Broommates – Episode 21
Author: Valerie Valdes
Title: Black Dog
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Kitty, who was outside, heard the howl most clearly and knew it for what it was.
“Black dog,” she whispered. She couldn’t move for fear of the creature. If it had her scent, running was pointless anyway.
Inside, everyone else was nearly frozen, but for another reason. The air had solidified like molasses in a freezer, hard and just as cold, black as pitch. Miranda could feel it trying to force its way into her mouth; she gritted her teeth against the sensation. Here was Grant’s trap, then, but what was it? Solid fog wouldn’t be so dark, and neither would a temporal stasis, which tended to cause red or blue trails. What it really felt like, when she thought about it, was ghosts. A whole swarm of them, all piled together like a rugby team made of mist. Unfortunately, she couldn’t move her mouth to attempt a banishing.
Behind her, something screamed, something decidedly not human and very much in pain. This scream was joined by others, until the cacophony nearly split Miranda’s head. Within seconds, she could move freely, and the dim light of her glow stick once again pushed back the darkness. She turned to see Anthony swinging a sword at Parker, who was covered in a layer of what looked like filmy black smoke. Beatrice was already free and rushing outside to stand beside Kitty.
“When we get out of here,” Miranda told Anthony, “you are spilling the beans about that sword if I have to–”
“Later!” he shouted.
Miranda exited the crypt to find Beatrice and Kitty both staring at the trees barely a hundred feet away. Another howl pierced the air, closer than the last.