Oh, mother, I write this last sentences to you. I'm sorry I was an ungrateful son who wasn't ready to assume the role you had chosen for me as your caretaker. I wish I could have been, and in my last attempt to bring some peace to you I write my goodbyes.
The world is such an amazing place. I've walked my way through most of Europe, but, as the Lord will have it, it is in this cursed stretch of Italian forest that I will meet my creator. I should have known better than to keep going when the first signs of fever began; I felt sick and my whole body hurt. In my defense I must say that by the time the white wintery coat began to fall I was feeling fine!
The night was dropping its velvety darkness when I came upon a river. There was no other way to cross but right through it, so I went in. It was there that I realized I mustn't be alright because my limbs felt so heavy and it took all my strength to get to the other side. The small river felt as if I had crossed the ocean. I climbed out of the basin clawing and using every tree root that parched its side wall. I finally felt the grass under my body as I reached the top and I lied there, too exhausted to move.
Sleep overcame my sickly mind but it was not the resting sleep of the good souls, but the torturous one reserved for the insane. In it, the crimson of the twilight resembled the spilled blood of the murdered, behind me was a Black River of doom, and before me the forest was filled with unsettling cries which no gay animal would make. A symphony from hell, it was, and I ran away in terror through an earthen path. The earth turned to red dust that covered it all, even the snow that began to fall in light and delicate snowflakes. It was a ghastly spectacle that shone under the moonlight; one only exceeded by the sight of a horrible figure that proceeded to hound me through the leafless forest.
It was a white figure with a preternatural glow to it, probably a concoction of my feverish mind imagining ghosts under the spell of the moon. Oh, but it felt so real! As I ran even more hastily than before, it always kept close, hiding its face behind the trees but letting me know it was closer every time. The unnatural woodland whispered condolences and timid cries, for they knew I could not outrun my dead. In the last turn of the path it was there, in front of me. Oh, God, what a horrific sight! It was you mother, it was you!
Your teeth-less mouth in a twisted smile, unable to open for it was bound by the sad bow with which they silence the dead. Once your skin was rosy and alive, not anymore, oh, mother, not anymore. It is now gray and pale, and your once proud stance is now a hunched figure secured inside your shroud. How can I fight the assault of insanity when in front of me is a deranged illusion of the one whom I adore the most?
"No, horrible creature, begone! You're not her, you can't be. No matter how poorly I repaid her love, she would never collect my debt this way," but the horrible creature freed its hands from its bind and grab a hold of my neck, and even though it was impossible for it to speak, it did. Oh, it did!
"Benjamin, I gave you freedom in life, but you'd be mine in death." And a dreadful laugh cut through the night, soulless, and cold.
It was that laugh, that same appalling sound that now hunts me out of my dreams, that awoke me. With the last of my strength, I write these words for you. I love you so, and I'm sorry I left you alone. After father's passing, I should have stop my wanderings, but I was selfish and I wanted to live. I think I might pay with my life for my error, for I can see the white splendor of the ghostly figure after me. Oh, my beloved mother, I wish not see your face this way. Let me close my eyes, Lord, and may my soul meet you very soon.
* * * *
"Hypothermia is not a horrible death, but those visions... poor man! What is his name, again?"
"It doesn't say, Sheriff. Just the initials written on the first page, BJ Faraday. A Diary of my Travels," read the deputy, "What do you think made the marks on his neck?"
"No idea, but the Coroner will probably figure it out. Wait, you said Faraday? Wasn't Charlotte Faraday just buried in this cemetery a couple of days ago?"
"Yup. Her grave's that one over there. Holy shit! Right where we found his body!" The astounded men stared at the headstone half expecting for something to come out of the still loose earth.
"Let's get out of here. He might be just a mugger 'cause this sure ain't the Italian Alps." The Sherif said, walking briskly out of the creepy woods, but he knew Benjamin as a kid when they had attended Redding High School together. Benjamin was the only person he knew who had one blue eye and one brown. Heterocromia Iridium had Benjamin called it, recalled the policeman while wondering which were the odds of this random mugger sharing the same affection.
Remember to keep hoping to increase your chances of winning. Merry Creepfest!