse hung permanently. The two girls scavenged in the pantry, finding fruit snacks and squeeze apple juice. They carried as many would fill their pockets and went to eat in the dining room. 

"Oh, I know!" Molly said once they got there. "I can sit over here and you go to that end. We can be fancy." Sara nodded enthusiastically. 

"I can be like Mom, and you can be like Dad!." The dining room felt almost as barren as the kitchen. The walls hung empty of family photos and decorations, there was no plush carpet underneath their feet. The windows stood curtain-less. They took their time eating their snacks, pretending their applesauce was gourmet and their fruit snacks expensive. They crumpled up their wrappers and threw them at one another, ducking at the others' assaults' and crying out if they got hit. Then the noise came. It was a hush at first, barely noticeable and distant, but it crept closer and closer. The girls stopped their game.

"Listen . . ." Sara said, pointing her finger up in the air as if to better help her identify the sound. It was a hollow, rumbling noise, a loud whisper in a quiet room. 

"Let's go find it," Molly said, swiftly getting out of her chair and leaving the dining room. Sara got up and followed in the same direction as Molly, her footsteps wet against the hardwood. Her toes curled up the dust on the ground. She walked into the foyer, a curving staircase taking up most of the space. A few coats hung on the walls. Molly was gone. Sara looked up and around yet couldn't find her. She made her way up the stairs, each one letting out a small creak. Each step made her heartbeat louder.

"Molly?" her voice echoed around. No one responded. The noise became louder. A weeping chant of emptiness. It sounded like when just this summer Sara was stuck in a rip current. Her arms and legs were useless against the power of the tide, her chest getting heavier with fear.

"Molly?" Nothing. She walked into her room, her parents, and the guest bedroom. Each room was how she remembered, not a single change made. Molly was nowhere in sight. Sara's heart pounded. She creaked back down the stairs, the strange noise vibrating and filling her ears. She made her way to the living room.

"Molly." The other girl was kneeling down by the fireplace. Charred wood laid within, forgotten from the previous fire. Her knees were covered in it, staining her white stockings. Molly looked gloomily ahead, not paying attention to the other girl. Sara stood in the middle of the room, looking at her hands. They were trembling. And then the noise came again. The crashing and turning in the very pit of Sara's stomach.  

"My Dad used to make a fire every day here." Molly finally said, her voice quivering. She turned around to look at Sara, her eyes sullen and gray. "Does your Dad make a fire here every day?"

Sara shook her head. The noise continued, intensifying and rumbling within her. Sweat pricked her hairline. Molly looked at the ground, deep in thought. Sara stood motionless. The current had swept her up, unnoticing, then pushed her deeper and deeper into the ocean. Multiple times she had gone under, where no one could hear her pleads for help. 

"Molly?" The girl's head snapped up. Her eyes were filled with something feverish.

"Why don't we go race the foam?" She said, standing up and walking towards Sara. Her face suddenly looked pale, almost blue. She seemed to be limping on one side. "It would be fun." She reached for the other girl's hands but she hid them behind her back. 

"I don't think that's a good idea," Sara said, slowly stepping back to increase her distance from Molly. "The storm is really bad." 

"I think it's a great idea," Molly said, tilting her head to one side. "Let's do it." Sara's heart rose to her throat.


"Come on."


Molly's face gained some color, she ran forward and managed to get one of Sara's arms. Sara screamed as Molly dragged her to the kitchen and out to the balcony. Her screams were dead in the wind. Her body went rigid and weak.

"Don't be weird, let's go race the foam," Molly said, more to herself than to Sara. Sara tried to pry herself away with all her might, but it was useless. She screamed out again.

"No one can hear you." Molly laughed, dragging the girl to the balcony stairs. "It's boring alone in the middle of the ocean." Sara tried kicking her but she kept her grip. The wind raged on, jostling the girls as they slowly descended down the stairs. Then, from way up high and barely audible.

"SARA!" Molly's eyes widened. She gripped Sara tighter and started hauling her towards the water. The seagulls squawked in the distance.

"SARA!" A figure appeared on the balcony, looming against the grey sky. The grip on her wrists disappeared, someone scooped her up instead. Her mother looked down at her, her eyes wide and mouth slack. 

"What in god's name were you doing?!" She yelled over the wind, hugging her daughter into her chest. Sara sobbed in her arms. unable to say a word. 


"What was she doing out there?" Jacob asked his wife, who sat stone cold on the edge of their bed.

"She said some girl, Molly, dragged her out there." She shook her head. "Sara has some imagination. And some nerve." Jacob paced the room, his hand stroking his chin. 

"Do you think this has anything to do with ... with the family who lived here before?" His wife scoffed and wrapped her arms around herself. 

"Don't be ridiculous." But Jacob had an unrelenting chill down his spine. He knew very well what happened to the other family's daughter, And he couldn't help but hear . . .

November 11, 2021 02:13

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