As I dragged my foot, leaving spots of blood behind for the soil to absorb and fuel the dreadful forest, my breathing became increasingly laboured and the tall, dark trees appeared to be looming over me and whispering secrets that the land had held for years. Every breath I drew and each step I took towards my approaching death seemed to be watched by eyes scattered all around me. My eyes were blurry from all the tears I had shed for my companions I had to leave behind as they awaited their slow demise , I didn’t realised the forest had become silent as I was thinking about all that had happened; the silence was piercing. It felt like I was dragging weights around my neck as I gently lifted my head to look forward. As if the events that had just occurred weren’t bizarre enough, the scene in front of me only served to frighten and confound me even more. There was a large bonfire in the middle of a grassy field that seemed to go on forever. The full moon illuminated the entire area, but even with all the light the bright grassland seemed even more unsettling than the forest. It seemed as though there was an invisible boundary separating the dark, horrible forest from the endless grassland. But what was even stranger was that there was a group of young women, only their arms visible beneath the brown cloaks, all of them had exceptionally pale skin that the moonlight appeared to reflect back as if there were pearls scattered across it. And then, as I moved a few steps forward, the forest’s silence appeared to vanish as a pleasant song began to reverberate in my thoughts. It reminded me of a mother humming her children to sleep. My entire body felt as though it was free of weight, and I could feel my feet gliding through the grass in the direction of the blaze. Although my mind was at peace, my heart was racing as I approached the bonfire and the women. It felt as though my heart was yelling at me to return to the forest for safety with each beat, and as this doubt grew, I suddenly recalled how familiar the forest felt. It felt as though the dark trees were casting their shadows over me to protect me from something, and it felt as though the soil wanted to engulf me to hide me from something. As this realisation set in, the music which at first seemed to be so calming, grew into to sound like agonising screeches and screams . The women in the group abruptly shifted their heads in my direction, and what I witnessed will always be engraved in my memory. Every woman was missing an eye, and in their place maggots were pouring forth. Time seemed to have stopped, and although I wanted to turn around and rush into the woods, my feet appeared to have rooted themselves. I turned around and started running, but it felt like the unsettling sounds of cracking bones and limbs were getting closer and closer, the forest seemed so near yet so far away. In the blink of an eye, the women seemed to be suddenly crawling towards me. It was horrifying as their bodies seemed to be contorting as they crawled, and even worse was that they seemed to be increasing their pace. I believed all of my running and efforts to escape to the light were in vain as I felt the piercing glare from their decaying sockets and their horrible nails almost gripping my ankles.I had not spotted the hole that seemed to coincidentally align on my path because I was so terrified and panicked at the time. I stumbled down after first sensing my ankles bending to the side and then my entire sense of balance failing. I started to lose all hope as the women were only a few feet away and I had unconsciously prepared myself for my impending demise. The women were vying to get to me first, and it appeared as though everything was moving slowly as I watched one of them scrape my throat with a sharpened nail before feeling it puncture my neck and exit the other side. In an instant, everything went completely dark, and I gasped for air as the warmth of my partner’s presence beside me and the comfort of my bed slowly began to console me. It was a nightmare. I put a palm on my chest to calm myself down even though my heart was pounding and my breath was laboured. I watched the full moon shine through my window as the shadows made by the dark trees formed patterns all over the room. I reclined and turned to face my companion. As I did so, I expected to see the comforting brown orbs I had known and loved all my life but instead I was met with empty eye sockets an bloody maggots crawling all over his face. I smiled as I kissed his lips goodnight and the dark night englufed me into it’s arms again as I drifted off to sleep with the bodies of all my lovers pale skinned mistresses buried under my bed.