's 2016 Horror Write-off:

The Hooligans: forest

Submitted by Jac R. B. (Jacobguy)

I woke up and my home was filled with nothing but licorice.

It sprouted straight out of the floor, like it was some sort of bamboo. It was hard to get through it all, especially the door, but when I got outside, there was licorice everywhere. The licorice brush was so thick, and these "Twizzlers" (did I forget to mention that it was the licorice candy, not the actual plant?) Were so tall, I couldn't see the sky, as I begin to wade through I can only see darkness...

There is only the forest.

I've been traveling through the brush for days now, or at least, I think it's been days. Perhaps it's been longer. Occasionally something moves in the brush, the first time I tried to check it out, but that was before whatever it was started making the ground shake, now I only run. I've never seen its face, if it even has one. Every time, no matter what, I can hear it... and then i can FEEL;"> it... it just sits there, in the quiet, breathing down the back of my neck with hot, wet breaths.... but even if i turn around, nothing will be there, save for that rustling in the brush...

after wading and wading in the forest for so long i think i can see something in the distance....


i can see the sunlight.

I Haven't seen the sun in god knows how long, I've been in this forest so long, I've only managed to stave off hunger and thirst by eating these horrible stalks of licorice for god knows how long.

Has it been weeks? Months? Years? I don't know. but I do know that I can see the light now, up this steep incline, and I tear away at the hill or mountain, making my way to the light. as long as i run up that hill to the light, I can feel the thing from the brush. it pursued me, almost sprinting i think.

i didn't care, all i knew was that it was there, and even now it was violently breathing down my neck, only seconds from snatching at my flesh with unseen claws or stingers, but I continued on.

I find myself out of the forest, and though the thing in the brush faded away to whence it came, I find no comfort.

The sky is orange, and the only places where the forest doesn't touch are barren.

What happened to the world?

I continue to climb the incline until I reach the peak, getting as far from the forest as possible, before taking one last look back.

There's two strange areas of white and black, the latter in smaller patches inside the first. It took a second before I realized.

It was a silhouette. A silhouette of a person.

I didn't have much time before the patches of white and black, now realizing that they were eyes in the silhouette, "turned" to look at me.

I could only stand there.

Only stand as the silhouette moved like a shadow over the landscape, moving its "arm" over to me. Licorice sprung up around me, surging forth from the earth like geysers of candy.

I fear I will never escape the forest again. Now that it knows I'm here, it will never let me go.