Tom’s Secret

-Tom! How have you been, man? I haven’t been able to reach you these days.

-I have been busy, you know how things are.

-I suppose, yeah, you’re a busy scientist.

-You know pretty well, don’t you? –Answered Tom with a low tone.

Dan felt in his chest certain heaviness; he’d noticed the weary face Tom had. Dan felt that maybe Tom was just tired, but he knew it doesn’t come just from tiredness. Dan made a strange gesture at Tom and said: “Bye, take care!” Tom replied the same and disappeared among the crowd in the supermarket.

When Dan arrived at the town, with a huge cross rising, and the population happy to welcome him, he met a different Tom. He used to be a young and forceful, but he started noticing that Tom was losing his strength, but it didn’t only come from his work, and Dan suspected it for the last two weeks, when he observed a strange scene at Tom’s front porch. Dan believed it was just a fantasy, but his neighbor confirmed it.

Tom had two weeks without being seen, and a weird smell came out of his house. The neighbors were worried, but it was one of the kids who said something none of us believed back then; the kid claimed a tall brown figure opened the door and stood in the front porch, looking at the road. The figure never moved, it was as still as a statue. The kid was pale when he went home and claimed that that person wasn’t Tom.

And when Dan saw Tom at the supermarket, the suspicions about him became true, even though he was still reticent. At night, the very same day, Dan’s kid woke him up:

-Dad, did you hear that? –Asked the kid, trembling.

Dan answered:

-No, there’s nothing to hear, my boy, don’t worry.

He looked at his dad as a shelter where he’ll feel safe, and closed his eyes again. Dan looked through the window and the entire town was dark, everyone was sleeping; there was just one house that was still alive, and it refused to turn off whatever it had inside.

Dan woke up the very next day and the thought of what he saw a day before still roamed around him. He stood in his front porch and saw one of his neighbors.

-Hey, David, how have you been? I’ve wanted to ask you something –asked Dan, and he received an unexpected and angry answered.

-Yes, Dan, I know where you’re going ahead, I know what’s happening. Let me tell you something, if he doesn’t leave this place, the fury of god will burn it down, do you understand?

-What has happened to him? –Asked Dan.

-No one knows, his skin started rotting fast, his eyes got a yellow tone that reminded me of sick man involved in diabolical acts. He started aging fast since a couple of months, but we won’t stand this anymore. Our town lives under fear and that’s going to stop.

David got in his truck and left. Dan quivered, everything was happening quickly, and the nightmare inside his chest became way more real. He had to buy vegetables, so he decided to use the day to forget about that matter, at least for a day.

***

-LEAVE! LEAVE! LEAVE!

Those were the words heard outside. Dan was woken up by them and he looked through the window; the nightmare had begun. Dan ran fast to his kid’s bedroom; the boy was sleeping and nothing seemed to bother him. Dan locked the door and made sure the noise wouldn’t disturb him. He looked for a t-shirt and ran towards the front door and he saw it, he saw the beginning of the end.

Tom’s house was trembling, the windows expelled a combination of colors and screamings; everyone thought someone was being murdered there, and these screamings joined and evil and unforgettable laugh that increase the crowd’s fury. David was already in the front porch, with a torch screaming:

-Tom! If you don’t go out now, the fury of God will let you go! Get out!

But those words didn’t last long, as well as David’s patience, for he lighted the wooden house with the torch, and the flames started eating the old wood fast, as though the evil laugh’s rhythm was being fed with it. It was a nightmarish event. The house fell apart instantly; it was evilness against the army of God in front of Dan’s eyes. He was paralyzed and tried to talk with David.

-David! No! He might be alive! Someone should save him! He’s still a human being!

But David’s eyes were red; the fury consumed him and he didn’t even look at Dan. The objective was to kill Tom, no matter what. The house burned, and the laugh reduced its volume to a point it wasn’t heard anymore, letting the wind cleaning the air. The silence fell upon the town.

-It’s over –claimed David.

-IT’S OVER –claimed the crowd.

***

The very next day, Dan went out with his kid to buy some candies and walk a little bit. Two guys were next to them and, fearing someone could hear them, one of them said.

-Did you see it yesterday? It was pure hell. Today it was said that twenty corpses were found under the wooden floor, as well as certain books about occultism and getting into someone’s body. I can’t digest what sort of experiments made that guy there. But it’s good it was over. Today, before sunrise, some wolves were surrounding the house, and no one knew where they came from, you know that there aren’t wolves around this place!

Dan left that place, fearing his son could hear anything. He went home again and, before opening the door, the kid said:

-Look! Dad! Wolves!

Dan looked at the burnt house and he saw three wolves, but one of them was different; it had a yellow tone in its eyes that made it different from the rest; it made it alive. -Yeah, son, wolves.