The Shadows on the Wall- Part 5

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The following work of Flash Fiction is in collaboration with my fellow blogger friend, Jithin of Photrablogger. The picture above is his creative photography which inspired this series of flash fiction writing. Do check out his blog to read about his adventures while travelling and many lovely pictures.

Character List:

Margaret or Maggy- a 19 year old girl, out to search some truths

Steve- the caretaker of the mansion, a man in his fifties

Robert- the house cook

Grandpa- Maggy’s grandfather

Part 1 by Sweety

Part 2 by Traveling Hat

Part 3 by Saya

Part 4 by Moses

You are now reading Part 5 of the story. Please read the parts that came before so that you can enjoy the story and understand the flow.

Maggy sat up in her bed abruptly, shaken from the vivid dream she just had and saw Robert, sitting in a chair opposite, looking at her speculatively. Dawn was breaking outside. She saw the trees of the woods take form in the growing light. The cold light of the day did nothing to dispel her fears or to allay her apprehensions. She pressed her fingers to her temples. She felt overwhelmed by the turn of events.

She had arrived in her Grandpa’s mansion the previous night in the hope of uncovering his mysterious disappearance a year back. But, the bloodcurdling scream in the middle of the night and the encounter with a shadowy form had left her nerves frayed.

Maggy swung her legs out of the bed but moaned as she tried to stand. Robert jumped up to help her. Maggy felt a vague discomfort as he steered her with his hand at her elbow. The touch of his soft shirt sleeve evoked memories of a childhood when she and Rob played in the kitchen, in the house and in the woods near the enormous mansion. The look in his eyes as he appraised her were cool but she could not forget the warmth of his gaze just the night before.

Maggy freshened up in the bathroom hurriedly and changed her clothes. “I would like to go for a walk”, she announced weakly. Robert excused himself, saying he needed to be in the kitchen to plan the day’s meals. With trepidation, Maggy walked out of the side door of the living room to the large and now unkept garden. The fringes of the once magnificent garden were slowly being encroached by the surrounding woods. Her grandfather had regaled her with fascinating stories of the woods when she was little. With a start, she remembered her dream, where she was in the dungeon of the mansion. “Is there really a dungeon here? “, she wondered aloud. Her sound sounded hollow even to herself.

Maggy walked on. In her misery, she hardly looked at the tiny wild flowers growing in the bushes. The birds chirped, but her ears echoed with the sound of her Grandpa’s voice, calling for help. She felt as if she were walking in a dream. As the bushes grew denser and the trees blocked out light, Maggy realised she had walked farther than she had realized. She turned to go back. Trying to distangle her clothes from the thorns of a plant, she noticed strange marking on one of the tree trunks.

Surprised, she came to herself with an alertness she had not felt before. She reminded herself of the reason of her visit to the mansion. She had to find out what had happened to her beloved Grandpa. Brushing the leaves off her clothes, she looked around keenly. There was another tree trunk with a similar mark on it. And another… if it was a trail, it seemed to be leading deeper into the woods. She would lose her way, Maggy realised. “I must come back with someone, maybe Rob”.

Her heart quickened at the thought of Rob. With brisk steps, she walked back to the edge of the garden. Some of the beautiful wild flowers were trampled! Was she careless while entering the woods? Or had someone else been here, after her? Following her?

Maggy quickly entered the house through the small kitchen door. Robert was drying the dishes with a towel. Last night’s mess had all been cleared away. The door of the cabinet they had hidden in last night was ajar. Following Maggy’s gaze. Robert walked over to close the door. All of a sudden, Maggy heard a deep, rumbling sound coming from the cabinet? Or was it from beneath the wooden floor of the kitchen? No, she was not mistaken because the vibrations traveled through her body.

Shocked, Maggy looked at Rob but his expression was masked. “Rob”, she blurted out, “Is there a dungeon underneath the mansion”?

“Dungeon? No!”, he said almost harshly. Maggy felt lightheaded. As she swayed on her feet Rob shot out a hand to help her and she saw the crushed petals of the wild flowers on his shirt sleeve…

Can Maggy trust Robert? Where does the trail in the woods lead to? Is there really a dungeon under the house?

To be continued by Manvi

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54 Comments

  1. Oh my, I Love this new twist. Is the good guy the bad guy now? Ooh, this story is just getting more and more exciting. I really enjoyed this part, mystery is one of my favorite genre. Great part. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 3 people

    Reply

  2. Superb twists again….the trail in the woods is so exciting and so is the rumbling noise..hmm…I wonder what it is !! The possibility of a negative streak in Rob , makes it so much more exciting…Well done πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

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      1. That is so true Sona…its fun using your creative imagination to give life to characters born in another person’s mind ! Even I am so excited to see the way my characters have taken shape and the fact that the story is evolving so beautifully ! Cheers to our team πŸ˜€

        Liked by 2 people

      1. I just lunched a writing competition in a Nigerian university and i would love you to be one of the international judges! All the work involved is to read the long listed stories (Five) and pick which one you think should win the compitition! More details is on my homepage πŸ™‚ pls accept my offer.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Just checked the competition details. This sounds like a great opportunity for the university students. I would absolutely love to read the final entries to get a taste of the writing in your part of the world. Count me in! Being a Judge sounds like a big thing. I can this do this informally as well!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, Rashmi, i thoroughly enjoyed reading you in the last chain. You have a beautiful blog and your exuberance comes through in your words. Thank you for reading. I feel happy to be part of this great group.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

    1. Thanks so much, Abbie! I loved your part so much! Sorry for trying to kill off the romance that you had so beautifully brought in. I am rather bad at building an atmosphere like that. Looks like i need to be reading more of romance genre πŸ˜€

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      Reply

  3. I hope your 3 questions were answered πŸ˜€ I really love what you have brought here and as always,you paint stories oh so vividly. I think we have clearly established that one by now. It’s truly wonderful to write this with you. I’m looking forward to more collaborations with you and more of your writings πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    1. Yes, James, all my questions have been answered and some more. The way you ended the story was simply wonderful! Thank you for using up all the clues that the various parts provided you with. It is good to have you as part of our team.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

  4. This was beautiful Sona..You bought another thread into the story, and now the “hero” maybe a villain too πŸ˜€ and twisting it, giving more space to others to write..!! πŸ™‚ Exciting twist..!!
    Off to read the next part, and I am enjoying this πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

      1. Oh thank you so much for the support..!!
        Yes Jithin did ask me, but I kept kicking the ball forward many a times..
        But I will be doing it soon..!! πŸ™‚ hopefully..!!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh i think that would be really early πŸ™‚ I am still trying to decipher fiction πŸ™‚
        But your support was really kind, and I am really going to try it soon πŸ™‚
        Thank you so much …!! It meant, a lot..!!

        Like

      3. Even I am waiting to be honest..!!
        I really wanna join the chain, as soon as I feel comfortable πŸ™‚

        Like

      4. Crash course in fiction ?? I have had enough of my technical education πŸ˜›
        Ya, you are right…!! Too much of thinking spoils the fun, and makes us more conscious..!! hmm I too am gonna try writing something.. πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you so much! To be truthful, i myself felt inadequate the very first time. And scared every single time, not just because i have to come up to expectations but also to be worthy of being part of such a talented group of writers.
        Love to have you with us πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

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