Highly Commended Story - Junior Category
“The Possessed Orphanage” by Marilena Triantafillidis, St Catherine's British School, Greece, is the Highly Commended story in the junior category of the first biannual Short Story Contest 2020.
Marilena attends St Catherine’s British School in Greece. She enjoys debating and participates in many tournaments. Some of her hobbies are acting, dancing and playing the piano. She loves reading, especially books written by JK Rowling and George Orwell. Creative writing is her new passion and she hopes to see it grow further. Marilena aspires to become a lawyer when she grows up, to advocate more fairness in the world.
The Possessed Orphanage
As the curtain of night fell upon the eerie forest, one by one, the stars winked on in the darkening sky. A feeling of trepidation overwhelmed her, as she was abandoned abruptly once more. Shivering from the bitter weather, the memories came flooding back into Anne’s mind-reminding her of the haunting nightmares she had left behind. Her fragile body was as unstable as a lifeless man having a seizure. The bone white moon howled in exasperation and the frigid wind roared across the wilderness! The veiled trees’ silhouettes were approaching; warning her of the caliginous horrors that lay ahead. She was alone, lost. Without hope, without reason. Who would want to live with her? Her freckled face was pale, as if one foot was already in the grave. Anne’s ginger hair was tangled wildly and her diseased teeth had miniature cracks everywhere. Her pure, black eyes were as dark as a murderer’s footprint, staring around in despair.
A dense curtain of fog penetrated the massive expanse of land rapidly; so the light faded and the stars gathered overhead. An oozing path appeared out of nowhere. Seeing that it was her only hope to reach her destination, she started wading through the gruesome, thick mud restlessly. At last, she reached a spine-chilling, mysterious and macabre manor, which stood alone- proudly! "Lincolnshire Orphanage" she whispered to herself in apprehension. Anne knocked on the door carefully. No answer. The silence echoed through the ice cold air. She slowly turned the dusty gold door knob and pushed reluctantly. Quivering, she entered a pitch black hallway. Bang. The door slammed behind her, sending daunting echoes throughout the orphanage. She slowly ambulated up the stairway, each step creaking, as she ascended further up.
Tired after her long, intimidating journey, Anne was desperately trying to find an unlocked room in the blackness. "Why is this happening to me?" she moaned silently. Finally, after searching tirelessly, Anne found an abandoned dining room. Among the darkness, the dazzling candle was an almighty lightning bolt in the distance. A flash of light appeared in the black sky and the torturous thunder was howling louder than a wolf in agony. It made all the cutlery rattle and rattle and rattle. Splash. The spitting rain hit the stain glass window with such venom, it was about to shatter into a million miniature pieces. The air was as damp as a carcass with fresh blood all over it. Cobwebs were dangling from the slimy ceiling and the still olive and lifeless wallpaper was calamitously torn apart. Two ostentatious, golden features were located directly opposite each other, cursing any living creature that dared to look at their own silhouette- in either of the haunted mirrors! She sat on the once elaborate, beauteous carpet; which was now filled with gruesome grime. By now, the downpour had increased immensely. The rain became her lullaby, as she fell asleep peacefully.
There was an eerie scream, as deafening as a harrowing gunshot-there was blackness, once again! Startled, Anne got up as fast as a cheetah, fear taking over her weak body. A melancholic murmur echoed through the Victorian looking walls. Cautiously, she crept towards the door. A veiled silhouette floating could be distinctly seen, leaving Anne astonished and aghast. "W-w-who i-is there?" Anne stammered. It came closer and closer and closer, eyeing her with repulsion. Its yellow eyes stared directly at her as if it was sucking all the life from her lost soul! This was the end. Her end. She trembled helplessly, no longer having control. It was over...