Flash Friday 01/04/2016: Cabin Leaver
The first sign that David and Amanda weren’t alone was a loud thud outside the darkened wooden cabin.
The pair held out their candles to illuminate the cabin door. An axe could easily break through. So could a chainsaw. The killer could barge through without a second thought. It wasn’t so much a case of if he’d enter, but when. When he did, they had to be ready to either fight or flee. Given how high the body count was already, there may only be one choice.
The pair waited on edge. Nothing happened.
“David,” Amanda breathed. “I think he’s right outside.”
David didn’t say anything. He gave a solid nod, his gaze fixated on the door.
“I’ll take the flashlight,” she said. She slowly lifted it off of the nearby table, clicking it on. “I’ll go out and investigate. If I don’t make it back, warn the others, okay?”
Amanda crossed the cabin, resting her hand on the doorhandle. She hadn’t had the time to apply pressure to it before David hissed “no”.
Amanda turned. “What do you mean, ‘no’?”
“What I mean is, why the hell are you going out of the cabin to check if he’s there?”
Amanda blinked, as if David was the stupid one. “To see if he’s there, obviously.”
“Yes, you could go outside and look around the woods to try to find him, or you can stay here in the safety of the cabin.”
Amanda blinked again. “But we have to–”
“We don’t have to do anything. He’s outside, right now, probably waiting for us to leave. So we’ll stay in here, where we have the advantage.”
“But if I don’t go out there with this flashlight, then…”
“Then what, exactly?”
Amanda stared at David, as if trying to find words. Then, still in total silence, she turned the door handle and opened the door ajar.
David slammed it shut again.
“What the hell is wrong with you?!” David spat, no longer caring for his volume. “Why are you so keen to go out and get yourself killed?”
“But…I heard a thud–”
“Yes, I know, I heard it too. Do you know what I thought of when I heard it? ‘It’s a good thing that we’re in this cabin with tools and weapons and–‘ for Chrissakes, Amanda, we have a gun here! A gun! Mounted on the bloody wall! And you’re going out there to meet with a mass murderer with nothing more than a light!”
Amanda pouted. “Now you’re just trying to make me out like an idiot.”
“Because you are! Because you’re in a situation where a mad slasher is on the loose and you want to waltz out there totally unarmed into his domain! Are you thick? Have you gone mental?”
David’s tirade was interrupted by a tapping at the window. “Excuse me,” said a hooded man on the other side, his face obscured by shadow. He pointed behind himself.”I made a loud ‘thud’ noise outside your cabin just now. That means one of you has to come out to investigate it, in order to satiate your burning curiosity and advance the tension of the scene.”
Amanda put her hands on her hips, shooting a smug look to David. “See? I told you I was right.”
“He’s the bloody murderer! He’s a violent psychopath that deserves to be locked away for life! He only wants you to leave the cabin so he can kill you! ”
The murderer waved from the window. “I’m right here, you know.”
“Oh, he wouldn’t do that, surely,” said Amanda.
“Yes he would! He’s been stalking the camp grounds with a giant pair of shears the entire time!”
“Oh, don’t be harsh,” the murderer said, holding them up. He gave them some test snips. “They’re not that big.”
“They’re still ruddy big!”
“I’ve seen bigger.”
“It doesn’t matter. Either way, you’ll still murder us with them.”
“No I won’t.”
“Yes you will!”
“Says the time you sliced open the campsite leader and strung his entrails over the campfire!”
The murderer paused. Then, he added, “that was just one time.”
“What about the park attendant you sliced the head off of?”
“What about the gift shop clerk whose head you stuffed into a bear?”
“If you could just listen–”
“What about the woodworks instructor you literally used like a sockpuppet and made him sing I’m a Little Teapot?”
“You know what?” the murderer said. “You’re just making me out as an awful person in front of others, and I don’t think I like it.”
“Yeah,” Amanda said. “What’s wrong with you, David? I thought you said camping alleviated stress, not made you even more bitter.”
“He’s going to kill us!”
“You can’t just judge a person based on their past actions. Sometimes people change, move on, find a new way to–”
“He’s trying to kill you right now!”
Amanda turned around, catching the murderer as he was in the middle of throwing a woodaxe through the window. The murderer flinched, dropped the axe, looked sheepishly at the floor for a moment, then said, “you can’t prove anything.”
“Maybe not,” David said, unmounting the gun from the wall, “but I can sure as hell stop something.”
“Wait a minute!” the figure gasped. “You can’t shoot me! That’s murder!”
The hooded figure managed to duck before the bullet shattered the window. Hurried footfall was the only thing the pair heard, listening as it ran off into the distance.
“Right then,” David said, reloading the rifle. “Now that that’s settled, let’s make a move to contact the police, shall we?”
“Oh,” Amanda spat as David crossed the cabin. “And I suppose now is a perfectly good time to leave the cabin, huh? Always on your terms.”
David pretended not to care.