15th October 2011, 12:22 PM
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: West Sussex
Re: THREE HUNDRED WORD WRITING CHALLENGE #3 — Read First Post!!
EARTH TO EARTH Reverend Wilkes stared at the panting, floridly dressed woman who’d burst into the vestry. ‘Mrs Pennington?’ She looked pale. ‘You must come!’ He followed her through the dusk to the churchyard wall, where a stone angel lay in pieces. ‘I heard noises,’ Mrs Pennington said. ‘Thought it might be vandals. But look!’ The grave the angel had guarded was broken open — as though from within. Wilkes shuddered. So, it begins.
* * * Descending the crypt stairs, he reflected on the Order of Evil Vicars whose work he’d uncovered. Over centuries and generations, they had corrupted certain burials by blaspheming the resurrection. Wilkes had never discovered to what ultimate end their work was directed, but fearing the worst, had placed stone angels at the heads of those graves. And no ordinary statues. His trembling candlelight failed to penetrate the crypt’s far corner. ‘The first has risen.’ ‘And the guardian?’ grated the reply. ‘Smashed.’ ‘But it awakened?’ ‘The wings were extended. My parishioner didn’t notice.’ The form of Shurifael dragged its feet into the faltering light. ‘Then the Exhumanations are more powerful than ever we imagined.’
* * * Up the bell-tower stairs, Wilkes led the impossible being, the chief of the angelic spirits he’d summoned into his occult mixture of cement powder and holy water. They stood together by the roof parapet, overlooking the night-shrouded world. ‘I shall hunt the Exhumanation.’ Shurifael raised his sword, spread his wings in a display of holy magnificence. Great pinions gleamed beneath the moon. He sprang into flight — And screamed, flapping frantically, as his stone weight plunged him to a shattering impact with the ground. As the fog of cement dust settled below, Wilkes wondered if he should have used carbon fibre. No, he decided, the Exhumanation’s first victims now distantly screaming. His congregation hated church modernisers.