's 2013 Horror Write-off:

" Elephantocalypse "

Submitted by Anonymous

Nothing, not even her military service, could have prepared her for the sight of the mangled body of her co worker sliding down the extended throat of a giant elephant bull.

She stopped dead in her tracks in the middle of the stairs. She saw another elephant arrive in the great hall, and a third one. One of them actually carried another human body with its trunk, like a rag doll. Later, she would also think she saw something impaled on one of its tusks.

The entire building was shaken by the trumpets, both inside and outside. There were also the screams of people and animals. Yeah, no shortage of that.

Working in the House of Natural History and its zoological parks had been her greatest dream since early childhood. Now everything had changed in just a few hours, before anyone even realized what hit them.

From somewhere at the back of her mind, it started to come back to her that this park was world-famous for being home to the largest elephant herd in captivity.

As the elephants slowly turned their massive heads in her direction, she was finally able to snap out of her paralysis and run back up the stairs.

Elephants couldn’t climb stairs, now could they?

Of course they could. The stairs were broad enough, after all, designed to accept masses of visitors. The steps were extra low and wide, to make it easier for classes of preschoolers...

She didn’t turn around, the thundering sounds of the elephants pursuing her being all the confirmation she needed. The trumpets sent painfully intense shivers up her spine, almost knocking her over.

Shaking all over, she arrived at the second floor and ran through the hallways, cursing the megalomania of the architects who had designed this place, making most gateways so high and broad that even large animals would have no trouble passing from one hall to the other. She was glad that the stairs at least had slowed down the elephants a little.

She decided to skip the first bathroom she came across, and instead picked the second, a little further away, A hysterical giggle rose at some corner of her mind as she picked the men’s room, feeling extra sneaky.

Behind her, she heard the greatest racket yet, the unmistakable sound of the stairs breaking down. In their savage greed, the elephants had probably climbed it all at once, underestimating their collective weight.

Still, she hurried into one of the cabinets, sat down on the toilet seat and slammed the door shut, making sure to lock it. Then she pulled up her feet so they wouldn’t be visible through the gap at the bottom of the door.

Oh, she would definitely stay here for a while. Wait a day or two. She thought back to the blood-shot eyes of the elephant staring at her as he gulped down her coworker. There was NO WAY she’d leave this hiding place.

With all the discipline she could muster, she forced herself to be completely quiet.

The mind-wrenching trumpets continued to resonate all around.

Her biggest fears were proven right when she heard the sound of scuffing feet approaching.

It could be people, she told herself, it doesn’t HAVE to be an elephant who survived the incident with the stairs, walking as silently as it possibly could to sneak up on her.

But the heavy vibrations in the floor, coming ever closer, made this hard to believe.

Did it even check the other bathrooms?, she caught herself wondering, a strange feeling of frustration added to her screaming terror.

Or perhaps several elephants had reached this floor, and split up to look for her.

When she heard a knocking on the door, she pulled her arms around herself tighter than ever, rolling up like a pangolin, working hard to control her breathing.

She heard something slide over the door of her cabinet, then fumble with the handle. The doors to the bathroom were certainly too small for a full-grown elephant to pass, but she suddenly realized that she had forgotten about the reach of the trunks.

She pondered that even though elephants were color blind, the hue of the little red card that was visible when the stall was occupied was probably still distinguishable to them from the green card of unoccupied stalls. In that moment, she also remembered an occasion at which she had watched the dissection of an elephant brain.

But the door was still locked, and even if the elephant somehow managed to open it, she would still be out of the reach of its trunk. Just barely. Maybe.

Then she heard the unmistakable racket of a trunk dragging a tool box.