THE CHASE | PART ONE

It darted across the street as she stared up at the moon. She only caught a glimpse of it out of the corner of her eye. 

    A cat?

    A dog? 

    Huh, maybe it was nothing. 

    She turned back to look up at the moon. It was so large and bright tonight. A full moon that had definitely had an effect on those around her. Everyone was acting crazy today. 

    Something moved in her peripherals. She glanced over her shoulder. Still nothing, but she felt off. Someone was definitely watching her. 

    She shuddered and started across the street. 

Someone yelled. She stopped in the middle of the road, looking to the left where the sound came from. People were moving quickly towards her. 

    Confusion and curiosity kept her cemented to the spot. The horde was moving closer. They...they didn’t look quite right. Their gate was off as the ambled forward. Each of the people was stumbling, almost like they were drunk. None of them moved with any clear direction. There were only five of them, but they gave her the greatest feeling of doom. 

A couple of them sniffed the air as they closed in on her. That’s when they found their direction. Together, they headed straight for her. 

    Turning, she ran down the street. Her feet pummeled the asphalt, but she could hear the group of strange people closing in on her. How were they so fast? 

    A bright light came around the bend further up the road. Momentarily blinded, she managed to get out of the vehicle’s way. She waved her arms in the air, trying to get the driver’s attention. The car flew by despite her efforts. 

    Didn’t he see the horde of people following her? She turned to look at her pursuers, but they had disappeared. Her mouth hung open as she stared at the empty road. 

    Something growled behind her. A set of hands grabbed her. One dug into the skin of her arm. 

    She awoke, screaming. She looked at her arm, deep scratches etched across her skin, illuminated by the bright full moon. It wasn’t just a dream.

THE CHASE | PART TWO

 

    She stared up at the full moon. How was there another full moon tonight? There had just been one last night. And, god, had last night been strange. She could still see the horde of people that chased her in her mind. 

    The scratches on her arm had grown much worse overnight. Red and swollen, they stood raised against her skin. The red was spreading around the wound. The color turned darker, almost black as the infection snaked its way up her arm. That is what worried her more than anything. 

    Something rustled across the street. Her hand snapped up, scanning the street. Nothing, but she stayed alert. 

    A few moments later, she heard the staggering footsteps. They marched out of time down the street. 

    Quickly, she ducked behind a garbage can, immersing herself in thick shadow. She watched as they ambled by. 

    Are they the same ones that chased me last time? she wondered to herself. 

    After the horde had passed, she crept quietly behind them. She tried to stay back far enough for them not to pick up her scent. If they caught her again, she probably wouldn’t make it out alive. 

    The people stopped suddenly. Like the previous night, they sniffed at the air. She expected them to turn on her, but they started down a side street. They were after something --rather someone-- else.

    A man jogged towards the mob. She tried to yell, but the man had headphones on. She took off to warn him. To avoid the strange people, she ran behind the houses, but she wasn’t fast enough. They closed in on the jogger. He didn’t see them in time: didn’t realize that something was wrong. 

    The swarm enveloped him before he had a chance to scream. 

    She stood watching, torn between joining the swarm and running as far away as she could.

THE CHASE | PART THREE

 

    The third night with a full moon. She couldn’t help be feel like she was in an infinite time loop as she stared up at the bright moon. 

     The horde of strange people were nearby, getting closer. She could feel them before she heard or saw any sign of them. The feeling worried and upset her. She watched the street where they had appeared both nights before. Tonight, she didn’t hide. Somehow, she knew they would overlook her and continue on their slow pursuit. When they passed, she joined their ranks, not thinking. 

    She could smell something. It made her mouth water. She looked around, noticing the others were doing the same. One of them latched onto the trail. She knew to follow. Together, the horde ran down the street. 

    Wait! What am I doing?! she thought. 

She tried to stop running, but her body wouldn’t listen. She had lost all control. 

    She could see what they were after through the heads in front of her. Another jogger. At least he was running away from them. Hopefully, he would get away. 

    She tried to scream to the jogger —to warn him— but her mouth wouldn’t open. Her vocal cords were frozen. 

    Terror filled her. 

    The horde was closing in on the jogger. He showed no signs of noticing the rabid group of people. 

    She screamed inside her head, hoping persistence would win her back control over her body. She fought hard against every movement. 

    The first of the horde reached the jogger. They grabbed his arms and spun him around to face the rest of the group. She could see the shock turn to fear on the man’s face. It made her hunger greater. 

    The rest of the horde closed in on him. They tore at his flesh. She fought her body’s urge to join in, but it was useless. She watched hopelessly as she got closer to the feeding... As her hands ripped at the jogger’s flesh. 

    She screamed and cried in her mind. She tried to close her eyes but couldn’t. 

    Trapped.

    She was trapped inside her own body, the body of a monster.