Labyrinth
by ff_b

The winds of October had turned cold, and Mark pulled up the zipper on his hooded sweatshirt as leaves swirled and danced about his feet on his evening walk. Darkness fell so early these autumn nights, and the eighty degree days he had experienced only weeks earlier now seemed but a distant memory to the college student.

Walking past the old cemetery on his usual route, Mark gazed upon the weathered and broken headstones there, faded memories of lives now long past and forgotten.- -Had it made any difference that those people had ever lived? The melancholy thought filled Mark with an involuntary shudder, and he quickened his pace. There were teeth in the wind now, and it had begun to spatter a chilling rain. Flakes of an early wet snow began to mix in, and Mark decided to cut his walk short in light of the deteriorating weather; this might be accomplished if he cut through the cemetery.

The shorter route is not always the best, however, and as Mark advanced along the trail winding through the cemetery he felt himself becoming disoriented in the darkness with wet snow pelting him in the face and limiting his visibility; hell, he hadn't dressed for anything like this! In the middle of the cemetery Mark knew that there was a small caretaker's shed; if he could duck in there for a minute, perhaps he could throw off the chill, clear his head, and regain his bearings. Surely this freak snow squall wouldn't last much longer...

The door to the caretaker's shed was only secured with a sliding exterior deadbolt; there was nothing in there worth stealing, and cemeteries by their nature tended to repel the casual and curious. The rough wooden door creaked open in response to his tug, and Mark stepped inside, fumbling in the darkness for a light switch. Finding one, a dim illumination came from ceiling bulbs, but Mark was surprised to see the length of the corridor before him.

He was additionally startled to see a parka-clad, bearded figure hastening towards him. The man beckoned to him frantically, clutching some kind of firearm. "What are you doing out here?," he shouted at Mark. "Don't you know that its already killed Hans and Lars?

Further conversation was rendered impossible by something with clawed jointed legs that erupted through a wall partition; twin heads dangled from the front of it, grotesque mockeries of men who had once been known as Hans and Lars. "Run!- -Warn the others!," babbled the Norwegian as he raised the business end of a flamethrower towards the rapidly approaching horror. The flamethrower only sputtered when triggered, however, its fuel having been exhausted. The Norwegian screamed as the thing reared up before him, splitting open to reveal what appeared to be an enormous vagina with teeth. Gouts of blood spattered on Mark as flailing tentacles whipped around the Norwegian and pulled him inside the gaping maw.

Mark backpedaled in desperation, groping for the door which had brought him into this besieged antarctic research station. He fell through the door, to his surprise landing on a hard concrete surface. Someone grabbed him by his collar and pulled him roughly to his feet. A bloodied and dirty face yelled urgently into his own. "We've got to keep moving!," the man cried. "Don't you understand?," he implored. "It never rests, it never sleeps, and it will keep coming at you until you are dead!" As if to emphasize that point, a door exploded inwards, and through the portal stepped the gleaming metal endoskeleton of a model T-800 series Terminator. The sophisticated killing mechanism fixed Mark and his new companion with baleful red eyes, and advanced on them.

"Run!," screamed the man at Mark, pushing him away. As Mark heeded the advice, the ragged man dodged a powerful swipe of the cyborg's arm and rammed a cylindrical object between its metallic ribs. The cyborg reached to remove the object but was too late, the cylinder detonating, killing his companion, and blowing the cyborg into several large pieces. Mark observed with horror that the upper torso of the cyborg was still partially intact, and the device dragged its mangled body towards him with one remaining functional arm. Almost falling over his own feet, Mark staggered through the ruined door through which the Terminator had only moments before entered.

The door only led to another corridor, within which the low humming of engines could be heard. Lights were flashing there, and a klaxon horn sounded an alarm. There were conduits on the walls, and scarcely enough space existed to pass through the hallway. In the shadows between pipes something was unfolding itself, something dark colored and shiny, like an exoskeleton. The alien creature which emerged was both reptilian and insectile; it lifted its large, oblong head at Mark, and opened its cruel mouth within which could be seen yet a second set of jaws; clear fluid, perhaps some kind of horrible saliva, flowed from the mouths, oozing out of them. The inner set of jaws extended towards Mark from out of the larger mouth; powerless to move, Mark stared at the spectacle, transfixed like an insect. Gaping, the inner set of jaws rushed towards Mark; he heard a terrible, snapping sound...

...and awoke outside in darkness. A shadowy figure wearing an expressionless white mask moved slowly towards him, brandishing a large knife on which dried blood could be seen. Mark realized that Michael Myers had come home for Halloween. Running between gravestones to escape the psychopathic killer, Mark wondered what he had done that was causing him to live through the scenarios of one horror movie after another. Perhaps the scarab that he had stolen from the Egyptian Museum of Antiquities had something to do with it; Mark had offended the gods of ancient Egypt by this act, and now was cursed to be trapped in an infernal labyrinth from which he would never escape. The spirits which had been unleashed would continue to pursue him for all eternity, implacable and unrelenting.

Mark stumbled over a tree root, falling to the cold, hard ground and skinning his knees. Blood streaming down his shins, Mark regained his footing, aware that Michael Myers was closing, his knife hungry for the young man's flesh. His breath coming in ragged gasps, Mark staggered forward, his eyes haunted as he calls out a warning in your direction:

"The spirits are restless, and angry...they're coming for me now...and then, they'll be coming for YOU!"