Victoria ran down the corridor, slipping and sliding on the bloody floor as she fled for her life. They were behind her, tracking her, following her scent, hungering for her life. She was the last one. Everyone else was lost.
The oak doors of the entrance were wide open, moonlight pouring onto the ghastly, nightmarish scene of blood and gore that was the Entrance Hall. Blood dripped from the candles of the chandelier overhead. Victoria ran beneath it, those horrible creatures relentless in their pursuit and Victoria didn't know how to escape them.
The graveyard whispered a cool, calm, detached voice in her head, the chapel.
Victoria didn't know if it was her own thoughts or if somebody had planted them there but she obeyed, dashing through the doors and sprinting along the length of gravel towards the gates. She flung the iron gates open, luckily they had been left unlocked, and she headed along the remote road towards the graveyard. Leaping over a low, barren hedge Victoria was in the fields, her breath was misty on the cold night air and her heart was pounding in her chest.
Cruel laugher echoed through the night. They were coming. They almost had her within their grasp. She took of again, fleeing across Farmer Herdock's wheat field and climbing over the stone wall that separated it from his vegetable patch. Victoria's whole body ached with the strain and the cut above her eye stung terribly but at least the bleeding had stopped. It was the scent of her blood they were tracing. It was what would lead them to her.
Victoria desperately wanted to stop for a moment and catch her breath but it would kill her. She didn't have any time to waste. If she flattered for even a second she would be there's. Farmer Herdock's farmhouse was straight ahead and Victoria could see the outline of the wooden barn and the dark windows of the Georgian home. She wondered if he and his family were safe. Under the current circumstances that was extremely unlikely but Victoria didn't have time to worry about anybody else right now. First she had to survive.
There was another laugh that reached Victoria's ears, a mocking laugh. They were playing with her, making her believe she had a chance to escape when really there was no hope…
No, Victoria thought fiercely, positive thinking was the key.
There. The pointed sphere of the chapel tower was growing closer and closer. Victoria could see the ancient wall, the gates, she was almost there…
Victoria's shoes clattered on the cobblestone path as she raced through the gates into the graveyard. The gates swung shut behind her with a clash but she didn't stop, she hardly noticed, she still had to reach the chapel. She tore down along with winding path, gravestones passing in a blur, the gates rattled and the laughing was high and frightening. The chapel loomed over her, a sanctuary, and she rushed into it.
The relief was immediate and so good she could have fainted with happiness. She halted by the stone font and breathed heavily, a stitch biting in her side and her head spinning. The room was dim, candles burned while the electric lights had been ignored. White lilies surrounded the large wooden cross at the front of the room. The laughing was drowned out by slow and sombre organ music. It was beautiful playing and Victoria glanced up to her left to see who was so skilled at playing the organ.
A figure in a dark cloak sat at the organ, his back to her. Victoria moved a little until she caught sight of his hands, large and pale, pressing the keys with perfect timing. The notes lingered solemnly, reaching into Victoria's very heart with a deep sadness. Victoria moved closer, her eyes fixed on the figure, she took steps forward…
The playing stopped immediately; those white hands stopped moving in their perfect motion. Victoria gasped, dismayed that she had disturbed his playing. She had knocked over a wine glass and she stared down at the shattered fragments, disappointed that the music had ceased. She raised her head again, staring at the figure expectantly.
The man rose from his seat and slowly turned to face Victoria.
Victoria's heart leapt into her throat and her stomach plummeted simultaneously. The monsters that chased her, all the blood, all the death, all the fear came rushing back to her in one big thump as she gazed into those intense red eyes.
Her death had arrived.