November 20, 1991 – Calloway Falls, North Dakota
The grass where she’d fallen was wet, and the damp air drew across her flesh like a chilled shroud. Trembling, she rose to her feet. Who was she?
How had she found herself here? She could hear the harsh thud of her heartbeat, but what it was that had produced such terror, she could not remember.
Then a voice like thunder split the night air.
Prophet… desist. Rebelling only makes it worse…
She ignored the voice and tried to blank her mind as she ran deeper into the forest. Trees loomed like beasts, their branches raking her legs as she raced past. Rough roots and stones bloodied the bare soles of her feet, but still she ran on until exhaustion overtook her.
It’s no use, she thought as she struggled to regain her breath.
Her numb, battered skin bore purple blotches. As her mind remembered warmth, a light woven cloth appeared and wrapped itself around her shivering body.
She touched the cloth with trembling fingers.
“What the hell…” Her voice bore an edge of panic to it.
How had she done that? It had to be part of the madness still raging inside her – how much longer could she fight it?
The voice boomed a second time.
Her muscles grew taut as a grim shadow emerged from the trees and fell upon her. An icy cold filled the air as she struggled to move, but her entire body was immobilised. Even her tongue was held fast. Darkness poured into every cell of her body as she stood powerless, terrified unable even to scream as the shadow bent her will to its own.