february 2017 winner

Feb 28, 2017 | monthly writing competition | 1 comment

Congratulations  Alexandria Cook

No Way Out is February’s winning story. Alexandria has won a $20 W.O.W OP Shop voucher, a $20 iTunes gift card and will have her story featured on our site and social media pages. You can read her winning story No Way Out below now.

Thanks to everyone who entered, voted, shared and liked. Missed out on winning this month, March entries opens 3rd & close on the 21st, for more info click here.

No Way Out

by  Alexandria Cook
(MWC –  Feb 2017 Winner)

Suddenly, without any warning the ground beneath Sabrina’s feet started to give way.  Looking down she could see cracks appearing beneath her feet and frantically tried to steady herself.  The earth was crumbling beneath her and she felt herself sinking further and further into the soft, damp earth.

It was a day like any other or so it seemed to Sabrina that morning as she set off for her walk across the Common.  Feeling relaxed by the warmth of the morning sun on her shoulders she decided to go a different way and found herself heading towards the old, disused quarry. 

The area had been abandoned and the quarry closed many years ago  after the tragic death of a quarry worker who lost his life when he was buried alive under a landslide.  Despite several high level searches the body was never found and the area cordoned off.  Signs were erected warning people ‘to keep out’ and the quarry had been left idle.  Locals said it was haunted and strange, eerie sounds had often been heard late at night.

The hard baked earth looked smooth and inviting and felt deceptively firm beneath Sabrina’s feet. I won’t go as far down as the quarry she thought, I’ll just see how far this path goes and turn back if it becomes difficult.   She strolled for about 10 minutes before noticing the undergrowth getting decidedly thicker on both sides of the path but continued on until a sudden turn in the path led her almost head on into a huge tangle of overgrown bushes and brambles which barred her way.

Feeling a bit uneasy and not wanting to risk being scratched, she decided it was a good time to turn back.  As she did, the branches seemed to close in around her so she couldn’t see which way she’d come.  She pushed a clump of brambles out of her way but they sprung back and sharp needles slapped her in the face. She felt the thorns cut into her skin and a trickle of blood ran down her cheek.  She turned around again but a clump of dense, prickly bushes sank their tiny thorn-like teeth into her jacket and wouldn’t let go.  Panic began to rise in her throat as the heavy branches blocked out the sunlight and darkness surrounded her. The branches pulled at her hair and were just inches from her face.  Her breathing had become faster with heavy gasps and her heart raced so much she could feel it thudding in her chest.  “Help, she cried out, help me please, anyone, I’m trapped and can’t find my way out”. The more she struggled, the tighter they gripped her. No-one knows where I am, she thought.  “Please, can someone help me, I don’t want to die here all alone”.

Sabrina could feel the weight of the undergrowth crushing the air out of her chest as the outer branches began joining themselves together across her body like spindly fingers that formed thin ropes which tied her legs together.  Her face was stinging and bleeding from cuts and her hands were sore and red from prickles and insect  bites.  Terror gripped her as her feet sank deeper into the soft, damp earth below.  “Help”, she cried again but fainter this time; her voice becoming weaker as she realised no-one would hear her anyway.  Sweat ran down her face and into her mouth, mingling with the taste of blood and salty tears, she cried out again, I’m stuck, please can anyone hear me”?  With hope rapidly fading, she closed her eyes and began to pray, reciting the only prayer she knew by heart “Our Father, who art in heaven”….but suddenly faltered when she thought she heard a sound.  “Is someone there”?  but all she could hear was silence. 

Then she heard it again, louder this time and an eerie, high pitched laugh reached her ears.  She stopped struggling and thrashing around, her prayers forgotten as she strained again wondering if she had imagined it.  But there it was again, louder this time, more like a whine than a laugh.  Then she felt something soft and wet pushing against her cheek. Not knowing what to expect, she slowly peered through half opened eyes to see Jed, her Staffy X standing by her bed, his warm, wet nose nuzzling into her cheek. 

Relief flooded through her body as she reached out and put her arms around her wonderful dog.  Now wide awake, she was overcome with love as he’d woken her from a terrible nightmare.  “I love you Jed, so much, I love you more than anything in the world”.  Jed stood in front of her, tail wagging, tennis ball at his feet, ready for their morning walk.  Sabrina would have given anything not to go for another walk but her much loved pet had saved her from being crushed by a deathly copse and swallowed in a muddy swamp so she struggled out of bed, head reeling and pulled on some old track pants, a hoodie and trainers.

Still wondering why she would dream such a thing, she made her way into the kitchen and turned on the radio just as the Newsreader announced the 8am news.

Police cordoned off part of the Common near the disused quarry early this morning as the body of a young female walker was found entangled in a copse of bushes.  Police believe she took the wrong path, tripped and fell into some overgrown bushes. While trying to free herself, it appears she pulled the remains of a old barbed wire fence down, cutting her face and hands.  A Forensic Pathologist said cause of death was a massive heart attack brought on by severe emotional stress.  Foul play is not suspected but if anyone has any information which may assist the Police in their enquiries, please contact them on their Hotline on 11 00 11”.